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St. John Middle School celebrates back-to-back winning soccer seasons

March 21, 2024

Valdosta, GA – St. John the Evangelist Catholic School (SJCS) is proud to announce the
success of their middle school soccer team in the recently concluded season. Coaches
Stacie Zimmerman-Staton and Matthew Nelson have led the wonderful team to victory
with their dedication and hard work.

The team, consisting of students from grades 6th to 8th, has shown exceptional skills
and sportsmanship throughout the season. These students have not only excelled on
the field but also off the field, SJCS has rigorous academic standards the students must
uphold to play sports. Students are accustomed to balancing tests, quizzes, homework,
practice, and additional extracurricular activities. Their commitment and
determination have brought them to the top of their league, making SJCS proud.

“The mission of St. John is to, ‘Glorify God in all that we do.’ These students have lived
that statement. Their sportsmanship and virtues were apparent in how they played the
game of soccer,” says Coach Zimmerman-Staton. “Their hard work and perseverance
have paid off, and we are thrilled to see them achieve such success in the soccer

The school community is proud of the team's achievements and looks forward to seeing
them continue to excel in the future.

Local School Gives Away $10,000 at 26th Annual Fundraising Event

January 23, 2024

Valdosta, GA – St. John the Evangelist Catholic School (SJCS) hosts the 26th Annual
Reverse Draw and Gala. This year’s Back to the 80s themed event will be held
Saturday, February 10th, 2024, at 6:30 p.m. at The Patterson.

The reverse draw has become a highly anticipated event for the St. John the Evangelist
Catholic School community and the surrounding area. This year's theme, Back to the
80s, will bring a new level of excitement and entertainment to the event. Attendees are
encouraged to dress up in their best 80s attire and get ready to dance the night away to
classic hits from the decade. The reverse draw format adds an element of excitement
as attendees have the chance to win $10,000 while also supporting a great cause.

Other activities during the night include a live auction, door prizes, Steel’s Jewelry
Raffle, 80s Prom King and Queen crowning, and of course, a chance to WIN $10,000.
Greg Moore will auction off incredible live items including beach vacations, a hunting
package, a fine art portrait, and other exciting packages.

The event is SJCS’s largest fundraiser and helps provide tuition assistance to students,
fund community service projects, and continues the school’s mission to empower ALL
students to reach their full potential and to follow the model of Christ. Last year’s
funds were used to assist with the addition of a state-of-the-art STEM lab and to
update the T. J. LaHood Memorial Library and Media Center.

“Thanks to the support of our local community, we are celebrating 26 years of our
Reverse Draw and Gala,” said event chairwoman Celine Gladwin. “We welcome the

entire community to enjoy a black tie evening filled with suspense as numbers are
drawn to reveal the guest who will walk away with the $10,000 grand prize.”

Mrs. Carter, principal, stated, "This event not only raises crucial funds for our school
but also allows us to come together and have a great time while doing so. The support
of our community makes a huge difference in helping our students reach their full
potential. We are thankful for the support because our students are our future which
benefits our entire community. This year's theme, 'Back to the 80s,' is sure to make
for a memorable evening."

Tickets to attend this amazing event are on sale now for $150 and include dinner for
two, two drink tickets, and an entry into the drawing for $10,000. Entries into the
drawing only are also available for $100. Tickets are available at St. John Catholic
School (229-244-2556) or online at

For information about donating or sponsorship opportunities, please contact Celine
Gladwin at

Thank you to our SJCS 2023-2024 annual sponsors including: Dr. and Mrs. George
Staton, Joel and Cheri Carter, Mike and Lisa Murphy, Sam Dennis Law, Ben and
Kimberly Mackey, David and Donna Nolan, the Gladwin Family, the Puckett Family,
Hamilton Trust & Estate Elder Law, Eddie Felders Country Meat Market, Universal
Roofing & Remodeling, Nail Expressions, and SJCS Alumni.

In addition, we want to thank our Reverse Draw sponsors including Hester & Morris
Orthodontics, Steel’s Jewelry, Mr. and Mrs. John and Angela Storrings, Traditions
Floorings, Mrs. Mary Williams, Mr. and Mrs. Majeski, Katherine A. Gonos and Stephen
G. Adkins, and our very own SJCS Special Area Teachers.

Students of St. John the Evangelist Catholic School Honored Veterans at Recent Event

November 13, 2023

St. John the Evangelist Catholic School recently hosted a Veterans Day program to express gratitude to the veterans in the community. The event included a patriotic procession led by the pre-K 3 and pre-K 4 classes, who recited the Pledge of Allegiance. The school band performed the Armed Services March, and the fourth-grade students sang the National Anthem. Attendees enjoyed refreshments as a gesture of appreciation.
Reflecting on the importance of the program, SJCS Principal Cheri Carter stated, “With many of our students having an active duty or retired military parent, our Veterans Day program takes on added meaning. We believe it is essential to convey our gratitude to the veterans in our community in a meaningful way. This event exemplifies our commitment to teaching our students about the importance of service and expressing appreciation for others.”

A notable moment of the event was when sixth-grade student Addison Kiggins read the poem "We Honor You Today" to the many veterans, active members of the military and families in attendance. The heartfelt words resonated with attendees, underscoring the collective sentiment of gratitude and respect for the sacrifices made by veterans.

St. John the Evangelist Catholic School remains committed to fostering a spirit of gratitude, service, and community engagement among its students, and the Veterans Day program stands as a testament to these values.

St. John Volleyball Team Raises Donations for Staff Member Affected by Breast Cancer

October 17, 2023

Check Presented in Memory of SJCS Parent

Valdosta, GA – The St. John the Evangelist Catholic School (SJCS) volleyball team recently raised donations in honor of Breast Cancer Awareness Month. During a recent match, the volleyball team collected donations to benefit a SJCS staff member affected by breast cancer. The team presented a $1,300 check to the fellow Eagle family member in memory of SJCS mom Stephanie Nelson and all those battling breast cancer. 

"At the heart of the game, our SJCS volleyball team displayed not only their athletic ability but also their big hearts,” said SJCS Volleyball Coach Corey Wolford. “With all of the SJCS teachers, classmates, and families cheering on, the team came together to help a fellow Eagle fighting cancer.”

The SJCS volleyball team raised $1,300 from the money raised at the breast cancer fundraiser game, in addition to bake sale donations at school and after Mass at St. John the Evangelist Catholic Church. 

About Saint John the Evangelist Catholic School

St. John the Evangelist Catholic School, located at 800 Gornto Road in Valdosta, Georgia, provides students Pre-K 3 – 8th grade with the highest quality education in a Christian setting. The school offers electives including Spanish, digital arts, music, band, art and computers as well as religion, in addition to extracurricular activities like basketball, soccer, volleyball, and student council. For more information, call the school at (229) 244-2556 or visit


SJCS Volleyball Donation - SJCS Volleyball team present a check for $1,300 to SJCS custodian Julie Hier who was recently diagnosed with breast cancer. The team raised funds during a recent game as well as bake sale donations at the school and Church.

SJCS Presents a Day of Unique Fundraising Fun: Cow Plop Drop & Wild West Casino Night

October 17, 2023

Valdosta, GA – St. John the Evangelist Catholic School (SJCS) announces not one, but two special fundraising events scheduled for Saturday, October 21, 2023. This day promises a unique blend of entertainment, all in the name of supporting the school community and its educational initiatives.

Cow Plop Drop - Pay for a Plot and Hope for a Plop!

Kicking off the day at 10:00 AM, SJCS presents the third annual Cow Plop Drop. The school will release a cow onto the soccer field, and you purchase a plot of land on that field. The anticipation builds as everyone eagerly awaits the moment the cow makes its "plops." The owner of the plot where the cow chooses to "plop" will win $1,000.

"Cow Plop Drop is always a highlight of our fundraising calendar. It's a fun way for our community to come together virtually and support our school," said SJCS Home and School Association President Hala Dennis.

Plots are available for purchase on the school’s website at One plot is $25 and three plots can be purchased for $65. The excitement will be broadcast live on SJCS's Facebook page. Spectators are invited to watch the event online, starting at 10:00 AM.  

Casino Night - In the Wild West

As the sun sets, SJCS invites the community to step into the Wild Wild West at 6:00 PM in the SJCS Parish Center for its Casino Night. The event promises an evening of thrilling entertainment, bringing all your favorite casino games under one roof. From the roulette wheel's spin to the shuffling of cards at the blackjack tables, this night guarantees the pulse-pounding thrill of chance.

“Our Casino Night is a fantastic way to enjoy an evening out with friends and family while supporting our school,” said Cheri Carter, SJCS Principal. “We're turning the Parish Center into a Wild West for an unforgettable and exciting night.”

Delicious food from local food trucks including S & G World Famous BBQ, Kinsey Lab and T’s Treats, will be available for purchase during the event. Tickets to Casino Night are $100 for two people and includes $200 casino money and two raffle tickets for a chance to win baskets and prizes. Tickets are available for purchase online at

About Saint John the Evangelist Catholic School

St. John the Evangelist Catholic School, located at 800 Gornto Road in Valdosta, Georgia, provides students Pre-K 3 – 8th grade with the highest quality education in a Christian setting. The school offers electives including Spanish, digital arts, music, band, art and computers as well as religion, in addition to extracurricular activities like basketball, soccer, volleyball, and student council. For more information, call the school at (229) 244-2556 or visit


SJCS Unveils Cutting-Edge STEM Lab for Students’ Exploration and Innovation

September 05, 2023
August 18 Proclaimed as St. John the Evangelist Catholic School Day

St. John the Evangelist Catholic School (SJCS) announces the grand opening of its state-of-the-art STEM Lab, designed to ignite the curiosity and creativity of students from Kindergarten to 8th Grade. This remarkable STEM Lab stands as the sole establishment of its kind in the surrounding counties, firmly positioning SJCS as a pioneer in hands-on, experiential learning. The ribbon-cutting ceremony took place Friday, August 18 2023 amidst a gathering of the school’s educators, community leaders, and enthusiastic students.

The ribbon-cutting event was attended by Most Reverend Stephen D. Parkes, Bishop of the Diocese of Savannah, and Valdosta Mayor Scott James Matheson. Bishop Parkes' dedication to education and his remarks resonated with attendees, emphasizing the transformative power of innovative learning environments and creating soaring opportunities for all students. Mayor Matheson proclaimed August 18 as "St. John the Evangelist Catholic School Day," recognizing the school's profound impact on the community and its commitment to nurturing young minds. His proclamation underscored the school's role as a pillar of educational excellence and its strong partnership with the local community.

The SJCS STEM Lab features an array of cutting-edge amenities, including brand-new computers, engaging activities tailored to various age groups, and a diverse array of equipment such as a 3D printer, milling machine, and etching machine. These resources empower students to explore, plan, create, reflect, and share their discoveries, fostering a unique "growth mindset" approach to education. The role of the teacher transforms into that of a facilitator, guiding students on their journeys of exploration and discovery.

Principal Cheri Carter of St. John the Evangelist Catholic School underscored the significance of the STEM Lab's launch: “Our STEM Lab represents an unparalleled opportunity for our students to engage in hands-on exploration and discovery. This innovative pedagogy encourages critical thinking, problem-solving, and a deep passion for learning that will serve our students well throughout their lives. With this distinctive facility, SJCS stands at the forefront of educational excellence, setting a precedent for the region.”

At the helm of this groundbreaking endeavor is Arlene Manning, an accomplished educator with over 18 years of certified teaching experience in Georgia. Holding a BS degree from Florida State University, Manning's expertise in the natural sciences has greatly enriched the lives of countless students. Her commitment to education is further exemplified by her involvement in SJCS for the majority of her career, teaching middle school science. Manning's extensive background includes facilitating STEM programs in public school systems, leading STEM-related field trips, and inviting professionals from various fields to share their expertise with students. 

With over a thousand project opportunities within the lab's kits, students at SJCS will enjoy a diverse range of experiences, each contributing to their depth of knowledge and critical thinking skills. As the only institution of its kind in the region, SJCS continues to demonstrate its commitment to providing an exceptional education that prepares students for a future driven by innovation and exploration.

SJCS continues to expand its commitment to cutting-edge education with the introduction of a state-of-the-art Broadcast Lab. This innovative facility, equipped with high-quality cameras, professional lighting, a versatile green screen, and advanced editing tools, empowers students to not only write and create captivating stories but also seamlessly integrate multimedia into various subjects. This dynamic space encourages collaborative learning and nurtures essential skills in communication, technology, and storytelling. Complementing this modernization, the school's Media Center is undergoing a comprehensive renovation, with all-new books, shelves, circulation desk, and comfortable seating areas. Scheduled for completion by the end of the month, the updated Media Center will provide an inspiring environment for students to explore the world of literature and embark on imaginative journeys. 

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