Our School is Named after St. Vincent
St Vincent was born at Valencia in Spain in 1350. At the age of eighteen he was professed in the Order of St. Dominic. He became a doctor of Sacred Theology. He devoted himself to missionary work. He preached throughout Spain, France, Italy, Germany, Holland, England, Scotland and Ireland. Numerous conversions followed his preachings, which God himself assisted by the gift of miracles. He is considered one of the most famous missionaries of the fourteenth century.
Vincent’s outstanding virtues were humility and the spirit of prayer, which made his work successful.
His motto is "Whatever you do, think not of yourself but of God."
He died on April 5, 1419. St Vincent was canonized in 1455.
History of Our School
St. Vincent School in Chatham Township opened in September, 1958 with two classrooms. The land was purchased from Antonius Brenders. The school was built by Frank VanBussel and Son, Contractors. Edgar Vandrabaney served as the first chairman of the school board.
In 1961, a two classroom addition was constructed to bring the school to four classrooms. In 1965, a portable classroom was added and was used as a library. Four more acres of land were purchased from Roy Kreiger in 1968, and in 1969, St. Vincent was amalgamated with other schools to form the Kent County Roman Catholic Separate School Board.
In 1983, the school celebrated its 25th Anniversary. Past students, teachers and surrounding community were in attendance. In 1986, two portables were attached to the north end of the school (the present day library and Grade 2/3 room). The principal’s office (present day Resource Room) was built. A secretary’s office (present day conference room) and a large storage room (Old photocopy room) were added to the south end of the school. St. Vincent school became a K-6 school. The school community was growing, but the building lacked a proper facility to teach physical education. A year later (1987), another classroom was added to the north end of the school (present day Grade 3/4 classroom).
Three years later, (1989), the school celebrated the opening of its new Gymnasium. It was the largest elementary school Gym in the Kent County Roman Catholic Separate School Board. The students no longer had to be transported by bus to Blessed Sacrament School for Physical Education.
A growing population was the impetus for the school board to expand St. Vincent School again. In 1990, three more classrooms were built (present day Grade 4/5 classroom, Grade 5/6 classroom and Grade 6/7 classroom). Finally, in 1993, one more classroom was built (present day Grade 7/8 classroom). The north wing of the school had expanded to 4 classrooms in 7 years. Further renovations of the school took place in 1996. A classroom was turned into the front office, principal’s office, and photocopy room, and the staffroom was expanded. The hallways were painted and the existing heating system was expanded to include the northeast wing of the school. However, the Viking Dome (Gymnasium) lacked proper seating facilities and a performance area.A stage and a larger storage area were added to the Gymnasium in 1997. The first school performance on this newly built stage took place on December 17, 1997.
Today, the school serves about 225 students (40% rural and 60% city). Almost all of the students are bussed to the school.
School priorities in the last few years have included a focus on Computer Technology, developing the Arts (Musicals & Plays, Choir, Talent Shows, etc), Peace Garden, and school organizational matters from a school based management approach.
St. Vincent School enjoys a healthy partnership with the School Advisory Council, and with all work hard to achieve common goals. Parents also assist with many functions where their input, expertise and support are invaluable.
Christian values are emphasized in many ways - from bible readings in the morning to recognizing students who practice Christian values in their day-to-day lives.
Our students are given opportunities to experience a variety of activities to support them in their school life.