Catholic Schools Office


The Catholic Schools of the Diocese of Knoxville prepare SCHOLARS, LEADERS, and SAINTS.




Empowered by the Holy Spirit and recognizing the vital ministry of Catholic education to the future of the Church and nation, we will provide a learning environment that emphasizes quality education and spiritual growth for all.

Core Values

Catholic Identity

Our schools are family-centered communities where all decisions, traditions, and teachings originate from our membership in the Catholic Church and are visible as we serve, pray, encourage, and support each other.  We collaborate and problem-solve in positive ways while respecting the views and needs of others. 

Service to God & Others

Our schools serve God by placing our personal needs second to the service of others.  We believe that work has dignity and contributes to the community.

Dignity of Individual Persons

Our schools believe that God created each person with dignity and love.  We believe that this         God-given life should be supported and cared for from conception to natural death.

Honor & Integrity

Our schools are open, honest, and trustworthy.  We seek to be fair and loyal to our calling, to those we serve, and to those who serve us.  We seek to overlook the faults of others and continue to strive to love them as our Lord has asked.


Our schools strive to do the very best in all endeavors.  We prepare, support, and assist our students to glorify God and to be successful members of society.



Our schools bring out the best in others through leadership and guidance in a collaborative and community-based environment.  The love of God helps the growth of leadership.


                                       2015-2016 CATHOLIC SCHOOLS’ ANNUAL REPORT



2016-2017 School Year

calendar image


Johnson City
Knoxville Area Schools

2017-2018 School Year


Knoxville Area Schools



Catholic Schools Week  2017

January 29 – February 4, 2017

Letter from Superintendent of Catholic Schools

Family Letter from Bishop Stika (English)                Family Letter from Bishop Stika ( Spanish)



2017-18 Tuition Support Letter-English

2017-18 Tuition Support Letter – Spanish


(Click logo above for Letter to School Communities from Sister Mary Marta, R.S.M.)

(Highlights are posted  around the 15th of each month for the previous month’s happenings)

February 2017

Latest News

Notre Dame High School

February was a very slow month for Notre Dame.

We started with the student athletic signing day on February 1st. We had two young ladies sign for soccer, 1 for basketball and 5 young men signed for football.

It was also the last three days of Catholic Schools Week in which we included in the January highlights.

We held a faculty retreat on February 17th in which the faculty was able to answer some questions given by Mr. Valadie.  This was one of our best ones yet.  The teachers were able to engage and learn so much more about each other than many of us even knew.  It was a much needed time together.

On February 27th we were fortunate enough to have Megan Almon of the Life Training Institute who spoke to our school this morning about being and defending Pro Life!



We ended the month with the big three school fundraiser….ChattiGras!

Our Lady of Perpetual Help School

OLPH 6th grade class enjoyed a fun, reflective, and prayer-filled retreat day!

Eighth grade students attended the annual etiquette luncheon, where they were able to learn and practice the rules of courtesy and manners while enjoying a meal at the historic Read House Hotel.

The Varsity Girls team took first place in the independent Schools Conference Basketball Tournament. Go Lady Rams!

Eighth grade student, Matthew Laws, son of Jeff and Becky Lewis, has been notified by the National Geographic Society that he is one of the semifinalists eligible to compete in the 2017 Tennessee National Geographic State Bee. The contest will be held at the Floyd Payne Campus Center, on the Tennessee State University campus in Nashville on Friday, March 31.

ChattiGras, Chattanooga’s Mardi Gras-style evening, gathered hundreds together to support all three area Catholic schools for the sixth consecutive year. Guests enjoyed a delicious meal, dancing, casino games and silent auction. The event was held at the Chattanoogan Hotel



St. Jude School

Sixth Grade students traveled to the Challenger Center at the University of TN Chattanooga to spend the day.  Students experienced a variety of hands-on activities that helped in their quest to learn about space and our space program.


St. Jude hosted the ISC 8th basketball championships.  St. Jude played cross town rival, OLPH, for the number one spot in both the boys and girls division with the Saints taking 2nd place in both.  Both teams played a great game.

The 6th Annual Chatti Gras was held on February 25 in support of Chattanooga Catholic Schools. Approximately 340 individuals came together to enjoy dinner, dancing, auction and casino games. Superintendent, Sister Mary Marta Abbott, R.S.M., provided the “Welcome” remarks.



Knoxville Catholic High School

Course Selection meetings were held by grade level on February 9. Students will be working on the courses they want to take next year during the next week. Completed forms must be submitted to their School Counselor by the end of school on March 7.

Our Diocese and all ten schools were awarded accreditation by AdvancED. Bishop Stika has declared that all of the schools in the Diocese should receive an additional day off from school. For Knoxville Catholic High School, this day will be Tuesday, April 18, following Easter Monday.

Congratulations to Luke Smith on his selection as a Finalist for Mr. Basketball in Division AA. The awards ceremony will be held on March 7 at MTSU on the floor of Murphy Center.

The Irish track team raced well at the Indoor State Championships.  The girls distance medley relay of Eleni Christopoulos, Sophie Wilson, Ellie Wolski and Shila Kapaya finished fourth to make All-State.  Callie Tucker and Georde Goodwyn both made All-State in the mile.

Congratulations to the Irish Boys’ Basketball team on winning the District 4-AA Championship. Luke Smith was named Tournament MVP. Brock Jancek, Chase Kuerschen and Jack Sompayrac were named to the All-Tournament Team.

Congratulations to the members of the KCHS Dance Company on their 1st Place finish in the small lyrical division at Hollywood Connection Dance Convention. All five members won several Dance Scholarships to attend the 2017 National Finals in Anaheim, CA, including the HC Dance Award, (2) runner up for The Hollywood Icon Award, VIP award, Hollywood Dance Shoot, (2) LG Award, (2) Music Video Workshop, and (2) The Fame Award.  The team members are Daisy Flomberg, Bonnie Claire Fultz, Rachel Rigsby, Abigail Underwood and Katie von Wedel.

The first ever Fine Arts Faculty Showcase was presented on February 23. The program included performances and visual art presented by our KCHS Faculty, as well as music from several of our performing ensembles.

Congratulations to Head Basketball Coach Mike Hutchens on reaching his 500th career win against Union County on February 24.  It was a great evening and very appropriate that the Irish played at home.

Members of the KCHS Band traveled to Belmont University on February 27 for a Band Clinic, and performed very well. Please visit the Knoxville Catholic High School Community Facebook group for a highlight video of their performance.

Congratulations to the Irish swimmers and divers for a great 6th place finish in the KISL Regional Championship Meet.  The girls’ relays notched top eight finishes in all three relays finishing 3rd, 5th, and 8thwhile the boys relays placed in the top ten in all three relays at 7th, 9th and 9th. This was a great meet for the Irish who have 11 athletes qualified for the State High School meet.

Sacred Heart Cathedral School

NJHS Ceremony

Rose Ceremony


Geography Bee

Congratulations to Patrick Barry, SHCS Geography Bee Winner, and Libby Williams our runner-up.


Mrs. Templeton’s 6th grade assisted a mock “CSI unit” in class today.

They became crime scene investigators by testing the physical and chemical properties of different substances to identify “evidence.”


7th grade science Fair

The 2017 Sacred Heart Cathedral School 7th Grade Science Fair was a great success!  Over 60 students worked for over two months researching topics that interested them and promoted the scientific method.  On Wednesday, February 22, their hard work was displayed in the gymnasium for their peers, parents, teachers, administrators, and a panel of professional judges to admire and review.  The students who received awards will have the opportunity to take their projects to the Southern Appalachian Science and Engineering Fair at Thompson Boling Arena at The University of Tennessee on March 27 – 30, 2017.  Congratulations to all our students!


St. John Neumann Catholic School

Synergy Exhibition at the Dogwood Arts Festival –

Congratulations to Jack Acord and Alex Latham, whose artwork was chosen and displayed at the Dogwood Arts Festival this year. Their work was selected from 124 submissions for the 2017 Synergy Exhibition at the Clayton Center for the Arts. Jack Acord was awarded 1st Place at his grade level for his still life drawing.


Belmont Field Trip                                                                                                                                            On Monday, February 27, six SJNCS band students performed with the KCHS Wind Ensemble at McAfee Concert Hall at the annual Belmont Wind Ensemble Invitational in Nashville. It is an incredible honor to be invited to participate in this festival and an invaluable experience for the students to work with the professional instructors at the university. What a fantastic day!


National History Day Success! –

SJNCS had 25 seventh graders competing at the regional National History Day competition on March 3rd.   Students created projects based on this year’s topic: Taking a Stand in History. Our students created exhibits, websites, documentaries, performances, and papers.

Two of our entries won first place! Maksym Ulmer, Luke Jessie, and Wyatt Devall’s exhibit “The King of the Ring” and Alonso Vela and Nicholas Beldyk’s website “The Cristero Rebellion and the Boy Who Took a Stand for Religious Liberty.”  The competition was very stiff across all categories. Congratulations to all students who participated and especially to the students who won. They will compete at the state level in Nashville on April 8.


National Geographic Bee –

Congratulations to Paul Liulevicius! Paul has qualified to compete in the state level competition of the National Geographic Bee which will be held on Friday, March 31st . We are so proud of his accomplishment and wish him the best of luck in the upcoming state bee.

St. Joseph School

Haiti Service Project:  “Am I my brother’s keeper?” Gen 4:9

YES!  Our students brought in over $1200 worth of spare change throughout Catholic Schools Week for our brothers and sisters in Fond des Blancs, Haiti.  We are sending the funds to Immaculate Conception Church’s Haiti Committee to bring much needed resources to Saint Francis Xavier Catholic School.  Thank you for your help in teaching our students the Catholic Social Justice Teaching of Solidarity: standing with our neighbors on a global scale and working for their good!

Saint Albert the Great Science Fair Winners – Feb 1

Congratulations to all our Science Fair participants, to their teacher, Mrs. Calvert, and to our winners!

8th Grade

1st Place: Keeley Wade

2nd Place: Georgia Wallace; Savannah Watson

3rd Place: Kate Landen; Meredith Thomas; Mary Vu


7th Grade

1st Place: Drake Light

2nd Place: Lola Boehmann

3rd Place: Scout Herber


6th Grade

1st Place: William Edward Lovelace

2nd Place: Gigi Sompayrac

3rd Place: Emma Ackermann; Aliyah Fox; Sami Taggart

Active Shooter Training – Feb 1

Our staff spent Wednesday afternoon in an Active Shooter Training conducted by Mr. Jerry Stout of the TN Department of Homeland Security.  Beyond the run, hide, fight message (also known as: A-void, D-eny, D-efend), Mr. Stout shared that one of the most essential factors in fighting against this scourge is Awareness – thank you to all in our community for keeping your eyes open to help us keep our children safe.

Parent-Teacher Conferences – Feb 9-10

Thank you to all of our parents and teachers who met last Thursday and Friday for conferences.  As our mission statement makes clear, the work of educating our students is cooperation between parents, who are the primary educators, and teachers – who are happy to help!  Special thanks to our Home & School Association for providing a delicious pizza dinner to our staff on Thursday evening.

The American Heart Association Says Thanks! – Feb 6-10

Our families brought in nearly $1200 during the Jump Rope for Heart program.  Mr. Drew Franklin coordinated the fundraiser through his Physical Education classes, both to raise awareness about the plight of so many in our communities with heart disease and to to encourage our students to avoid it through healthy, active lifestyles.  Thank you for your help!

Mr. Zengel at the Latino Enrollment Institute Retreat – Feb 7-9

As a follow-up to the summer Latino Enrollment Institute at the University of Notre Dame, Catholic school principals from around the country gathered at the Franciscan Renewal Center in Phoenix, AZ to share their successes.  In particular, the goal of the program is to help Catholic schools learn how to better welcome Latino students into their classrooms and to help their schools benefit from their gifts.

Homer the Hound Visits SJS – Feb 14

Our students were paid a visit by Homer the Hound, one of the mascots of the Tennessee Smokies baseball team.  Homer also made sure to express his love for Mrs. Calvert, whose birthday was this past Tuesday.  Go Smokies!  Special thanks to Mrs. Kathy Rankin for providing this opportunity.

Joel Mayes Visits SJS – Feb 15

Mr. Mayes is our Zaner-Bloser Rep and visited on Wednesday for Mass and to say hello to our Super Kids in Kindergarten and their Super Teachers.  As you know, we adopted the SuperKids Reading Program from Zaner-Bloser this year as a pilot and are very pleased with the results.  We will be expanding the program into 1st Grade next year and into 2nd Grade in 2018-2019.

Middle School Valentine’s Dance – Feb 16

On Thursday evening, our Middle School students cut a rug and ate lots of candy all while leaving room for the Holy Spirit at the Middle School Dance.  Special thanks to our 8th Grade Class Officers, Keeley Wade, Sami McLean, Meredith Thomas, and Mary Vu for organizing the event and to all our staff and parent chaperones.

AdvancED Accreditation Review – Feb 23

Last week, all 10 schools in the Diocese of Knoxville received district accreditation through AdvancED.  By far, our strongest ‘strength’ was Catholic identity.  Our schools also scored well above average in 6 out of 7 categories of academic excellence, only lagging behind the international average in one area:  Digital Learning.  With our new Wifi network up and running, a host of iPads and Chromebooks in use and Interactive Touch Panel TV’s on the way, Saint Joseph School is ready to take on the challenge of improvement in this area.  Bishop Stika was so pleased with the success of the schools that he has decided to grant us all an extra day off!  For more info, read Mr. Bill Brewer’s article:

Mardi Gras SJS Benefit – Feb 25

Our annual Mardi Gras was a great success!  It was wonderful to see guests from several parishes, supporters from KCHS, alumni families, and many new faces.  While the numbers are still being crunched, we can be sure of one dollar amount: $15,000.00 was raised in the paddle item portion of our event.  These funds will be used to purchase, install, and train teachers on new interactive touch panel tv’s for our classrooms and to begin replacing teacher computers with higher quality laptop computers.  Thank you for your support!

St. Mary's School - Oak Ridge

The St. Mary’s 2017 Middle School Science Fair was held on February 9, 2017.  A total of fifty-seven projects were entered for judging.  The projects were divided into two categories, physical and biological sciences, and the judges awarded a first through fifth place in each category.  Additionally, two honorable mentions were awarded in biological sciences and seven in physical sciences.  These students qualify to participate in the Southern Appalachian Science and Engineering Fair (SASEF) to be held at the University of Tennessee, Knoxville on March 28 – 30, 2017.


Physical Sciences Winners

Marissa Dalton (1st)- A Clay Array of Amazing Glazing

Mateo Gorrondona (2nd) (not pictured)

Fight Drought with Solar Panels

Anna Kasemir (3rd) -Can You See Me Now?

Amelia Van Berkel (4th)-Did that Get the Lead Out?

Jacqueline Audet (5th)-O-Pine Wood Derby

 Honorable Mention

Luca Filigenzi-Battery vs. Battery

Paige Halcrow & Genevieve Krass- The Great Buffer Race

Elizabeth Brands-Rubber vs. Cotton

Joshua Luttrell-How Does that Sound?

Caroline Elliott-Good-Bye Graffiti

Elliot Barnes- Waste Heat? Wasted Energy!

Joey Wood-Making Light of It!

Biological Sciences Winners

Sydney Mesmer (1st)-Don’t Give Mosquitoes a Biting Chance

Sarah Tackett (2nd)-Milk: The Next Generation

Luke Cheadle (3rd)-Home Remedies: Healing or Hurtful?

Miko Zolnierczuk (4th)-The Mysterious Flatworm

Parker Sorah (5th)-Healthy Hydration Outdoors

Honorable Mention

    Ian Hubbard-Radiation Observations Revealed

Ethan Sherlock-Battle of the Genres


Congratulations to our second graders who received the sacrament of reconciliation for the first time on February 14th.

We rejoice with several of our students who received the sacrament of Confirmation on February 15th: Jacqueline Audet, Emily Corbett, KelliAnn Corbett, Victoria Corbett, Marissa Dalton, Elijah Dempsey, Anthony Filigenzi, Paige Halcrow, Anna Kasemir, Sydney Mesmer, Brianna Milne, Sarah Tackett, and Joey Wood.

Bishop Stika and Sister Mary Marta, RSM visited St. Mary’s School on February 15th.  A great time was had by everyone!

The Diocese of Knoxville Schools received system accreditation on February 23rd ! We celebrated the accreditation by enjoying cupcakes from our superintendent, Sister Mary Marta Abbott, RSM.  Yummy!!

St. Mary’s Mardi Gras Gala was an evening filled with lots of fun ~ the food, decorations, auction items, student art, teacher gifts, class baskets, and so much more! It was a lovely night that benefits the students of St. Mary’s. Thank you to everyone for making the night enjoyable as well as successful! Special visitors:  Lt. Governor Randy McNally and his wife, Jan; and the mayor of Oak Ridge, Mayor Warren Gooch and his wife, Judy.

St. Dominic School

Celebrating Catholic Education


Dress for Success Day saw our students choosing an interesting career and dressing the part.


Church Day Activities


Stain Class Window Scavenger Hunt

Human Battle Ship

Minute-to-Win-it Bible Version

Prayer Cube Craft


               Congratulations to Andrew Riley, winner of the Knights of Columbus state free throw competition.  Andrew is a 3rd grader at SDCS.


STAR WARS Math and Science Night

SDCS students dressed as their favorite Star Wars character were joined by Darth Vader, a Storm Trooper, and a Bike Scout for an evening of hands-on math and science fun.  The evening began with a demonstration and discussion about the construction and operation of R2-KT, a female droid created in memory of a young girl who lost her battle with cancer.  SDCS students also took up donations for Make-a-Wish Foundation.



St. Mary's School - Johnson City

On Friday, February 3rd as part of Catholic Schools Week, St. Mary’s, Johnson City faculty and eighth grade faced off in Volleyball.     Our faculty members were the triumphant heroes on super Heroes day.

St. Mary’s School, Johnson City collected canned food for our parish food pantry to the total of over 700 items.    Our students by class made canned sculptures and were judged by four judges.   The 8th grade and kindergarten buddies were are winners.