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School Update about School Opening, Safety Plan and Enrollment, and New High School College Credit Programs

Fri, Jul 17th 2020 09:00 am

July 16, 2020

School Update about School Opening, Safety Plan and Enrollment, and New High School College Credit Programs

Dear Parents and Students,

Archbishop Walsh Academy and Southern Tier Catholic School will be open for the 2020-21 school year.  The first day of school is Tuesday, September 8th!

Our preference is for in-class, in-person instruction.  We will know if this is possible when Governor Cuomo confirms private and public schools’ collective status on August 7th.  In the meantime, the School Safety Committee, co-chaired by Mr. Lee Filbert, Assistant Principal, and Mr. Eric DiMartino, Business Manager, is writing our Safety Plan which will be submitted to the New York State Department of Health on or before July 31, 2020.

Two other models are for a blend of in-class and online instruction or purely online instruction.  It may be necessary to toggle among models as health data may change over time and require different educational approaches which will be addressed in our Safety Plan.

If you would like to share your thoughts for our consideration about school safety procedures as they relate to social distancing for in-school instruction please contact Mr. Filbert at [email protected] and/or Mr. DiMartino, [email protected].

Our school’s size lends itself well to social distancing protocols. Therefore, in order to provide as optimal safety procedures as possible, we find that we must limit PK-12 enrollment for the 2020-21 school year to approximately 175 students. 

Enrollment for the new 2020-21 school year is going extremely well and classroom seats are at a premium. Preference is given to families whose children were enrolled at Archbishop Walsh and Southern Tier Catholic School during the 2019-20 school year and are returning to Archbishop Walsh and Southern Tier for the 2020-21 school year.  Then, upon meeting admissions standards, new students will be admitted on a first come basis. Inquiries about enrollment should be made to Ms. Mary Beth Garvin, Director of Admissions and Student Life, at [email protected].

Also, next year we will have 4 new exciting academic opportunities for our high school students. For more information about all four programs listed below, please contact:

The first academic opportunity is an agreement with Hilbert College through their Dual Enrollment Program.   “Dual enrollment” means that the students will earn credit towards their high school diploma in addition to Hilbert College course credit that can be used towards a Hilbert College degree or transferred to any college or university degree program.  This program will be offered to junior and senior students enrolled in IB courses and provides our students with the opportunity to earn Hilbert Credit through courses offered right at their high school for a significantly lower cost.

The second academic opportunity is a similar program, “College Connections,” through Jamestown Community College and is free or low cost for Walsh students. This program allows students to earn concurrent high school and college credit by completing JCC courses taught in the high schools by highly qualified, JCC-trained and supported teachers.  Students who successfully complete College Connections courses earn SUNY JCC credit, which is verified by an official transcript.

The exciting thing about both of these programs is that our students do not need to take any additional classes beyond their IB studies; satisfactory completion of their IB coursework satisfies the requirements for college credit at both institutions.  Notably, we are able to offer these programs because of our stellar faculty. After review and selection processes from both colleges, our teachers were deemed qualified to bring these programs to Walsh. Details regarding specific courses and fees will be coming soon.

The third academic opportunity is that seniors attending Walsh will have the opportunity to participate in the New Vision-Health Professions program from Cattaraugus-Allegany BOCES. This is an elective program for high school seniors who plan to attend college and major in a health related field. The New Vision program explores opportunities in health professions. Students learn the theory component on the following: anatomy and physiology, health occupations, medical terminology, as well as select diseases, participation in government, economics, and English composition.

Students in the New Vision program observe health care professionals in Olean General Hospital or Jones Memorial Hospital and in the Olean or Allegany County community setting. Students rotate through almost all departments at Olean General Hospital or Jones Memorial Hospital and many doctor offices throughout Olean or Allegany County. A goal of the program is to expose students to as many health careers as possible.

Upon successful completion of the program, students receive two credits in Health Occupation Education, one-half credit in Participation in Government, one-half credit in Economics, eight college credits for Human Anatomy and Physiology I & II, three college credits for Medical Terminology, and three college credits for English Composition II from Jamestown Community College. 

Finally, effective with the 2020-21 school year, the fourth academic opportunity is that Chemistry will be offered to our junior class.  A second year of Chemistry will be added for the senior year in 2021-22. Chemistry joins Biology and Earth Science as one of three science program choices for the International Baccalaureate Diploma Programme’s two-year science sequence. 

Please contact me if I may provide further information about any topics mentioned in this update or any topic about which you have an interest.

May you and your families enjoy the summer weather.

Please be safe and remember:

“Once an Eagle, Always an Eagle!”

Pax et Bonum,

Thomas J. Manko
School President and Principal
[email protected]



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