Our mission statement, “Developing Personal and Academic Excellence in the Catholic Tradition,” states the purpose of our school system. With the strong partnership that exists between our Church/parishes, parents, students, alumni, faculty, staff, administration, and community at large, we see this mission being carried out daily in our schools and in the lives of our graduates, who are prepared for roles of leadership and service in their adult lives. We are pleased to announce that 98% of our graduates have pursued a college education and many have been accepted in some of the most academically demanding institutions in the nation. They take with them the benefits of an education rooted in faith, knowledge, character and service. In short, they are equipped to succeed in a changing world.
In 1960, the vision of Catholic education in the Rapid City Diocese took its first giant step with the construction of Perpetual Help Grade School on Fairmont Boulevard in Rapid City. This replaced the Cathedral Grade School and St. John’s Grade School and provided a great environment for our PreK-8th grade students for approximately 50 years. On August 22, 2012, our PreK-5th grade students entered St. Elizabeth Ann Seton at Terra Sancta for the first time. The original St. Elizabeth Seton building now is home to St. Thomas More Middle School. Across the parking lot, is St. Thomas More High School, which opened in 1995 and is the successor to Cathedral High School and St. Martin’s Academy.
The transition of our elementary children to Terra Sancta has had a very positive impact on St. Thomas More Middle and High Schools. The improvements to these two facilities have received positive feedback, and we are now positioned for growth at all levels. A very successful summer childcare program began in the summer of 2013 at Terra Sancta, and we look forward to expanding on this program in the future. Today, the RCCSS serves 880 students from Preschool through Twelfth Grade developing in those students, “personal and academic excellence in the Catholic tradition.” Students come from communities across western South Dakota.
The Rapid City Catholic School System (RCCSS) has a long tradition of educating children in a loving Christian environment, and enjoys a reputation as one of the leading school systems within the State of South Dakota. We serve the Diocese of Rapid City, which includes a broad area of 43,000 square miles with 12,444 families. Our students score well above the national average on standardized tests and successfully complete post-high school programs at a high rate. They also take advantage of the distinctly Catholic thrust of our mission: to learn from the lessons that Jesus teaches, to strive to live lives within these Christian mores, and to serve others accordingly.
St. Elizabeth Ann Seton and St. Thomas More have a history of excellence, and we are proud of our accomplishments. Our vision is rooted in a commitment to academic excellence, building faith and moral character, leadership development, and community service. Our graduates leave the system prepared to live in accordance with Catholic values and to meet the challenges and opportunities of a rapidly changing world. I invite you to stop by and visit about how we can meet the educational needs of your student. Most first-time visitors comment on the “great feel” they experience when walking through our facilities. Come and witness first-hand, “Catholic Education, the Heart of Community.” Thank you for your interest.
Rapid City Catholic School System
343-8484 ext 216