History

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The History of Saint Mary's High School

St. Mary’s Yesterday, Today and Tomorrow – Founded in 1904, St. Mary’s has been preparing its students to achieve success for 112 years. A community of nearly 400 students and faculty continues a tradition of scholarship in the footsteps of countless alumni, parents, friends and supporters.

Today, we are proud to be a Catholic, private, college preparatory school offering an excellent education in a co-ed environment that mirrors the world in which we live. We are ranked in the top 10% of Western New York high schools by Business First and are the highest ranked private co-ed school in the ranking. Our curriculum is both cutting edge, with a one-to-one Google Chromebook and significant investments in STEM, and focused on traditional values and our Catholic faith. Our small size and breadth of extracurricular offerings, including more Varsity sports than any other Western New York Catholic high school, give every student an opportunity to become involved and grow as a leader.

St. Mary’s history has made us who we are today, and we invite you to be part of our tomorrow.

1904: St. Mary’s High School opened its doors.

1909: St. Mary’s High School was officially chartered.

1954: Construction of our present school began.

1955: St. Mary’s High School at 142 Laverack Avenue opened in September. The Salvatorian Fathers joined with the Franciscan Sisters to operate the school.

As enrollment increased, expansions were made to the building in 1956 (Math Wing, English Expansion), 1962 (Science/Guidance Wing, Cafeteria Expansion), 1983 (Art/Music/Foreign Language Wing), and 2004 (Athletic Center).

1975: Dorothy Blake made SMHS and Buffalo Diocese history by being the first lay woman appointed principal.

1991: St. Mary’s became a private high school administered by the Board of Trustees.

2004: St. Mary's launched a huge campaign to add a Field House to its campus. The Field house is home to many things. The hardwood floor allows the Physical Education classes the opportunity to run multiple sections of sports to accommodate its students. Many mens’ and womens’ sports teams have the opportunity to play here; basketball, volleyball, and wrestling just to name a few. Additionally, virtually every team will utilize the facility for indoor practices. The Field House is also seen as a home for many events in the community. 

2007: First graduate of St. Mary's named principal.

2016: St. Mary's adopted a new school model. A Head of School was named along with four Deans. This distinction has aligned St. Mary's with some of the leading prep schools on the east coast.