Lourdes High Switching to President-Principal Model

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The board of trustees of Our Lady of Lourdes High School in Poughkeepsie, in cooperation with the archdiocesan board of members—Cardinal Dolan, Msgr. Joseph LaMorte, vicar general, and Michael Deegan, superintendent of schools— announced the adoption of a president-principal model of school governance starting in the 2021-2022 school year.

Catherine Merryman, who served as principal since 2014, will be president, and Meghan Vilardo, who was serving as assistant principal for faculty, will be principal.

“Our Lady of Lourdes High School is well-established as a premier high school option in the Hudson Valley educating servant leaders of tomorrow in a Christ-centered Catholic tradition,” Mrs. Merryman said. “All of the various opportunities for excellence that are on the horizon can be grasped only with bold moves forward. 

“We believe this next chapter for Our Lady of Lourdes High School will benefit from a president-principal model of leadership led by proven leaders who have devoted their life’s work to Catholic education.”

Mrs. Merryman’s teaching career spans 29 years, 25 in the archdiocese. She was a teacher and administrator at Lourdes for more than 10 years before being appointed principal. She earned her bachelor’s degree from SUNY New Paltz and her master’s in education from the University at Albany.

Mrs. Vilardo has taught at Lourdes for 16 years and assumed administrative duties in 2014. She received her bachelor’s degree from Western Connecticut State University, Danbury, Conn., and her master’s in adolescent education from Mercy College, Dobbs Ferry.

Both played pivotal roles in reopening the school in September 2020 during the Covid-19 pandemic.

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