From the earliest days the Church has sought to fulfill the mandate of Christ to teach the Gospel to all people. (Matthew 28:18-20) Catholic schools have developed unsurprisingly from the mission of the Church to teach the Good News. The many teaching documents of the Church have clarified the nature and role of this mission:
The influence of the Church in the field of education is shown in a special manner by the Catholic school. No less than other schools does the Catholic school pursue cultural goals and the human formation of youth. But its proper function is to create for the school community a special atmosphere animated by the Gospel spirit of freedom and charity, to help youth grow according to the new creatures they were made through baptism as they develop their own personalities, and finally to order the whole of human culture to the news of salvation so that the knowledge the students gradually acquire of the world, life and man is illumined by faith. So indeed the Catholic school, while it is open, as it must be, to the situation of the contemporary world, leads its students to promote efficaciously the good of the earthly city and also prepares them for service in the spread of the Kingdom of God, so that by leading an exemplary apostolic life they become, as it were, a saving leaven in the human community.
- Declaration on Christian Education, Second Vatican Council, No. 8
Can. 800 §2. The Christian faithful are to foster Catholic schools, assisting in their establishment and maintenance according to their means.
-Code of Canon Law
As those first responsible for the education of their children, parents have the right to choose a school for them which corresponds to their own convictions. This right is fundamental. As far as possible parents have the duty of choosing schools that will best help them in their task as Christian educators. Public authorities have the duty of guaranteeing this parental right and of ensuring the concrete conditions for its exercise.
-Catechism of the Catholic Church, No. 2229
Education is one of the most important ways by which the Church fulfills its commitment to the dignity of the person and building of community.
-To Teach as Jesus Did, §13
Catholic schools are therefore part of the central mission of the Roman Catholic Church. Through participation in the sacramental and devotional life, the study of religion and theology, a full curriculum of secular subjects and a variety of extracurricular activities, St. Genevieve School seeks to assist parents in their duty as the primary educators of their children.