At the dedication of St. Patrick Catholic High School in August 2007, Archbishop Thomas Rodi predicted that the school would become a model —“a school set upon a hill.” On October 15, 2010, his vision was fulfilled when the National Catholic High School Honor Roll named St. Patrick as one of the best 50 Catholic secondary schools in the United States.
The National Catholic High School Honor Roll is a list of the top 50 Catholic high schools in the United States, where schools are examined on the criteria of academic excellence, Catholic identity, and civic education. The purpose of the Honor Roll is to recognize and encourage excellence in Catholic secondary education, and is a resource for parents, schools, donors, and colleges.
The Honor Roll is an independent project of the Acton Institute, an international research and educational organization. The Honor Roll was produced in consultation with a national advisory board comprised of Catholic college presidents and Catholic scholars.
While Archbishop Rodi and others accurately predicted the success of the school, few envisioned such a rapid rise to national recognition. It is not surprising, however, considering that St. Patrick has established an impressive record, including:
- At least one National Merit Finalist each year
- ACT scores that exceed the state and national averages
- Scholarships exceeding $11 million offered to three graduating classes
- Two students (2010 graduates) recognized by CollegeBoard AP as an AP Scholar with Honor and an AP Scholar.
- National Spelling Bee contestant (2008) advancing from State Spelling Bee
- Representatives to the International Science Fair each year as well as district and state winners in the Science and Engineering Fairs.
- State Reading Fair winner (2008)
- A Catholic identity that permeates the spirit and climate of the school (Weekly mass is one of the largest in the Diocese)
- 11 MSHAA state championships (Dance team – 3 consecutive years)
- 2 MSHAA Coaches of the Year
- Award winning Robotics Team (Regional winner, advancing to national competition)
- Award winning teachers and administrators
- Host school for the Misssissippi State Association of Student Councils (Spring 2010); State and National Officers in Student Council organization
- Choir invited to sing with Kenny Rogers (Christmas 2009)
- Active involvement in community service projects by individuals, clubs and organizations, including blood drives and many fundraisers.
- Annually produces sell-out Broadway classical musical performed at the Saenger Theatre in Biloxi
To see a list of the top 50 schools, as well as lists of the 10 honorable mention schools in each category, visit http://www.chshonor.org.
The annoucement was made at a noon celebration. Dr. Rhonda Clark welcomed Bishop Morin, priests, Mayors Holloway and Schloegel, and other local officials, St. Patrick students, faculty, parents and other relatives. Guests included sixth grade principals and students from our partner elementary schools. Eric Granberry offered the opening prayer. Kate Rushton sang the "Star Spangled Banner." Senior class president Alex Waldrop reflected on "What Makes St. Patrick Special."
The official announcement was made by Principal Bobby Trosclair. With a shower of confetti, the banner announcing the school's honor was unfurled. Bishop Morin congratulated priests, administration, teachers, and students on the honor. Matti Ray Seymour offered the closing prayer.
The St. Patrick musicians offered entertainment while guests were invited to a delicious lunch catered by Naomi's Catering. Mrs. Andi Oustalet served as chair of the Celebration Committee.