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Castle Shannon's Parochial School


In 1894, Saint Anne Parish opened its first school in the church sacristy. The sacristy is the priest's room for changing his garments. This small class numbered 15 and the first principal was layperson Flora Kelly.

In 1895 a one-room schoolhouse was constructed. By 1912 additions to the original structure included two additional stories, a kitchen, lunchroom and bowling alleys. In 1954 a new school building was appended to the first school adding 12 classrooms and a gymnasium, which has been, the training ground of some of the finest girls' and boys' basketball in the area. By 1956 seven more classes were added. With lower enrollments by the late 1970's, St Anne's decided to close the original structure and had it demolished in 1977.

The first religious faculty of the school were, four Sisters of Saint Agnes sent to instruct the school's sixty students. In 1905, the Sisters of Saint Agnes were replaced by, the Sisters of Divine Providence. The current staff includes two sisters of the Divine Providence Order and seventeen other lay teachers. Today's enrollment is 323 students covering kindergarten through eighth grades.

Cathy Jakabowski became St. Anne School's fifth principal and second layperson to hold that position. Since she has been with the school, the school has installed a 24 computer networked lab and lightened the school's ambiance with stained glass, a renovated chapel and other renovations. The school also has an excellent forensics program, which competes in the Pennsylvania Junior Academy of Science. The school has Middle State Certification. Jakabowski feels the next project for the school is to strengthen their endowment fund. She comments, The development of the fund will ensure the future of our school.

As the oldest school in Castle Shannon still providing for the community, and in July 1993, the Middle States Association, reviewing the school since MSA accredited in 1990, concluded, The students of Saint Anne are indeed very fortunate.




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