Education is Essential

COVID-19 has presented a tremendous challenge for Saint Ignatius High School to balance our mission of providing an academically rigorous, Catholic, Jesuit education along with the health and safety recommendations of leading healthcare experts. On Monday, March 15, students returned to full-day, in-person learning.

Saint Ignatius High School

A Week of Gratitude

May 15th marks the final day of instruction in the 2019-2020 school year. What we end the year with is a feeling of gratitude for the memories we have, the community we are a part of and the people we love.
In a typical school year, we would mark the ending with an All-School Mass in Fr. Sullivan Gym and a closing Mass for faculty and staff in St. Mary's Chapel. This year, we celebrated from our homes as nearly 1,000 viewers watched our Mass of Gratitude broadcast on the SIBN. And it truly was a celebration. Complete with student participation, expressions of gratitude, and memories of what makes this such a special place to be associated with, God's presence was evident. The Mass is now available on YouTube. We invite you to download the Mass Worship Aid and pray along at home.

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During Mass, President of Saint Ignatius High School Fr. Ray Guiao, S.J. '82 expressed his own gratitude for several faculty and staff members who will be retiring at the end of this school year. He asked us to pray for and congratulate the following individuals: Tony Antonelli Hon. ’19 (Math); Dan Baron (Theology); Brian Becker ’77 (Math);  John Cooney ’67 (Science); Dale Gabor ’66 (Languages); Dan Galla (Theology); Mike Howard Hon. ’19 (History); Hank Gaughan Hon. ’19 (Health and Physical Education); Tom Pasko Hon. ’96 (English); Christine Piatak (Languages); Patricia Kyle (Fine Arts); Jennifer Fight (Athletics); and MJ Kyle (Advancement).

Throughout the summer, we will share stories of each of these individuals and the way in which they shaped the history and future of Saint Ignatius High School.

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This week brought us signs of hope through the beauty of life. We celebrated Mother's Day on Sunday paying tribute to the women in our lives who help form us. That day ended with a rainbow over the city, captured in the photo above before a night of our Labre Ministry to the Homeless. That night marked 908 consecutive weeks of Labre.

We also witnessed beauty through our Virtual Fine Arts Week. All week long we displayed student artwork and talents through our social media platforms. We even had AP Studio Art students share their portfolios with us. Check out our Instagram highlights to view their pieces.

Our Fine Arts faculty members created an interactive virtual gallery so that you can enjoy the work of our talented students from the comfort of your own home. The gallery features various media, including photography, digital art, self-portraits, ceramics, 3D art and more!

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Please note that the virtual gallery is not mobile-friendly. Click inside the gallery window to start. Use the keyboard arrows to maneuver and your mouse or trackpad to look around. When you are finished exploring, press the escape key to show your cursor and exit. View the 2020 Art Show at https://www.sihs.art/.
 
And as the celebration of our seniors continues, we recognize the 2019-20 Wirtz Award winner Michael Boehm '20. The Wirtz Athlete of the Year Award is the most prestigious award a student-athlete at Saint Ignatius can earn. The award is named after John Wirtz, a Saint Ignatius legend who, in 28 years, served as athletic director, and coach for the football, basketball, and baseball teams. Boehm owns every season and career record for the lacrosse program, and helped the Ice Cats win three straight state titles. But more importantly, Michael is a great young man who embodies what it means to be an Ignatian athlete.


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As the year comes to a close, we leave you with these words from Principal Dan Bradesca '88 as he expressed his own gratitude for our current parents, who during the transition to virtual learning, became an even greater extension of the classroom.

"When “school” shifted to the home as campus, you as parents became the “on-site support team” who provided guidance and coaching to us in the same fashion as we did for you. It is my belief that the idea of in loco parentis took on new meaning—and a greater significance as a result of this pandemic. We as a school have come to appreciate and depend on you as parents in new ways, and many of you have also shared how you have a better understanding and appreciation for the role we play in the learning and development of your sons.

I truly believe that this historical event will make us stronger as an Ignatius community, and will certainly enhance and fortify the education that we provide for your sons. My days as principal are quickly coming to an end, but I am committed to not finishing my tenure by dropping the mic and simply washing my hands  (a little COVID-19 humor…) and thus absolving myself of what this summer and next year has in store for us. I will work with our new principal Dr. Anthony Fior '02 and his team to help with this transition in this most uncertain of times. I will continue to stand in service of the school in any way that I can be of help.

To our families, our leaders, our faculty and staff, and especially to our students, we are grateful for you. When you first step foot on the Saint Ignatius High School campus it is easy to be captivated by the inspiring architecture, beautiful landscaping and elegant pathways. But what truly brings Saint Ignatius to life—and has made it a deeply respected institution for more than a century—is the people.

Our people are the beating heart of the school. Every day they each write their chapter of our ever-evolving story. This story doesn’t end on graduation day. Our strong network of alumni spans the globe, where they continue to put into action the lessons learned during their four years. This commitment to the school illustrates why, even after graduation, they are Ignatius Men Forever!