Diocese of Harrisburg Catholic Schools

Proclaiming the Good News of Jesus Christ, the Catholic Schools Office of the Diocese of Harrisburg supports their Catholic Schools by promoting the spiritual, academic, social, and physical development of students in an environment that is distinctly marked by the values of our Catholic faith.

Find a Catholic School Near You

We believe your child is a gift from our loving God. We would love for you to become part of our community! Each school will be able to offer you a tour and also tell you about their admissions process and costs.

of our Elementary students score above the national average in Language Skills
of our Elementary students score above the national average in Reading
of our Elementary students score above the national average in Math
of our students graduate from High School
in scholarship funds are offered to graduates of Catholic Schools

About the 2021-2022 School Year

September 1, 2021

Dear Parents and Guardians in our Catholic Schools:

We pray this letter finds you and your families well and excited for this new school year!  Thank you for your ongoing support, partnership and belief in Catholic education during this challenging time.

As you are aware, our School Reopening Committee worked thoughtfully and prayerfully this summer to develop a health and safety plan.  That plan honored the decisions of parents and guardians as the primary educators of their children. However, yesterday, the Pennsylvania Department of Health announced that masks will be required in all K-12 schools, private, parochial and public, for students, faculty and staff when indoors, effective September 7, 2021.

Throughout the pandemic, we have followed every state mandate, and, when developing our safety plan for this school year, stated that we would continue to follow state COVID-19 mandates. We understand there are various positions and feelings regarding masking, but, as we have a mandate that applies to parochial schools, our cooperation is required.  As such, face masks will be required for all students, faculty, staff, visitors, et al., when indoors in all 36 Catholic Schools in the Diocese of Harrisburg, regardless of vaccination status, effective Tuesday, September 7, 2021. Based on the Department of Health’s mandate, our masking protocols include:

  • A face mask, covering the mouth and nose, must be worn by all students, teachers, staff and visitors, regardless of vaccination status, when inside our Catholic schools.
  • Face masks are not required when:
    • Wearing a mask would cause a medical condition or exacerbate an existing one, including respiratory issues, mental health conditions or a disability.
      • In these cases, a face shield is recommended to be worn.
    • Engaging in an activity that cannot be performed while masked, like eating and drinking or playing a musical instrument.
    • Participating in physical education classes and athletic practices or events, whether indoor or outdoor.
    • The individual is under two (2) years of age.


Our Catholic schools will follow CDC guidelines in the event of a COVID exposure. As guidelines are reviewed and updated, we will share these updates.

Let us celebrate the gift of this school year with joy, and, together, find opportunities to bring God’s children closer to Christ.  May God bless you and your family.


In Christ,

Most Rev. Ronald W. Gainer
Bishop of Harrisburg


Mr. Daniel Breen
Secretary for Education and Superintendent of Catholic Schools


Read this letter in Spanish

As instructed by PDE, we are requiring appropriate medical documentation as part of the application to the principal for an exemption from the face covering Order.  In a September 10 letter to school administrators, PDE’s Sherri Smith wrote:  “Any school entity simply permitting a parent’s sign-off without evidence that the student has a medical or mental health condition or disability that precludes the wearing of a face covering is not in compliance with the Order.”  The full text of Sherri Smith’s letter can be found here: https://www.education.pa.gov/Schools/safeschools/emergencyplanning/COVID-19/messages/September2021/Pages/September10.aspx

What sets our schools apart?

As the Catholic Schools Office of the Diocese of Harrisburg, we envision education as a lifelong process that can actualize the full human and spiritual potential of all people, calling them to discover, internalize, proclaim, and live the Gospel message and to grow in faith.

We believe:

  • Every Child is a gift from God
  • Parents are the primary educators of their children
  • Teachers are a partner with the family in the educational process
  • Every person must be treated with dignity, respect, and care
  • The school is rooted in the life of the parish
Values Based Learning

Our schools are Christ-centered with a goal to provide the best spiritual formation for each child’s body, mind, and soul and to educate each student intellectually, spiritually, and morally.


Students in almost all our schools have access to a world class wide area network that brings untold educational resources and opportunities to them in well equipped classrooms.


Our schools are accredited by the Middle States Association of Colleges and Schools and are members of the National Catholic Education Association. Catholic schools are unique faith-centered communities that integrate thinking and believing in ways that encourage intellectual growth and nurture faith and inspiration. They create a supportive and challenging climate which affirms the dignity of all persons within the school community.Please check out our schools.

  • We offer an education that combines Catholic faith and teachings with academic excellence.
  • We partner with parents in the faith formation of their children.
  • We set high standards for student achievement and help them succeed.
  • We provide a balanced academic curriculum that integrates faith, culture and life.
  • We use technology effectively to enhance education.
  • We instill in students the value of service to others.
  • We teach children respect of self and others.
  • We emphasize moral development and self-discipline.
  • We prepare students to be productive citizens and future leaders.
  • We have a 99 percent high school graduation rate. 85 percent of our graduates go to college.
  • We cultivate a faculty and staff of people who are dedicated, caring and effective.
  • We provide a safe and welcoming environment for all.

Affordable Tuition

A quality private Catholic education comes with a cost. Our schools work hard to offer the most affordable tuition possible for parents who want to make that choice. We are committed to making Catholic education an affordable option for families. Financial Aid and Scholarship programs are available to help with the cost of attending our schools.

Neumann Scholarship Foundation

The Neumann Scholarship Foundation provides financial assistance to families within the Diocese of Harrisburg who want to choose Catholic school education for their children, but do not have the financial resources to pay full tuition.

Golden Apple Award

Through the generosity and kindness of the Donahue Family foundation, the Golden Apple Award has been established to honor outstanding individuals who devote their lives to teaching in Catholic schools.

The Diocese of Harrisburg recognizes the unique responsibilities Catholic school educators have with regard to the holistic development of those students entrusted to their care. These educators are not only state-certified, but must also meet diocesan catechetical certification standards, which helps to ensure the integration of Gospel values and the Catholic Faith in all subject areas. As such, the Catholic school educator is a special person who guides students as they strive to reach their full intellectual and spiritual potential.

In light of the valuable contributions made by Catholic school educators to the Church and society, the Diocese of Harrisburg demonstrates its appreciation through the Golden Apple Award program.

Employment Options

Looking for a job in a Catholic school? View current openings and find resources for school applicants here.

All curriculum policies and procedures are established by the Office of Catholic Schools of the Diocese of Harrisburg and are voluntarily consistent with the requirements of the Academic Standards of the Pennsylvania Department of Education.

Catholic Schools have high graduation rates.

U.S. Graduation Rates

Over 98% of our Catholic School students graduate from High School compared to 78.2% in Public Schools.

Courtesy of the National Catholic Education Association www.ncea.org

The Instructional Support Advancement Committee raises funds to support the implementation of new programs, and expand existing programs in order to sustain Instructional Support for children with learning differences and special needs in grades K-12 throughout the Diocese of Harrisburg.

The committee serves as a resource and support system for families and will promote awareness to all key stakeholders in the Catholic Community.

Secretary for Education and Superintendent of Schools

Mr. Daniel Breen
PH: 717-657-4804

Associate Superintendent

Mrs. Margaret Barrett
PH: 717-657-4804

Board Members
  • Rev. Peter Hahn, St Leo the Great
  • Rev. James Lease, St Catherine Laboure
  • David Rushinski, Harrisburg Catholic School
  • Antoinette Oliverio, St Patrick School
  • Vince Harper, Bishop McDevitt
  • Loretta Witkowski, Corpus Christi School
  • Adrienne Howe, Lancaster Catholic
  • Jeffrey Hughes, Resurrection Catholic
  • Kimberly Winters, St Joseph Danville
  • Katie Seufert, York Catholic
  • Eric Zeglen, Shippensburg University
  • Terry Kerwin, Counsel, Kerwin and Kerwin
  • Daniel Breen, Secretary of Education and Superintendent of Catholic Schools, ex officio
  • Margaret Barrett, Associate Superintendent of Catholic Schools, ex officio

The Catholic schools in the diocese are operated as faith communities, not as a commercial or secular enterprise. The schools provide an opportunity for the development of faith-based values and for receiving instruction in the teachings of Christ and His Church.

  • Community Policies
  • Administrative Policies
  • Business Policies
  • Personnel Policies
  • Personnel Benefits Policies
  • Student Policies
  • Curriculum Policies
  • Student Accident Insurance

COVID-19 Acknowledgement

Please use the below link to find the COVID-19 Acknowledgement for parents and/or guardians of students enrolled in a Catholic school in the Diocese of Harrisburg for the 2021-22 year.

Wellness Policy

The schools in the Diocese of Harrisburg recognize that student wellness and proper nutrition are related to students’ physical well-being, growth, development and readiness to learn. The Diocese of Harrisburg Office of Education is committed to providing a school environment that promotes student wellness, proper nutrition, nutrition education and promotion, and regular physical activity as part of the total learning experience.

An Introduction to Service as a Teacher in the Diocese of Harrisburg – part 1 of 2

An Introduction to Service as a Teacher in the Diocese of Harrisburg – part 2 of 2

Catholic Schools Contacts

Mr. Daniel Breen

Superintendent of Catholic Schools and Secretary for Education

Office: 717-657-4804 x222

Mrs Margaret Barrett

Associate Superintendent for Curriculum and Government Programs

Office: 717-657-4804 x230

Administrative Assistants

Tammie Sciacca
Office: 717-657-4804 x223

Ann Everest
Office: 717-657-4804 x222

Jane Waldeck
Office: 717-657-4804 x229

School Events

Find Out What's Happening at Our Schools

The Catholic Schools in the Diocese of Harrisburg are always bustling with activity. Browse our education calendar to see any upcoming events at your child’s school.