St. Augustine High School (San Diego)

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
Jump to navigation Jump to search
St. Augustine High School
SaintsHS San Diego.jpg
3266 Nutmeg Street


United States
Coordinates32°44′3″N 117°7′25″W / 32.73417°N 117.12361°W / 32.73417; -117.12361Coordinates: 32°44′3″N 117°7′25″W / 32.73417°N 117.12361°W / 32.73417; -117.12361
TypePrivate, Day, College-prep
MottoUnitas ∙ Veritas ∙ Caritas
(Unity ∙ Truth ∙ Love)
Religious affiliation(s)Roman Catholic;
Order of Saint Augustine
Sister schoolThe Academy of Our Lady of Peace
PresidentEdwin Hearn
PrincipalJames Horne
ChaplainRev. Kirk Davis, O.S.A.
Enrollment725~ (2014)
Average class size185
Campus size7.2 acres (29,000 m2)
Color(s)Purple and Gold         
Athletics15 sports
Athletics conferenceCIF San Diego Section
MascotHalo Joe
Team nameSaints
RivalCathedral Catholic
AccreditationWestern Association of Schools and Colleges[1]
PublicationSantos (literary/art)
NewspaperThe Augustinian
School feesRegistration Fee: $260
Tuition Deposit: $200
Senior Fee: $290
Junior Fee: $285
Sophomore Fee: $255
Freshman Fee: $298
Graduation Fee: $285[2]
Tuition$20,346 (2018-2019) [3]

St. Augustine High School is a private Catholic high school for young men under the direction of the Order of Saint Augustine located in the North Park district of San Diego, California and founded in 1922. It is located in the Roman Catholic Diocese of San Diego, and is a member of the Augustinian Secondary Education Association.

Named after Saint Augustine of Hippo, an early Christian theologian, St. Augustine teaches young men within the framework of the Catholic faith and in the Augustinian tradition. This culturally diverse school serves the communities of San Diego County and Tijuana, Mexico. The school also publicly states, "We open our doors to all boys we believe will benefit from our academic program."


Early history - 1920s to the 1950s[edit]


In 1922, John Cantwell, Bishop of the Diocese of Los Angeles and San Diego, asked the Order of Saint Augustine to satisfy the need of a new boys' school in the southern part of the 80,000-square-mile (210,000 km2) diocese. (The Order also operate Villanova University in Pennsylvania, and Merrimack College in Massachusetts, and in the early decades many of the school's religious staff were trained at these colleges.) The Order of Saint Augustine opened St. Augustine High School in the St. Vincent's parish meeting hall on September 18, 1922 with 19 students. The school moved to its current Nutmeg Street location in the year 1923.

Student affairs and expansion[edit]

Due to a need to accommodate a greater number of students, the school expanded multiple times in its early history, beginning with the construction of Sullivan Hall in 1947, adding 350 additional spots for additional students. In the 1950s the school constructed a new set of classrooms, erected a gymnasium, and added additional improvements to the monastery. However, despite these expansions, by the late 1950s, the school was suffering from overcrowding.

In 1956, the school became the first private school admitted to the San Diego City League of Athletics.

Middle period - 1960s to the 1970s[edit]

During the 1960s and 1970s, the school committed to smaller class sizes, new curricular innovations, and honors programs. In September, 1978, PSA Flight 182 crashed and exploded several blocks (Nile and Dwight Streets) from the campus. The school shut down and became a triage and command and control center for those authorities who responded to the emergency posed by the crash, culminating in the utilization of the gymnasium as a makeshift morgue. The following year an arsonist burned down the school's library, which has since moved to Villanova Hall.

Into the modern era - 1980s to the present day[edit]

New buildings completed in 2007

In the 1980s and 1990s, the school moved towards computerization and renovations occurred around the campus. The biggest change during this era was the creation of an on-campus parking lot and the closure of Bancroft Street, which previously divided the campus into two separate sections. In 1997, the school celebrated its 75th anniversary. The school continues to grow in the new millennium, and is embarking on an extensive building campaign which calls for most of the school being demolished and rebuilt to meet modern standards of building codes and architectural tastes. The school will also feature the latest in technology made readily available to its students and faculty.

On June 2, 2006, together with the San Diego mayor Jerry Sanders, the Auxiliary Bishop of San Diego Salvatore Cordileone, the school's President John Keller O.S.A., ASB President Alexander Guittard, and various members of the Augustinian and general school community, the school broke ground for the first phase of the school's building campaign.

Work commenced in the summer of 2006 and was completed in the fall 2007 for Phase One. The second phase consisted of the new Saint Augustine Commons, a multipurpose gymnasium and meeting space. Work began in late 2015 and was completed in 2017. Phase Three focused around The Raymond Center for The Performing Arts, a theater, new weight room and band room. Construction utilized the old Dougherty Gym and spanned from 2017 to 2018.


Tuition at St. Augustine for the 2017-18 year is $19,275.[4] However, students can apply for tuition assistance, whether in the form of a grant or scholarship or by working for the school (at the Lunch Counter, Bookstore, Maintenance Office, or Library). The top ten scorers on the entrance exam receive a $2,500 dollar scholarship each year, for a total amount of $10,000 over all four years.

Student profiles[edit]


The student body consists of many different national origins.

Most students live near and within typical driving distance of the school. The bulk of students live in San Diego and surrounding areas including La Mesa, Kearny Mesa, Point Loma, Downtown, and Beach areas. However, some students have longer commutes from areas in the North (such as Carlsbad, Del Mar, Valley Center, and Oceanside), the East (Poway, Escondido, and Lakeside), and the South (such as Chula Vista, Eastlake and Bonita) A number of students commute daily from Tijuana. Most students are Roman Catholic; however, the school accommodates people of other faiths, including non-Christian ones and some degree of non-faith in personal belief.



Saints offers courses in the following subjects:

  • Religion:
    • Faith Survey
    • Ethics
    • Social Issues
    • Morality
    • Old Testament
    • New Testament
    • Comparative Religions
    • Religion in America
    • Philosophy (Honors only)*
  • Social Sciences
    • Psychology*
    • World History*
    • Economics*
    • United States History*
    • Civics and American Government*
    • Speech
    • Leadership (ASB)
  • Foreign Language
    • Spanish*
    • Latin*
    • French*
  • English*
  • Mathematics
    • Pre-Algebra
    • Algebra I
    • Geometry
    • Algebra II
    • Statistics (AP only)*
    • Advanced Math
    • Pre-Calculus*
    • Calculus*
    • Business Math
  • Sciences
    • Sports Medicine
    • Physics*
    • Biology*
    • Anatomy and Physiology
    • Chemistry*
  • Visual and Performing Arts:
    • Concert Band
    • Symphonic Band
    • Music Theory*
    • Guitar Performance and Theory
    • Painting, Drawing, and Mixed Media
    • Ceramics
    • Art History (AP only)*
    • Theater Arts
    • Digital Photography
  • Computer Studies
    • Web Design
    • Graphic Design
    • Microsoft Office

(* denotes that an Advanced Placement or honors equivalent version of the course is offered)


For the 2010-2011 school year, Saints changed its schedule to a modified block format. On Monday and Tuesday, students take six classes for forty-five minutes each. On Wednesday and Thursday, they only take three classes a day, for eighty-five minutes each. On Friday, students again attend all six classes, but classes are shortened and school ends at 12:45.


Students experience several (including three mandatory) retreats at Saint Augustine. These retreats are:

  • Freshman Overnight Retreat
    • This retreat takes place over the first weekend in October, during which the entire freshman class is split into several groups where they discuss and learn about the Saints community and their place in it. The groups are led by a pair of either junior and senior "Big Brothers," one of whom opens their home for the evening prayer service for their group, before returning to Saints. The freshmen spend the night in the gym and are dismissed on Sunday afternoon after mass and final activities. This retreat is mandatory.
  • Sophomore Retreat
    • This one-day retreat at Mission San Diego de Alcala continues the theme of helping the community, both in global and local capacities. In past years, the focus of this retreat has been on the plight of African children, followed along with a screening of Invisible Children, culminating with a talk given a refugee from an African nation. This retreat is also mandatory.
  • Junior Retreat
    • This retreat is also a one-day event and focuses on building the relationship of the students in the class. Several activities build on the themes and the day finishes off with a mass. It takes place at Mission San Diego de Alcala.
  • Kairos Retreat
    • It is optional for seniors to go on Kairos, but it is strongly encouraged. The retreat takes place several times each year and juniors are permitted to attend Kairos in the spring.

Extracurricular activities[edit]



The school supports numerous sports teams that are accredited by the CIF (SDS Division) such as:

In these sports, Saints has 25 total CIF San Diego Division III Championship teams.

In the past few years several club sports have been organized by the student body. These sports are either non-traditional sports or the sport club has not been credited by CIF. For example, the Roller Hockey team started as a club, and eventually the school applied for the CIF Roller Hockey division. Some of the club sports include:


The student body actively participates in Intramural sports. Teams are organized by homeroom and generally teams of one grade play the same grade and gradually move to play other grades. The final games of Intramurals are popular with the students and the school extends the lunch period to accommodate the finals.

Visual and performing arts[edit]

In areas other than sports, the school supports numerous art disciplines including the dramatic, musical, and fine arts. Students artwork is prominently displayed throughout the campus. Student bands are popular and play at "8th Grade Visitation," some rally days, and at the Annual Saints/OLP Talent Show.

Theatre arts[edit]

The school is known for the successful theatrical productions put on by the students, and is recognized as a chapter of the International Thespian Society.

Recently, the school revived its annual musical with Oliver!. As of late, theatrical successes include such musicals as How to Succeed in Business Without Really Trying, Newsies, The Wizard of Oz, West Side Story and Little Shop of Horrors. Plays produced include Arsenic and Old Lace and The Complete Works of William Shakespeare (Abridged). Saints also hosts the "Flying Ferrets," an improv team.

Music programs[edit]

The instrumental music program has grown to include over 100 students and includes the 32nd Street Jazz Band, Symphonic Band, Concert Band, Pep Band, Winter Drumline, Pit Orchestra and Jazz Combo and Jazz Guitar Ensemble. They also offer courses in Guitar, American Popular Music and AP Music Theory.


The school is also active in journalism with one school-wide publication: The Augustinian. The Augustinian, published 6 times per year, is the school newspaper. The Augustinian is spearheaded by Alejandro Eros, the editor-in-chief. Other editors include Abraham Franco-Hernandez, Liam Brucker-Casey, Angel "Press" Perez, Nico Correa, and Matthew Anguiano. They are guided by Mr. Vladimir Bachynsky, their moderator and religion teacher.

Club and Special Groups[edit]

Like any high school, Saints has a wide variety of student clubs and associations. St. Augustine H.S. has or has had such clubs as:


St. Augustine is one of four Catholic high schools in the San Diego area, leading to a natural state of heightened competition between the St. Augustine and the other Catholic schools in the region: the former University of San Diego High School, now known as Cathedral Catholic High School, and the former Marian Catholic High School, now known as Mater Dei Catholic High School. (The fourth, the Academy of Our Lady of Peace, is an all-girls school and has long been considered as a sister school to Saints).

The rivalry that is most prevalent is between Saints and USDHS / Cathedral, which has spanned many years. Since the early 1970s, a yearly 'Charity Bowl' (now called the 'Holy Bowl'), first hosted at Jack Murphy Stadium (Qualcomm Stadium) by Bob Hope, occasionally at Balboa Stadium, and now at Southwestern College Stadium, has been the highlight of the rivalry. The two schools' football teams have in fact met in every season since the foundation of University High, except for 2007, when the game was cancelled as part of a county-wide cancellation of all high school sports during the October wildfires and was not rescheduled.

Notable alumni[edit]

See also[edit]


  1. ^ WASC-ACS. "WASC-Accrediting Commission for Schools". Retrieved 2009-06-05.
  2. ^
  3. ^
  4. ^ St Augustine Web Site Retrieved 1 September 2015. Missing or empty |title= (help)
  5. ^ "FRED JONES". Archived from the original on November 29, 2014. Retrieved November 20, 2014.

External links[edit]