Catholic schools have been present in Middletown since the 1800’s. In August 1880, two sisters of Saint Francis arrived to teach at the “first Catholic school” in Middletown. Thirty pupils were enrolled that year. The current Seven Sorrows of the Blessed Virgin Mary School opened September 4, 1951 under the name of St. Mary’s Parish School. The school was located at the corner of Race and Conewago Streets in Middletown, PA.
The first facility consisted of four Dominican Sisters from the Mother House and Sister College in Columbus, Ohio, and four secular teachers. There were 293 students in grades 1-8, and 70 students in kindergarten. On June 8, 1952, thirteen eighth graders received diplomas in the school’s first graduation ceremony. Some of the members of that first graduating class are still active members of the parish today.
In 1972, the Dominican Sisters were followed by the Adorers of the Blood of Christ Sisters, from Columbia, PA. After years of dedicated service to Seven Sorrows students, the Adorers of the Blood of Christ Sisters retired from the school and parish in June 1995.
By 2000, it was obvious that the original building needed to be updated. On June 1, 2008 ground was broken for a new multi-million dollar school building at 360 East Water Street. The following year on August 30, 2009, Seven Sorrows of the Blessed Virgin Mary School was dedicated by Bishop Kevin C. Rhoades. Currently, the school consists of students PreK-3 through 8th grade. Today the school is both PA Certified and Middle States Accredited. The school’s mission has always been to provide education of the highest academic excellence, while integrating the church’s spiritual teachings to help students form solid, spiritual values, and healthy relationships.
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