In February of 1995, Reverend Patrick J. Caverly, V.G., pastor of the Church of the Annunciation, and a group of parishioners took on the challenge of starting a new school. “The Promise and the Dream” campaign was kicked off to fund the construction of Annunciation Catholic Academy. Richard SanGiovanni, a parishioner, was hired as architect in February of 1995.
The mission and philosophy of the school were determined early in the spring so that all subsequent decisions could be made in light of what had been decided as the parish’s vision for the school.
Two kindergarten classes were started in leased modular classrooms in the fall of 1995, and a full K-8 school opened in the fall of 1996. Dr. Margaret E. Curran was selected as principal by Father Caverly at the beginning of October of 1995. The official groundbreaking ceremony was held with Bishop Norbert M. Dorsey, C.P., on December 16, 1995. A stated campaign goal of $5 million for the construction of the school and renovation of the church was reached before the end of December 1995.
Hundreds of people attended the orientation sessions in January 1996. By the end of the registration period, it was decided that there were sufficient students to open three kindergarten classes, two each of grades 1 to 6, one of grade 7, and one of grade 8. Waiting lists were immediately started in most grade levels.
Teachers were interviewed and hired during the spring of 1996, many of whom were parishioners. Along with Father Caverly, Bill Orosz, chair of the advisory board, and Mark McLaughlin, director of operations for the parish, continued to oversee all aspects of the project. They also met regularly with Dr. Curran concerning staffing, the budget, and purchases of furniture, texts, and equipment. The school was designed to be highly technological, based on educational goals and objectives.
Construction of the building was completed in July, a month before schedule. Classes began for grades K through 8 on September 1, 1996, just 18 months after Father Caverly asked a small group of parishioners if they felt there was interest in starting a school!