News Archive


  • July

    Health Office Reminders (By Neilia Bliss, R.N.)

    If you need to contact the nurse over the summer months, please email Neilia Bliss, R.N. at

    Just a reminder that ALL students need to have their health records updated before the start of the new school year.

    To update student information, log into mySMCA and click on the on the RESOURCES page>Magnus Health Records tile.
    • Please update anything that is due to expire August 1, 2019 or that has a red X.
    • New families, please complete your checklist of TO DO items.
    • Upload all forms directly into Magnus.  Do NOT send paperwork to the school.
    • Remember, new physicals are required each school year (good only for 365 days)
    • TAPPS forms must be filled out and signed by a parent and student each year.
    Thank you so much, and have a happy, healthy summer!
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  • Summer Hours

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  • May

    Baseball Finishes in Final Four!

    SMCA Baseball falls to Fort Worth Christian School to close out a successful season. With a 17-10 record, and finishing in the final four at the TAPPS Division 2 State Tournament, our players have nothing but an exciting and remarkable season to look back on. Congrats!

    Baseball rounds out the 2018-2019 athletics season. Thank you so much to all the families, friends, coaches, donors and so many more who continue to support St. Michael's athletes! We couldn’t do it without you!
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  • Morality: The Hard Questions (By Laura Litschi, Theology Department Chair)

    Should we use fertilizers that produce food more efficiently but harm the environment? What is the best course of action to combat human trafficking? Do you think surrogacy is an ethical option for a family who wants a child? Should assault style weapons be taken off the market? Do you think euthanasia should be legalized across the United States? Is torture moral?

    These are some of the many questions junior theology students are posing to each other for discussion. Each student spent fourth quarter researching and writing about a moral issue. In these final weeks the students present their research to the class and lead discussion among their peers.

    I love these weeks of presentations and discussion when I get to join the students in the audience and witness the evidence of their growth throughout the year as they lead and participate in high-quality class discussion. As students discover the value of in-depth research, writing, and discussion on these complicated issues, I encourage them to end the year with a "what next?" curiosity to further inform themselves so that they can confidently take responsibility for their opinions.
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  • Robotics Team Competition Most Successful So Far (By Gil Garcia)

    Here are a few details from the weekend's TAPPS robotics competition.
    1. The team finished third in regular competition.
    2. The team was on the runner-up Alliance.
    3. The team won the Rookie of the Year (TAPPS) award.
    4. The team was an honorable mention for the Innovation Award. 
    5. Participating team members for the TAPPS group were Joe Lawler, Grant Lawler, Rylan Peterson, and Daniel Pinzon. 
    It was by far our most successful outing of the season and an excellent way to close out the year.
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  • Crusaders win TAPPS 5A North Regional Track

    St. Michael’s Catholic Academy men’s and women’s track teams both won their respective TAPPS 5A North regional championship in historic fashion on April 25 at Clark Stadium in Fort Worth. The men's team was led by a dominating performance in the final event, the 4 x 400 meter relay. The team of Sebastian Cascarano, Reece Anderson, Stone Sears and Jack Esparza dominated in a quality field by posting the state’s fastest qualifying mark headed in to the State Meet set for 5/4/19.

    In total the SMCA men are sending nine athletes across 10 events to the state finals. Jackson Long qualified second in the 3200M and 1600M runs. Joe Eichorst nabbed the 7th seed in the 800m dash. The men’s 4x200m relay of Vaughn Malone, Cascarano, Sears and Anderson took 2nd and are headed to state as the 3rd seed. Cascarano also qualified as the state’s 6th seed in the 200M dash. The Crusaders turned in good performances in the field events as well. Nathan Vondrak took second place in the shot put; Thomas McCarthy qualified for the state meet, taking 4th in both the high jump and pole vault; and Stone Sears nabbed a spot at state by taking second in the triple jump.

    The St. Michael’s women turned in a virtuoso performance in winning five regional championships on the track and qualifying nine athletes in eight events. Two-time defending state champion Kinga Parrish turned in the most dominating performances of the meet in winning the 800M dash by a 10 full seconds. Minutes later Parrish crushed the field in the 400M dash running the fastest time in the state and setting a new SMCA record at 58.90 seconds. Mary Hodapp, not to be outdone, also took home two individual titles in the 3200M and 1600M runs, posting the top marks in each headed to Saturday’s state meet. Parrish and Hodapp then teamed with Jennifer Thomson and Molly Van Ackeren in winning the 4x400M relay earning the state’s 1st seed headed to State. The ladies 4x200M relay team of Van Ackeren, Caroline Treadwell, Sidney Kaliher and Thomson took second in a season best performance and earned the state’s 3rd seed in the process. Freshman Camille Terracina punched her ticket to State taking second in the 3200M and fourth in the 1600M. Fellow freshman Sydney Osgood earned her spot in the state final with a bronze medal in the 800M. Thomson also took third in the 300M hurdles and Kiele Shultz took second in the pole vault securing the 3rd state seed.

    The Crusaders will be competing in the TAPPS 5A Track and Field State Championship on Friday, May 3, and Saturday, May 4, at Panther Stadium in Waco, Texas. Congratulations to all the state qualifiers and good luck at state!
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  • Renowned Author Dr. Robinson Speaks on Science-Fiction and Social Forecasting

    St. Michael's welcomed highly-acclaimed author and environmental speaker Dr. Kim Stanley Robinson to present a lecture to coincide with Earth Week. Robinson is one of the most well-known and respected science fiction writers in the world and was named a Time magazine “Hero of the Environment.”
    Through the science-fiction genre, Robinson reveals some possible solutions to the environmental challenges that humanity faces, and that topic was the focus of his lecture. Afterward, Robinson met personally with students in AP Environmental Science and English classes to further discuss the environment and the life of a writer.
    “I really enjoyed the time with Dr. Robinson, especially the luncheon that the AP Environmental Science students had with him. We talked about the effects that human development can have on the environment and the available options for the future of climate change,” junior student Luc Pierce said.
    Dr. Robinson spoke to the entire student body. Interestingly, he spoke to the students without any visuals - no video, PowerPoint, or special props, and totally captivated the audience. Dr. Robinson's talk was compelling in that it addressed climate change and global warming not only from a technological and scientific perspective, but also from a socio-political perspective, citing Mondragon, a corporation and federation of worker cooperatives based in the Basque region of Spain founded by graduates of a local technical college, as an alternative socially responsible business model. His theses sparked lively commentary and debate in the Q & A that followed.
    According to an article in The New Yorker, Robinson is "generally acknowledged as one of the greatest living science-fiction writers.” His work has been translated into 24 languages. Robinson has won numerous awards, including the Hugo Award for Best Novel and the Nebula Award for Best Novel. Robinson's work has been labeled by The Atlantic as "the gold-standard of realistic, and highly literary, science-fiction writing."
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  • April

    Lacrosse Teams Advance to District Play

    Men's and Women's Lacrosse teams both qualified for playoffs. The Lady Crusaders defeated Lake Travis 15-4 to secure the #3 spot in the central district of Division I Texas High School Girls Lacrosse League. The Lady Crusaders will play #2 Vandegrift on Thursday, April 25, at Round Rock Sports Complex. Time yet to be announced. The Lady Crusaders are 11-2 overall and 5-2 in district. 

    The Crusaders had their last game of the regular season on Wednesday, April 17, against McCallum. The Crusaders have already secured a playoff spot and will play Gateway College Prep at Gateway on Wednesday, April 24, at 7:30 p.m. The Crusaders defeated Gateway earlier 13-9 in a non-district game. The Crusaders are 6-6 overall and 3-2 in district. 

    Way to go Crusader Lax and good luck in your playoff games! 
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  • Lifetime Crusader Mitch Morse Credits Early St. Michael's Experience

    Lifetime Crusader Mitch Morse credits his early St. Michael’s experience for his athletic successes. Thanks for the shoutout, Mitch!

    Read the Article

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  • Bringing Back the Bling! Music Students Excel at TAPPS (By Steve Moreland, Director of Fine Arts)

    This past Friday, April 5, music students traveled to the TAPPS Solo Competition hosted at Regents. The 13 students who competed brought back 10 State Gold Medals for SUPERIOR performances of their solos. The group ensemble competition will be in Waco on April 23.  Congratulations, all! (Right/left - Bottom /Top)
    1. Jillian Getman
    2. Alyssa Garlepp
    3. Carson Cardwell
    4. Enting Zhou
    5. Anna Usleman
    6. Veronica Hodapp
    7. Larrisa Berrios
    8. Mary Hodapp
    9. Baekki Ma
    10. Grade Usleman
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  • March

    Dr. Penny Weibly Now A Published Mystery Writer!

    Congratulations to Dr. Weibly on the publication of her book "Maybe Murder." The novel is a "cozy mystery," a subgenre of crime fiction written with humor that takes place in a small, socially intimate community. Her second book in the series is due out soon. 

    In "Maybe Murder," Benjamin Kalico, a young man who has opened a detective agency in Austin, Texas, forms an unlikely partnership with Emelia Winterjoy, a retired English teacher and amateur sleuth, to solve a murder “that hasn’t happened yet.” 

    Dr. Weibly earned her masters and doctorate in English literature from the University of Texas at Austin. She has taught generations of St. Michael's students in her tenure here.

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  • Making Life Safer: Engineer Your World Students Study Building in Earthquake Zone (By Patti McLain, Physics & Engineering Instructor)

    The Engineer Your World I students are wrapping up the penultimate project of the year. This unit demonstrates the importance of acquiring and analyzing data to inform design decisions. Students use the engineering design process to redesign an apartment building for improved safety in an earthquake-prone region of northeast India.

    Through two rounds of building and testing scale models and analyzing the resultant data, students learn about the challenges of collecting, interpreting, displaying, and analyzing data to make and defend informed design decisions while considering necessary trade-offs between building height, building cost, and public safety. After testing their final designs, students document the results. Students opted to try two very different earthquake mitigation techniques: adding truss structures and tuned mass damper.

    "Developed by a team of University of Texas faculty, NASA engineers, and secondary teachers working with funding from the National Science Foundation, Engineer Your World is an innovative, student-centered curriculum that engages learners in authentic engineering experiences and inspires them to embrace an engineer’s habits of mind. Collaborative, student-directed projects build resilient problem-solving skills and empower students to think like engineers, to adopt engineering processes, and to pursue engineering disciplines for the betterment of our world." (
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  • February

    Elena Earns a 36 on ACT - Just Perfect!

    Congratulations to Elena Meigs ’20, who earned a 36 – a perfect ACT score. Only two-tenths of 1 percent of students who take the test, a curriculum-based achievement exam, score that high. For the ACT, 34 and up is the 99th percentile of test takers! A perfect 36 is the rarest score of all.
    From the soccer field to AP Calculus, Elena excels at being a well-balanced St. Michael's student. Great accomplishment, Elena.
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  • Madison Barrick '22 Releases Original Song

    Madison just released recorded a song last June at the studios of David Tyo in Saratoga Springs, New York. He is Recording Arts Department Chair at The New School of Radio and Television in Albany, New York. (To learn more about him go to his website ). She recorded with Kenny Kakaty who is also 15 years old ( ) and wrote the song. Madison will be back in the studio over spring break to record another original song and a few cover songs.

    You may listen to her song on iTunes from this link. Enjoy!
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  • Women's Soccer Wins District Championship

    Back-to-Back District Wins! On Monday, February 4, the Lady Crusaders defeated Brentwood Christian 5-1 at Senior Night on Austin McMeans Field at Crusader Stadium to win the TAPPS Division II District 4 Championship. The Lady Crusaders finished district play with six wins and zero losses, outscoring district opponents 27-5. This is the second year in a row the Lady Crusaders have won district. 

    The Crusaders will host McKinney Christian in the TAPPS Division II Area Playoff Game on Monday, February 11, at 4:30 p.m. on Austin McMeans Field at Crusader Stadium. Please come out and support the Lady Crusaders. 
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  • January

    Fall Culminating Projects in 3D Architecture Design Class (By David Meagher, Technology & Social Sciences Instructor)

    Architectural rendering has long been a part of the architect toolkit. Taking plans and converting them into a beautiful still image has been used by architects and designers for over 100 years. Students in Architectural Design in 3D class recently completed their final architectural renderings using a variety of software and approaches. This class places an emphasis on architectural design, function and the importance of correct scale. Students also learn how to design, populate and render architectural concept pieces. Projects this semester ranged from Micro Houses, Georgian streets, modern house concepts, and challenging designs.
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