Frequently Asked Questions
Q. Are religion classes part of the curriculum at Villa Maria Elementary?
A. Preschool through grade eight has a daily religion class. The text book is one of the approved programs used by the Catholic Schools in the Diocese.
Q. Must students attend CCD classes in their parish before receiving Holy Communion?
A. In all parishes except Holy Cross Parish (Fairview), VME students attend classes 4 to 6 weeks prior to the reception of the sacrament. We find that this helps Villa students to become comfortable and feel part of the First Communion class. Most of these classes begin sometime in late January or early February. You may check with your individual parish. Villa’s second grade religion program prepares these students for the reception of the sacrament. Villa uses the same religion program as other local Catholic schools.
Q. Is bus transportation available?
A. Several area school districts (including Millcreek, Erie, Fairview, Girard, Harborcreek, General McLane, and Ft. LeBoeuf) are available to transport Villa Maria Elementary students to and from school during the school year except on early dismissal days.
Q. Does Villa offer hot lunches?
A. Hot lunches are served on a daily basis beginning with the first day of school. The school menu is distributed monthly.
Q. What about uniforms?
Q. What are the school hours:
Q. What is the Family Association and what do they do?
A. The VME Family Association was started in 1988. All parents at VME are automatically members and all are invited to come to monthly meetings and participate in all activities and events. The purpose for the Association is to help build community among school families and faculty through gatherings and programs that enhance the social, academic, artistic, athletic, and spiritual growth of the students of Villa.
Q. What’s the Thursday envelope?
A. All school related information is sent home on Thursday of each week. The Thursday envelope will also contain information from the Family Association and Athletic Board.
Q. Does Villa recycle? How can I help?
A. Villa collects used cell phones, ink jet and laser printer cartridges, and batteries for recycling. Please help us help Villa and our environment by sending in these items with your child! At school we also recycle paper and aluminum cans.
Q. What are all the fees for at VME?
A. Like most private and some public schools, we have fees to help fund specific departments in our school. These fees include technology, cafeteria, family association, and fundraising. We try to limit our other projects intended to raise money.
Q. My child is sick and won’t be in school. Whom do I contact?
A. When a student is absent, the parent must call the school attendance line (814-838-5451 x555) by 8:45 a.m. to verify the child’s absence. We are concerned about the safety and whereabouts of your child. If you do not call the attendance line, you will receive a call asking you to verify your child's absence.
Q. How can I get help with tuition costs?
A. Families may apply for tuition assistance and look for scholarship opportunities in our brochure and elsewhere throughout the community. They should also check with their local parish and/or employer to see if they provide financial support for private school.
Q. Is Villa a “diocesan school?”
A. Villa is a private school owned and operated by the Sisters of Saint Joseph. We maintain close ties to the Catholic Schools Office of the Diocese of Erie and we are accredited by the Middle States Association of Colleges and Schools.
Q. I have to be at work at 7 a.m.; can I drop my child off early?
A. Before-school care is available to parents who must transport their children to school before 7:30 a.m. Students who arrive between 6:30 and 7:30 a.m. will be supervised by school personnel. In addition, the after-school program provides care for VME from dismissal until 5:30pm on school days only. The Extended Care Program provides extended care for VME children during holiday breaks. Each of these three programs costs a modest fee.
Q. Villa has a pool?! When does my child get to take advantage of it?
A. Our Aquatics curriculum is the only in-school swimming program in the area and begins with at age 4. The focal point for the youngest students is to acquaint them with the pool so they become comfortable in the water and knowledgeable about pool safety. The American Red Cross Swim progression levels begin with Kindergarten. Aquatics remains an integral part of the P.E. program; skills, safety, and fitness are taught at all levels. The pool is also available to rent for private parties!
Q. Does Villa have a nurse?
A. A school nurse is assigned by the Millcreek School District. Villa is assigned a school nurse on a part-time basis determined by the number of students in the school.
Q. What if I have more questions?
A. We have a variety of resources to help with your questions: