Sadie Howard

Sadie Howard, a seventh-grade student at Holy Innocents¹ Episcopal School, has been named the Fulton County winner in a Water Conservation Essay Contest sponsored by the Metropolitan North Georgia Water Planning District. The annual contest challenges students to think critically about protecting and conserving water resources in metro Atlanta.

In the 2016 contest, sixth-, seventh- and eighth-grade students were asked to write a 300- to 500-word essay on the following topic: “Why is water conservation important to you and our region?”

In her winning essay, Sadie’s discussed the stresses on Atlanta’s water supply and addressed practical approaches to conservation for homeowners and businesses.

“I was surprised and exited to win for Fulton County,” she said. Howard went on to thank Middle School Principal Theresa Jespersen and teachers Sharon Spotanski and Maureen Danzig for their support.

On Dec. 14, Sadie and winners from 15 other Metro counties were honored at a reception at the Georgia State Capitol. She also received $100 in prize money.


The Notre Dame Academy Board of Trustees and the Sophia Academy Board of Trustees have announced that Sophia Academy will be joining with Notre Dame Academy in August 2017. With the merger, the two schools will operate under the Notre Dame Academy name on the school’s newly expanded campus located in Duluth. The merger will establish Notre Dame Academy as Atlanta’s only Independent Catholic institution serving children of all learning abilities in grades preschool through high school. 

By combining the two schools, Notre Dame Academy will be able to increase access and engagement for all students by identifying and removing barriers to learning, based on Catholic social teachings. The school is committed to the common good by striving to balance individual rights and the interest of the wider society.   

Founded in 1999, Sophia Academy is an Atlanta-based Marist Catholic school, serving children with learning differences. Sophia Academy presently serves students in Kindergarten through 12th grade.  

Founded in 2005, Notre Dame Academy is a Marist Catholic and International Baccalaureate (IB) World School located in Duluth. Notre Dame Academy presently serves 576 students in four divisions: Early Years (Pre-K2 through Kindergarten), Lower School (grades 1-5), Middle School (grades 6-8) and Upper School (grades 9 and 10), and is currently enrolling students through 11th grade for the 2017-18 school year. 

A newly designated fifth division to Notre Dame Academy will be created with the merger of the two schools. The new division will be named the Father Colin School for the founder of the Society of Mary, Father Jean-Claude Colin, S.M. (1790-1875). 

“The Father Colin School will embrace the unique gifts of children with learning differences and will embody the spirit of the mission of the Society of Mary, which strives to be humble, loving, compassionate, open, inclusive and merciful,” said Father John Harhager, President of Marist School, Chairman of the Sophia Academy Board of Trustees and Board member at Notre Dame Academy.

Notre Dame Academy is recognized for providing an IB college-prep educational track for traditional learners set within a Catholic environment, while Sophia Academy is best known for their small class sizes and individualized instruction for children with learning differences.

Prospective families who are interested in learning more about the full educational track of learning options available at Notre Dame Academy can learn more at (678-387-9385) or (404-303-8722).

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