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Schools’ office names distinguished principal, pastor, and teacher of year

Dr. Noreen Dillon is congratulated by students at St. Mark School in Peoria on Principal Appreciation Day after learning that she had been named Distinguished Principal of the Year by the diocesan Office of Catholic Schools. Also recognized were Msgr. Mark Merdian, pastor of St. Pius X School in Rock Island, as Distinguished Pastor of the Year, and James Taber, longtime science teacher at Central Catholic High School in Bloomington, as Distinguished Teacher of the Year.

In the season of thanksgiving, the Office of Catholic Schools of the Diocese of Peoria is recognizing three people who have given many years of service to Catholic schools. They are Msgr. Mark Merdian, pastor of St. Pius X School in Rock Island, Distinguished Pastor of the Year; Dr. Noreen Dillon of St. Mark School […]

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Bishop appoints Sister Sara Kowal, SCTJM, as principal of Peoria Notre Dame

Sister Sara Kowal, SCTJM

Bishop Daniel R. Jenky, CSC, has appointed Sister Sara Kowal, SCTJM, to serve as principal of Peoria Notre Dame High School for the remainder of the current academic year. The announcement was made March 6. Sister Sara, who has taught theology and directed campus ministry at the school for seven years, was to have succeeded […]

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Diocese’s ‘distinguished’ educators of year surprised, humbled by recognition

Receiving recognition from the diocesan Office of Catholic Schools for 2018-2019 are, from left: Msgr. Brian Brownsey, pastor of St. Mark Parish in Peoria, Distinguished School Pastor of the Year; Eileen Lohr, longtime kindergarten teacher at St. Vincent de Paul School, Peoria, Distinguished Teacher of the Year; and Randy Simmons, principal of Peoria Notre Dame High School, Distinguished Principal of the Year.

“Distinguished” isn’t a title that sits easily with the pastor, principal and teacher being honored by the diocesan Office of Catholic Schools. In fact, each admitted to being surprised by the honor, which was announced in late December. “I’m humbled by it,” said Randy Simmons, who was named Distinguished Principal of the Year. He leads […]

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Three Catholic school principals are retiring as school year comes to an end

Joe McDaniel, Jodi Peine, and Jerry Carls are retiring, although not for the first time, as principals as the academic year comes to an end. (The Catholic Post/Jennifer Willems)

Three principals serving in Catholic schools of the Diocese of Peoria are retiring as the academic year comes to an end. Jerry Carls, principal of Trinity Catholic Academy in LaSalle for two years, and Joe McDaniel, principal of Holy Cross in Champaign, each stepped in on an interim basis until permanent principals could be found. […]

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Gwenn Roche to leave principal post at Corpus Christi School, Bloomington

Gwenn Roche

BLOOMINGTON — Gwenn Roche, principal of Corpus Christi School since 2013, has announced that she will be leaving at the end of the year so her husband, Patrick, can accept a job in the Columbia, Missouri, area. The move will take them closer to their daughters, grandchildren and extended family in Kansas City, Missouri, but […]

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St. Matthew, Champaign, welcomes new principal; set to open preschool

"It's almost like a dream come true -- my passion of being an educator and still being able to practice my faith daily," says Michelle Biggs, the new principal of St. Matthew School in Champaign. (The Catholic Post/Jennifer Willems)

CHAMPAIGN — St. Matthew School is poised to start a preschool next week and new principal Michelle Biggs couldn’t be a better fit — she has national board certification in early childhood education. “Things happen for a reason and God opens doors when you least expect it,” she said. A teacher and assistant principal in […]

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Awards bestowed as Mass, luncheon with principals closes school year in diocese

Among those recognized by the Office of Catholic Schools at its year-end Mass and luncheon with principals were, from left: Krista Hinkley of The High School of Saint Thomas More, Distinguished Teacher; Anita Kobilsek of Holy Cross School in Mendota, Distinguished Principal; Father William Miller of Costa Catholic Academy in Galesburg, Distinguished Pastor, and Sally Martin of St. Mary School in Kickapoo, Distinguished Teacher. (The Catholic Post/Jennifer Willems)

Encouraging the principals of Catholic schools around the Diocese of Peoria to savor every moment of their summer vacation, Bishop Daniel R. Jenky, CSC, said he looked forward to seeing them rested and “all charged up” in the fall. At the Mass marking the end of the school year, which was held in the Our […]

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Anita Kobilsek of Holy Cross, Mendota, is diocese’s 2016-17 Distinguished Principal

Principal Anita Kobilsek reads to first-graders Kaylee MacDonald, Gabriel Bunch, and Corbin Doll of Holy Cross School in Mendota. (The Catholic Post/Jennifer Willems)

MENDOTA — While it is a given that students will achieve academic success at Holy Cross School, principal Anita Kobilsek wants so much more for them. “This is my underlying philosophy: that the kids know, love and serve Jesus, that they know Jesus is truly present in the Eucharist — body, blood, soul and divinity […]

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