WHAT IS IT AND HOW DOES IT WORK?
- Think of the “houses” in Harry Potter, only deeper, richer, and built in a faith-based community. We give each student a belonging.
- We have 8 Communities each named after a Saint. Kids are called to a Community when they first arrive.
- Within the Community, kids are placed in Houses with mixed grade levels and a Mentor Teacher.
- “House” meets daily.
- Nearly all activities run though our Community System as Communities compete for the annual Thunder Cup.
- Students remain in the same House for 4 years, maturing in relationships and leadership, building authentic bonds with their peers and their Mentor Teacher.
WHY IS IT IMPORTANT?
Being in authentic relationships is the most important part of developing kids’ spiritual lives. We do this intentionally everyday in House. Kids must walk with peers and mentors who are in relationship with Jesus in order to feel comfortable getting to know Him.
Our Community System teaches “other-centered” instead of “self-centered” by sharing in daily “play,” charity, and Community competitions.
Also, when students feel known and loved, they are more free to excel in all areas of their life, especially academics.
- A traditional high school student council only gives opportunities to a limited number of students. Our Community System provides over 200 leadership positions for all grade levels, giving them opportunities to plan events, provide mentorship, and lead.
- Our seniors go through a three-day extensive leadership training summit, and continuous training throughout the year.
- Each Community will elect two Community Captains (Senior Leaders) to serve and support the Community as a whole with their Dean (faculty member chosen by the administration.)
- Each House will elect one House Captain (Senior Leader) and three underclassmen (Junior, Sophomore and Freshman Leaders) to lead and serve their House with their Mentor Teacher.
- The School will elect two School Captains (Senior Leaders) who will be responsible for the atmosphere of care and concern for the entire school as fostered by the House system with the Director of the Community/House System.
GOALS OF THE COMMUNITY SYSTEM
- Help each St. James Academy student know and love Jesus and the people in our community more deeply.
- Ensure individual care by providing each student with at least two adults who will monitor and support the academic, social, and spiritual growth of each student.
- Enhance the ministry provided to all of our students by embracing our Catholic values and traditions.
- Strengthen the bonds of the St. James Academy Family Spirit among the 9th-12th grade divisions.
- Create opportunities for students to be trained and to serve as leaders.
- Develop each student’s interpersonal relationship skills.
- Enhance the community strength outside of St. James Academy.