De Smet Jesuit High School
|De Smet Jesuit High School|
Ad Majorem Dei Gloriam
For the Greater Glory of God
Men for Others
|233 North New Ballas
Creve Coeur, Missouri, (St. Louis County) 63141
|Religious affiliation(s)||Roman Catholic|
|Founder||Most Rev. Joseph Cardinal Ritter|
|Oversight||Society of Jesus|
|Color(s)||Maroon and White|
|Athletics conference||Metro Catholic Conference|
|Rival||St. Louis University High School
Christian Brothers College High School
|Accreditation||North Central Association of Colleges and Schools|
|Average ACT scores||26|
|Tuition||$13,970 (2014-2015)[needs update]|
|Affiliation||ISSL, ISACS, NAIS, North Central Association of Colleges and Schools|
|Admissions||Director, Tim Sullivan|
|Athletics||Director, Kevin Roberts|
The school began classes in the fall of 1967. It was named in honor of the Belgian Jesuit missionary Pierre-Jean De Smet, S.J.
Honors courses are offered in math, English, foreign language, social studies, fine arts, and science, totaling 130 college credit hours. Honors students at De Smet average a score of 31 on the ACT, and grades for honors courses are weighted when calculating grade-point average. The entire curriculum is college prep, but there is a full-service learning center to assist students needing extra help. All students lease a tablet PC, featuring a pen and multi-touch display as well as speech/audio recognition. Moodle is used to facilitate teacher communication with students and parents.
De Smet Jesuit fields 52 teams in 19 sports, 4 of them non-cut. DeSmet competes in the large school division in the Missouri State High School Activities Association, and has historically had much success in competition. The school competes in the Metro Catholic Conference along with fellow private schools Chaminade College Preparatory, Christian Brothers High School, St. Louis University High School, and St. John Vianney High School.
The basketball program has won 5 basketball state championships (1973, 1978, 1979, 1982, 1999), three of them under Rich Grawer who went on to coach at University of Missouri and St. Louis University. His 1979 team went undefeated, 32-0.
In 2016, the school hired Blake Ahearn as its head varsity Basketball coach. Ahearn, an alumnus of the school, was both a standout player in high school and in college at Missouri State University. He also spent a short time in the NBA, including stints with the Miami Heat, San Antonio Spurs, and Utah Jazz.
A student Core Team, composed of juniors and seniors who meet during home room, is vitally involved in invigorating all aspects of the Campus Ministry program. Students are, further, encouraged to write prayers for the opening and closing of the school day and reflections for the Friday Holy Hour, and plan liturgies; they also network with youth groups at other schools and parishes.
All freshmen make the El Camino retreat in which they come to see life as a journey, with role models, heroes, and acceptance of oneself. It is led by seniors and includes team-building exercises, small-group discussions, and faith sharing. The Kairos retreat runs three days and is led by seniors who have made it. It emphasizes peer leadership and ministry to build solidarity, based on the experience of God’s love in our lives. Follow-up gatherings are held for those attending the retreat. The senior retreat lasts two full days and introduces retreatants to various methods of prayer from St. Ignatius’ Spiritual Exercises, directed toward a facility at finding God in all things.
Freshmen serve the school community at school events. Sophomores assist at school and are also encouraged to volunteer in their neighborhood and church communities. Juniors select from more than 120 area service agencies; they go out on Mondays and their experiences are incorporated into class on Tuesdays. Many are drawn to tutoring children or recreating with them, at inner-city grade schools, homeless shelters, and in Head Start programs; they also work with children having learning disabilities, physical disabilities, autism, or behavioral disorders. The elderly in nursing homes offer a mutually enriching experience for many. Seniors continue on and deepen their experience from junior year. There have also been service-learning trips to Honduras, Belize, South Dakota, and New Orleans, to learn and grow by working with those in need.
Liturgies & spirituality
Mass is celebrated daily at 7:20 am. Each Friday there is a Holy Hour along with the Sacrament of Reconciliation. Ten large Eucharistic celebrations are held throughout the year, incorporating Holy Days or special events like Mass of the Holy Spirit, Missioning, Thanksgiving, De Smet’s birthday, family Masses with BBQ or breakfast, Ring Mass, and Graduation.
A Christian Life Community group meets weekly for prayer and reflection, focused on Ignatius’ Spiritual Exercises and on finding God in one’s daily live. De Smet in Prayer (DIP) has a breakfast meeting before school once each week to discuss, reflect, and pray together on living out one's faith as brothers in the Lord.
Clubs & activities
There is a separate Student Government for each year.
Sports & Games
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- Henry Edward Autrey - United States federal judge, Eastern District of Missouri, also the first graduate from the first Graduating Class of 1971
- Eric Schmitt - Missouri state senator
- Tom Dempsey - Missouri state senator
- Bill Mueller - retired MLB third baseman
- Steve Stipanovich - retired NBA basketball player
- Bob Keppel - Major League Baseball pitcher
- Pat Noonan - assistant coach for the Los Angeles Galaxy and former Major League Soccer forward
- Chris Klein - President, Los Angeles Galaxy and former Major League Soccer midfielder
- Blake Ahearn - point guard for the Dongguan Leopards of the Chinese Basketball Association (CBA)
- Will Bruin - Major League Soccer forward for the Houston Dynamo
- Ray Agnew III - NFL player