The students are the number one priority at Charleston Catholic. The faculty and staff reach out to students academically, spiritually and emotionally every day. Building a student’s self-confidence, self-esteem, academic knowledge and religious knowledge is paramount at CCS.
Charleston Catholic School is foremost Catholic. Students pray every day and attend Mass every week. Additionally, the school serves its students and maintains its Catholic identity through its staffing. Currently, there are two nuns on campus (Sisters of Notre Dame of the Toledo, Ohio Province) who enhance the religious offerings by providing their expertise in the area of religion. Additionally, the gospel message and values are interwoven in the curriculum. Elements of faith are integrated in the learning process by weaving religion throughout the academic curriculum which allows the students to view their education through spiritual eyes.
The academic program offered by the school is comprehensive. CCS hires experienced teachers who will give students the knowledge they will need to succeed in high school. One-third of the teachers have Master’s degrees while K4, K5, and First Grade classes have full-time teacher aides. Additionally, a cooperative partnership exists with the University of Notre Dame Alliance for Catholic Education (ACE) Program.
What makes CCS unique among other private schools in the Charleston area is its emphasis on the fine arts. Students spend time four days a week in some type of arts class including chorus, band, drama, movement or creative writing.
Opportunities to build community internally are incorporated by having the upper school students work with the lower grade students and teachers (i.e. the fourth graders are “buddies” to the kindergarten students). Through this interaction the lower grade students receive benefits from the upper grade students as a result of the mentoring process.
Externally, CCS provides opportunities for the students to interact with the community periodically by participating in various ways:
- Whenever disasters occur, students answer the call by giving of their time, talents and treasures. They give personal monetary gifts from their allowances or money earned for providing a service;
- Students are required to obtain service hours for the 5th – 8th Grade religion classes (5th grade – 2 hours, 6th grade – 10 hours, 7th grade – 20 hours, 8th grade – 30 hours)The students visit senior citizens and nursing homes where they participate in sing a-longs or simply sing for the residents;
- Many of the students are pen pals with senior citizens;
- Students make greeting cards and distribute to the neighbors in the community around the school;
- Students serve at shelters; conduct food drives; plan prayer services; participate in various outreach services (i.e. collaborate with the ladies of Sacred Heart Church in the planning and implementation of a baby shower for residents at a local home.)