Saint Gregory the Great School, staffed by the School Sisters of Notre Dame, opened its doors on September 17, 1962, with a total enrollment of 155 students in four grades: one, two, seven, and eight. The school was founded to provide a total learning environment based on excellence in educational opportunities and the formation of Christian community. Saint Gregory the Great School was officially dedicated by Walter W. Curtis, Bishop of Bridgeport, on January 20, 1963. It was dedicated in honor of Saint Gregory the Great, one of the four Latin Doctors of the Church. The following year, two more grades were added, grades three and four, bringing the enrollment to 247 students. By September 1964, Saint Gregory the Great School had opened all eight grades, bringing the enrollment to 341.
In 1966, ground was broken for a gymnasium which would also serve as a multi-purpose hall for the entire parish. On January 2, 1968, the first meeting of Saint Gregory the Great Home and School Association was held, beginning a program that has continued to promote the effective communication and cooperation among the school principal, faculty, and parents. The ultimate goal was to provide the best Catholic education for each child attending the school.
To complete the Catholic framework of education of Saint Gregory the Great School, a half-day Kindergarten was opened in September of 1975. In June 1989, a two-room addition was added to the school, behind the gymnasium, to accommodate two full day Kindergarten classes. In September 1994, Saint Gregory the Great School opened its first Pre-School, which was established in order to fulfill a growing need for early education. The Pre-School originally provided both morning and afternoon sessions for three and four-year-olds. Later, in 2011, Pre-School was changed to provide a full day, every day, four-year-olds program.
In 1991, the Bridgeport Diocese introduced the concept of regionalization. Saint Gregory the Great School then became part of Region IX, which included the seven parochial schools in and around the Danbury area, as well as the seven parishes which did not have a Catholic elementary school. The school remained this way until September 2006, when Saint Gregory the Great School became a diocesan school as mandated by the Diocese of Bridgeport.
The Alumni Association became an active, integral part of the school in 2003. Through its efforts, a new state-of-the-art science lab was designed and built. The science addition, conference room, teachers’ room, and bathrooms, opened in September 2005. The alumni also afforded the school the opportunity to hire a full-time Spanish teacher in 2005-2006 for Pre-School through grade eight, allowing the middle school to receive daily instruction. In 2007, a new parking lot, light poles, trees, and landscaping enhanced the front of the school.
In 2010, Saint Gregory the Great School received the U.S. Department of Education prestigious Blue Ribbon Award for Academic Excellence. The school was recognized for its excellent academic program and its dedication to creating a safe, nurturing environment.
Saint Gregory the Great School has continued to develop programs that enrich and strengthen the curriculum, with active programs in the following: liturgical development, art, music and drama department, boys and girls sports, and a complete multimedia computer curriculum. Classrooms have been equipped with the latest technology. All classrooms have a smart board. All classes have access to iPads and/or laptops. All middle school students have iPads and use them daily for instruction.
Starting in 2011, many structural updates and renovations have occurred at Saint Gregory the Great School. New windows, air conditioners, floors, ceilings, sensor lights, and white boards have been installed in grades one through eight. In 2013, the school was outfitted with a security system comprising of security cameras inside and outside the building, a fob key system, and reinforced front doors.
One unique characteristic of Saint Gregory the Great School is its long family legacy. Many parents are alumni, choosing to continue the tradition by sending their children to the school. Some teachers and staff are alumni while a majority of teachers and staff have sent their own children to Saint Gregory the Great School. This has perpetuated a strong bond within the community and a deep sense of tradition within the school. Because of the teacher’s vested interest, they want to continue to maintain the integrity of the school.