Saint Martin’s Academy, rural Fort Scott, is a Catholic boarding school for boys that combines classical academics with a practical work program on a sustainable farm, according to its’ website. www.saintmartinsacademy.org
The school is in its’ third year.
Daniel Kerr is the headmaster of the academy and gave fortscott.biz an email interview.
“We have 42 students this year across all four grades: 9th, 10th, 11th, and 12th,” Kerr said. “Our first graduating class of nine will graduate on May 29th. Our graduates’ plans include college, apprenticing in a trade, and mission work.”
One of the new faculty this year is Adam Taylor, who is the assistant headmaster.
“Adam spent 20 years in the Marines before entering the private sector as a vice president at Cloudera, a software company,” Kerr said. “His son, Ian, is a 12th grader.”
The school also has a new dean of student life, Bryan Meyers.
“Bryan has taught at a variety of private and public schools for over a decade and has a passion for integrating academics with the living laboratory of the farm and fields,” Kerr said. “He teaches several classes and is also the school’s beekeeper with several active hives and more on the way.”
The school offers rugby as part of the program.
“Practices for the 2021 Rugby season are well underway and we have seven or eight matches slated in the late winter and early spring, mostly with teams from the Kansas City metro area,” Kerr said. “Team captains Ian Taylor, Henry Hickey (12th grade), and Nate Jones, Danny Harrington (11th grade) will lead the Kingfishers in our first year of playing with a full squad of 15. Rugby is played by all the boys who are able and helps develop a real esprit de corps and sense of camaraderie.”
The school is still in the construction phase with the main completed building, Theotokos Hall, the center of activity.
“Theotokos Hall serves a multifunctional purpose during our first years,” Danielle Bauer, who has development and fundraising duties at the academy, said. “Currently the building houses our kitchen, dining hall, common area and hearth, library and classrooms. Most importantly, the top floor of Theotokos Hall serves as our chapel where the boys gather daily for prayer and Holy Mass.”
It also served as a temporary dormitory until bunkhouses could be built.
“Three of our five bunkhouses scheduled for construction are now occupied by the boys,” Kerr said. ” This has been a game-changer for us by freeing up space within our main building, Theotokos Hall, to be developed for proper classrooms and a library. Enrollment next year should approach 60 and it is likely we will have a waiting list by May.”
The students are involved in the community.
“Among our work project, the boys are currently re-building several picnic tables for Gunn Park and have done some preparatory cooking for Fort Scott’s soup kitchen (Feeding Families In His Name at the First United Methodist Church),” Kerr said.
“I am sincerely grateful for the hospitality and kindness of Fort Scott’s civic leaders and residents in welcoming St. Martin’s these first few years,” Kerr said. “We look forward to being increasingly engaged in service and cultural projects that make positive contributions to the community.”
St. Martin’s Academy is located at 1950 Indian Road, Fort Scott.