The Harrison Family - LITTLE FLOWER SCHOOL
"We feel truly blessed to be a part of this wonderful community." -- Jennifer Harrison

The Harrison Family, Little Flower School

Eight year-old Ella Harrison is a lucky girl. Of all the schools her parents visited, they picked the one where they knew she would be loved the most. Of course the academics mattered, too, but nothing would ever compare with the warm welcoming Jim and Jennifer Harrison received the first time they walked through the doors of Little Flower School.

"You know your child is spending their day in an environment not only of learning, but love and caring" says Jennifer, who is impressed that the teachers and staff know all the kids by name.

Ella began attending Little Flower's Pre-K in 2009 when she was three years-old. She is now in the third grade and enjoying her favorite classes, Science, Reading, Religion, and special classes like Art and Music. She likes the fun teachers, the good friends she's made and school-related activities including Halloween Fun Fair, the school play, Sports Day, school Masses (reading scripture, reciting petitions, bringing up the gifts, etc.) and the various activities of Catholic Schools Week.

Jim and Jennifer both attended SIU Carbondale, where he earned a Bachelor's degree in Engineering and she received her Master's in Rehabilitation Administration. He works as a Quality Engineer II at Caterpillar, Inc. in Decatur. She is the Grant Manager at Illinois Council on Developmental Disabilities in Springfield.

Despite their busy schedules, they also find time to oversee Ella's outside activities such as dance, gymnastics, basketball and piano (taught by Little Flower music teacher Ms. Blazier). In addition, Jennifer has served as a room parent and past Parent Teacher Club (PTC) President. She is currently Secretary of the School Board. Jim is Vice-President of Little Flower Men's Club. They have served as co-chairs for the school auction for the past two years and they volunteer every year during Heritage Days.

Catholic education is important to the Harrisons because they want Ella to understand that her faith is a part of every aspect of her life, not just while she's attending Mass.

"We love the fact that she is exposed to Catholic teachings on a daily basis so that her faith becomes a natural part of who she will become as an adult" Jennfier says.

The family atmosphere vivifies the halls of Little Flower. To Jennifer, this was evident from the start, but it was exemplified during one of the most trying times in her life. She was diagnosed with breast cancer in 2011 and the outpouring of love and support from the Little Flower family was overwhelming.

"We've never had to ask for help! The parents, teachers and staff from Little Flower have just been there offering to cook meals, pick up Ella and babysit, while sending flowers, cards and praying" says Jennifer. "The staff raise money throughout the year for breast cancer through Pink on Paydays and a Paint the Gym Pink basketball game each year."

It sounds like Ella's not the only lucky one. Jim and Jennifer have been humbled and touched by the good people that surround them, and they say they would reciprocate in a heartbeat. Jennifer has even found a silver lining in her travails.

"The parents in Ella's classroom have been extremely supportive and have become some of my closest friends. I can't imagine what I'd do without them and I'd never have had the fortune of meeting them had we not decided to send our daughter to Little Flower School. We feel truly blessed to be a part of this wonderful community" she says.

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St. Aloysius
Blessed Sacrament
  Christ the King
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Sacred Heart-Griffin

St. Agnes  
Little Flower 
St. Patrick