The Five Pillars
Cardinal Ritter High School Students are surrounded by a positive, nurturing environment in which every aspect of life is addressed throughout the entire learning process. Cardinal Ritter High School believes that five pillars support education: Faith, Academics, The Arts, Athletics, and Culture. By incorporating all five pillars into the educational process, Cardinal Ritter High School ensures that students are learning and preparing for life.
Faith is the foundation for Cardinal Ritter High School and its student body. Spiritual formation revolves around the presence of Christ in the sacraments, as well as living our faith through word and deed. Mass, penance service, daily communion, class retreats, and service learning are integral parts of the student experience at Cardinal Ritter. Students know the beliefs, traditions, and customs of the Catholic Church through participation in activities and theology courses. We welcome students from other faiths and respect their beliefs and customs; our student body embraces and learns about other faith traditions through curriculum, as well as their experiences with one another. Cardinal Ritter fosters an environment which allows students to practice their faith openly, enthusiastically, and proudly. A Cardinal Ritter student comes to understand the importance of service and charity to their immediate and global community.
High academic standards continue to be the focal point of Cardinal Ritter High School. Students learn to think critically and benefit from small class sizes and personal attention. AP courses, the Marian College Dual Credit program, student internship experiences, cadet teaching, and the integration of technology into the curriculum are a few ways in which students are prepared to succeed in college and the workplace. A well-rounded student learning experience encompasses not only challenging English, math, science, language, and social studies courses, but also a variety of fine art courses such as: drama, speech, choir, band, and art. Students compete in numerous state and local art competitions, and Cardinal Ritter excels in many academic co-curricular activities such as chess club, spell bowl, and academic teams. For those students needing academic support, Cardinal Ritter High School provides for those needs through our learning support center, individualized education plans (IEP), tutoring, and three tiers of academic coursework. These programs help ensure that students are challenged and succeed at all ability levels.
Experiencing, creating, and appreciating art in all forms enables our students to develop their own gifts and talents. Plays and musicals, speech and art contests, art classes and appreciation, choir, and band are only part of our curriculum allowing students to express themselves and gain a broad understanding and appreciation of the arts. Cardinal Ritter students experience different forms of art, theatre, and music. Through their exposure to these forms of expression, each student expresses their own unique gifts and talents.
Some of the greatest memories of high school are formed around athletics. At Cardinal Ritter High School, our students are both outstanding student athletes and fans. School spirit, competition, sportsmanship, and leadership are stressed as an important part of our student athlete’s experience. Opportunities for athletic participation are varied and many of our students participate in one or more sports, in addition to other co-curricular activities. Cardinal Ritter student athletes understand the importance of Christian character, conduct, athletic achievement, leadership, and respect for teammates and opponents.
Students experience culture in a variety of ways at Cardinal Ritter High School. The culture of Cardinal Ritter itself is filled with rich traditions and diversity – a warm, safe, small school environment that values and challenges each student. They also learn the broader value of culture – appreciating and learning how to interact in the world around them, valuing and learning the beauty and contributions of other countries and cultures, and integrating those experiences into their personal lives. Students formulate an understanding of today’s global environment through classroom learning and discussion, service learning, mission trips, field trips, and interaction with one another. Cardinal Ritter students respect and accept others and their beliefs. Students interact in appropriate ways with different people in a variety of social settings. Cardinal Ritter High School fosters an environment in which cultural diversity is valued and appreciated.