Unique Harry Potter Type Experience
Makes Cardinal Newman Seventh Graders Feel at Home
“Hmmm – superior intellect; keen sense of humor; gifted artist – I think you belong in St. Augustine House.” That’s the kind of comment the sorting hat makes for seventh grade students as they begin their journeys at Cardinal Newman School. Yes, there is a sorting hat.
Modeled after J.K. Rowling’s Harry Potter series, seventh graders are put into one of eight different houses. Only at Cardinal Newman, the houses are named for eight “Doctors (special saints) of the church: St. Augustine, St. Theresa, St. Thomas Aquinas, St. Anthony, St. Catherine, St. Bonaventure, St. Isidore and St. Albert. The program builds acceptance, understanding, appreciation, camaraderie, team spirit, and leadership skills for seventh and eight graders.
Under this program, the Junior High is, for lunch and free time, divided into eight HOUSES – each containing an equal number of seventh and eight graders. The HOUSES compete in a variety of areas throughout the year, and the winning team earns a special adventure. In the past, winning HOUSES have gone to Carowinds and The National White Water Rafting Center.
“The HOUSE program has been a tremendous success,” said Jacqualine Kasprowski, Principal. “The transition into Middle School can be daunting - but not at Cardinal Newman. Our seventh graders become active members of our School, and they develop an immediate sense of belonging. “
Dean of Student Life Bobbie Anne Abson, directs the overall program with support from HOUSE Chancellor Elizabeth Gertz. The leadership for each HOUSE consists of its “Head of HOUSE” (a CN teacher) and the HOUSE Captains (three appointed eighth graders). At the end of the first quarter, an additional leadership position is be added when a seventh grader in each HOUSE is appointed to be a HOUSE Assistant Captain.