||The neutrality of this article is disputed. (September 2014)|
|175 South Mason Road
Creve Coeur, Missouri, 63141
|Color(s)||Green and White|
Whitfield School, founded in 1952, is a private, non-sectarian preparatory school with upwards of 400 students in the grades 6-12. The school's campus is located in Creve Coeur, Missouri, a suburb of Saint Louis. Whitfield School has grown immensely since 1952, most particularly under the leadership of Dr. Mary Leyhe Burke, who was succeeded by Mark J. Anderson in 2002. John Delautre began his tenure as Head of School in July 2012.
In 1952 John Barnes and Allen Cole purchased Dumford Academy, located on Bartmer Avenue, thereafter continuing operations as Whitfield School. The school moved to its current location during spring break of 1957, at which point a residential house was converted into classrooms and also served as the home for Barnes and Cole. The house now serves as administrative offices as well as a meeting and congregating facility, and has come to be named the "Barnes and Cole Alumni House."
The school experienced major growth and changes, under the fourth head of school, Dr. Mary Leyhe Burke. Dr. Burke raised money to build a new building on the land which was directly adjacent to the house; this building was completed in the early 1990s. Whitfield then received major additions, as well as several renovations in the 90's and 00's. The last major construction project, completed in 2002, added new gymnasiums, locker rooms, a state-of-the-art weight room with coaches' offices, a new dance studio and a new music studio, as well as an atrium which would serve as an a strong visual presence on Ladue Road as well as an entrance to the Cady Athletic Center and Woods Hall. This project included backstage space for the theatre department, new computer commons areas, as well as a library, called the Intellectual Commons, which occupies the space of a former gym. A 2008 construction project expanded parking lot.
In January 2010, Mark Anderson announced he would relocate to Sanford School, a K-12 school in Hockessin, Delaware. Principal Ruth Greathouse was the Interim Head of School. John Delautre was announced as the new Head of School in December 2012 and began his tenure on July 1, 2012.
Students in grades 6-12 take required courses each year in the following departments: English, social studies, science, mathematics, and language. Fine arts requirements, including music, theater and visual art, change as students get older. Whitfield classrooms average 12 students per class, and the teacher-student ratio is 1:8. These facts support student engagement and allow teachers to challenge every student.
Whitfield Performing Arts takes an experimental approach to the way that the main stage shows are executed. An abstract space allows for the variation of the stage position, audience seating and hanging of lights and speakers. Whitfield School is part of the International Thespian Society and is chapter #5436. The school often employs professional costumers, lighting and sound technicians, and scenic designers. The school puts an emphasis on the performing arts and encourages students to either appear in shows or work backstage as a way to produce a well-rounded student.
Whitfield is recognized for its athletic teams, which compete with much larger schools and consistently outperform schools of similar enrollment. At the high school level, 75% of students participate in athletics. All students are guaranteed a spot on a high school team; coaches determine whether that space is at the varsity or junior varsity level. Playing time is not guaranteed, however, and is predicated on an athlete's aptitude and effort. If students don't choose to partake in the sport itself, they may be coaches' assistants, team managers, or videographers.
Whitfield School has had a consistently successful soccer team led by Coach Bill Daues and assistant coaches Mike Quante, Jeff Cacciatore, a former college and indoor soccer star, and Luke Cano. Since 2001 Whitfield's soccer team has won seven state championships; that's seven out of nine state championships in Missouri Class 1 soccer since there has been 3 classes. In 2009, Whitfield regained the title after beating Springfield Catholic 1-0 in the final. In 2010, The Warriors took on Sprinfield Catholic again, and again they won 1-0 with a goal from Nick Doherty. Notable rivalries for soccer are John Burroughs School, Westminster, Bayless, Springfield Catholic, and Pembroke Hill.
Whitfield's impressive wrestling program operates under the direction of Coach Charlie Sherertz: a three-time honoree as Missouri wrestling coach of the year . The varsity wrestling team has won three state titles in five years (2008, 2009 and 2012). In 2012, five Whitfield Warriors earned individual state titles: Rodney Hahn '14, Will Hahn, '13, Ethan Sherertz '12. Austin Smith '12, and Chris Wilkes '13 . Coach Sheretz encourages grapplers of all ability levels join the team and demands a high level of dedication from each participant.
Whitfield School won its first Wickenheiser Cup in varsity hockey in March 2008. The previous year, Whitfield Hockey had lost to Priory 4-3 in the Wickenheiser Cup Final. In 2011, the Whitfield hockey team won the Founder's Cup by beating Parkway South High School 7-5, and Nick Kunin was named the MVP of the game. In 2012, the Warriors won their second Wickenheiser Cup Championship by defeating Lutheran High School South 6 to 5 in an exciting game that was tied through regulation and the 10 minute sudden death period. MVP senior Hunt Lucas scored the only goal in the shoot out, and junior goalie Alan Eidelman stopped all three chances to secure the win. Ryan MacInnis led the Warriors scoring with one goal and two assists. Whitfield Hockey is coached by former Blues player Jim Campbell (ice hockey).
Whitfield's varsity dance squad won the 2008, 2009, 2011, 2012, 2013 and 2015 state championship in the 1A division, and advanced to a national competition in 2008, where the team won first place in pom in the extra small division.
Whitfield's boys basketball team won the state championships in 2000. Two consecutive appearances in the state championship in 2009 and 2010 resulted in 2nd and 3rd places finishes, respectively.
Coached by Harold Barker, the varsity golf team won the 2010 and 2011 state championship. The team's 2011 campaign was highlighted by Mitch Rutledge who shot scores of 74 and 71 to capture medalist honors.
Whitfield has several publications, both traditional and innovative. All of the school's publications are extracurricular and student-run. Most publications are named after Greek works of literature.
The school's yearbook, The Iliad, is published annually and is completely designed by students with the help of a faculty advisor who oversees the meetings. The books are distributed on Field Day, where the day is spent more on signing yearbooks than on actual Field Day events.
The school's newspaper, The Odyssey, is published monthly and is student-run and edited, with a faculty advisor. This paper contains articles features articles about large-scale issues that impact society as a whole, movies and other forms of entertainment, and school-wide news and polls.
The school's online magazine, The Aeneid, is an experimental and innovative publication whose purpose has been re-defined several times. It offers more time-sensitive articles and more urgent issues than what the Odyssey might feature. The publication is entirely student edited and student run. It also has opportunities for people interested in technology because the magazine requires a staff of programmers to build and maintain the site.
The school's literary magazine, The Secret Voice, is published once a year and contains works of art and literature, submitted throughout the course of the year by students and faculty. These anonymous submissions are reviewed by a selection committee which decides, based on several factors, what should be included in that year's edition.
Whitfield's motto, "In Propria Persona," means "to one's own person."
The school embraces this slogan by allowing the students the freedom to participate in the activities that interest them most, thus building a foundation for their passions and interests. Whitfield has a long-standing belief that students shouldn't be forced into activities but rather should be encouraged to participate in a variety of clubs, teams, service projects, and organizations. Therefore, Whitfield does not have any sort of athletic or extracurricular requirement that must be fulfilled for graduation like other similar schools.
Whitfield prides themselves on giving back to the St. Louis community. Every year students participate in adopting a family from the St. Patrick's Center in order to help families in need have a special holiday season. In the spring, Whitfield students host a blood drive to help the Red Cross. In the spring students collect can for Whitfield's canned food drive in order to help Operation Food Search.
Whitfield possesses a relaxed environment in which most students opt not to use the lockers offered to all students. Instead students leave backpacks, gym bags, and even purses in the hallways.
Great pride is taken in Whitfield lunches prepared by a full, professional staff. Former students occasionally visit the school only for the food. In addition to the daily entrees, a full salad and sandwich bar is provided every day, giving students numerous healthy options.
Whitfield School has a school dog, which is a golden retriever named Rascal. Rascal visits numerous classes daily and is a favorite among students and faculty alike. Rascal is Whitfield's third dog.