St. Lawrence students thrive on personal attention

Published 12:00 am Monday, October 27, 2003

There is something about a small group of kids who meet each other on the first day of school in kindergarten, and see each other day in and day out for six consecutive years. By then, they know each other pretty well.

"Hi, I'm T.J. Young, and I'm the smartest kid in this class," the St. Lawrence sixth grader introduced himself. His introduction drew howls of good-natured protest from classmates.

"No way," they joked.

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"This is a small school," fellow sixth grader Kara Jordan explained. "We all know each other."

And that, say students and staff alike, is one of the best things about St. Lawrence School.

"Everyone knows everyone," secretary Sally Cannon said. " If anyone is sick, we can always find a grandparent or aunt or uncle, someone we can get a hold of. And the sixth graders are good to look after the younger kids."

St. Lawrence School can trace its beginning to the late 1800s. For many years, classes were conducted in an older building near St. Lawrence Church.

In 1981, the Catholic school system began leasing the old Lawrence Street School building from the city school system, and moved classes to the school's present location.

Today, 98 children study at St. Lawrence. The children and the adults can think of dozens of reasons why they love it.

"The kids are generally well-behaved, they're really bright, and the parents are very supportive." sixth grade teacher Sarah Walker said. "They show their support in so many ways. We probably wouldn't be here without them; we rely on them so much."

"I have tons of friends. It's fun here," student Ben Wells said.

"It's a Catholic school so I get to learn more about my religion," Shelby Walker said. " I have some great friends, and all the teachers help us a lot and I'm thankful for it."

"It's a real family atmosphere here," cannon said. "It's a great school for education and for religious instruction. And small classes mean more individualized help. It's just a great school."