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Frequently Asked

Why do parents choose St. Mary’s? 
St. Mary’s offers a rigorous curriculum and its dedicated teachers challenge students and prepare them for success in high school and beyond.  Students learn the tenants of the Catholic faith and are provided opportunities to practice that faith on a daily basis.  St. Mary’s students are well-behaved and hard-working.  St. Mary’s is more than just a school, it’s a community full of families who want the best for their children and the educational environment is second to none.

May I come in for a tour?
Yes.  Principal Tom Ruiz gives tours and answers questions for those considering enrolling their children at St. Mary’s.  Call 663-0676 to request a tour.  Students in grades 4-8 are also allowed to “give St. Mary’s a try” with shadow days scheduled on request.   

Is SMS affordable? 
YES! Our competitive tuition rates enable us to offer our excellence in education at an affordable price. Financial aid such as, Diocesan assistance, free & reduced lunch, parish subsidies, SGO scholarships, and free & reduced book rental are available. We are also a proud participant in the Indiana School Choice Scholarship (Voucher) Program.  Most families spread their electronic tuition payments over ten months.  For questions, please contact our business manager, Jan Mucha at The investment in a strong academic foundation typically leads to college scholarships for St. Mary's graduates.

Does St. Mary’s have modern technology?
Absolutely! St. Mary’s is one of the leaders in Northwest Indiana in the area of technology. Some recent upgrades made over the years are: Hired a full-time technology coordinator, cloud-based gradebooks for teachers, new parent information system, upgraded infrastructure, commercial-grade student accessible WIFI system, smartboards, continuous software updates, numerous professional development opportunities for teachers, and “one to one” technology. Students in grades 1-8 use Chromebooks as a resource.

Our family is not Catholic. May our children attend St. Mary Catholic Community School?
Yes. We have many students at St. Mary’s who are not Catholic. Everyone is welcome at St. Mary’s. All students attend mass and have religion class but those who are not Catholic are not expected to fully participate in mass.

Does St. Mary's provide after school care?
Yes.  St. Mary's students in grades K-8 may stay after at "Angel Care" until 5:30 PM.  The Angel Care staff is made up of teachers and classroom aides.  Many students complete their homework at Angel Care and our younger students enjoy coloring and other activities. 

Are families required to volunteer their time?
Yes. A credit of $600 is offered to families for working a total of 12 hours of service at designated fund raisers. These hours may be divided among the fundraisers. A parent or legal guardian may only fulfill these hours. All families are encouraged to participate and the service hours are generally thought of as a fun way to serve the school and get to know other SMS parents.

Are parents bombarded with candy sales, raffle ticket sales, bake sales, wrapping paper sales, and other fundraisers throughout the year?
No. Due to the tremendous efforts of our Home and School Association, we have a few major fundraisers rather than many small ones.

Are hot lunches available to students?
Yes. Crown Point Food Service provides two choices of lunches daily. Children can choose to bring a cold lunch or purchase a hot lunch on a daily basis. Milk may be purchased alone. Monthly menus are distributed to families.

What is “The Wildcat”?
The Wildcat is our weekly electronic newsletter. It is e-mailed to all parents on Wednesday and can also be found on online. On a Weekly basis blue envelope is sent home to each family with the oldest child in the family. Report Cards, classroom newsletters, forms, fund-raising information, and school sponsored activities are all included in the Blue envelope. Your child should return the folder to his teacher the next day.

May I attend Mass with my child?
Parents and siblings are always welcome at Mass. Children will sit with their class and we ask parents to sit in the rear of church to allow for all the classes.

What time do I drop off and pick up my child?
Doors open at 7:00 am. Students are to be in their classrooms at 7:30 am. Dismissal begins at 2:15pm.

Does St. Mary’s make exceptions for students who’s birthdate is after the September 1st kindergarten cut-off date?
No.  There are several reasons for this but, we have so many students who are reading at multiple grade levels above the national standards, enrolling a student that would be the youngest in their class would put that student at a disadvantage in many ways.

Who do I call if I have more questions?
Administrative Assistant, Monica Kasper 219-663-0676.

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