Excellence in Academics

St. Rita of Cascia High School is completely committed to a College Preparatory curriculum. All students are placed in an academic program that is tailored to meet their needs. Our course of studies will challenge each student to fully develop his intellectual talents.

We are proud of our students and honored that the United States Board of Education has cited St. Rita as an Exemplary Secondary school. On average 98% of our students continue on to college. The senior class of 2019, totaling 153 young men, earned over $20 million dollars in scholarships, and are currently enrolled in prestigious universities across the country. Virtually all of these scholarships were academic or leadership awards. Our average ACT score is 23 and students who take two or more Honors classes average a 28 on the ACT.

New information for the 2019-20 school year:

  • St. Rita and St. Xavier University have partnered up to offer a dual-credit course for juniors and seniors. The Introduction to Business Class meets at St. Rita from 7:30 a.m. - 8:20 a.m. and is taught by a St. Xavier University professor. This class provides our students a chance to earn college credits while at St. Rita.

  • New electives have been added to our curriculum, including: Computer Science Principles, 2D/3D Animation and Graphic Design. These join other electives that have already existed, such as: Engineering, Apple Apps Design (honors or non-honors), Beginner Band, Irish American Literature, Forensic Science, Art electives, and numerous others.

  • Freshmen are now required to take 1.5 years of Math and English in their freshman year. Students will take English I for an entire year and a semester of English Composition. Students will also take a math course for the entire year, and an additional semester of a Math Theory course.

  • Online class offerings have expanded to include courses such as: Business, Engineering, Marine Science, Astronomy, and several others. Juniors and Seniors can take an online class and will get a free period off in which to complete them, either in the first or last period of the day. Parents, the student, and the St. Rita Counseling Department will receive a weekly status report for each students’ progress. 15% of eligible students take advantage of them during the 2019-20 school year. 

College Preparatory Curriculum

Advanced Placement and Honors Courses

St. Rita High School offers AP and honors level courses to qualifying students in the following subject areas:

English, Fine Arts, Mathematics, Science, Social Science, Technology, Theology and World Languages.

Student Success Center

Tutoring is available for all students every day during lunch and Monday through Thursday after school until 4:00pm in the Student Success Center. Math teachers tutor on Tuesdays and Thursdays after school and Liberal Arts teachers tutor on Wednesdays.


Academic Honor Roll

St. Rita High School has three levels of distinction for academic excellence, which are:

Superior Honors: 4.4 Semester GPA and Higher

High Honors: Semester GPA of 4.2-4.399

Honors: Semester GPA of 4.0-4.199

Class Rank

St. Rita does not rank students by GPA or percentile.

Transcript Information

St. Rita High School’s academic year is divided into two semesters with official grades reported in January and June.

Abbreviations used on the transcripts include: 
H: Honors Course, AP: Advanced Placement Course, SS: Summer School Course, P: Pass, I: Incomplete, W: Withdrawal, F-WD: Failure-Withdrawal

Summer school or other credit recovery grades are not averaged into the GPA.

Counseling Calendar of Events

College Preparation and Information

Throughout the school year, students receive excellent preparation for the ACT test and the college search process in general. Below are some of the features and advantages of the St. Rita experience.

  • ACT Prep occurs every day in the junior year, throughout all classes and programs. Our teachers have the ACT in mind when they instruct their students and offer them helpful tips and techniques in all classes.

  • Students who live in Chicago have access to free ACT prep programs through Title One, while students outside Chicago can have access to similar programs as well through St. Rita and outside groups.

  • All juniors will attend our Junior ACT Day, where an outside company goes over test strategies and thoroughly discusses the ACT through a comprehensive, four-hour workshop.

  • All students may take an after-school ACT class, taught by various St. Rita faculty members. There is a fee for this program, which stretches over several weeks. Students can also participate in after-school ACT practice tests, which happen several times a year. There is a $10 fee for taking a practice ACT test.

  • St. Rita works with its students and will recommend several outside organizations for additional ACT prep, as well.

  • Our Career Day is held every October, and features 20+ alumni and friends of St. Rita who make presentations on various careers and fields, including business, medicine, technology, law, marketing, law enforcement, finance, communication and more.

  • Our Spring College Fair is held every April and features 120 colleges and universities to meet with students and parents. That night, there is also a free College Financial Aid workshop and seminar that parents can attend.

  • St. Rita holds a free FAFSA seminar in September each year for interested parents and students.

  • Every day at lunch, college admissions officers visit St. Rita and set-up an information table outside our Dining Hall for lunch periods. Students can ask questions to admissions officers during or after lunch. Over 100 schools visit us each year for this program and students benefit greatly from the one-on-one interaction.

  • Throughout the year, the Counseling Department will hold small-group meetings with seniors to explain The Common App and how to apply to colleges, what forms to fill out, how to submit information, etc.

  • St. Rita uses the Naviance system to send transcripts, create student and college profiles, find job interests and help locate college matches for our students, as well as potential scholarship matches for our Ritamen.

A comprehensive program of counseling services are available to the student body. The philosophy of our counseling program is the recognition of the personal worth, Christian dignity, and uniqueness of each individual student. At St. Rita, counseling services are an integral and significant part of the total educational program.

Counseling Office Staff

Wes Benak ’81    Vice President of Academics     wbenak@stritahs.com

Wes Benak ’81
Vice President of Academics


Jill Nagel   Director of Guidance     jnagel@stritahs.com

Jill Nagel
Director of Guidance


Beth McGlynn   Counselor     bmcglynn@stritahs.com

Beth McGlynn


Brian Hagen ’04


Noreen Kelliher   Administrative Assistant     nkelliher@stritahs.com

Noreen Kelliher Administrative Assistant