When we chose Immaculate Conception School as the elementary school for our children many years ago I did not realize at the time that we were choosing much more than “where our kids would go to school.” Having just completed 18 continuous years of attendance, as all six of our children moved from Kindergarten through to Grade 7, I see with great clarity that what we chose back then was the place where our children would grow up. We are grateful, happy, and blessed that our family grew up at ICS.
School life immerses children in a particular environment day after day, from four year olds whose backpacks look half as big as they are right through until they are thirteen year olds taller than their mothers. School life has a great influence on a child’s experience of ‘childhood’.
All schools teach academics, organize educational and enriching activities, and offer team sports: ICS does these things well. But what ICS offers that is unique, difficult to measure but easy to feel, is an atmosphere of faith and of family woven into daily life at school. The school is a community where children are taught daily of God’s infinite love for each one of them, taught of the value of every person’s soul, the beauty of their own personal gifts, and their calling to contribute. In this small school students are taught to care for one another and they learn over their years there what it feels like to belong, to be known well, to have influence, to be significant, to have responsibilities towards others. Students feel comfortable to be themselves and so at the same time to take risks and try things. Then they take all this with them.
In this competitive world, it’s funny that the very attributes that can be too readily overlooked as “soft skills” are in fact the deal-breakers and difference makers in life. It’s true in people and it’s true for schools.
As our children have moved on to high schools and universities of their choice I know they take along with them the solid academic grounding and, arguably more importantly, the faith, confidence and happy memories gained during their simple, beautiful childhood years spent at ICS.
It’s been so good and we are grateful.