Mission and Philosophy
The Sisters, Little Workers of the Sacred
Hearts, operate and direct the activities of
Our Lady of Grace Nursery School and Kindergarten as an integral
part of their charism and profound religious commitment. Since 1962,
the school and its educational programs have offered a tangible service
to the local community - regardless of race, nationality, gender
The Sisters affirm their total commitment to the educational and
emotional development of children and strive to provide an environment
that nurtures the potential for discovery, learning and growth. The
Sisters and staff work to provide quality care and interactive learning
opportunities for children in an atmosphere where Christian values
and love are evident.
Our Lady of Grace School is committed to the development of the
whole child and fosters spiritual, intellectual, emotional, social
and physical development on several levels. In an environment where
young children are made to feel loved, secure and self-confident,
specially designed programs help to prepare children, in every
possible way, for elementary school and beyond.
We believe that parents are the primary teachers of their pre-school
child. We also recognize that parents offer us an awesome responsibility
when they entrust their child to our loving care. Accordingly, each
family is an integral part of our school structure, where interaction
between parents, teachers and staff is considered an all important
factor. We strive to work together for the successful development
of each and every child.
Recent studies indicate that a quality preschool experience provides
a lifetime of benefits to participants and the communities in which
they live. For every $1.00 invested in educating a child between
birth and age 5, $10.00 is returned in saved costs of remedial and
special education, increased graduation rates, reduced drug and incarceration
costs, and increased numbers of young citizens joining a skilled
work force and participating in higher education opportunities. Early
education is one of the most effective ways to close the achievement
gap in our schools.
Monsignor Francesco Maria Greco was the pastor of a poor but expanding
parish in Acri, a town located in Calabria, Italy. In 1894, he petitioned
several religious congregations to send Sisters to provide secular
and religious education to the children of the town.
When every religious community refused his request,
Monsignor Greco approached a devout catechist named Raffaella DeVincenti
her assistance in starting a new religious congregation. Together,
Monsignor Greco and Sister Maria Teresa DeVincenti founded the religious
community known as Le Piccole Operaie dei Sacri Cuori – The
Sisters, Little Workers of the Sacred Hearts of Jesus and Mary.
From its humble beginnings in Acri, the work of the
congregation spread rapidly throughout Calabria to Rome and northern
in charity and with a particular devotion to the poor, the congregation
became actively involved in several apostolates – education
(nursery school, kindergarten, elementary school, high school, university
and catechetics); the staffing of orphanages and parish ministries;
social work; and the care of the aged and infirmed in hospitals and
In October 1948, nine Sisters left Calabria to begin
a new apostolic mission in the United States. They came specifically
to expand their catechetical work… namely the formal education
and spiritual development of young children and adolescents. Upon
their arrival, the Sisters staffed Saint Basil’s Preparatory
School as well as the Bishop’s chancery.
help, the Sisters eventually established two educational institutions
in Stamford- Our Lady of Grace Nursery
School and Kindergarten
in 1962 and Villa Divino Amore Nursery School in 1989. Both of these
facilities have provided a much needed service to the local community
that has particularly benefited the children of working parents.
For close to 45 years, over 4,500 children have been educated
in a loving and nurturing environment.
In addition to the efforts in their own schools, several of the
Sisters are involved in religious education programs in local parishes
in Stamford including Our Lady of Montserrat and Saint John the Evangelist.
The Sisters subsequently established nursery schools in Philadelphia,
Washington and Riverdale, Maryland. Internationally, they have opened
new convents across Italy and established missionary houses and novitiates
in Argentina, Albania and India.