Upper School (6-8)

Meet our Upper School Teachers

Mrs. Lee Morris

Mrs. Morris teaches sixth grade Literature and seventh grade Literature and Language Arts. She began teaching at St. Agnes in 2011 after substituting for 8 years.  She graduated from Randolph-Macon Woman’s College Phi Beta Kappa, magna cum laude, with special honors in International Relations and English.  She obtained her J.D. from the University of Virginia School of Law, where she was Notes Editor of the Virginia Journal of International Law.  After law school Lee clerked for the Hon. Boyce F. Martin, Jr., of the United States Court of Appeals for the Sixth Circuit.  She then went into private practice, where she ultimately became a litigation partner in a large law firm.  Mrs. Morris eventually transitioned to being a full time stay at home mom.  She and her husband Andy have three sons, all of whom attended St. Agnes from pre-k through eighth grade.

Mrs. Mary Cannon

Mrs. Cannon teaches sixth grade Religion and eighth grade Literature and Language Arts.  She joined St. Agnes as a full time teacher in 2021 after spending several years as a substitute.  Before this she was a freelance speechwriter for a variety of clients in the private and nonprofit sectors and authored three published books as a ghostwriter.  Earlier in her career she was Vice President for Editorial and Research Services at Fannie Mae, served as Assistant Secretary of Housing and Urban Development for Public Affairs, and worked on Capitol Hill as legislative aide to Congressman Jack Kemp.  She earned her B.A. with Honors from LeMoyne College.  She and her husband Frank have three adult sons and two grandchildren.

Mr. Michael Brown

After spending time at St. Agnes as a substitute, Mr. Brown joined St. Agnes as a full time teacher in 2021. Mr. Brown teaches 6 grade Math, 7th grade pre-Algebra, and Algebra. Mr. Brown grew up in Arlington, VA. He attended St. Ann’s Catholic School and Bishop O’Connell. In 2012, he graduated cum laude from James Madison University after studying Economics, Political Science, and Math. His goal as an upper school math teacher is to help students find a deep appreciation for learning and how mathematical thinking can help them in their everyday lives.

Mr. Timothy O’Leary

Mr. O’Leary grew up in Queens, New York and attended Archbishop Molloy High School. He received his Bachelor’s degree from State University of New York at Cortland, a Master’s in Business Administration from University of Bridgeport, and Master’s in Education from Southern Connecticut State University. Mr. O’Leary began teaching middle school science at St. Agnes in 2018.  He played college baseball and then professionally in the Frontier League with the Evansville Otters and internationally with Ireland’s National team.  Mr. O’Leary resides in Arlington, Virginia with his daughters Paige and Teagan.

Mrs. Monica Balroop

Mrs. Balroop is a certified teacher and has been teaching for the past 27 plus years. She began  began teaching 5th, 6th, 7th and 8th grades at St. Agnes in 2007.  Her main focus is Mathematics but has also taught L. Arts, Social Studies and Science.  Her field of experience comes from Trinidad and Tobago, Canada and United States in both Public and Private Schools.  She is a graduate of the University of Western Ontario, Canada, BA;  Walden University,  Minnesota, USA , MSc.;  and  The Catholic Womens’ Teachers College in Trinidad, WI.

Mrs. Cathleen Ueland

Mrs. Cathleen Ueland began teaching at St. Agnes in 2013. She was awarded her Bachelor of Arts degree in English from the University of San Francisco, and also earned a Certificate of Liberal Arts from the University’s St. Ignatius Institute.  ‎The George Washington University granted her a Master of Science degree in International Affairs, with an emphasis on International Law.  She also holds certification from the Virginia Catholic Education Association and a Certificate of Catechesis.  Prior to‎ her career in education, Mrs. Ueland worked at a think tank in Washington, DC, edited publications, served on the Board of SBA and raised three graduates of St. Agnes.

Upper School At A Glance

The Upper School (often referred to as Middle School in other academic settings) imbues students with self-advocacy in a Christ-centered learning environment.  The cornerstones of the Upper School are leadership, respect, community, and service.  The  faculty is constantly evolving to meet the needs of adolescent students, develop a sense of self in each student, and provide academic guidance. Students switch class, gain additional independence and leadership each year, join clubs, and prepare for high school.

The Upper School employs a cross-curricular approach (social studies, literature, art) by teaching a specific topic from complementary perspectives.  For example, students study ancient Greece by learning about customs and traditions in social studies, reading The Iliad in literature, and creating a Greek artifact in art. Students in the Upper School are also offered differentiated math beginning in 6th grade, with many 8th grade students taking high school algebra.

Successful Upper School students are academically and socially competent; able to work collaboratively with adults and peers; comfortable in their own ideas and opinions; and possess strong character and work ethic. Saint Agnes graduates attend the area’s outstanding Catholic, private, and public high schools.  In 2011, ten percent of the class were accepted at Thomas Jefferson High School for Science and Technology, widely acclaimed as the #1 high school in the country.

Highlights of the Upper School include:

  • Focus on personal growth, leadership, time-management, self-discipline, and incorporating faith into daily life.
  • Students gain responsibility as members of Student Council, Prayer Partners to younger students, and peer mediators.
  • Eighth graders lead school-wide celebrations such as the Christmas Prayer Service and Living Stations of the Cross.
  • History comes alive as students dress as Roman plebeians, create Civil War memory boxes, and host a Roaring 20’s party.
  • Many eighth grade students study Algebra 1 and test into accelerated high school math.
  • Students participate in Science and History Fairs; Spelling and Geography Bees; and the Diocesan Shakespeare Festival.
  • All Upper School students participate weekly in clubs, including yearbook, peer mediation, chorus, greenhouse, and knitting.
  • Outstanding faculty includes three male and several bi-lingual teachers.
  • Seventh and eight grade students participate in InnerQuest, a day-long team-building program

Academic excellence in a Christ-centered community

Saint Agnes Catholic School
2024 North Randolph Street
Arlington, VA 22207-3031
Office: 703.527.5423