Mother Catherine Academy will have a new principal for its second year as an independent Catholic school.
Anthony Wojt, currently a principal intern and social studies teacher at St. Patrick’s Catholic School in Fayetteville, N.C., was named principal last week for the coming school year.
Wojt is scheduled to begin July 1.
The board of trustees decided to go with new leadership in the second year of the school based on a business plan to take the school into the next five years.
Linda Miedzinski, who was principal of Mother Catherine Spalding School before the archdiocese shut it down primarily due to low enrollment, stayed on as principal when the school opened as Mother Catherine Academy.
A few months ago the board of trustees asked that she only stay on as principal through the remainder of the current school year. Miedzinski instead submitted her resignation on March 13.
Acting Principal Jessica Bowles said she met Wojt when he came to visit the school. She said he seemed to bring with him a strong Catholic faith.
Bowles said Wojt has studied the school and seemed ready to carry out its mission and “help us to continue to grow with our new independent Catholic school.”
Bowles will continue at the school as assistant principal and fourth-grade teacher when Wojt takes over.
Bill Leonard, president of the board of trustees, said Bowles’ first love has always been the classroom. He said the board was fortunate she was able to step into the leadership position during this transitional time.
According to information provided by the school, along with his Catholic school teaching experience, Wojt has taught in public schools in North Carolina and Michigan and is an adjunct teacher at Fayetteville Technical Community College.
Wojt has bachelor’s and master’s degrees in secondary education and is completing an educational leadership master’s certificate.
He is a parishioner at St. Patrick Church, where he is a eucharistic minister and a leader in the family life ministry.
Wojt said Monday that he was looking forward to moving with his wife and three children to St. Mary’s County, saying that the county had everything the family was looking for.
From studying the county, he said it was “an unbelievable place to raise a family.”
As a principal, Wojt said staff can expect “a commitment to foster faith development, social development and academic achievement.”
“I’m a gregarious kind of guy,” he said, adding that he is approachable and students can expect that he will listen to their story and work to help them be successful.
Leonard said Wojt was the top pick of about six applicants, all of whom were from out of state.
The top three were interviewed via Skype and the top two were brought to the school to meet with staff and others from the school community.
Leonard said Wojt had “every indication of being a strong leader focused on strong academics.”
In addition, Leonard said the new principal was also focused on the faith formation of students, a strong Catholic identity and maintaining affordable tuition, among other things.
Leonard said Mother Catherine Academy is positioned for growth and “it’s essential we have strong leadership.”
In its first year, the school hit its enrollment mark of 151 students. The prekindergarten through eighth grade school opened in August with 141 students.
Leonard said the school anticipates more growth in its second year.