By Tim Harfmann
On October 23, young musicians showed off their talents with skills made possible because of a Catholic education.
The performance took place as Bishop DiMarzio convened a major summit to highlight the value of Catholic schooling.
“It shows that we’re alive, and we’re working and it’s working very well. We’re raising money from other people that are supporting,” Bishop DiMarzio said.
Through that support and the scholarships that are created from it, the building blocks for the future Catholic education are laid, ensuring that a great classroom experience endures for students.
Tom Chadzutko, the superintendent of schools in the Brooklyn Diocese, appreciates the hard work of the many people who help students, especially Futures in Education.
“We’re giving them heart, mind, soul education. it’s all in one. We meet the individual needs of all the children, and we work together to really make sure that they have all those components in their lives,” he said.
Altogether, over $7 million in scholarships are handed out to 4,500 students each year.
31 percent of the families helped by Futures in Education live at or below the poverty line. The average household income for recipients is $30,000.
Darla Romfo is another person making a difference for students, providing tuition help through her group the Children’s Scholarship Fund.
Darla speaks with many parents who are hoping for more than what’s offered in New York City’s public schools.
“We hear it from parents that come to us for scholarships. They’re kind of horrified by what’s going on in our public schools, and they are really looking for something different. They expected something different, and they find it in Catholic schools,” she said.
For Schmeiderlyn Ulysse, an eighth grader at Saints Joachim & Anne Catholic Academy in Queens, academics are important but so is her faith.
“With my Catholic education, I want to help others know the true meaning of what it means to spread the Good News and how to be a good Catholic, and knowing that God will always be by your side,” Schmeiderlyn said.
Learning her faith while learning her lessons is just one example of why a Catholic education equals excellence.