New Catholic school in Rhode Island hires founding headmaster


WARWICK — Six months before its inaugural academic year begins, the board of directors of Chesterton Academy of Our Lady of Hope (“Chesterton Academy”) has announced the hiring of Robert Duffy, Ph.D., as the school’s first headmaster.
Dr. Duffy is a native Rhode Islander who graduated from Bishop Hendricken High School in 2009. He received a B.A. in philosophy and humanities from Villanova University and a Ph.D. in philosophy from Fordham University, and taught undergraduate courses at the same institutions. His academic and scholarly career is marked by many prestigious fellowships and honors. Most recently, he served as the assistant headmaster of Valor North classical charter school in Austin, Texas.
“Students at Chesterton Academy will encounter the beauty and wonder of reality through a richly classical and Christ-centered education, one that fosters true friendship in the pursuit of wisdom and holiness,” said Dr. Duffy in a written statement. “I am excited to return to my home state of Rhode Island to serve as the founding headmaster.”
Dr. Duffy’s selection concludes a rigorous six-month search by the board of directors that drew candidates from across the country.
“We are confident that we have found the right man for this important educational endeavor,” said Michael Casey, co-founder and president of Chesterton Academy. “He is a man of deep learning and strong moral character. However, we were most impressed by Dr. Duffy’s love for the truth and sincere desire to bring the light of Jesus Christ to young minds.”
Dr. Duffy is married with two young children. His hobbies include, as he noted in his statement, “reading and discussing poetry, philosophy, and theology, and spending time with friends and family.”
Chesterton Academy will host a “get to know you night” with Dr. Duffy in the coming weeks.
Chesterton Academy is an independent classical Catholic high school in Warwick, Rhode Island. In November 2022, Bishop Thomas J. Tobin signed a canonical decree officially recognizing it as a Catholic high school in the Diocese of Providence.
Chesterton seeks to form young men and women to be joyful saints by introducing them to great thinkers such as Socrates, Thomas Aquinas, and Dante, and by forming them in a distinctly Catholic culture, such that they freely choose the adventure of Christian discipleship.
Learn more about the first and only Chesterton Academy in New England by visiting


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