Throughout our history, Xavier has encouraged young men to nurture a boundless curiosity about the world—to ask tough and thoughtful questions, to explore new perspectives and interests, to expand their knowledge and consciousness.
To use Jesuit language, students learn to seek the magis (“the more”) on 16th Street. That lesson begins in rigorous, thought-provoking classes, where students strive to be more and do more—always in service of others.
Our students’ curiosity has long been fortified by a deep sense of discipline. Sons of Xavier often credit their four years on 16th Street with their penchant for time management, their capacity for self-direction, and their creativity and problem-solving skills. They develop those critical abilities thanks to challenging, caring teachers who are experts in their academic fields as well as the education of boys.
- Computer Science & Technology
- Fine Arts
- Modern & Classical Languages
- Military Science
- Physical Education & Health
- Social Studies
The philosophy of the Computer Science and Technology Department is to develop digital citizens of creativity and conscience. We seek to transition students from pure consumers of digital content to creators. Students can explore their God-given talents through project-based learning while preparing themselves for the modern economy.
Coding I is a required course for all freshmen. All other courses may be taken as junior or senior electives.
Colleagues in our English department work to provide students with a cohesive, four-year college preparatory course of study. Since effective writing is grounded in focused, thoughtful reading, all teachers engage students in in-depth classroom discussion and close reading. Students have access to English teachers during community periods for one-on-one discussion of writing in process.
Xavier students are required to take four years of English. Honors courses are offered in the freshman and sophomore years; AP English courses are offered in the junior and senior years.
The Xavier Fine Arts Department strives to encourage creative expression, intellectual development, problem solving, higher order thinking, and strong moral character through the various fine arts course offerings. Aware of the growing number of creative fields, we are proud to say that our students receive many competitive scholarships, and place in the nations’ top art schools and universities. Drama, art, music, and band fulfill Xavier’s mission to educate the “whole person” and inspire passion and empathy for all of creation, not just what we make on our own.
The Mathematics Department at Xavier develops students’ problem solving skills as well as their ability to use mathematical reasoning to understand and arrive at solutions for a problem. The mathematics classrooms at Xavier encourage discovery of and identifying connections between the concepts explored throughout the course of study. Our curriculum and teachers prepare students for higher level math courses by challenging students to employ critical thinking skills and developing their mathematical knowledge and confidence.
Xavier students are required to take three years of mathematics, but are strongly encouraged and typically take four years of mathematics. The typical sequence for a Xavier student in his first three years are as follows: Algebra 1, Geometry, Algebra 2/Trigonometry. After completing these courses, students have the ability to advance to the following courses based on their performance: Introduction to Calculus, Calculus, AP Calculus AB and BC. Additionally, a Financial Accounting course is offered as an elective to seniors. Upon admission to Xavier, a placement exam will determine if a student begins their course sequence in Algebra 1, Algebra 1 Honors, or Geometry Honors. Honors level courses are offered in the first three courses of study and students can move into Honors courses at any point if they meet the requirements.
The study of a modern or classical language enhances critical thinking skills; it fosters a sense of global community; it prepares for career opportunities; it provides an avenue for international education, and it assists students in adapting to the multicultural environment and value orientation of others within their own society.
The Department of Modern and Classical Languages at Xavier offers a three-year sequence in Latin, French, Italian, and Spanish. The fourth year is taken as an elective. Arabic is offered as an elective course for seniors.
A placement exam is offered each year in April for those incoming freshmen who seek advanced standing in their target language.
Xavier High School requires its students to take three years of one language with the possibility to add a second one in Junior year. In Senior year, students may take a language course as an elective.
The linguistic and cultural components of the Xavier language program will help students better understand and learn their own language(s) as well as those of other people. Classroom activities reflect language usage in everyday situations according to the objectives, content and instructional techniques of the Department of Modern and Classical Languages.
The military science curriculum incorporates the latest educational theories used in secondary education. McREL standards have been linked to each of our lessons to show a cross-connection with this curriculum and the standard curriculum taught across the country. At the heart of the program of instruction lies the intent to build young men with advanced skills in leadership, citizenship, life success, geography, and wellness in a structured interactive environment.
The flexibility of our program allows it to bear the scrutiny of professional educators while at the same time meet the needs of the community. Satisfactory completion of the Regimental JROTC program can lead to advanced placement credit in the Senior ROTC program or advanced rank in the Armed Forces. Additionally, several components of the JROTC course curriculum have been identified for college credit that is awarded to cadets upon successful completion of the specified requirements. From a national perspective, the JROTC program is the centerpiece of the Department of Defense’s commitment to America’s Promise for Youth.
Xavier High School requires that each student complete four years of physical education and one semester of health. The curriculum is designed to meet the physical, mental, social and emotional needs of each student keeping in mind the Jesuit ideals of educating the whole person. Courses center on the core principles of the graduate at graduation: Intellectually Competent, Open to Growth, Religious, Loving, and Committed to Doing Justice.
The Physical Education curriculum offers a variety of individual and team sports such as football, soccer, basketball, tchoukball, hockey, dodgeball, team handball, and a strength and conditioning component. The course focuses on motivating students to strive for lifetime personal fitness. Teachers encourage students to perform each task to the best of their abilities and guide them towards attaining the most positive results from the exercises performed.
During sophomore year, all students are required to take a semester-long health course. Topics include Decision Making, Nutrition, Managing Stress, Lowering the Risk of Infectious and Chronic Diseases, Preventing Drug Abuse, and CPR/First Aid. The health curriculum supports Xavier’s mission of graduating young men who develop the skills to assess and maintain their own physical, mental, social and emotional health.
Xavier’s intramural program takes place during the lunch period and offers students an additional opportunity to participate in team sports. Sports include football, basketball, hockey, wiffleball, soccer and ultimate frisbee.
Facilities include the main gym, commons gym, cardio room, and a renovated weight room with a full time strength and conditioning coach.
Religion at Xavier is a four-year requirement covering a core that begins with God's revelation in Sacred Scripture during freshman year, examines in sophomore year how the Christian community of disciples continues Jesus' proclamation, looks at the personal response of faith and moral action in junior year, and explores how a Christian is called to shape our world in the ways of the Kingdom during the first half of senior year. The second semester senior courses include electives in Philosophical Foundations of Christian Thought; World Religions; Christian Ethics on War & Peace; Ignatian Perspectives; and Theology the Environment and Climate Change.
The philosophy of the Xavier Science Department, in accord with Ignatian pedagogy, is to develop young men who truly appreciate and understand the sciences and the subsequent scientific processes associated with them. Through their experiences in the classroom and the laboratory, our aim is to prepare our students to be successful in their future academic and career endeavors. We also strive to make real the connections between the sciences and God’s natural order.
Lab science is required for three years. Electives are available, and a four-year sequence is possible.
The Social Studies Department seeks to educate young men of "competence, conscience, and compassion." With this aim as a model, the basis of our instruction finds its roots in the JSN Ignatian Pedagogical Paradigm (IPP) that encourages reflection and impels action. Courses in social studies help Xavier students discover and embrace the values by which we hope that they will live by emphasizing basic civic virtues. In all courses, students learn the basic principles of representative government and good citizenship. In addition, social studies courses daily support many basic principles of Jesuit and Catholic education. Through discussions about historical events and figures, students learn to ponder the moral nature of certain political, economic, and social decisions.
The four-year social studies requirement allows the department to provide a well-rounded curriculum. The required course of study begins with a two-year inclusive study of world history broken down by year into ancient through medieval (Global Studies I) and renaissance to modern (Global Studies). Since the department recognizes the importance of learning about African, Asian, American, European, and Latin American civilizations, the curriculum spends two years providing an in-depth analysis of the historical evolution of each of these cultures. During junior year, students study a full-year of American history. In each of these underclassman courses, the Social Studies department offers either Advanced Placement or honors sections including AP World History, AP United States History, AP European History, AP American Government & Politics and AP Comparative Politics. If a senior opts not to enroll in an Advanced Placement course, he can take a course on the Modern World History (1945-present).
Social studies curricula intersect with and support other academic disciplines, particularly regarding cognitive and learning skills taught in other humanities courses, such as English and Religious Education. Instruction in methods of research and essay writing forms a crucial component of the social studies program. As part of our Comprehensive Writing Program, emphasis is placed on a graduated expectation of research writing assignments. During freshman year, students learn the proper format of writing a five-paragraph essay. During sophomore year, students learn to research for a five-page, resourced history paper with a works cited page. During junior and senior years, the students develop and compose a ten-page term paper.