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One Newton School Closes, Another One Opens

While Trinity Catholic may be gone, another private school will continue on in the school's former facility on Washington Street.

While Newton's Trinity Catholic High School closed earlier this summer, a new school has opened in the school's former space on Washington Street. 

CATS Academy Boston at Trinity Catholic High School, a private preparatory school run by UK-based Cambridge Education Group, has started operations at 575 Washington St. under the stewardship of the Archdiocese of Boston, according to the Trinity Catholic website.

The CATS Academy is accredited by the New England Association of Schools and Colleges’ Commission on Independent Schools and is affiliated with the CATS College, which has locations in Cambridge, Canterbury and London, England. Both domestic and international students are welcome to the academy, which offers boarding facilities in West Roxbury, according to the academy's website.

The academy's prep school in Newton is the program's first campus based in the United States.

The Newton campus, which is located next to Our Lady Help of Christian's Parish, was vacated at the end of the last school year following a merger between the co-ed Trinity Catholic High School and all-girls Mount Saint Joseph Academy. The two schools have merged to form Saint Joseph Preparatory High School, which is located at the former Mount Saint Joseph campus in Brighton. 

The merger, which was announced last year, resulted in a school of 290 students and 40 faculty and staff, according to a press release from Saint Joseph Prep. The new school opened its doors earlier this month. 

Saint Joseph Prep is sponsored by the Sisters of Saint Joseph of Boston and is "founded upon academic excellence, personal integrity and the Catholic tradition."

“We are ushering in a new era for Catholic education in the city of Boston,” Head of School Thomas E. Nunan Jr. said in a press release. “In only a few short months, our students and parents, our faculty and staff, our parents and benefactors, have made this dream a reality.”

More information on the Saint Joseph Prep opening is included in a press release below:

“Coming Together, Seeking Truth, Serving Neighbor”: The Birth of a New Catholic School in Boston

BOSTON, MA (Sept. 14, 2012) – Saint Joseph Preparatory High School opened its doors to 290 students and 40 faculty and staff last week, marking an historic first day for the co-educational, college preparatory high school created through the combination of two area Catholic high schools.

The first day of school was the exhilarating culmination of a yearlong effort to bring together the all-girls Mount Saint Joseph Academy of Brighton and the co-educational Trinity Catholic High School of Newton. A sponsored ministry of the Sisters of Saint Joseph of Boston, the school is founded upon academic excellence, personal integrity and the Catholic tradition.

Head of School Thomas E. Nunan Jr. said the creation of the new school was made possible by the steadfast commitment of the Sisters of Saint Joseph, current students and parents, alumni and alumnae of the two schools, members of the Allston-Brighton community and a host of educational and corporate partners including Boston College, Regis College, St. Elizabeth Medical Center, the Catholic Schools Foundation, and the Archdiocese of Boston.

“We are ushering in a new era for Catholic education in the city of Boston,” Nunan said. “In only a few short months, our students and parents, our faculty and staff, our parents and benefactors, have made this dream a reality.”

The closing days of summer were marked by orientation sessions, a family cookout and the completion of a range of physical plant updates to the school, located on Cambridge Street, outside Union Square. Nunan said students, teachers and staff are excited to see the start of classes.

“What a blessing it is to see our scholars begin this inaugural journey together – they are the pilgrims and pioneers, the trendsetters and trailblazers,” Nunan said. “Together, we will create something extraordinary at Saint Joseph Preparatory High School.”

The school will focus on scholarly achievement, authentic community, student-centered learning, and faith-based character development.  With a forward-thinking approach to the integration of technology, a variety of programs in the arts and athletics, and a commitment to spirituality and service, the school instills Catholic values and respect for all people.

To prepare the school for an expanded student body and the necessary facilities required of a co-educational institution, a number of projects were undertaken to improve facilities. Projects included upgrades to building systems, new lighting in classrooms and hallways, new girls’ and boys’ locker rooms for athletics, a new wireless network and redesigned administrative spaces.

There is a range of other ongoing initiatives as well, said Nunan. A new Chapel is expected to open by October 1 and the school’s 1:1 iPad Initiative aims to provide every student access to tablet-powered learning technology in the classroom.

Among the many events slated for the fall semester, Nunan said students are planning to run in the annual Brian Honan 5K Run/Walk, which takes place Sept. 23 in honor of the late Boston City councilor and Brighton native.

In addition to the college preparatory curriculum, students are engaged in clubs, activities and sports. Fall sports underway include football, volleyball, boys' and girls' soccer, golf, and cheerleading. Student activities include robotics, theater and community service.

For more information about Saint Joseph Preparatory High School, please see the website http://www.saintjosephprep.org, or attend the Open House on Sunday, October 28, between 1 p.m. and 4 p.m.

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