Ss. Robert and William Catholic School dedicates their new Early Learning Center:
To encourage curiosity, SRW’s Guardian Angels Early Learning Center provides a nurturing environment focusing on faith, knowledge, skills, and behaviors that are the foundations for future academic success.
On Wednesday, October 2, 2019, the Feast of the Guardian Angels, in a packed Parish Center, Bishop Roger Gries celebrated Mass for students, staff, parents, and grandparents of children enrolled in Ss. Robert and William Parish’s Guardian Angels Early Learning Center. Following Mass, 57 students, aged 3-months to 5-years old, entertained guests with songs and dancing, concluding with the whole group singing, “Angels Watching Over Me.”
The event is the culmination of a vision created by the Leadership team. Fr. John Betters, and co-principals, Mrs. Martha Dodd and Ms. Meg Cosgriff saw a need for quality child care in the Euclid community. The team brainstormed how to expand their already established 4-Star Preschool to include child care for the youngest learners. They did not have to look far, as the Merici Center, the former convent of the Ursuline Sisters who founded St. William School in 1947, was available and was the perfect space. Extensive renovation occurred this summer, repurposing the solid stone building into offices, classrooms, and an Atrium for the Good Shepherd Program.
The Guardian Angels Early Learning Center (GAELC) is rooted in the Catholic tradition and provides both academic and child care programs for children ages 6-weeks to 5-years. GAELC offers five rooms dedicated to age appropriate care and education. Rooms include: Baby Angels (6-weeks through 18-months); Toddler Angels (12-months through 36-months); Wee Angels (3-year old full or half day programs); Little Angels (4-year old half day program) and Junior Angels (4/5-year old full day program). All teachers hold college degrees and share a deep love of nurturing children.
On hand for the ribbon cutting were two Ursuline Sisters who had lived in the convent and taught in the school. Sr. Kathleen Ogrin, OSU (formerly Sister St. Maxim) taught first grade at St. William School before establishing the kindergarten program there. Young children are her passion and she was thrilled to see her former home serving so many children. Sr. Robert Goebel, OSU (formerly Sister Aquinas) served as principal during the late 70s. She, too, was excited to attend the ceremony and give her blessing to the new center.
Since opening the doors on September 3, enrollment has increased by 11 students, and tours are being scheduled daily with prospective families. The staff at GAELC meets every morning at 7:00 AM to begin the day together in prayer. Each day they thank God for the foundation built by the Ursulines and ask the Guardian Angels to guide and protect their work. A double rainbow over the building on a recent Saturday was a sure sign God is blessing the work being done!