Open House Offers Opportunity To Come And See
Teachers at Annunciation Parish’s Christ the King School were in position at the front doors at 5 p.m. on-the-dot on Feb. 1, ready to talk about what makes their school special.
Catholic Schools across the Diocese of Evansville opened their doors to welcome visitors for the “Come and See” open house from 5 to 7 p.m. on Feb. 1. Staff members and volunteers at Annunciation-Christ the King were among the hundreds of school representatives around the diocese who greeted prospective school families as they toured classrooms, met teachers, learned about tuition assistance and asked questions.
Each school had its own unique spin on the evening. Some chose to let student representatives tell about their school; others held chili suppers, exercise classes and other group activities to promote community. Annunciation-Christ the King Principal Matt Moore said they chose to have teachers lead tours because they “have an intimate knowledge of the school.”
There were many questions throughout the evening. “Do you still teach handwriting? Are there opportunities for students to work ahead of their grade level if they are advanced in a certain subject? What’s the average class size?” All were addressed expertly by staff members of Annunciation-Christ the King, where veteran and first-year teachers alike collectively offered tours to visitors.
Middle-school language arts teacher Laurie Basham led prospective families on school tours throughout the evening. Basham was able to provide the perspectives of experiencing Annunciation-Christ the King as a teacher and a parent.
“I wouldn’t send my own children here if I didn’t believe it was the best school for them,” Basham said. “It’s a small school and faculty; we bond together and work to help each other out.” She went on to explain that all students were “her students,” not simply the ones in her classes. “We all do what is best for all students. It’s home for them.”
Principal Moore echoed Basham’s statements. “We have a highly effective learning environment, and we love our kids,” he said. “We want to help all children reach their potential and grow through Christ.”
As each tour group moved throughout the school, the hallways became enlivened with groups greeting one another and teachers proudly sharing their spaces. Basham led her group to a variety of specialty classrooms, including resource, art and minds-in-motion classrooms; a computer lab; and the school library. In each space, Catholic identity was evident through posted prayers and symbols such as classroom crucifixes.
As tour groups entered the cafeteria they were met by enthusiastic parent volunteers offering refreshments. Father Alex Zenthoefer, pastor of Annunciation Parish, joined Principal Moore to answer any additional questions from visitors.
Moore said he was grateful to the diocese for the opportunity to promote the school and potentially build enrolment. “It’s the opportunity to remind the community we are here, ready to partner with parents in faith. More than a school, we’re a Christ-centered family.”