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St. Joseph High School (Westchester, Illinois): Wikis

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St. Joseph High School
Address
10900 West Cermak Road
Westchester, Illinois, (Cook County), 60154
 United States
Coordinates 41°50′57″N 87°53′36″W / 41.849264°N 87.89341°W / 41.849264; -87.89341Coordinates: 41°50′57″N 87°53′36″W / 41.849264°N 87.89341°W / 41.849264; -87.89341
Information
Type Private, Coeducational
Motto Vincit Qui Laborat
(Victory Belongs to Those Who Work)
Denomination Roman Catholic
Established 1960
Oversight Archdiocese of Chicago
President David McCreery
Principal Donna Kiel
Teaching staff 50
Grades 912
Enrollment 887 (2007)
Color(s) Red, White and Black               
Athletics conference East Suburban Catholic Conference
Mascot Joe Charger
Team name Chargers
Accreditation(s) North Central Association of Colleges and Schools [1]
Newspaper The Lance
Yearbook The Blazon
Tuition US$7,450
Affiliation Christian Brothers
Dean of Students John Perovich
Admissions Director Matt Wilkinson
Athletic Director Bruce DeSanto
Website
Website

St. Joseph High School (or St. Joe's) is a Roman Catholic, coeducational, college prep, school in Westchester, Illinois, and is sponsored by the Christian Brothers of De La Salle.

St. Joseph High School is accredited by the North Central Association of Colleges and Secondary Schools and approved by the Illinois State Board of Education. St. Joe's is a member of the National Catholic Educational Association and the Christian Brothers Educational Association. The school is also a member of the Illinois High School Association (IHSA) and the East Suburban Catholic Conference (ESCC).

Contents

Admission

Students come from more than 100 elementary schools from the western suburbs and the City of Chicago. The students are accepted for admission based on the entrance exam, grade school records, and teachers’ recommendations for freshman year. Transfer students are accepted based on their academic records, discipline reports, and recommendations. Currently, the racial make up of the school is Caucasian, Hispanic, African American, Biracial, Asian, and Native American.

History

Samuel Cardinal Stritch, Archbishop of Chicago, invited the Christian Brothers to start a new high school in Westchester, Illinois. Though classes began at the new school in September 1960, work on the building continued through early 1961. The school was dedicated on September 16, 1961, Cardinal Stritch's successor, Albert Cardinal Meyer, Archbishop of Chicago.[2]

The school earned national attention in the 1994 documentary film Hoop Dreams. The subjects of the film, William Gates and Arthur Agee, were both students at the school, and both played on the basketball team under head coach Gene Pingatore.

In 2004, the school became the first Catholic high school in the state of Illinois to enter an all wireless, all laptop learning campus. Every student and teacher receives an IBM/Lenovo laptop computer which they either purchase or lease from the school.[3]

St. Joseph was an all-male institution until 2005, when Francis Cardinal George, O.M.I., Archbishop of Chicago permitted the school to become coed in light of the closing of Immaculate Heart of Mary High School, the neighboring all-female institution.[4]. Prior to the opening of school in 2006, St. Joseph's purchased the former grounds and building of the Immaculate Heart of Mary High School, and started the second semester of the 2006-07 school year by moving classes into the building. The original St. Joseph High School building is now used primarily for athletic facilities.[5]

Great Seal

In the center is the crest of the De La Salle Christian Brothers, the Catholic order of Brothers who sponsors St. Joseph High School. At the top of the crest is the Latin phrase Signum Fide, which means "the sign of faith". Below the Brothers’ crest is the broken shield, the family emblem of St. John Baptist De La Salle, the 17th century French saint who founded the Christian Brothers.

Below it hangs the star of Bethlehem, a symbol used by Lasallian schools around the world.

On one side of the star of faith is the symbol of the atomic age which depicts the school's dedication to learning and technology. On the other side, is the hammer and chisel representing the school's patron saint, St. Joseph the Worker, who was noted for his simple, but hard work as a carpenter and as the foster father of Christ.

The entire crest is surrounded by plumes and a knight’s helmet, representing the English tradition of the Village of Westchester.

Finally, at the top of the great seal of St. Joseph High School is the school motto, “Vincit Qui Laborat,” which means “Victory Belongs to Those Who Work.” Directly below the school seal is a cross to indicate Roman Catholic Church.

Academics

There are three academic programs in which students pursue coursework: Honors, College Prep (A), and College Prep (B).[6 ]

Coursework is broken down into three divisions:[6 ]

  • Applied Sciences: Mathematics, Science, Computer/Technology, Physical Education
  • Language Arts: English, Fine Arts, Foreign Language
  • Social Sciences: Religious Studies, Business, Social Studies

The school offers the following AP courses: Calculus,[7] English Literature, Studio Art, Spanish Language,[8] and European History[9]

In addition, students have the opportunity to take certain business courses on-line through Triton College.[10]

Athletics

St. Joseph is a member of the East Suburban Catholic Conference. In state tournaments sponsored by the Illinois High School Association, school teams have finished in the top four in these tournaments:

  • basketball (boys) •• 4th place (1983—84); 3rd place (1986—87); 2nd place (1977—78); State Champions (1998—99)
  • soccer (boys) •• 4th place (1984—85, 2004—05); 3rd place (1989—90, 99—2000); 2nd place (1997—98)

Additional facts

Every spring, St. Joseph High School hosts ChargerFest and (since 1995) sponsors its US$10,000 Super Raffle, which are the school’s biggest fundraisers. ChargerFest features a buffet, door prizes, additional raffles, games, and music.

In December 2005, St. Joseph High School hosted an event entitled “Becoming a True Leader,” which featured prominent leaders of today sharing leadership experiences and advice with the entire St. Joe's student body and visitors. Francis Cardinal George, O.M.I. began the program by blessing the St. Joseph community and the school’s past heritage and new initiatives.

St. Joe's Head Basketball Coach Gene Pingatore and alumnus Isiah Thomas were both members of the first class of the East Suburban Catholic Conference’s Hall of Fame in 2006.

Notable alumni

References

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