Messages from the President

News from the Hill - November 17, 2023

Dear East Catholic Family,

As the fall sports season wraps up and we prepare for the winter season, life remains busy here on the Hill. Most teams have completed their seasons, but our girls varsity soccer team has put together a nice run in the Class L playoffs. After beating Joel Barlow in the first round, 3-0, they knocked off the number one seed, Berlin, with a resounding 3-0 victory in the second round. They then went on to beat Farmington 1-0 in the quarterfinals. On Wednesday, they played Simsbury at Willowbrook Park and lost 2-1 after going into overtime and penalty kicks. Congratulations on a hard-fought season! The girls swim and dive team wrapped up their season this week with the Class S state finals on Wednesday, placing sixth overall! The final game of the fall season matches our Eagles against Northwest Catholic in a traditional Thanksgiving Day football game at NWC at 10:30 a.m.

On Friday, November 10, we celebrated Veterans Day here on campus. This is the second year we have had a Veterans Day program rather than a day off. I could not be prouder of our East Catholic family. We welcomed 24 veterans from various military branches with a pancake breakfast, students did service projects on and off campus, and we heard speeches from Ms. Michele Leavitt Weinstein '82, Major Giovanni Tomasi, Jr. '08, and Mr. Ryan Hinton (former principal at East) as our Keynote speaker. You can see more about the program below. Many thanks to Mrs. Kathy Reilly and Mrs. Adrienne Andrews for their leadership in putting the day together. Great job, everyone!

Each month the East Catholic Parents Association meets to coordinate volunteer opportunities and to hear from me and other staff about what is going on at East. I encourage any and all parents to join the group if you can. Here are the dates for the remainder of the year:

  • Monday, January 8 at 6:00 p.m.
  • Monday, February 5 at 6:00 p.m.
  • Monday, March 11 at 6:00 p.m.
  • Tuesday, April 16 at 6:00 p.m.

This will be the last News from the Hill before Thanksgiving. As a reminder, we have Monday, November 27 off for achieving our walk-a-thon fundraising goal. On behalf of the faculty and staff at East Catholic, we wish you all a relaxing and enjoyable Thanksgiving holiday. We have much to be thankful for, and at the top of the list would be our East Catholic family.


Sean P. Brennan '85
Chief Administrator

East Catholic Newsletter - November 17, 2023

News from the Hill - November 3, 2023

Dear East Catholic Family,

In the last two weeks, we wrapped up the first quarter of the school year were treated to four impressive performances of The Importance of Being Earnest, inducted new members of our National Honor Society, and easily surpassed our fundraising goal for Walk-a-Thon!

Stage East has been rehearsing for the fall play for a couple of months. What is even more impressive is that they have two separate casts. Each cast had two performances. Congratulations to all cast, crew, and especially Mrs. Quackenbush for putting on great shows!

On Wednesday, November 1, we inducted a handful of new seniors and a larger group of juniors to the East Catholic Chapter of the National Honor Society (NHS). It was a lovely ceremony run by the officers of NHS: Braeden Pagani, Suzanne DePasquale, Adam Eskin, and Sarah Posniak. Many thanks for their leadership and for Mrs. Taylor’s oversight. All in attendance were blessed to hear the keynote speaker, Sister Peggy Evans, SNDdN.

Our students have been actively engaging with our community service initiatives. We served shelter meals and supported the MARC Halloween dance here on campus. Thanks to all who were involved. Remember, all students need at least 10 hours of community service each year. Get involved!

Our Walk-a-Thon came to an end this week with a spirited spirit week. It was great to see so many students having fun with the different days. See more below, but we are extremely grateful to all who donated in helping us reach our goal!

Looking forward, good luck to Braeden Knotts and Bella Jensen as they compete in the state Cross Country Open on Monday. We will have our annual Memorial Mass on Sunday, November 5 at 2:00 p.m. in the auditorium. The Parents Association will have a couple of fundraisers beginning on Monday, November 6 (see below).

Tri-M will host a Coffee House on Wednesday, November 8 in the cafeteria. We will recognize students who have committed to colleges and universities on Signing Day, November 9.

As we did last year, rather than giving a day off for Veterans Day, we will come to school for a half day to recognize the importance of our fellow citizens who served or are still serving in our military. We will spend time doing service projects but also hearing from veterans on Friday, November 10.

As always, please be in touch with good news, questions, or concerns.


Sean P. Brennan '85
Chief Administrator

East Catholic Newsletter - November 3, 2023

News from the Hill - October 20, 2023

Dear East Catholic Family,

It is hard to believe that we are approaching the end of October, but everyone is certainly keeping busy! Last Thursday, all sophomores and juniors took the PSAT. Seniors had the day off to work on college applications and the like, and freshmen had their own program – training in the ITC, a service project, and use of MobileServe to track their service hours each year. The day was incredibly successful. Freshmen were very engaged, and the PSAT went off without a hitch, even finishing a bit early. Thanks to the Counseling Office for their leadership!

With that extra time at the end of the day, sophomores and juniors were given a blank sheet of paper and asked to write a quick note to a prospective student as our fall open house was that evening. The thoughtful, sincere, and touching notes that our students wrote blew us all away. We are very fortunate to have such a caring and invested community!

The open house was a tremendous success. We had 150+ families register and over 450 people on campus for the evening. Many thanks to all who were involved – student ambassadors, faculty, staff, parents, etc. Special thanks to Chad Malone and Abby Diemar from our Admissions Office. The 2023–2024 admissions cycle is off to a great start!

Candidates for freshman class president gave speeches last week, and the class voted on Monday during advisory. Congratulations to Charlie Hathaway ’27 for winning a tight race. We are now taking applications for the freshman class executive board.

Many thanks to family and friends who have contributed to our annual WalkEast Walk-a-thon fundraiser. We are well on our way to our goal of $50,000. We will wrap up the walk-a-thon on Friday, November 3 with a pep rally at the end of the day. Proceeds from the walk-a-thon will go to our broadcast studio in the ITC. Please contribute if you have not already. If we reach our goal, we will get the Monday after Thanksgiving off.

Yesterday at our monthly, all-school assembly we were treated to a preview of The Importance of Being Earnest by Oscar Wilde. Stage East is in the final stretch of rehearsals, and, as you can see below, they will have three performances next weekend. Please try to catch one of the shows!

Congratulations to our Aetos Dios robotics team for an excellent showing at a recent competition. See the story below.

Lastly, as the first quarter comes to a close in one week, we encourage everyone to finish strong. Remember to ask your teacher questions if you need to clarify directions or the particulars of an assignment. We are here to help!


Sean P. Brennan '85
Chief Administrator

East Catholic Newsletter - October 20, 2023

News from the Hill - October 10, 2023

Dear East Catholic Family,

Thank you for your patience as you awaited the next installment of News From the Hill. Our previous director of marketing and communication, Sarah Lomazzo '14, accepted a new position at UCONN last month, and our new director, Kelly Shea '08, just started last week. I would like to thank Sarah for the dedication to the job while back at East, and we ask you to join in welcoming Kelly!

Well, we are all certainly staying busy here on campus! Classes are in full swing, sports are underway with multiple schedule changes due to the incessant rain, The Importance of Being Earnest is three weeks away from opening night, and both the freshman and junior classes have already had their class retreats. We closed out last week with our fall sports pep rally where we recognized our fall captains for each sport, raised the banner for winning the 2023 Division I boys basketball state championship, and wrapped up a Robotics Slime-a-Teacher fundraiser with Dean Reilly "winning" the prize of being slimed!

We had our second all-school assembly on September 28. New this year, we will gather the school each month for an all-school assembly in the auditorium. Run by the student government, so far this year we have seen two editions of The Nest, a news video spotlighting events and programs on campus. We are also looking to feature individual students and their known or unknown talents.

On Tuesday, October 3 I attended the CIAC Sportsmanship Conference with seven of our students and the Athletics Department. East Catholic was one of the schools recognized for establishing a Class Act program at our school. Class Act programs (ours is called Eagles Take Action) are committed to good sportsmanship on and off the field, and we certainly embrace good sportsmanship.

Our Admissions Office has been busy as well. We hosted 8th graders from Covenant Prep in Hartford and both St. James and St. Bridget from Manchester. These are fun days on campus, as we have graduates from our feeder schools who already attend East and are eager to host students for their shadow days.

Looking forward, we will transition from warm-weather dress code starting on Tuesday, October 10. Essentially, this means no more shorts (no one will miss them more than I). We will have our fall open house on Thursday, October 12 at 6:30 p.m. Tell all of your friends and family with 7th and 8th graders to come visit our great school!

Lastly, we continue to ask families to pull forward around the front circle when dropping off in the morning. If your student has athletic gear that needs to be dropped at the gym, you are encouraged to drop them at the back circle. Many parents also utilize the side entrance (music wing). Let's all work together to make drop off and pick up as safe as possible.

Please be in touch any time with good news, questions, or concerns.


Sean P. Brennan '85
Chief Administrator

East Catholic Newsletter - October 10, 2023