Office of the Superintendent of Schools Issues Statement Relating to Mask Mandates at Catholic Schools in the Archdiocese of New York

Today, the Office of the Superintendent of Schools issued the following statement relating to mask mandates at Catholic Schools in the Archdiocese of New York:

Dear Catholic School Communities,

As you are likely aware, Governor Kathy Hochul today stated that the school mask mandate remains in effect and will be reassessed in early March. Since Catholic schools in the Archdiocese of New York are legally obligated to follow this mandate, we must continue to do so. As soon as the Governor lifts the mask mandate for schools, we will follow those new directives.

We are keenly aware of our parents’ concerns, frustrations, and disappointments surrounding this issue. We have and will continue to advocate on behalf of our Catholic school communities with the Governor and state health officials.

The Office of the Superintendent of Schools

February 9th, 2022|

Daily News: Catholic Ed. Surges

In this Daily News article, Joanne Kroeger writes: “After nearly two years of a devastating pandemic that has wreaked havoc on the nation’s school systems, the city’s Catholic schools have been experiencing something only a little short of a miracle.

Consistent safety protocols, combined with clear and steady communication with parents, have resulted in high in-person attendance levels — and a surge in enrollment after decades of decline.

In the haze of COVID closures, chaos and confusion, Catholic schools have become a safe haven for students. Since September 2020, 100% of the city’s 170 Catholic schools have remained open with very low infection rates even during the omicron surge‘, said Michael Deegan, superintendent of Catholic schools in the Archdiocese of New York.”

Click here to see the full article.

Click here to see an additional interview with Superintendent of Schools Michael J. Deegan.

February 7th, 2022|

New York Post Special Section: Catholic Schools Week Directory

In a special section devoted to Catholic Schools Week, New York Post reporter Mary Kay Linge writes: “Catholic schools build a foundation for children that will last a lifetime.” Superintendent of Schools in the Archdiocese of New York Michael J. Deegan is quoted in the article, saying: “Education is a fundamental pillar of the Catholic Church. We believe that parents are the primary educators of their children, and we respect and honor that role. Our schools support parents as they shape their children into becoming other-centered, generous and faithful adults.”

Click here or on the image below to read the full article!

January 31st, 2022|

Creation of the St. Mary’s Academy in Somers NY Announced

Superintendent of Schools of the Archdiocese of New York and John F. Kennedy Catholic Preparatory School Announce the Creation of the St. Mary’s Academy in Somers, New York

Beginning in Fall of 2022, John F. Kennedy to Offer Grades 6-8 in an Academy Setting to Current Eligible Public School Students.

Catholic Schools in the Archdiocese of New York and John F. Kennedy Catholic Preparatory School in Somers, NY, jointly announce a new opportunity for middle school students currently attending public school to attend grades 6-8 in an academy setting on the high school campus at Kennedy Catholic. St. Mary’s Academy will open for the 2022-2023 school year with a limited capacity of one class per grade, with possible expansion planned for the future. St. Mary’s Academy will give families another choice for a superior Catholic education in Northern Westchester County.

This is great news for Catholic families in Northern Westchester County as we all continue to battle the Covid-19 pandemic,” said Timothy Cardinal Dolan, Archbishop of New York. “The Catholic Church in New York introduced organized education to New York more than 200 years ago, and the academy’s formation is a move towards preserving and growing Catholic education in this area for generations.”

The St. Mary’s Academy will offer the same time-tested Catholic school curriculum and values-centered education available at all Catholic schools across the region. The program of studies will not only fulfill middle school educational standards of the New York State Board of Regents but will also challenge students to expand their educational horizons by studying languages other than English along with math, science, and robotics.

John F. Kennedy Preparatory School is one of the premier high schools in Westchester County,” said Kennedy Principal and President, Father Mark Vaillancourt. “Our strength and commitment to excellence position us well to align with the Archdiocese of New York in this exciting alternative for public school students in grades six, seven, and eight. The new St. Mary’s Academy will expand the great tradition of academic excellence for future generations in Westchester County.”

While only public school students may apply to St. Mary’s Academy for the 2022 – 2023 school year, wider application opportunities will be available in the future. Families with 5-7th grade students in public schools are encouraged to visit the John F. Kennedy Catholic Preparatory School website for more information about eligibility and required admissions testing.

All families of every faith looking for a faith-based, values-centered continuous education for their children from Pre-K through 8th grade are always welcome to visit at any time, year-round, to learn more about the opportunity to provide their children with an exceptional education at an affordable price in a Catholic school.

About Catholic Schools in the Archdiocese of New York:

Catholic Schools in the Archdiocese of New York serve nearly 54,000 students from Pre-K through 12th grade across 170 schools in nine counties and boroughs throughout New York, including Manhattan, the Bronx, Staten Island, Westchester, Putnam, Rockland, Ulster, Orange, and Dutchess. Catholic schools offer a unique combination of academic and spiritual development that empowers children of all backgrounds to gain the confidence to realize their fullest potential. To learn more about the Archdiocese of New York’s Catholic schools, visit, or

About John F. Kennedy Catholic Preparatory High School/Academy:

Kennedy Catholic, located in Somers, New York, is Northern Westchester’s premier college-preparatory high school serving the young men and women of Westchester, Putnam, Dutchess, and Fairfield counties and the Bronx. Kennedy Catholic follows a rigorous Regents curriculum that prepares students for a successful college career while preparing them to live out Christ’s message of service to the world in the sound doctrine of the Catholic faith. Founded in 1928 by the Sisters of Divine Compassion as St. Mary’s School in Katonah, the current school was built in 1966 on its present site in a serene, 64-acre site setting which includes the natural beauty of a lake and woodlands.

To learn more about Kennedy Catholic, visit

Click here to view and download the press release.

January 27th, 2022|

Local Student to Spread Kindness to Dobbs Ferry Residents

In an article written for Hudson Independent, journalist Rick Pez­zullo writes: “A sec­ond-grade stu­dent at John Car­di­nal O’­Con­nor School (JCOS) in Irv­ing­ton is tak­ing her school’s motto to heart dur­ing Catholic Schools Week.

Catholic Schools Week takes place from Jan. 30 to Feb. 5 in schools through­out the Arch­dio­cese of New York. In cel­e­bra­tion of this an­nual event, Sophia Callaguazo (shown in the photo) and her class­mates will be spread­ing love and kind­ness by cre­at­ing Valen­tine’s Day cards for res­i­dents of St. Cabrini Nurs­ing Home in Dobbs Ferry.

The motto of JCOS, a Catholic School for chil­dren with learn­ing dis­abil­i­ties, is #choosekind.

Callaguazo is an In­ner-City Schol­ar­ship Fund re­cip­i­ent at JCOS. Her mother, Gladys Callaguazo, cred­its the Schol­ar­ship Fund with en­abling her daugh­ter to at­tend JCOS, where she said fac­ulty have helped her de­velop stronger skills in read­ing and writ­ing, while also em­pha­siz­ing sup­port­ing the com­mu­nity through ser­vice.

Last year, Sophia re­ceived the schol­ar­ship through the fund, which pro­vides tu­ition as­sis­tance to 11,000 stu­dents in schools within the Arch­dio­cese.”

Click here to view the full article!

Phioto: Sophia Callaguazo is a second-grade student at JCOS in Irvington.

January 27th, 2022|

Cathedral High School Receives Computing Donation From BlackRock

Cathedral High School received a donation of 28 Dell computers from BlackRock Global Fixed Income.

The donated computer equipment will replace outdated gear in the library. The all-girls school at 350 E. 56 St. has a successful relationship with BlackRock, the host of an annual summer internship program in which two CHS students participated virtually during the summer.

“As we prepare our students for 21st-century careers, the latest computing technology becomes a critical tool for our students who are interested in business, science, or engineering,” said Maria Spagnuolo, the school’s principal. “We are grateful to BlackRock for their generous donation, and we look forward to sending more of our students to their prestigious and competitive Summer Excellence Internship program.”

BlackRock is a global investment manager and a leading provider of financial technology. The publicly traded company helps millions of people build savings by making investing easier and affordable.

Cathedral High School, a Catholic College Preparatory school of the Archdiocese of New York, educates young women of all faiths and expects them to behave with religious and moral integrity in the pursuit of social justice. The school has seven varsity sports, and it is a member of the Girls Catholic High School Athletic Association, competing on the B division level.

For more information about the school, please visit or call Johanna Castex-Velez, Director of Admissions at (212) 688-1545 ext. 224.

January 27th, 2022|

As Omicron Surges, Catholic Schools Meet the Challenge

When it comes to confronting the latest Omicron surge, Catholic schools in the Archdiocese of New York prove they’ve always been able to put up a good fight. The latest from the National Catholic Register reports on this continued success. Click here to view the article!

Below is a brief excerpt, including a quote from Superintendent Michael J. Deegan:

… In the Los Angeles Archdiocese, which has the largest Catholic-school system in the country, Superintendent Paul Escala said his last survey of 220 schools indicated more than 70% were in full in-person mode, with the remainder in modified-learning modality until staff members who must quarantine due to exposure or sickness can return to campus.

Escala explained that, especially with elementary schools, which lack large complements of additional teaching staff, having more than a few teachers out can be disruptive.   …

Still, Escala said, “I think that our schools once again are showing resilience in the face of challenges. Resilience, persistence, grit: You witness it all. And I think it’s just the difference between having a job and having a vocation. Our leaders, our teachers as a whole see their work differently than their [public-school] peers do. Because of that, they are able to bear witness to the incredible power of the Gospel.”

New York Catholic Schools Superintendent Michael Deegan concurred. “What distinguishes Catholic schoolteachers in the Archdiocese of New York from many public-school teachers is that Catholic teachers put the needs of their children before their own needs. That is a historic qualification of Catholic educators.”

Photo: A student sits behind a barrier and works on a tablet at St. Anthony Catholic High School during the COVID-19 pandemic on March 24, 2021, in Long Beach, California. As the pandemic continues, Catholic schools are demonstrating best practices for in-person learning, complete with tried-and-true safety measures. (photo: PATRICK T. FALLON / AFP via Getty Images).

January 20th, 2022|

Thank Governor Hochul for Supporting Catholic Schools

Governor Kathy Hochul released her first state budget proposal this week, and while she recommends increasing support for public schools by some 7 percent, her recommended increases in funding to support Catholic and other religious and independent schools amounts to an 18 percent increase. Specifically, Governor Hochul triples funding for health, safety, and security projects in our schools (from $15 million to $45 million) and allows nonpublic schools, for the first time, to use the funds to support critical maintenance and repairs of school facilities. Governor Hochul also increases support for Science, Technology, Engineering & Math (STEM) instruction in our schools from $40 million to $55 million.

Click here to  join us in sending a quick note thanking Governor Hochul for supporting our Catholic schools!

January 20th, 2022|

Catholic New York Profile: Her Job Is to Help Schools Understand Their Catholic Identity Makes Them Unique

In this profile of Linda M. Dougherty, associate superintendent for Catholic identity in the archdiocese, John Woods presents a compelling profile of Ms. Dougherty, writing, “Since taking over her new post last August, Mrs. Dougherty has already met with newly named principals and those in a couple of school regions around the archdiocese.

One of the first things Mrs. Dougherty often asks principals is how someone just walking in would know that their school is Catholic. Follow-up questions might include: ‘Who greets them?’ and ‘What is the culture of your school?’

The queries are designed to start a discussion about ‘what makes their school Catholic,’ she said.

Click here to view the full article.

Photo: Cardinal Dolan offered Mass last September for students of St. John’s School in Goshen.

January 14th, 2022|

Catholic New York Article: Latino Outreach Program ‘Like Talking With a Relative,’ Says One Parent

In an article in yesterday’s Catholic New York, Armando Machado reports, “At the archdiocesan School Superintendent’s Office, the Latino Outreach Program helps Hispanic families navigate the intricacies of school application, enrollment and financial aid procedures, in Spanish for parents and guardians who are not fluent in English or simply feel more at ease with their native language. The outreach efforts include the use of social media.”

Click here to read the full article!

January 13th, 2022|

Considering a New York City Catholic School for Your Family

In an article in New York Family that appeared on January 13, 2022, Jaclyn Griffith writes about the impact of school choice, saying:

It’s hard to imagine a decision that impacts your child’s present and future more than the decision of which school they will attend. Academics, community, relationships, location, guiding principles—all of these are sure to influence your family’s school choice. While considering the overwhelming number of options, it’s important for parents to understand the benefits of a Catholic school education in New York City.”

Click here to read the full article!

Photo: New York Family | Getty Images

January 13th, 2022|

Catholic Schools Issue COVID-19 Test Guidelines and Tips for Families

Catholic Schools Issue COVID-19 Test Guidelines and Tips for Families

Click here  or on the image below for the English Version:

Click here or on the image below for the Spanish Version:


January 5th, 2022|

Catholic Schools Update: Archdiocese of New York to Provide Free COVID-19 Home Test Kits to Staff and Students’ Families

Superintendent of Schools Michael J. Deegan announced today: “I am very pleased that after much work between the Health and Safety Task Force of the Office of the Superintendent of Schools and government officials, Catholic schools in the Archdiocese of New York will be able to provide every family and staff member with a COVID-19 home test kit.” See Mr. Deegan’s full message below, and learn more at:

January 1, 2022 | Haga clic aquí para la versión en español de este anuncio

Solemnity of Mary, The Holy Mother of God

Dear Catholic School Communities,

I hope you had a blessed Christmas and as enjoyable a New Year celebration as possible. We are all weary of the COVID-19 pandemic and all the accompanying impositions on our personal lives as well as the requirements on our schools in order to remain open safely, as they have since the beginning of this pandemic.

I am very pleased that after much work between the Health and Safety Task Force of the Office of the Superintendent of Schools and government officials, Catholic schools in the Archdiocese of New York will be able to provide every family and staff member with a COVID-19 home test kit. As municipalities and health organizations struggle to stock up on these much sought-after kits, we hope our distribution of tens of thousands of test kits will provide some small measure of comfort in knowing you will have these crucial tools in your home when you are exposed to COVID.

Your principal will be in touch regarding the distribution of the test kits for your school community this week. Please be sure to review the document distributed with these kits for critical information on their use and contact your school office with any questions about the distribution of these free kits. While we will strive to continue to make kits available in the future to you, please know that you can and should also visit the free testing sites linked here: In NYC:

While social media and newscasts portray many conflicting and contradictory headlines and narratives, and COVID mandates seemingly change on a daily basis, you can be confident that our schools remain a constant in a universe of variables: our buildings are safe and remain open for our students to safely pray, learn, and grow together. We remain so by continuing to follow the health and safety guidelines that got us here. We will continue to require temperature checks, face coverings, physical distancing and enhanced ventilation processes in all of our school buildings.

The experts of the Health and Safety Tasks Force of the Office of the Superintendent of Schools are evaluating all of the new guidance and information about quarantine, isolation, close contacts, testing and the associated timelines for each. We will leave behind the chaos of government and press releases and in the coming weeks, provide updated protocols for our families, recognizing; however, if some warrant implementation sooner, we will do so. While we understand that some want the policies implemented overnight, as we have always done, our response will be thoughtful, intentional and always made in the best interest of all of those in our school communities.

Lastly, it is imperative that if you or your child have any symptoms, even mild ones, get tested and remain home until you receive the results of the test. We know that PCR testing remains the gold standard of testing and that those who are vaccinated may take a day or two to test positive after being symptomatic with the new variant Omicron.

Please join me in praying for an end to this awful health crisis and that 2022 brings us closer to the freedoms and simplicity we enjoyed at this time two years ago. I remain grateful for your support, resolve and partnership in keeping Catholic schools at the forefront of education and safety throughout the global health crisis.


Mr. Michael J. Deegan
Superintendent of Schools
Archdiocese of New York

January 2nd, 2022|

Christmas 2021 Greeting from New York Catholic Schools Superintendent Michael J. Deegan

In his videotaped 2021 Christmas greeting, Superintendent of Schools Mr. Michael J. Deegan expresses his wish for a “blessed, merry Christmas and a healthy New Year.” Mr. Deegan also voices his thanks for the “bright-eyed optimism” of our Catholic school youth, whose faith and example give us hope for better days ahead. Also on set at St. Joseph’s Seminary is the Cardinal Hayes High School Choir, shown above, who sing a lovely rendition of “Silent Night.” Click here to view the video!

December 20th, 2021|

Catholic Schools Celebrate Thanksgiving through #ArchGiving

This year, students at Catholic schools in the Archdiocese of New York prepare their hearts for Thanksgiving by raising food donations expressing gratitude through cards and prayers, and helping those in need in their community. Through the hashtag #ArchGiving, schools throughout the Archdiocese share on this video the many ways that their students gave back this Thanksgiving season.

Click here or on the video viewer below to view a video snapshot of these charitable efforts!

El Sr. Michael J. Deegan y la Oficina del Superintendente de Escuelas desean lo mejor de esta temporada a la comunidad de escuelas católicas. A través del hashtag #ArchGiving, estudiantes de escuelas católicas en la Arquidiócesis de Nueva York también demostraron su gratitud.

November 24th, 2021|

Science Teacher at St. Martin de Porres School Receives Prestigious STANYS Award

We are thrilled to announce that Mrs. Loretto Canfield, a science teacher at St. Martin de Porres School in Poughkeepsie New York, was awarded the STANYS Excellence in Science Teaching Award last week. The award is given to teachers with careers that exemplify the STANYS mission: their work showcases excellence in teaching, leading, and providing opportunities for all students to participate in and learn Science. The award is given yearly to only one teacher in the state! Congratulations, Mrs. Canfield!

> Click here for the full award announcement and testimonials

November 10th, 2021|

Archdiocese of New York’s Family Life Office Offers Parents Free Webinars about Preventing Suicide among our Children

Hope and Action: A Free Webinar For Parents of Teens and Young Adults About Preventing Suicide Among Our Children

Sponsored by the Archdiocese of New York’s Family Life Office, this free Zoom-based webinar offers parents a safe and confidential way to learn about warning signs for suicide, and how to create space for loving conversations that may save a life. The webinar will be offered twice, once on Thursday, 28 October and once on Wednesday, 3 November at 6:30pm (ET).

Q&A to follow presentation

Fr. Chris Alar, MIC: Marian Fathers of the Immaculate Conception; Author, After Suicide: There’s Hope for Them and for You
Pamela Morris, PhD: Professor of Applied Psychology at NYU Steinhardt School; Loss survivor
Stan Collins: Suicide prevention specialist; Co-founder, Directing Change Program; Loss survivor

> Click here to view and download the program flyer with complete details

October 21st, 2021|

NYC Catholic school enrollment rising amid end of Gifted and Talented program

Friday’s New York Post noted that: “New York’s parochial schools fully reopened more or less a full year ahead of schools run by the city Department of Education, which have seen a steep enrollment and attendance drop. More recent interest in Catholic schools has been spawned by Mayor de Blasio’s announced plan to kill the Gifted & Talented classes, as parents seek alternatives to remote learning and look for more challenging classrooms.”

> Click here to view the full article by Conor Skelding!


October 18th, 2021|

How John Cardinal O’Connor School hopes to transform education for students with disabilities

John Cardinal O’Connor School in Irvington New York was featured prominently in this article from The Pillar, which appeared on October 11. The article stated: “Officials with the Archdiocese of New York, which oversees the school, say the John Cardinal O’Connor School is the “gold standard” of special education among Catholic Schools in the country. With small student-to-teacher ratios, multisensory teaching methods and individualized curriculums, the archdiocese hopes it can replicate the school’s model, and better serve more students with learning disabilities.”

> click here for the full article.

October 12th, 2021|

Superintendent Michael J. Deegan Delivers Heartfelt Welcome Back to School Message to Catholic School Parents

Superintendent of Schools Mr. Michael J. Deegan delivered this heartfelt video message to Catholic School parents across the Archdiocese of New York today, celebrating the first weeks of the 2021-2022 school year. In the video, he calls on parents, students, teachers and staff to remain vigilant while the COVID-19 crisis persists. He also thanks everyone in the Catholic Schools community for their unprecedented support which has led to the successful opening of over 170 Catholic schools across the Archdiocese. Click here or on the image above to start the video!
September 30th, 2021|

New York Catholic Schools Release Video Recap of Opening Day 2021 Media Coverage

All 171 Catholic schools in the Archdiocese of New York are open once again, thanks to the bravery and hard work of principals, pastors, teachers and staff.
Please see this retrospective of coverage surrounding that event, featuring Superintendent of Schools Mr. Michael J. Deegan’s media interview and a message from our own Archbishop Timothy Cardinal Dolan on his SiriusXM Catholic Channel program! None of what we do every day would be possible without the continued support of our devoted parents and generous benefactors.
Photo: Superintendent of Schools Michael J. Deegan at Academy of St. Paul & St. Ann School on opening day.
September 24th, 2021|

Superintendent Deegan marks the start of National Hispanic Heritage Month in the US

Haga clic aquí para la versión en español de este anuncio

Today, September 15, marks the start of National Hispanic Heritage Month in the United States. Since 1988, Hispanic Heritage Month has celebrated the rich histories, cultures, and contributions of Hispanic Americans who trace their roots back to Spain and Spanish-speaking countries in North America, Central America, and the Caribbean.

Throughout our nation’s history, Latinx and Hispanic persons have had a profound and positive influence through their strong commitment to family, faith, and service. They have embodied servant leadership and embraced communal identity in a way that not only reflects the multiethnic and multicultural customs of their community but follows the way of Christ.

As always, I would like to recognize Hispanic Americans not only in our nation, but also in our schools. According to a 2016 Boston College study, more than 97% of school-age Hispanics do not benefit from Catholic school education. While Latinos are by far the fastest-growing ethnic group in the U.S. Catholic Church, many Hispanic families find Catholic education just out of reach. Here at the Archdiocese of New York, we strive to ensure that traditional barriers to entry—including tuition expenses and lack of cultural support and bilingual resources—do not deter our Hispanic families from pursuing an enriching Catholic education. On all levels, our schools work together to affirm and serve our Hispanic families.

Over the next four weeks, we will share with the community through our website and social media platforms some of the creative ways that our schools showcase and celebrate Hispanic heritage, persons, and culture. Through our hashtags #HispanicHeritageArch and #TradiciónHispanaArch, you, too, can share your story with us and potentially be featured on our English- and Spanish-language channels.

While one month will simply never be enough to fully honor our nation’s Hispanic heritage, we hope it is enough to spark a greater sense of understanding and solidarity with the Hispanic experience. Please join me in celebrating this month and throughout the year, ¡dando gracias a Dios! (giving thanks to God!) for our Hispanic students, teachers, pastors, and staff.



Mr. Michael J. Deegan
Superintendent of Schools
Archdiocese of New York

September 15th, 2021|
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