Frequently Asked Questions
- Why St. Sebastian's?
- What kind of student does St. Sebastian's seek to enroll?
- How do we apply?
- What is the tuition and is financial assistance available?
St. Sebastian's draws its identity from both the Independent and the Catholic School traditions, fostering an environment where faith and reason join forces in the search for truth. While smaller than most Catholic and parochial schools, both in total enrollment (375) and average class size (11), the School is committed to providing an academic environment where Gospel values play a leading role in understanding the truth about God's plan for us. As an Independent School, St. Sebastian's makes a strong commitment to pursuing the highest level of intellectual inquiry and academic rigor. All students gain admission to four-year colleges and universities. All students are afforded the opportunity to participate in competitive athletics and first-rate art programs. No other boys' school in New England embraces both traditions as wholeheartedly.
St. Sebastian's seeks to enroll students who possess both the motivation and the ability to succeed in a rigorous academic curriculum while fully immersed in the religious and extracurricular life of the School. Admission is highly competitive, and the Admissions Committee carefully considers a number of academic and personal factors in its deliberations.
- How central a role does religion play in the daily life of the School?
- How does the School celebrate its Catholic heritage?
- Are there any non-Catholic students enrolled?
- Is community service a required component of the School's religious mission?
- Is the School affiliated with a particular religious order?
Definitely. Students take advantage of numerous opportunities to perform service both within School walls and in the community at large. Each student's exposure to service at St. Sebastian's culminates with Senior Service - a five-week intensive community service immersion completed just prior to graduation.
- How is a student's academic schedule determined?
- Are students grouped by ability?
- What are the student/faculty ratio and average class size?
- What is the School's educational philosophy?
- Are there any distinctive aspects of your curriculum?
The School subscribes to a classical educational philosophy that aims to provide each student with a deep grounding in the skills necessary to find success and fulfillment in life. Central among these skills are writing and speaking, necessary elements of the critical thought process. To that end, the School's writing program ensures that each student achieves both the competence and the confidence to use the written word as an effective tool throughout his life. Through a variety of public speaking opportunities, each student also develops the poise necessary to convey his thoughts in the most persuasive and articulate manner.
Though the School aspires to help its students achieve excellence in all areas, special emphasis is placed on writing and public speaking. These critically important skills cross all academic disciplines. All freshmen are required to take a daily course in writing that complements their traditional English literature course (which also demands much writing). Additionally, each student in the School is required to deliver a public speech each year before his peers in their weekly Chapel meeting. Underclassmen speak before their individual grade level; seniors address the entire School community. Learn more about the Writing Program and Chapel Speaking Program.
- What sports are offered?
- Is there an athletic requirement?
- Are students ever awarded athletic scholarships or merit?
- With what other schools does St. Sebastian's compete?
- Are there any other athletic opportunities?
Though students are not required to play sports, virtually all students participate in at least one competitive sport. Many students play two or three. St. Sebastian's makes it possible for every student to be actively involved in athletics, offering as many as four of five different teams in some sports.
- What non-athletic activities are offered?
- What specific opportunities are available in the fine arts?
- Is there an extracurricular requirement?
- Can a student play a sport and participate in an extracurricular activity simultaneously?
- Are activities ever scheduled with other schools?
- What role do students play in the formation and organization of extracurricular groups?
In additional to an extensive offering of fine arts courses, the School’s fine arts program offers numerous after-school opportunities in drama, musical performance, painting & drawing, photography, ceramics and film editing. In recent years, students have been routinely recognized in the Boston Globe Scholastic Art Awards competition. A number of alumni are currently pursuing professional opportunities as actors and writers.