St. Mary's High School (Stockton, California)

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Saint Mary's High School
"A College Preparatory High School"
5648 North El Dorado Street
Stockton, California, (San Joaquin County) 95207
United States
Coordinates 38°0′16″N 121°18′23″W / 38.00444°N 121.30639°W / 38.00444; -121.30639Coordinates: 38°0′16″N 121°18′23″W / 38.00444°N 121.30639°W / 38.00444; -121.30639
Type Private, Roman Catholic, Co-educational, College-Preparatory
Motto Veritas ∙ Caritas ∙ Tenui Nec Dimitam
(Truth ∙ Charity ∙ I have taken hold and will not let go.)
Religious affiliation(s) Dominican Sisters of San Rafael, Oblates of St. Francis de Sales
Patron saint(s) Mary Queen of Angels, St. Francis de Sales
Established 1876
Founder Rev. William O'Connor, Charles Webber (Stockton Founder)
School district Diocese of Stockton
Authority SMHS Board of Directors
Superintendent Carla Donaldson
CEEB code 053435
President Peter Morelli, '69
Principal Kathy Smith
Grades 9-12
Enrollment 926 (2014-2015)
Student to teacher ratio 28/1
Campus size 25 acres (100,000 m2)
Campus type Urban
Color(s) Hunter Green and White         
Slogan "Be who you are and be that well." -St. Francis de Sales
Sports Tri-City Athletic League. Division 1-3
Mascot Ram
Accreditation Western Association of Schools and Colleges[1]
Publication Teleram
Newspaper The Kettle
Yearbook Cauldron
Tuition $8,390 (2014-2015) + fees
Dean of Academics Alana Weisz
Dean of Students Greg Traverso, '76; Genesta Jackson
Director of Institutional Advancement Tony Franks
Director of Athletics James Brusa
Director of Student Activities Luigi Gherardi

Saint Mary's High School (SMHS), founded in 1876, is a Roman Catholic, co-educational, college preparatory school in Stockton, California, USA. The school is under the jurisdiction of the Diocese of Stockton and sponsored by the Salesian order of the Oblates of St. Francis de Sales priests and brothers (Toledo-Ohio Province). St. Mary's has long established itself as the premier private secondary school in the San Joaquin County. The school is a member of the College Board and is fully accredited by the Western Association of Schools and Colleges[2] and by the Western Catholic Education Association.


Graduation 2014 marked the completion of 138 years of Catholic education in the Stockton area. St. Mary's roots go back to 1876 when St. Agnes Academy opened as a boarding and free day school for girls, grades 1-12. The faculty then consisted of seven Dominican Sisters and 95 students. Since that beginning, St. Mary's growth has been reflected in the need to change locations five times to its present location of 25 acres (100,000 m2) on North El Dorado Street. A separate corporation sole within the Diocese of Stockton, St. Mary's is a co-ed secondary school that boasts of a student body of 926 and a faculty/support staff totaling over 110.

St. Mary's High School has had a strong religious presence of Priests, Brothers, and Sisters throughout its history. The Dominican Sisters of San Rafael have been joined by the Brothers of Mary, a number of Franciscan Friars, diocesan priests, the Sisters of the Blessed Virgin Mary, and the Oblates of St. Francis de Sales.

Lay men and women have contributed to the strengthening of the school's curriculum. The faculty represent expertise in 10 disciplines, offering over 130 courses in theology, English, social studies, mathematics, physical education, science, computer resources, foreign languages, business and vocational arts, and fine arts. There are also twenty-seven cocurricular activities and teams in 15 sports. St. Mary's graduates, numbering over 12,000, are scattered throughout California, 49 additional states, and 6 foreign countries.

School History


The school is located on North El Dorado Street, one mile (1.6 km) east of San Joaquin Delta College and two miles (3 km) north of the University of the Pacific.


Located on twenty-five acres are five classroom buildings, a cafeteria, student store (Ram Center), two gymnasiums, a football field, track facilities (with a rare, green colored track), and baseball and soccer fields all located within the Thompson Sports Complex. There is a residence on campus for the priests and brothers associated with the Oblates of St. Francis de Sales (Toledo-Ohio Province).

Completed in the Fall of 2006 and now fully occupied is The Lagorio Family Academic Center. This two-story, 23,000-square-foot (2,100 m2) building houses the administration, guidance and counseling offices, conference rooms, a new state of the art library, classrooms, a technology laboratory, group study areas and several student project rooms. It presents a new public face to the community and establishes a contemporary architectural vocabulary for the school.

Another addition to the campus is The Cortopassi Aquatics Center which opened September 2007. This facility has become recognized as the premier aquatics facility in the area, hosting collegiate, city and area-wide events and tournaments, providing recreational and instructional opportunities and serving as the home for the St. Mary's Aquatic Sports Program.

Upon the successful completion of St. Mary’s High School’s "Generations of Academic Excellence Project", the next priorities included building a new facility consolidates the new athletic department offices, a weight training room, and locker facilities for a number of sports, supplementing those of The Sprague Family Athletic Building.

Sanguinetti Football Field has been revamped and now has an upgraded artificial turf to accommodate a wide variety of sports.

Our $15.7 million campaign will also create a state-of-the-art science and mathematics center for future generations of SM students, as well as rejuvenating our beloved student chapel. Classrooms are in the process of being remodeled and plans are currently in the works for a new school cafeteria/auditorium. This will also create an outside amphitheater green space in the center of the campus and enclose the school for safety and security.

Future projects include a 2-story building that will house the school's first performing & fine arts center/theatre and gymnasium.


Current enrollment is 926 students which reflects the diverse community of the San Joaquin Valley. Approximately 81% of the student body identify themselves as Catholic. The faculty consists of 4 Religious (Priests, Brothers, and Sisters) and 110 lay teachers and support staff. Student/faculty ratio is 24/1 with the average classroom size being 25.

Guidance Services[edit]

St. Mary’s High School, in its continued effort to meet the needs of the students and to build community, has provided a staff of qualified counselors who are ready to help students at any time with anything from personal and academic problems to scheduling and college placement. The staff includes the academic dean, counselors, a scholarship/financial aid counselor, and a licensed clinical social worker. The counselors routinely meet with students throughout the year to help them in whatever way possible and to discuss educational plans. The Guidance Office is staffed during school hours. Students or their parents may request an appointment with a counselor during the school day. A licensed clinical social worker brings to St. Mary’s additional services.

St. Mary's High School Prayer[edit]

Remember O Most Gracious Virgin Mary, that we the school community of St. Mary's High School have placed ourselves in your name. With confidence, we seek your protection and implore your assistance to hear and answer our prayers.

O Mother of the Word Incarnate, come to each of us today; help us to know and love Jesus your son as you did. Help us to see goodness in every person we encounter as Jesus did.

O Virgin of Virgins, Our Mother, give us the wisdom, courage, and perseverance to live the message which your Son lived and taught. Amen.[citation needed]


St. Mary's offers a rigorous academic program that focuses on college-bound students. There are an array of Honors, Advanced Placement and remedial level courses for qualified students.

There are ten departments at St. Mary's from which students choose their required and elective courses: Theology, English, Social Studies, Mathematics, Physical Education & Health, Science, Computer, Foreign Language, and Fine Arts.

In addition, students may take courses for high school and college credit at San Joaquin Delta Community College or University of the Pacific.

St. Mary's exceeds state and national averages on the following national exams: EXPLORE, PLAN, ACT, PSAT and SAT .

76% of our juniors and seniors take upper division mathematics. 73% of our juniors and seniors are enrolled in upper division science. 68% of our students enroll in Italian, Spanish or American Sign Language.

Advanced Placement courses are offered in American Literature, English Literature, Chemistry, European History, U.S. History, U.S. Government, Psychology, Calculus and Biology.

Honors courses are offered in Algebra, Biology, Chemistry, English, Geometry/Trigonometry, Physical Science, Pre-Calculus and World Literature.

Students may take Advanced Placement Exams in Biology, Calculus, English Language, English Literature, European History, Foreign Language, Physics, Psychology, U.S. Government & Politics and U.S. History.

As part of the religious focus of the school, each student is required to participate in a Community Service program upon graduation.

Co-Curricular Activities[edit]

St. Mary's students are active in many clubs and organizations emphasizing creativity, leadership, scholarship, and service. More than half of the entire student body are involved in some kind of organization whether it be school related or the community abroad. Student athletes compete in the Tri-City Athletic Association in football, volleyball, water polo, lacrosse, soccer, tennis, basketball, wrestling, baseball, softball, cross-country, track, swimming/diving, badminton, and golf. St. Mary's has long been recognized nationwide for its extraordinary athletic program.[citation needed] The Rams provide freedom to grow in all areas. They have totaled more than 40 CIF Sectional Championships, including almost a dozen for girls volleyball. The girls basketball and soccer teams are not only a force throughout Northern California, but are routinely ranked as the best throughout the area.[citation needed]

Some of the clubs offered at St. Mary's are:
Book Club, Multi-Cultural Club, Cabinet, National Honor Society, California Scholarship Federation, Open Artistic Forum, Campus Ministry, Pink Ladies, Chess Club, Psychology After Hours, CROP (Christian Relief Outreach Project), Dance Club, Drama Club, Ram Computer Club, Environmental Awareness Team (EAT) Club, Rampage Club, Ree Club, Forensics Team, Respect Life Club, Friends of Special Olympics, Senate, Interact/Key Club, SPOT (Students Putting Out Talent), International Outreach, St. Francis de Sales Club, Kettle Student Paper, Student Council, Model U.N., Student Mentor Program, Math Club


Saint Mary's High School features two main bands (Jazz Band & Symphonic Band) who play throughout the area and the state at competitions such as The Lincoln Band Review and The Heritage Festival in Anaheim, California. The band has acquired numerous awards in the Symphonic and Jazz Band Categories. The Saint Mary's High School Band department has recently (08'-09' School Year) started a drumb-line featuring the school's top drummers. This drumb-line is a precursor to what will one day be a professional marching band. Four students have recently been selected to the County Honor Band. St. Mary's High School won the Spirit of Anaheim Award which is given to the school that best represents its community and state.


Admission to St. Mary's is selective and based on a placement test, previous school record and recommendation. Transfer students are accepted on an individual basis after consideration of their high school transcripts and interviews. St. Mary's draws students from 64 local elementary and junior high schools.

With a large religious element, the school has been the choice for not only area students but for those throughout the county. Current University of the Pacific baseball coach and the only man to ever win a World Series ring, Olympic gold medal, and college world series title, Ed Sprague is a product of Saint Mary’s High, as is former Stockton mayor Ed Chavez.


100% of the Class of 2014 will be attending colleges and universities of which 72% will be 4 year institutions and the remaining community colleges. The class earned awards and scholarships totaling over $13,000,000 More than 11,000 graduates fulfill the roles of leadership and service, both in the community and worldwide.

College Matriculation[edit]

St. Mary's is known for its consistently high graduation rate, as well as its high proportion of students who advance to colleges and universities; every year the entire graduating class has done so, with the exception of a few students choosing to enter the military.

A large number of students traditionally choose to attend various colleges in the University of California system and various colleges within California State University campuses.

Others attend private colleges, such as the Franciscan University, Dartmouth, Stanford, University of the Pacific and Saint Mary's College of California.

During the 2010/2011 school year, with some consultation with the diocese, the St. Mary's Foundation and administration decided to refer to the school as "Saint. Mary's High School, A College Preparatory High School." This simple title more sharply defines the Mission of the school and what those involved in it strive to do on a daily basis.


In May 2014, 50% of the freshmen, 47% of the sophomores, 56% of the juniors, and 65% of the seniors achieved honors - first and second.

Notable alumni[edit]

External links[edit]

Notes and references[edit]

  1. ^ WASC-ACS. "WASC-Accrediting Commission for Schools". Retrieved 2009-06-05. College Board
  2. ^ [1], Directory of Schools, Western Association of Schools and Colleges.
  3. ^ The Record. "Local Roundup: Kelly gets the call to the major leagues". Retrieved May 26, 2016.