GREEN BAY — Plans are underway to move St. Thomas More Catholic School back to a familiar school site on Green Bay’s east side, according to the Green Bay Area Catholic Education school system (GRACE). The announcement was made March 1 in a press release from GRACE.
The relocation of St. Thomas More from the school building at St. Mary of the Angels Church, 650 S. Irwin Ave., to the school building at SS. Peter and Paul Church, 1420 Harvey St., will take effect at the start of the 2018-19 school year in August.
St. Thomas More was located at SS. Peter and Paul Church from the school’s founding in 1987 to 1995.
St. Thomas More, which has students in early childhood through eighth grade, is supported by the east side Green Bay parishes of St. Mary of the Angels. SS. Peter and Paul, St. Francis Xavier Cathedral, St. John the Evangelist, St. Philip the Apostle and St. Willebrord.
GRACE President Kimberly Desotell said the return of St. Thomas More to the SS. Peter and Paul site positions the school in a more centrally located building in Green Bay. Greater focus at the new school site will be placed on blending and uniting cultures, generations and faith to support the journey of lifelong Catholics, she said.
“By moving St. Thomas More Catholic School to the building at SS. Peter and Paul Parish, we will have a larger facility to accommodate enrollment growth while still being able to maintain our small class sizes and provide personalized attention to serve the needs of every child at the school,” Desotell explained.
St. Thomas More brings a multicultural Catholic community together. The Spanish language is a key component of the school’s curriculum, which includes lessons in the language and growing Spanish immersion classes for students.
“The new school site will help us enhance our parish partnerships for St. Thomas More by directly aligning them with their Hispanic ministries,” Desotell said. “We will have an opportunity to realign the academic programming at St. Thomas More to meet the needs of the students and their families, and we will be able to offer additional programming for families.”
A 13-member planning team – comprised of representatives from GRACE, the school’s supporting parishes, the Diocese of Green Bay and the community – recommended the relocation of St. Thomas More after conducting a thorough analysis, according to the GRACE press release.
Desotell said all six of the school’s sponsoring parishes, as well as the GRACE Board of Directors and Board of Trustees, supported the move for St. Thomas More. She also said school staff and parents have been informed of the impending move, reacting with support and enthusiasm.
A transition plan includes working with the Green Bay Area Public School District on transportation needs for St. Thomas More students to and from their new school. Upgrades to the new school location also are planned, including information technology, furnishings and the playground.
“We look forward to what the future holds for our students, teachers, staff, volunteers and families as we move into our new school later this year,” said Olgamar Amor, principal at St. Thomas More. “Our school and our parishes will be able to better honor cultural diversity that is focused on excellence in faith-based Catholic education while we empower our students and families to learn, grow and succeed together.”