Archdiocese Celebrates Opening of New Catholic High School for Low-Income Students

White House Press Secretary Tony Snow as featured guest

September 10, 2007

Washington Archbishop Donald W. Wuerl, Rev. Steve Shafran, SDB, president of Don Bosco Cristo Rey High School, and the founding freshmen class of 125 students welcome White House Press Secretary Tony Snow as they celebrate the grand opening of the new Don Bosco Cristo Rey High School. The high school, the only archdiocesan secondary school in Maryland, uses an innovative work-study program to offer low-income students an affordable college-prep education.

Thursday, September 13, 2007
10:00 a.m.: Ceremony
11:00 a.m.: Tours of building

1010 Larch Avenue
Takoma Park, Maryland
(From northbound lane of New Hampshire Ave., turn right onto Kentland Ave., then left onto Hopewell Ave. Street ends at Larch.)

During the ceremony, mementos from the students, archbishop and the White House will be enclosed in a time capsule. The students have written letters of hope for their lives and where they want to be in 25 years. The time capsule will be buried and then unearthed in 2032.

The school is co-sponsored by the Archdiocese of Washington and the Salesians of Don Bosco. Tuition is on a sliding scale, based on ability to pay. No family pays more than $2,500. The 125 students are culturally diverse with over half (55%) residing in the District of Columbia, 26% in Prince George’s County and 19% in Montgomery County. The average family income is under $30,000.

Students team up to job share in clerical positions at law firms, universities, non-profits and corporations. The business partners in turn pay the majority of the students’ educational costs. Students acquire job experience, develop a strong work ethic and increase self-esteem.

The Archdiocese of Washington has been educating students for over 200 years and is home to 106 archdiocesan and independent Catholic schools, with nearly 32,000 students in Washington, DC and Calvert, Charles, Montgomery, Prince George’s and St. Mary’s counties in Maryland. Catholic school information is online at

Kathy Dempsey
Office of Communications
[email protected]