SFHS Seniors Earn Perfect ACT Scores
Congratulations Nick, Suman and Nicholas!
Join Us On The St. Francis Path
"Praise and bless my Lord, and give Him thanks
and serve Him with great humility."
Saint Francis of Assisi
Three Reasons to Make Mindful Decisions When Choosing a High School"
This week, I read an article that outlined how web design can influence a parent's choice of school, and it reminded me that families make decisions in different ways. While research about academic opportunity, college readiness, and Franciscan community usually lead families to St. Francis High School, some forgo that process if another school "has always been the plan." And although I understand, I also wish each family the practice of mindful discernment, because students deserve to attend a school that suits them best. Here are my top three reasons for seeking out new information when your tendency is to rely on an old tradition.
- College entrance requirements have changed. Families need to look with new eyes at the college landscape. "Getting in" is different than it used to be, different than they may assume. Today's equation favors students who take advantage of opportunities offered at a particular school. This requires close contact with guidance counselors who help students stay on top of college goals so they can submit competitive applications. Ask questions about a school's academic structure to discern how your child fits into the whole.
- Young adulthood has changed. Academic excellence must exist within the balance of a community where students enjoy spending their daily hours. While students are busy meeting many requirements, they should enjoy their school environment in order to stay centered and academically motivated. Allow students time to shadow; trust their opinions about which school fits best.
- Schools have changed. Relying on antiquated information doesn't serve a student's best interest. Just as the college landscape has changed, so have high schools. Take a tour while school is in session for a fresh take on how the school feels. Read and ask questions to discern how a school keeps pace with today's expectations.
Families should choose a school because they prefer the path it sets before them. Students deserve attention, opportunity, and even a little love from their high school home. Contact me to walk our hallways or schedule a shadow day for your child. I'm happy to discuss your admissions situation any time (630) 668-5800 x1120.
Maureen Isphording, Director of Admissions
"I Am St. Francis"
The College Planning Perspective: Five Questions for Senior Ryan E., '19 and Junior Anna M., '20
1. What grade school did you attend, and what groups you are involved in at SFHS? What are your future plans?
Anna: I went to Churchill Elementary and Hadley Jr. High School in Glen Ellyn. I'm a current Junior and am involved Student Ambassador Leadership Team, National Honor Society, Band, Jazz Band, Theater, and Student Government.
Ryan: I moved here from Georgia, where I went to St. Catherine of Siena in Kennesaw. I'm involved in Track, National Honor Society, Student Government, Student Ambassador Leadership Team, and Theater. I am planning to major in Biomedical engineering at either the Calhoun Honors College at Clemson University or at Vanderbilt University.
2. Describe in one word your college planning experience.
Anna: One word to describe my college planning experience - exciting.
3. Are SFHS Guidance Counselors available when you need them? Explain.
Anna: Yes! Any time I need anything. I usually go in before school and set up an appointment. They ALWAYS get back to me as soon as possible and work around my class schedule so I don't have to worry about missing anything.
Ryan: Counselors are available when I need them. I can email a counselor to ask for an appointment in study hall, and they usually get me into the office the same day.
4. How you have used the college preparation resources within the SFHS Guidance Department?
Anna: One-on-one meetings work best for me. I use these appointments for just about anything--planning out my course schedules, asking questions about what classes would be best for the career I want to enter, what schools I should look at, and endless other things.
Ryan: I used one-on-one meetings a lot, because I was always curious to know more about the process and the specific colleges where I was applying. My counselor would always prepare me for the next steps I should take, and it was extremely helpful.
5. What one piece of advice did an SFHS Guidance Counselor give you that was particularly meaningful?
Anna: To know my own comfort level and to look at the big picture. Thinking about what I know I can handle is always a relief for me and lets me think about what I really need to do.
I am APPRECIATING St Francis.
Ryan: One piece of advice my counselor gave me was to not overextend my reach. I'm a student that always loves to be busy and doing something, but sometimes it's better to focus on a few meaningful things rather than a wide variety.
I am PREPARED.
Only at St. Francis High School
Reputation for Excellence: SFHS Counseling Helps Students Dream, Plan, and Finish Strong
Guidance and Counseling's impact stems from a strategic mix of best practices and highly trained educators who are forward thinking and accessible to students. An SFHS student's relationship with these inspirational problem solvers greatly impacts college readiness. In fact, academic success is incomplete without the comprehensive counseling opportunities exemplified at SFHS.
Students enter high school daring to imagine their future, and SFHS counselors help deliver that promise. They begin by forming relationships with freshmen and directing students to develop areas of potential through sophomore year. Then, St. Francis juniors and seniors loop with the same counselor, receiving one-on-one attention to prepare for the competitive application process. With creativity and an open-door policy, Counseling invites questions while helping students see the big picture and move beyond assumptions. And because college prep is everyone's business, SFHS's quality programs link students with faculty, staff, and parents, connecting a young person's personal college goals with coursework and activities required for admission.
"The Counseling Department philosophy aligns with the mission of St. Francis High School as well as standards set by the American School Counselor Association," explains Director of Counseling Bridget Buckley. "We provide students with the skills to set and achieve goals in every area of their lives, including academics, college, careers, and relationships. We also work with students, parents, and faculty to support students in their spiritual, academic, physical, and social development."
Take a look below at some of the one-on-one, classroom, seminar, and lecture style presentations SFHS hosts to help seniors earn meaningful college placement and develop as well-adjusted young people.
Freshmen and Sophomores Begin Here
- Course selection planning to support college goals
- Classroom presentations on testing, aptitude, college majors, and careers
- Access to Naviance software, where students can research colleges and careers, as well as complete inventories that help them to find the intersection of their interests, abilities, and aptitudes.
- Pre-ACT testing for Sophomores
- Opportunities to take in-person practice ACT exams
- Support programs as needed (from school adjustment to study skills to healthy maturation)
- Examples: Final Exam Test Prep Workshop, Freshmen Support Group, Suicide Prevention, Stress Management
Juniors and Seniors Finish Strong
- One-on-one meetings plus classroom guidance presentations on selecting strongest coursework, college and career goals, ACT and SAT preparation, and college application instruction
- Continued support and guidance through using Naviance software to find the right college and career match
- Opportunities to take in-person practice ACT exams
- PSAT Testing for Juniors
- ACT prep classes hosted on campus
Comprehensive Support for All Students
- Support programs as needed (from school adjustment to study skills to healthy maturation)
- Stress Management Events (therapy dogs, meditation, etc.)
- Suicide Prevention Week Programming, in collaboration with Students against Destructive Decisions
- Mental Health Awareness Week Programming
- Groups Available: Girls' Empowerment Group, Grief Group, Group for Transfer Students, General Support Groups, Men's Group
- Events as needed, through collaboration with all departments to address needs as they arise
Events for Parents
- 8 College Events Each Year
- College Planning Parent Information Program
- Senior Parent Coffee with the Counselors on College Admission and Scholarships
- College Financial Aid Information Program
- College Application and Essay Writing Program for Parents & Students
- Registration and Course Selection Information Program for Parents
- Sophomore Parent Coffee with the Counselors
- Junior Parent Coffee with the Counselors on College Search
- NCAA Eligibility Information Program
- 7 General Counseling Events each year from executive functioning workshops to mental health speakers
- Freshmen Parent Coffee with the Counselors: Making a Successful Transition to High School
Dual Role of Administrator/Teacher Builds Authentic SFHS Community
Three Questions for Three Educators: Principal, Assistant Principal, and Dean
"Community" is one of the strongest words prospective, current, and former students use to describe SFHS. And it doesn't happen by chance. At St. Francis High School, the goal of "community" factors into most decisions, including the dual role key administrators play on campus each day. Here, three administrators discuss how teaching time sharpens their insights and channels bonds of joy, peace, and hope, creating the climate that defines St. Francis High School.
1. What subject/classes do you teach?
Ms. Huhn, Principal: A semester course, Microsoft Office.
Mrs. Johnson, Assistant Principal: Math- I have taught every course offered in the Math department except Calculus.
Mr. Holleman, Dean: I currently teach Digital Literacy.
2. Why do you enjoy being in the classroom in addition to your Administrator duties?
Ms. Huhn: Remaining in the classroom all of these years keeps me fresh and allows me to work with our students first hand. I thoroughly enjoy teaching! Some days, it is the best 42 minutes of my day!
Mrs. Johnson: I like the connection with the students in class. It gives me the opportunity to do what I love best, teach math. I also think it builds credibility with the teaching faculty. I understand their good days and challenging days as a teacher in today's world.
Mr. Holleman: I enjoy being in the classroom because it allows me to get to know the students in a different capacity.
3. Describe the philosophy of why SFHS Administrators are also in the classroom.
Ms. Huhn: Administrators from other schools are often surprised to learn that I teach a class! I believe as an administrator in the classroom, I see things differently, and I am seen differently. I am in the trenches with my fellow teachers, it allows me to understand today's student. And when we are learning new systems, new methodologies, etc., I am too.
Mrs. Johnson: I believe it is important to be in the classroom as an administrator so that we can stay connected with the students outside of our normal responsibilities. This opportunity also allows us to experience today's classroom dynamic and gain a better understanding of what our teachers' day-to-day experience is like.
Mr. Holleman: Getting to know students in a different situation helps us all see each other in new ways.
Pictured left to right; Mr. Holleman, Ms. Huhn and Mrs. Johnson
Club Spotlight for Parents -
Adventure & Smash Clubs Meet Microsoft Management in Oakbrook
Adventure Club Open to: All students as personal schedules permit
Smash Club Open to: All Students as personal schedules permit
Meets: For special events and/or monthly during Activity Period
(Activity Period is 2:35-3:10 p.m.; practices/rehearsals begin at 3:15 p.m.)
Microsoft invited members of Adventure and Smash Clubs to Oakbrook for a few hours of gaming, virtual reality, and pizza. As part of the ongoing partnership between Microsoft and SFHS as a Microsoft Showcase School, students also discussed ways technology can enhance classroom learning with Microsoft staffers Amy Hood (CFO), Travis Walter (GM of World Wide Retail), Tracy Meagher (VP of North Central Region), and SFHS alum Carlton Gossett '11 (Program Manager for Mergers, Acquisitions, and Venture Integration).
The Microsoft management team coordinated the event as part of the partnership. Microsoft will also co-sponsor upcoming Startup Day, Coding Camp, and technology open house events at St. Francis High School.
St. Francis Speaker Series Invites Prospective Parents
Each year, Guidance and Counseling offers powerful speakers on relevant topics and welcomes prospective parents to attend the events. Scan the list and see what topics may make an impact with your family.
Resilience: March 12, 9:00 a.m.
Utilizing the book "Mindset" by Stanford Professor Carol Dweck, the workshop will discuss the benefits of cultivating a growth mindset and shares strategies for encouraging children to pursue challenges and view mistakes as opportunities for development. By Nicole Burmingham, Nurturing Wisdom
Exploring Ways to Restore, Replenish, and Refocus our Hearts and Minds: April 30, 8:00 a.m.
Our world is relentless and restless. What is the antidote when we feel uneasy, unquiet, and agitated? Explore ways to allow God to restore, replenish, and refocus our hearts and minds. By Diane Mercadante, Pastoral Minister at St. Francis High School
Call (630) 668-5800 for reservations
New Families Invited!
Spring Musical Middle School Night
Class of 2023 Spartan Family Welcome Night
Information Session for Prospective Parents
Art Showcase Middle School Night, 6:00 p.m., Students may submit art in the Middle School category of SFHS's Juried Showcase
Email Mrs. Doane for details
Summer Camp Registration Now Open
Feast of St. Francis
We hope you enjoy our talented choir singing the prayer of St. Francis
Thanks for reading
St. Francis High School Fast Facts
CLASS OF 2018-
100% of graduates were accepted to colleges or universities
Earned $33 million in college scholarships
72% of faculty have advanced degrees
Class of 2018 average ACT score = 27
117 Full year and semester course offerings
20 Honors courses
14 Advanced Placement (A.P.) courses
CO-CURRICULAR: ACTIVITIES & ATHLETICS
98% student participation in at least one activity
24 sports programs
10th Place Division 2A State Math Team
65% of students participate in the performing arts
66% of students participate in athletic programs
Provides opportunity for prayer and worship, retreats, justice and service, ministry leadership formation, pastoral care, and community building
SFHS Bus Service
St. Francis High School offers bus transportation. The school provides two-way bus service in the northern, western and southern suburbs, with students arriving to St. Francis High School by 7:25 a.m. and departing school after the Activity Period at 3:15 p.m.
For more information, fees, route schedules or questions, please contact Bob Gorski at (630) 668-5800 x1138 or at