St. Elizabeth Ann Seton School focuses on the total development of the child within a faith‐filled community.
Built on Faith
Two hundred years ago, Elizabeth Ann Seton founded St. Joseph’s Academy and Free School, the first Catholic School for girls staffed by the Sisters of Charity. A widow, Seton struggled through difficult years, converted to Catholicism and devoted her life to caring for the children of the poor.
Dedicated to following the will of God, Seton had a deep devotion to the Eucharist, Sacred Scripture, and the Virgin Mary. In 1975 she became the first native-born United States citizen to be canonized and is now widely considered the patron saint of Catholic schools.
A wife, mother, widow, convert, educator and spiritual leader, St. Elizabeth Ann Seton’s vision and legacy are alive today at her namesake school in Elk Grove, California.
Founded in 1999, St. Elizabeth Ann Seton is Elk Grove’s only Catholic School. Our school provides a faith-filled environment as well as a rigorous academic program in our preschool, elementary and middle school.
Biography of Elizabeth Ann Seton
SETON, Elizabeth Ann, born in New York city, 28 August, 1774; died in Emmettsburg, Maryland, 4 January, 1821.
Elizabeth Ann Bayley, one of two daughters of a prominent Episcopal family, was born in New York on August 28, 1774. She was a charming little girl, small-boned and dainty, with great brown eyes. Having lost her mother at the age of three, she was deeply attached to her physician father and used to sit beside her schoolroom window watching for him on the street. When he appeared, she would slip out quickly and run for a kiss.
Beautiful, vivacious, fluent in French, a fine musician, and an accomplished horsewoman, she grew up and became a popular guest at parties and balls. Long afterward she wrote of all this as quite harmless, except for distractions at night prayers and the bother of fussing over dresses. Small wonder young William Seton fell head over heels in love with her. She returned his love adoringly and they were married, surely to live happily ever after.
It began felicitously enough in a gracious home on Wall Street, William busy at his family’s shipping business, Elizabeth with the beginnings of a family. Anna Maria was born, then young Willy, and then came a thin thread of worry in the form of William’s ill health. With the death of his father, their fortunes began to decline. William was tormented by visions of debtor’s prison, while Elizabeth was certain that God would help them to survive. “Troubles always create a great exertion of my mind,” she wrote, “and give it a force to which at other times it is incapable… I think the greatest happiness of this life is to be released from the cares of what is called the world.”
In two and a half years, they were bankrupt. Elizabeth spent that Christmas watching the front door to keep out the seizure officer. The following summer she and the children stayed with her father, who was health officer for the Port of New York on Staten Island. When she saw the babies of newly arrived Irish immigrants starving at their mothers’ breasts, she begged her physician father to let her nurse some of them since she was weaning her fourth child, but he refused. By summer’s end, he too was a victim of the yellow fever epidemic, and Elizabeth was grief-stricken. More and more she turned to the Scriptures and the spiritual life, and in May of 1802 she wrote in a letter that her soul was “sensibly convinced of an entire surrender of itself and all its faculties to God.”
Then in 1803, the doctor suggested a sea journey for William’s health. Against Elizabeth’s better judgment they set sail for Italy to visit their friends, the Felicchi family. To pay for the voyage, she sold the last of her possessions-silver, vases, pictures, all probably inherited from her father. The voyage was pleasant, but arriving at Leghorn they were quarantined in a stone tower on a cane outside the city because of the yellow fever epidemic in New York. There she endured for forty days the cruelest suffering she was ever to know, possibly the key to all that happened during the rest of her life. She wept, then reproached herself for behaving as though God were not present. She tended the racked patient, now coughing blood; amused Anna Maria, who had come with them, with stories and games; and held little prayer services. When the cold numbed them beyond bearing, she and Anna Maria skipped rope. William died two days after Christmas in Pisa, at the age of thirty-seven. Only the laundress would help the young widow to lay out his body.
While waiting to return to America, Elizabeth attended the churches of her Italian friends where she was deeply impressed by the Catholic belief in the real presence. If this teaching about the Blessed Sacrament had been held in the Episcopal church in New York at the time, Elizabeth Seton’s story might have been very different, for this doctrine was at the very heart of her conversion. Returning to New York, poor now and living upstairs in a little house supplied by friends, the news of her interest in the church stirred up consternation on all sides. She agonized with indecision about it until finally, on March 14, 1805, she became a Roman Catholic.
Several plans to support her family failed, and finally she opened a boardinghouse for schoolboys; but when her sister-in-law, Cecelia Seton, became a Roman Catholic also, her angry supporters withdrew. Hearing of her need, the president of St. Mary’s College in Baltimore offered her a residence with a teaching position in that city. She accepted and left New York for good on June 8, 1808.
In March of 1809, she pronounced her vows before Bishop John Carroll of Baltimore, was given some property in Emmitsburg, Maryland, and in June she, her three daughters, her sisters-in-law, Cecelia and Harriet Seton, and four young women who had joined them, began what was to become the American foundation of the Sisters of Charity. For special occasions they wore black dresses with shoulder capes, a simple white bonnet tied under the chin (like Elizabeth’s mourning dress); and for everyday they wore whatever else they had. Their temporary abode provided four rooms, two cots, mattresses on the floor under a leaky roof where in winter snow sifted down over them. Vegetables, now and then a bit of salt pork or buttermilk, and a beverage called carrot coffee was their fare-all flavored with that great zest for survival which had become a habit with Elizabeth. When they moved to their unfinished permanent home they were invaded by fleas which had infested the horsehair for the plaster. Finally the home was completed and they had “an elegant little chapel, 30 cells, an infirmary, refectory, parlor, school, and workroom.”
In 1811 Mother Seton adopted the rules and constitution of St. Vincent de Paul, with some modifications, and the institution, having received the sanction of the highest ecclesiastical authority, became a religious order. Afterward a group of buildings, embracing a residence for the Sisters, a novitiate, a boarding-school for young girls, a school for poor children, and an orphan asylum, was erected.
In 1814 Mother Seton sent a colony of Sisters to Philadelphia to take charge of the orphan asylum. In 1817, in response to another application from New York, another body came to that city. At her death there were more than twenty communities of Sisters of Charity, conducting free schools, orphanages, boarding-schools, and hospitals, in the states of Pennsylvania, New York, Ohio, Delaware, Massachusetts, Virginia, Missouri, and Louisiana, and in the District of Columbia. Although, according to the constitution of her order, no one could be elected to the office of mother-superior for more than two terms successively, an exception was made in her favor by the unanimous desire of her companions, and she held the office during life.
Elizabeth Seton died slowly and painfully of the tuberculosis which had stricken all her family. At the last she was sustained on nothing but a little port wine. She had written to her best friend not long before, “I’ll be wild Betsy to the last.” The night of her death, January 4, 1821, she began the prayers for the dying herself, and one of the sisters, knowing that she loved French, prayed the Gloria and the Magnificent in French with her. The spirited young woman who had wanted only to marry a handsome man, be a happy wife, and raise a pretty family, had had adventures beyond her wildest dreams. Loving by nature, she grew in faith and hope because of trial, not in spite of it. And with each trial God revealed resources, strength, and courage she did not know she possessed.
Mother Seton was canonized the first American-born saint by Pope Paul VI in 1975.
St. Elizabeth Ann Seton Catholic School is an educational ministry which passes on the values, traditions, and teachings of the Catholic Church and builds a community of faith, family, knowledge, and service.
St. Elizabeth Ann Seton Catholic School creates a nurturing environment where each student is given the opportunity to grow in faith, knowledge, and character within a Catholic community.
We recognize the individuality of each student and partner with in the care and formation of their children. Together, we set high standards for all learners, facilitate academic development, and encourage students to strive for their personal best.
As Catholic educators, we foster a desire for life-long learning and the achievement of excellence. The educational and spiritual environment instills integrity, self‐worth, and the dignity of all individual and an acceptance of others. Ultimately preparing our students to be Christian witnesses and to actively live their faith.
Our School Prayer
Recited as a school family each school day during morning assembly.
With God’s help,
I will act in such a way that I will be proud of myself
And others will be proud of me, too.
As long as I do my best today
I cannot fail.
St. Elizabeth Ann Seton – Pray for us!
Meet Our Office Staff
Fr. Chris Frazer
I entered seminary after attending Jesuit High School and earned a degree in philosophy from Mt. Angel Seminary and a master of divinity from the University of St. Thomas Aquinas (the Angelicum). After eight years of theological studies and one year with a pastoral assignment in South Sacramento, I was ordained a priest in 2007. Having recently celebrated my 12th year of priesthood, I look forward to learning more about Good Shepherd Parish and getting to know the families of the St. Elizabeth Ann Seton community. Thank you all for your very warm welcome as I came aboard.
Mrs. Marci Greene
This journey began for me when I was called to re-establish the youth catechism program at my parish. I taught multiple grades and learned that I had a passion for teaching. Now, after being in education for over 20 years, I am able to use my experiences as a catechist, elementary teacher, middle school teacher, associate superintendent, mother, and Catholic to partner with the St. Elizabeth Ann Seton community. Together, we continue to make our school a place where students learn to love each other while increasing their knowledge of faith and academics.
Mrs. Tammy Babich
My philosophy is that every child is unique and special. I enjoy building relationships with each of them and their families. My favorite part of each day is to see when a child has a “magic moment.” I enjoy seeing the wonder and mastery of discovery and development. I have been a preschool director in the Elk Grove area since 1999. I am blessed to have opened the preschool at St. Elizabeth Ann Seton in 2008. Most of the preschool staff has been working together for the past 16+ years. I am proud of our school and its teachers. We are continually recognized for our compassion and patience that flows from class to class. I have been married to my wonderful husband for 28 years. My two older children continued their Catholic education into college and have graduated from Creighton University in Nebraska. My youngest daughter will graduate high school next year.
Meet Our Teachers
Administrative Assistant for Preschool Programs
I began my Early Childhood Education in 1986 as a teacher’s aide for the Center For Children in Southern California, While attending Glendale College. I continued my ECE schooling at Consumnes River College, earning a Child Development associate Teacher Permit.
Preschool Teacher, 3-Day Morning & Afternoon Programs | 2-Day Program Aide
Extended Day Program Teacher
Preschool Aide | Extended Day Program Teacher
Preschool Teacher, 2-Day & 3-Day Program Aide
Asst. Preschool Director | Preschool Teacher, 5-Day Program
Preschool Teacher, 2-Day Program
Preschool Teacher, 3-Day Program | Preschool Aide, 2-Day Program
Preschool Teacher, 2-Day Program
Hello, I’m Jenny Jessee and teaching Kindergarten is an absolute passion of mine! My primary objective is to provide my students with an environment that is conducive to attaining a solid academic education, while highlighting her/his individual God-given strengths. I strive to develop faith-based curriculum which foster student’s creativity and critical thinking using thematic units through real world experiences.
1st Grade Teacher
Creating a foundation that fosters an enriching educational
1st Grade Aide
2nd Grade Teacher
My name is Sara Brilz and I am proud to be the 2nd grade teacher and catechist. I have a B.S. in Early Childhood Education from the University of Connecticut and earned my Multiple-Subject Elementary Certification from the University of Colorado. I am passionate about fostering a love of learning in my students and feel blessed daily to have the opportunity to partner with parents in their efforts to help children grow spiritually, academically, and socially. Nothing warms my heart more than being a part of their journey to receiving First Reconciliation and First Holy Eucharist.
2nd Grade Aide
2nd Grade Aide
3rd Grade Teacher
My philosophy of education is to educate the whole child, spiritually, academically, emotionally and socially. I have a Bachelor of Arts degree in Education and a multiple subject K-12 teaching credential and have been teaching in the Diocese of Sacramento Catholic Schools for over 30 years. I enjoy the outdoors by working in my garden, hiking, going for walks and spending time with my three children and grandchildren.
3rd Grade Aide
4th Grade Teacher
My philosophy of education is that all students are unique and must have a stimulating educational environment where they can grow physically, mentally, emotionally, spiritually, and socially. It is my wish to create an atmosphere where students can meet their full potential. I have a Bachelor of Science degree in education and my credential is clear K-12. My Action Research Project was on Performance-Based Curriculum and Assessment. I believe that there are many ways to assess for understanding of concepts.I have taught in the Sacramento Diocese for 21 years.
4th Grade Aide
5th Grade Teacher
My philosophy is to educate the whole child, including but not limited to their spiritual, physical and academic needs. I have a Bachelor’s degree in Science with an emphasis in Food and Nutrition. I returned to school to become a credentialed teacher. I enjoy spending time with my family, both immediate and extended.
5th Grade Aide
Social Studies | 6th Grade Homeroom | Physical Education | Leadership Teacher
6th Grade Aide | Extended Day Program Teacher
Math & 7th Grade Homeroom Teacher
I received my B.S. in Liberal Studies from Hayward State University and my multiple subject teaching credential at National University. I have been teaching in the Diocese of Sacramento for 6 years, both in middle school and in 3rd grade. I myself attended Catholic school for 12 years, thus having the privilege to teach here at St. Elizabeth Ann Seton is like being HOME for me. I feel that Catholic education is a gift that allows our students to blossom academically in an environment where they can learn about, practice, and live thei faith daily. It is truly a blessing!
7th Grade Aide
Mrs. Becky Solie
Science & 8th Grade Homeroom Teacher
I have been teaching at St. Elizabeth Ann Seton for 13 years and am proud to be a member of this staff. Teaching has always been a part of who I am. I can remember being the student who helped my classmates when they had questions about an assignment. Even then, the desire to help others reach their lightbulb moment was strong in me. I pursued my career in teaching by attending University of the Pacific, as a student in their well-respected Education program. I earned my Bachelor of Arts and then went on to earn my Multiple Subject teaching credential and a Masters degree in Education there. My husband is also a teacher in Catholic education. Together we have two children: 3-year-old daughter, Charlie, and 6-month-old son, Sam.
7th & 8th Grade Aide
I am an English teacher accompanying students in the stages of their growth, fostering a love for wisdom and truth with an integration of faith, culture and life. Bachelor of Science Degree in Health Science and a Masters Degree in Education from CSU Sacramento.
Religion Teacher & Liturgical Ministry
Hi, My name is Mike Kitchens. I teach music at SEAS. My Education is in Music Composition, Performance, Education, and Recording Engineering, which I studied at California State University, Sacramento and the Conservatory of Recording Arts and Sciences. My Educational philosophy is to give more than what is required and expect to be a learner, your whole life.
Elementary School Physical Education Teacher
I am a licensed and credentialed Speech-Language Pathologist and hold a Special Education Teaching Credential. I have worked at St. Elizabeth Ann Seton since 2005 as both an Instructional Assistant as well as the Educational Achievement Specialist. I feel blessed to work with our students every day and advocate for each student to reach their highest potential at St. Elizabeth Ann Seton.
Technology & Yearbook Teacher
Brian Wilkman has been teaching technology for 8 years throughout California and is excited to bring his passion and experience for education to St. Elizabeth Ann Seton School. Born and raised in a small town near Los Angeles, Mr. Wilkman is the product of over 17 years of Catholic education and has master’s degree in history.
Extended Day Program Teacher
2nd Grade Aide | Extended Day Program Teacher
Preschool Aide | Extended Day Program Teacher
6th Grade Aide | Extended Day Program Teacher
Number of Students
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Get In Touch
9539 Racquet Court
Elk Grove, CA 95758
Monday - Friday
7:45am - 3:30 pm