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Coming Soon: St. John Bosco Academy

The Summit Academy Board of Directors announced the new name for the school during their annual “Mystery Night” fundraising event, which was held on Saturday, October 13th. Summit Academy will soon begin the process of changing the name of the school to Saint John Bosco Academy.

Two years ago, Bishop Peter Christensen suggested changing the name after the school’s provisional affiliation with the Diocese of Boise. The Board of Directors conducted surveys and held meetings with the parents and benefactors before announcing at the Academy’s 20th anniversary celebration last June of their decision to change the name. The Board President, Norm Sonnen, told everyone “the Board made the decision to change the name after much consideration. In the end, we felt that the school’s Catholicity should be reflected in its name.”

The Board solicited suggestions for the new name from the parents, students and benefactors. The selection process culminated in an evening of prayerful discernment for the board. At the end of the evening the Board was united behind the new name.

Bishop Peter Christensen was the first to be informed of the new name, “How grateful I am for the faithful, discernment process that Mr. Jim Hickel and the entire Board entered upon in choosing such an appropriate name. Although all members of the Prairie Community have known for years the Catholicity of Summit Academy, for others there will be no question about the identity of the school in the future. How perfect that the very name now promotes that which we value as Catholics. For as you may or may not know, the name chosen is one of our greatest heroes of faith from the 19th century. John Bosco was a young farmer who later became a priest. He eventually dedicated his life to the education of children. And most dear to my own heart, he established the Society of St. Francis de Sales which is devoted to the Catholic education of youth.”

Principal Jim Hickel is thrilled to bring Saint John Bosco Academy into reality, but was quick to make it clear how eternally grateful we are for all those who have sacrificed, prayed and worked so hard over the past 21 years to make the Academy what it is today. “Even though the name of the school has changed”, said Hickel, “our commitment to the wonderful mission, which is ‘To Teach the Mind, To Educate the Heart, and To Form the Character’, remains intact. Our motto of ‘Excelsior’ remains the same as well, which is our continued challenge to help the students rise above mediocrity by encouraging them always to strive ‘ever higher’ in every area of their lives. Furthermore, Saint John Bosco Academy is most fitting for our new name since it honors the founding and history of the Academy which has adhered to the educational method and preventive discipline practices of Saint John Bosco.”

Norm Sonnen added, “Catholic formation will continue at Saint John Bosco Academy for years to come, in the same fashion we have provided solid Catholic education for our students these past two decades.”

“Well done St. John Bosco Academy,” Bishop Christensen said. “My heartfelt congratulations to each and every one of you in the great Prairie Communities who will be served by such an esteemed school!”

The school administration will begin the process of formally changing the name throughout the next several months, with the official change-over to take place as of July 1, 2019.


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