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Spotlight Family – The Ryan Family

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Each quarter we’ll introduce a school family so they can share what they love about being a part of the St. Catharine School community. Whenever we can learn more about each other, the circle of faith and fellowship in our school grows! If you are interested in being a Spotlight Family, please email info@stcathschool.com

The Ryan family has been a large part of the St. Catharine Community for many decades.  This quarter we get to learn a little bit more about Kevin (St Catharine’s Class of 1991) and Gini and their three children; Maddie (3rd grade), Tommy (1st grade), and Finn (Preschool).

Q. What brought you to St. Catharine School?

A. Kevin and his 10 siblings all attended Saint Catharine School and his family have remained very active in the school community. Before our oldest, Maddie, was of school age, we made the decision to move from Bexley into Eastmoor and send our children to St. Catharine’s.  Lots of pieces played into this decision, but the amazing community paired with the opportunity for our children to gain a second-to-none education grounded in the Catholic faith were the deciding factors.

Q. Can you give some background on the SPICE program and your family’s involvement in the inception of this program?

A. Kevin’s youngest sister, Megan, was born with Down Syndrome. The rest of her brothers and sisters had all gone to St. Catharine and his parents were hopeful that she would be able to receive the same Catholic education.  When they met with the principal, Margaret Crabtree, about the possibility of enrolling Megan in kindergarten she said to them, “We have been waiting.”  They knew that there would be extra costs involved in having her attend St. Catharine, so they looked into fundraising for these costs.  The more people they talked to and more they looked, the more they realized that Megan wasn’t the only one who had special needs at St. Catharine.  They started SPICE to fundraise to support these efforts but to also raise awareness of special needs and to draw attention to the great things St. Catharine was providing.

Q. How do you see the missions of SPICE at work in our school community?

A. We believe that all teachers and staff at Saint Catharine exhibits the philosophy that every child is special.  SPICE provides a platform for discussion and awareness related to this belief.  We love that our children are learning the importance of inclusion and recognizing that every child is special and deserves the opportunity to learn and be treated with respect.

Q. What is your favorite part of the SPICE St Patrick’s Day Dinner?

A. SPICE dinner never fails to be a night full of great people, great food and lots of good ole Irish fun! Our favorite part is watching the love and support our friends and family provide this amazing organization. 

Q. So much of SPICE at St. Catharine is the culture of inclusion that exists for all the students – how can parents help their kids understand the importance of helping everyone be their best?

A. Talk to your kids. Make sure they are aware of how important it is to help everyone be their best and treat everyone with respect and kindness. Also, get involved.  There are so many opportunities for our students to live and not just learn this important lesson.