|September 8, 2014 • VOL. 52, NO. 15 • Oakland, CA|
| Back to school: Two more
principals named in diocese
St. Bede, Hayward
At the end of the last school year, Jocelyn Pierre-Antoine received a gift from one of her third-graders at St. Edward School in Newark. Attached to the gift was a beautiful handmade card with this scripture passage from 1 Peter 4:10 written in it, "As each has received a gift, use it to serve one another, as good stewards of God's varied grace."
As she was cleaning her classroom and organizing her files in preparation for the next school year, she was asked to consider being principal at St. Bede School in Hayward.
"Everything happened so quickly with the interview, invitation and the brief discernment," Pierre-Antoine said. "In making the decision, I had to trust what God had in store for my life, letting go of my own plans for the upcoming school year and completely surrendering to a new calling."
This new calling would take her away from the school community she had served for 12 years, including nine years of teaching third grade. Additionally, she had served two years as assistant principal and eighth-grade religion teacher, and a year teaching sixth-grade science, seventh-grade religion, math and science and eighth-grade math.
But her roots went even deeper than that. She was educated at St. Edward. "In my family, my brother and cousins all graduated from St. Edward," she said. She is also a Moreau Catholic High School graduate.
Pierre-Antoine graduated with a bachelor's degree in elementary education and human development from Boston College and a master's degree in science education from Cal State Hayward.
Through the Mary Ann Remick Leadership Program of the Alliance for Catholic Education, Pierre-Antoine received her master's degree in educational administration from the University of Notre Dame in 2008.
She got to know the St. Bede community through attending several Masses at the Hayward church, and having one-on-one conversations with some of the faculty and staff. "I am fortunate to work with Father Seamus (Farrell) who is such a supportive and caring pastor. The staff members whom I've met are very passionate about the school and dedicated to their ministries," she said.
The new principal has sent a letter to the families. She's also did her homework over the summer. "I've been studying the yearbook and calling each family personally," she said. "I've called almost every school family to introduce myself and strengthen the partnership between home and school. These calls have helped me learn the names of the families, particularly the children, while also making a personal connection with the members of my new community."
Pierre-Antoine brings her love for Catholic education to her new position. "I believe in the value and importance of Catholic education," she said. "I am a proud product of a school system that formed me to be a person who strives to follow the teachings of Christ and care for the needs of others. As principal of St. Bede School, I want all members of our school community to recognize that God's presence lies within each one of us so we are called to share this light with others."
This is a particularly proud year for the school, which was founded in 1964.
"This is also our golden anniversary so I want our entire school community (parishioners, faculty and staff, school families, alumni, members of the local community, donors and friends) to be able to celebrate how the 50-year history of our school has touched the lives of so many people so that we are inspired to continue the legacy that was established by the Sisters of the Holy Names of Jesus and Mary," Pierre-Antoine said.
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