Parent Interview

Emily Rodriguez

Emily has children at St. Mary's Catholic School in Taylor, Texas.

How long have you been at your school? What grades are your children in?

 

We have 3 girls, which are in grades 2nd, Kindergarten, and PK3. They started attending St. Mary’s early October of this year. 

 

 

How did you learn about your school?

My husband and I made the commitment to have our girls attend Catholic School soon after Covid started. A friend of mine who homeschools in Katy, TX (where Ruben and I met and were living at the time) shared with me that Houston needs a Chesterton Catholic School. While I was searching on the internet for Catholic Schools in Texas, I found SMS in Taylor. I saw on the website that it was a Chesterton Program, so it caught my eye and shared it with Ruben. He “dove” into the curriculum and loved it. We scheduled a tour of the school a couple weeks later and knew this was where we wanted our girls to attend. ​

 

Why is it worth paying tuition when public schools are free?

Worth every penny. Through Covid and an increasing progressive world, we knew public school was no longer an option for us. Our priority was to get our girls well-educated, grow in their Faith and GET INTO HEAVEN! Although we lived in Katy, TX with “good” public schools, we knew in the long run, the middle school and high school were not an option for us. Public schools are growing more liberal each year and the curriculum is less than par (i.e. Common Core Math). Christians are the minority and we want our girls to grow up with a strong Catholic and traditional background. 


 

What made you choose your school over other schools in your area?

We preferred a classical, traditional program that interweaves the Catholic Faith in all subjects. We also liked that the school was small and humble, not pretentious, as well as included a high school program.

 

Heidi and Kim won us over at the tour, as well😊 


 

How would you describe your school to a parent who is considering applying?

A traditional, humble Catholic school that focuses on virtue and living joyfully. My oldest, Lily (2nd grade) has grown a love for learning and her confidence has greatly increased since we’ve attended SMS. I recently asked Lily why she loves learning more since attending SMS (previously attended a public elementary) and she replied that “it’s fun and challenging!” I love that she enjoys working hard and has a desire to become the best version of herself. 

 

What are your thoughts on your school’s teachers? Your children’s peer group and other school families? Catholic identity? Culture? Curriculum? 

The teachers teach with love, joy, and high, but reasonable expectations for their students. Due to Covid, we have not been able to meet many of the other parents, but I was quickly invited to join class GroupMe and group emails, where I was able to meet other parents. The culture is gracious, close-knit/family oriented with a focus on virtue and our traditional Catholic Faith. The curriculum is challenging, but achievable. My husband and I love that religion is interwoven in all subjects. 


 

What is the most important reason you stay at your school?

There is nothing more important to Ruben and I than to get our girls into Heaven one day. They will need to be strong in their Faith and build a strong community around them as the world grows more secular. The most important reason for staying at SMS is the curriculum—religion and other core subjects. I feel at peace each day I drop my girls off at school knowing that they are in excellent hands at SMS.