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St. Joe ready for new year

St. Joseph Catholic School will return to classes Aug. 16 for the 2012-13 school year.

The school will begin with a half-day and dismiss at 11:30 a.m. There will be an open house for students and parents on Aug. 14 at 6 p.m. with a rosary service in the St. Joseph Catholic Church.

“Enrollment is up, which is exciting,” said Principal Susie Rohrer.

Last year the school was a pilot school for the Virtue Based Restorative Discipline through the St. Louis Archdiocese. This year it will be in the actual program.

Rohrer said, traditionally the church has celebrated the way certain men and women have lived the Paschal Mystery and has honored them as saints. St. Joseph School students are learning about courageous men and women so they can model their lives after the saints.

This program, according to, was founded by Catholic educator Lynne Lang and backed by St. Louis Archbishop Robert Carlson and Catholic School Superintendent George Henry. Lang’s program has a clunky acronym, VBRD, which stands for Virtue-Based Restorative Discipline. It seeks to form students in the Christian virtues, setting them on the path to holiness and teaching them how to repair the harm done by destructive behavior.

The school is also training parents in the virtue based restorative discipline so they can begin at home.

Each month the students will learn about a saint and the virtue that the saint exhibited. Each classroom has been assigned a month to develop a display to honor the saint they are studying.

Also, each grade level highlights a virtue each month and learns what the virtue means and then are encouraged to demonstrate it.

The students who exhibit their virtues each month will be reocognized on the “bucket filler board” at school and will be recognized with a special reward by Rohrer.

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