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History of St. Leo Catholic School

Until the early 20th century, North Carolina had very few Catholics, and was in fact considered mission country. The Benedictine Order founded Belmont Abbey, a Benedictine College, to promote the Catholic faith in western North Carolina, and the Benedictine Fathers began mission work in Forsyth County in 1886.  In 1942, St. Leo Parish was transferred from the charge of the Benedictine Order to the Diocese of Raleigh, and its first pastor, Michael J. Begley, was appointed.  The following year, Father Begley (later Bishop Begley, first Bishop of the Diocese of Charlotte) welcomed the Sisters of St. Joseph from Chestnut Hill, Pennsylvania. Having opened a convent on Georgia Avenue, the sisters first taught only Religion, Art and Piano, but in 1949 they opened the Villa Maria Anna Academy, the first Catholic grammar school in Winston-Salem, NC. In 1953, with the purchase of property next to St. Leo the Great Catholic Church, St. Leo Parish School was born. 

St. Leo Catholic School Today

St. Leo Catholic School offers a strong Catholic-based education with an excellent academic program for Pre-kindergarten through eighth grade. The school community strongly advocates caring, sharing and doing for others to foster in young people a sense of positive self-worth, responsibility and accomplishment that benefit the community.  Parents are to participate in a broad range of activities that support the school.