St. Thomas Academy
St. Thomas Academy was founded in 1885 by an archbishop named John Ireland. Since it was established by a member of the church, it is only right that the school remains to be affiliated with the Roman Catholic Church. Located in Mendota Heights, Minnesota, St. Thomas Academy (STA) strives to guide students before they step into college with Jesus Christ as their main influence.
What Is The School Known For?
Before STA got its current name, it was first called Saint Thomas Aquinas Seminary. This was later changed to Saint Thomas Military Academy. Finally, the management agreed to give it a simple name, Saint Thomas Academy.
The school only approves male students for middle school or 7th and 8th grade and for high school from 9th to 12th grade.
The private academy is best known for its religious traditions and activities. There are approximately 690 students in this school, which is more than the average of many private schools in the area. They also offer assistance to those who are in need of financial help. School days last for six to seven hours and a total of 175 days of class for the whole school calendar.
The school is also known for being very active in engaging with the community. The cadets are all required to complete 100 hours of community service during their senior year. Many of the students also volunteer to run food drives and help local non-profit organizations throughout the year.
Students and Faculty
As mentioned, this is an all-boys school for all grades (7 to 12). All high school students are enforced to join the Junior ROTC Army. Number of students varies from 660 to over 690 per school year. The average number of enrollees accepted is around 86%, but all students graduate at the end of the school calendar.
The Headmaster, Thomas B. Mich, directs 60 members of the faculty. At this rate, the student to teacher ratio is 10:1. Most classes have around 17 students. 80% of the faculty members hold a doctorate or master’s degree.
The campus, which is approximately 72 acres of land, supports handicap accessibility specifically at the cafeteria, the middle school building, and at the O’Shaughnessy doors.
Traditions and Sports
As a member of the Roman Catholic Church, there are religious traditions practiced at the school. Each morning after the second period, high school students attend the Formation. This activity is where they all stand with their battalions. A senior member of the Campus Ministry will say the Morning Prayer, followed by the Pledge of Allegiance from the cadet colonel or the headmaster.
There are also a lot of fun things to do especially for the sports minded, including football, hockey, swimming and diving, and basketball. The swimming and diving team is among the most notable, which has already acquired 11 championships including for this year. All in all, the school has received a total of 32 gold medals since 1975.