One beautiful aspect of our faith is its universality. And when you enter a Catholic Church, with the familiar altar, liturgical decorations, and prayer candles in view, you know you are home. It’s an important part of our identity as Catholics.
For a Catholic school, embracing and promoting our Catholic identity is just as important. This is why All Saints Catholic School is currently undergoing a rebranding process in order to make its Catholic identity more known — not only through its mission as a school but also through the physical school building.
Melissa Wilhelm’s son is enrolled at ASCS, and she also has a degree in Marketing. She has been working closely with Principal Paul Galuska to help make some of these changes.
“A while back, we were talking about how the school building was somewhat bland, and the fact that we weren’t bringing in the Catholic identity that we wanted our school to have,” Melissa says. “This is something I am passionate about, so the first thing we did was really put pen to paper on what was important to us. We started from the beginning, with the mission. We created a logo that makes sense. We decided what kind of symbolism we want behind our core values and we took all this information and applied it to the physical school building.”
Starting with the public spaces, changes have been made to the school to make it aesthetically pleasing, as well as bring the faith into all aspects of the school décor. Some of these changes include faith-based quotes on each of the wall displays; Catholic-based banners at the main entrance and middle school entrance; and a display of the Kerygma in the main hallway which depicts Creation, the Fall, Redemption, Salvation, and Re-Creation. In addition, teachers were given paint choices that match the colors used in the new brand to repaint their rooms. This has allowed teachers to have some ownership of their classrooms, while also bringing cohesion to the whole school.
“It really helps solidify what the school is all about,” Melissa says. “Prospective families coming in for the first time will understand what the school is all about. We have been working to make some of our intangible goals and missions tangible. As a school, we also strive to teach the children respect, and now we are demonstrating to the students how we respect the physical space that God has given us.”
Beyond the physical space, the faith is being incorporated into many aspects of the children’s education. Students and staff begin and end each day with prayer. Each classroom has been named after a Catholic saint and has a sign indicating that saint hanging outside the classroom entrance. The classrooms are also blessed by Fr. Joel Sember once a year. There are Catholic-based professional development opportunities for the ASCS staff each year. These are just a few examples of how the faith is being incorporated and emphasized at ASCS, and there are many more.
“We know that parishioners in the Antigo Area Catholic Churches take pride in All Saints Catholic School, and as a result, make a substantial financial commitment to support us through parish assessments,” Mr. Galuska says. “It is important that parishioners understand that All Saints is committed to guiding our students to be future leaders of the Catholic community. In order to successfully do that, we must continue to create an environment that promotes our Core Values and Catholic Mission.”
All Saints Catholic School always has opportunities for parishioners with many gifts, talents, and skills that will directly benefit the students and/or staff — please consider how you might share these with our school community!
If you are interested in getting involved at the school, contact Principal Paul Galuska at 715-623-4835 or firstname.lastname@example.org.