Hundreds of former students, parents, and colleagues recently gathered at St. Raphael Catholic School to honor Ellen Manning, who has served as principal for the past 23 of her 27 years with the school. During her tenure, Manning has overseen great progress and expansion in all areas of the school, with innovative programs and achievements for students and families from preschool through eighth grade.
Although Mrs. Manning is retiring from active duty as principal, she intends to stay involved in the community and in education, working with the underprivileged and students who demonstrate different learning styles.
School let out for the summer one final time for the retiring principal, who leaves behind the establishment of several key programs that provide students with the opportunity to rise to their greatest academic ability.
Some of Manning’s notable accomplishments for St. Raphael include the establishment of a thriving preschool, “Young 5” KinderKlasse, and the OASIS program “Outstanding Academic Spiritual Inclusive School.” This program was developed with Wendy Foster, Development-Marketing Director and EPRO Insurance Senior Advisor Erica Salda. Major partnerships with private investors fund the program.
“Principal Manning has made it her mission, and the school’s, to make sure every St. Raphael student has access to the resources to reach their full potential,” said Pastoral Associate Noel Fuentes, whose children all attended St. Raphael School. “We will miss her constant presence, but look forward to her continued involvement in OASIS and know the school will continue to benefit from the effects of her love and hard work each and every day.”
OASIS is a pilot program designed to optimize learning by educating teachers, parents and children on the latest brain research. The extensive program provides one-on-one and group-focused learning with certified educational specialists and focuses on the unique learning styles of each student, including an accelerated math program for exceptional learners. The “SMART Lab” Technology Program, a new addition to the OASIS program, mirrors Santa Barbara City College’s Assistive Technology Center. By providing access to state of the art technologies, the SMART Lab assists OASIS program students in successfully using their individual learning styles to master their curriculum using the latest technologies such as new Dell computers combined with Kurzweil and Dragon Naturally Speaking voice recognition software programs. Manning will continue facilitating the OASIS program during the 2010 school year, and says she looks forward to the expansion of the program.
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St. Raphael School is dedicated to the spiritual formation of each student and achieves this goal through its school-wide learning standards and the continued support of its clergy, principal, teachers, staff, school families, and parish community. For more information, please call (805) 967-2115 or visit the Web site.