Epiphany of the Lord is beginning the planning stages of a capital campaign to build a new Catholic school, and expand and relocate the outreach center. The parish conducted a feasibility study during the summer to determine the success of a campaign.
Here are answers to the most frequently asked campaign questions raised during the feasibility study.
1. Why is the school one of the first projects the parish is addressing from our master plan?
It fills a true need in the parish community, the need for Catholic education. The school building project addresses a vital aspect of the Church’s teaching ministry, a way to serve parishioners by offering a full faith-based education to our children.
2. Are there other projects included in this campaign?
YES. This campaign will raise funds to renovate and relocate the outreach center and the St. Vincent de Paul Society to the front of our parish campus. Here it will be more visible to our visiting neighbors in need and will reflect the importance the parish places on its social ministry to the poor.
3 How will a new school benefit the entire parish community?
By offering families a choice to provide their children with a Catholic education, we will build upon our Catholic foundation of faith and ensure a strong and enduring Catholic identity in our community. That is the mission that Jesus taught and commissioned to his church. A school will further foster a spirit of community and enhance the vitality of our parish family. All this will continue to attract younger members to our parish and encourage life-long participation in our faith at Epiphany.
4. Why do we need a Catholic school when we have such a good public school system in Katy?
An Epiphany school would not try to replace or compete with the wonderful public school system in Katy. The government recognizes its responsibility to provide education to the community. The Catholic Church recognizes its responsibility to educate children as well. To provide Catholic schools and faith formation to teach and strengthen our faith, has always been a part of our rich Catholic tradition. A Catholic school will teach Catholic values, traditions and knowledge to the youth of our parish. Our school will complement the public school system and provide parents with a choice in educating their children.
5. Is there enough demand for a Catholic school? How many families are interested in sending their children to the school?
We expect to always have a waiting list of applicants based on the responses in our survey and the conversations we have had.
6. How much will this project cost?
The preliminary architectural study estimates it will cost around $12 million to build and equip a two-story school building and to make the needed structural adjustments to the PAC and outreach center. The parish building commit- tee will be working with the architects to continue to develop the school architectural designs and the archdiocese will oversee the plans throughout the entire design and construction process.
7. Will Child’s Play Continue?
YES. The parish is committed to early childhood education and plans to make Child’s Play a part of the school’s program.
8. Can Epiphany support a Catholic school? How will it be funded once it’s built?
A parish of our size that is blessed with financial resources can support a Catholic school. It will be funded by tuition primarily with supplemental fundraising events. Similar schools in the archdiocese have a separate annual budget from the parish annual budget.
9. When will we break ground and when will the school open?
The ground breaking will take place once the capital campaign is completed and the archdiocese approves the construction design. It will take between three to four years for the school to open. The parish building committee is currently working with archdiocesan-approved architects to design the school building. The building committee will also collaborate with the Archdiocesan Catholic School Office to develop the curriculum.
10. How many grades will be taught? How many students will the school enroll?
The school will be pre-K through eighth grade. For the inaugural year of school, we plan to begin with pre-K through third grade and introduce additional grades each year following. When fully operational, Epiphany would have around 550 students. In future years, a third floor of classrooms can be added to the new school building to accommodate even more students.
11. What will families pay to send their children to the school?
Epiphany will have similar tuition, costs and fees to other Catholic schools in the archdiocese, where tuition averages around $8,000 per year.
12. Who will be asked to participate in the capital campaign?
Every parishioner in Epiphany will be invited to contribute to this first phase of the parish master plan. We will also approach companies and foundations for grant contributions.
13. How long will the campaign run and 13 when will it begin?
The campaign will run from November 2015 to May 2016.
The parish is currently putting together its campaign leadership team and beginning the preparation phase of the campaign.
14. Will this campaign wipe out the parish reserves and surplus?
There is no plan to use any of Epiphany’s current accounts for the construction. The current year’s budget was constructed with the administrative expense of the capital campaign in mind, and we do not intend to spend any more than that. Epiphany parish should be able to successfully raise the capital for this project with the three-year pledges of this campaign.
15. What can I/we do to help?
PRAY, VOLUNTEER, and GIVE. You are encouraged to be generous in all three ways. In November, you will receive a personal appeal letter and a campaign volunteer will contact you to personally deliver a campaign booklet, answer your questions and invite you to participate in the campaign with a gift. You will be asked to prayerfully consider making a sacrificial and meaningful gift that can be paid over three years. Thank you for making Epiphany your top charitable giving priority.