Holy Name High School to reopen in Escanaba after 50 years

ESCANABA — High school students, not only in the Escanaba area, but across Michigan’s Upper Peninsula will soon have an opportunity to receive a Catholic, classical education.

Holy Name High School in Escanaba will reopen after 50 years, beginning with the 2021-22 school year, offering both in person and remote learning.

A group of area educators, parents, alumni, supporters, and local pastors has been working toward this goal for several years. In January 2019 a major campaign under the slogan “Now is the Time” was publicly launched.

Funds were, and continue to be, raised to cover start-up costs and to help with operating costs over the first few years, as well as to fund an endowment to provide ongoing financial support for the school.

After reviewing their efforts, Bishop John Doerfler of the Diocese of Marquette, agreed that “now is the time” to reopen HNHS.

“It is truly good news to have a Catholic high school in our diocese very soon,” Doerfler said. “Holy Name’s pre-K through eighth grade school is noted not only for its academics but for developing its students into people of character and faith. I trust the high school will continue that tradition of educating and forming young people.”

Having navigated the COVID-19 crisis, Holy Name Principal Joe Carlson said, “Online learning is not something we wanted to explore, but we’re ready for it.” Carlson will lead as principal of the high school as well.

While reopening the school is a bold move, the leadership team is using prudence in its planning.

The high school will open with two grades the first year, admitting freshmen and sophomores. The following two years will see junior and senior grades added as the students progress. It’s likely that classes will be taught in a wing of the current Holy Name School the first year. After that, moving the Early Education Center — preschoolers through kindergarten — to the former St. Anne School building, which recently became available, is being considered.

HNHS will employ the Chesterton Academy Classical Curriculum, pending approval, which utilizes the Socratic method to immerse students in history, literature, philosophy, theology and languages to form articulate, clear-thinking, well-rounded and joyful individuals. Carlson said it’s “very reputable and many high schools are adopting it. We won’t be starting from scratch.”

While HNHS is on a sound financial foundation to start, there are still needs – especially building up endowments to provide permanent funding for the school. Michelle Bink is leading that effort and encourages anyone with questions or a desire to help to contact her. The school is also recruiting new students and welcomes parents to schedule an interview or school visit.

For more information, contact, mail to Michelle Bink, Development Director, 409 S. 22nd St., Escanaba, MI 49829; email alumni@holynamecrusaders.com; call 906-786-7550; or go to www.NowIsTheTimeHNHS.com.


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