Our Lady of Mercy School: 60 Years of Academic Excellence, Faith, and Values



BY KATRINA CAPISTRANO, DIRECTOR OF ADVANCEMENT

Our Lady of Mercy Catholic School (OLM) has been educating students of all faiths from K through 8th Grade since 1957. The Preschool opened its doors in 2006. From its humble beginnings to its current home, conveniently and centrally located in Winston Salem, OLM is proud to be celebrating 60 years of rich tradition, coupled with academic excellence based on strong faith and core values.

When the school first opened its doors on September 3rd, 1957, there were 130 students enrolled. Through the years, students have enrolled and were graduated, but one thing remained—excellent education in an environment of faith and respect, created through the dedication of the Sisters and lay people to whom students were entrusted.

Today, OLM continues to focus on small class sizes and developing and honoring each student spiritually and intellectually. OLM’s experienced educators share their love of learning, examples of faith, and expectations of excellence to their students every day. Each child in its diverse student body is invited to live and serve in a changing society as a respectful and responsible citizen.

Even though OLM has grown to be a formidable educational facility, nationally recognized as a Blue-Ribbon School of Excellence by the U.S. Department of Education, it is still somewhat of a “hidden gem.” Having moved into the former Bishop McGuinness High School building in 2002, OLM boasts high-school-level amenities and an excellent environment for elementary and middle school students. In addition, the Pre-K program is the only fully licensed 5-Star Catholic preschool in the Triad.

We invite you to come learn more about OLM. Here is what current OLM parents have to say: 

What led you to OLM?

“I was drawn because I wasn’t happy with the level of education my son was receiving at the school he attended, and I was intrigued by the National Blue-Ribbon Status. At the time, my son attended another private school in town, and I didn’t feel he was getting the education he needed.  I was looking for more structure and a higher academic challenge.” ~ L. Janjua

“My daughter started in public school. Although she was in the AG program, I was concerned about the lack of grammar that was taught, which in turn affected her writing skills. In addition, textbooks rarely came home for her to learn and develop good study skills. We were also interested in more structure and development of organizational skills.” ~ D. Steele

What is unique about OLM?

“I soon came to realize that respect and high moral character are truly the expected norm and not just a marketing tagline. The students are held to standards and challenged to be the best individuals they can be academically, socially, and spiritually.” ~ L. Janjua

“OLM is different because of the strong and dedicated leadership and educators who teach with love because they love to teach. Our children are learning to become young citizens of strong moral character, because of the character that is modeled to them by the teachers and staff.” ~ Current Parent

What makes Mercy students so successful?

“At a very young age, the children are taught responsibility and a solid work ethic. Because of the small class sizes, the personal attention to academics is unparalleled. The teachers know exactly where the child excels and where they need help, and provide help and guidance as needed.” ~ K. Simon & J. Averill

Do you have to be Catholic to attend a Catholic school?  

“No. On my initial tour, the 8th grader who gave the tour attended a Baptist church with his family. My husband and I come from differing religious backgrounds, both non-Catholic. Being at OLM brings an extra level of positive religious dialogue about differences and acceptance into our household.  The teachers are guides in a journey to help create a framework for each student to develop his or her moral compass.” ~ L. Janjua 

What advice would you give to parents who are choosing a school for their children?

“Come and visit OLM. OLM provides a loving, yet disciplined and structured environment where children thrive. Our kids will be fully prepared for high school and beyond because of the groundwork laid at OLM!” ~ K. Simon & J. Averill

“We offer love at home and when that love is also transmitted at school along with strong academic performance, we will harvest the best in a person’s future.” ~ A. Lahargou


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