For the 2022-2023 school year, St. Jerome Catholic School community is excited to welcome Rodney Wilhelm as principal.

Background – please share a little about your background and what brought you to Arizona and St. Jerome.

I graduated from the University of Wyoming and began my teaching career in Ehrenberg, Arizona.  After 9 years teaching junior high I earned a Masters degree from Northern Arizona University in Educational Leadership.  I was chosen to be the assistant principal in Bagdad, Arizona and after 5 years of working up through the ranks I was the superintendent.  We moved to Wyoming to be closer to family and I worked in Cheyenne and Lusk. It was in Cheyenne that I started working in a Catholic school.  My wife and I started attending mass as well.  When we moved to Lusk we went through the RCIA program and were confirmed in July, 2016.  One year later I was a principal in another Catholic school in Alliance, Nebraska.  After 5 years we decided to return to Arizona for the weather, conveniences and the principal position at St. Jerome.

What are you looking forward to as you begin this school year?

I am looking forward to working with the diverse group of families at St. Jerome as well as the dedicated staff.  I am also looking forward to being a part of a larger diocese and school system.

What do you think about the Arizona tax credit opportunity and how do you share that with your families?

The Arizona tax credit opportunity is such a game changer for lower income families that want to have a faith-based education for their child!  Families with fewer opportunities historically can now choose to have a private school education that is traditional, faith-based, rigorous, structured and prepares their child to be successful in high school.  We tell all of our families to apply for everything they are eligible for.  The benefits of applying and being accepted for the tax credit scholarships are amazing!

Why do you support Catholic education?

I support catholic education because I am catholic and I see the tremendous opportunities it provides for children in today’s world.  Students are prepared to be hugely successful in high school and life in general while helping them develop their faith.  Catholic education helps them also to develop strong morals, values and ethics which are so important in todays’ times.

What would you like to share about St. Jerome Catholic School?

Our academic programs help students to be successful on many levels including: Map testing, ITBS and future high school opportunities. The faith formation programs are extremely popular and serve hundreds of students.  Most of our students are able to be fully funded through scholarships and financial assistance.

What makes St. Jerome Catholic School unique and the community that it is?

Our student population is blessed to have the opportunity to attend receive an outstanding education through scholarships funded by tax credits and other financial assistance. CEA has helped many of our families be able to afford a quality, Catholic education at St. Jerome. We have a great rapport with our families and a long standing tradition of supportive alumni. This is our 60th year as parish and school.

We still have seats in most grades! Please call or come by! If you are interested in meeting Mr. Wilhelm and touring the school, reach out to the school office at 602-942-5644.