The very best schools typically have humble origins – a small cadre of students, fewer teachers, little physical room for growth, and a strong desire to succeed. St. Austin is no different. Steeped in a century of history, St. Austin Catholic School is located in downtown Austin on the western edge of the University of Texas campus. Over the century St. Austin has beaten all the odds. Transcending economic and social crises, rapid growth of the UT campus, new high rise buildings and street restrictions, St. Austin Catholic School is an oasis in an increasingly hectic downtown environment.
A parochial school to neighboring St. Austin Catholic Parish, St. Austin Catholic School opened in 1917 under the administration of the Dominican Sisters of Houston, who relocated Holy Rosary School (1915), a school for Mexican immigrant children, to a small one-roomed house at 1911 San Antonio Street. That first year, we enrolled 46 students. A year later, to reflect the Paulist heritage of the parish and the strong working relationship the sisters maintained with the Paulist Fathers, the school was renamed Newman School, a moniker it maintained until the 1941-42 school year when an eight grade was added and the school became a complete elementary school called St. Austin Catholic School. During the 1950s a rapid growth in population both in Austin and at St. Austin Parish required the school to demolish the old building and build a new elementary school on the site to accommodate the massive influx of students. Since then, the Dominican Sisters have left St. Austin (late 1970s) and their dormitories at Newman Hall have become the home of our Middle School. Under the ministry of the Paulist Fathers, the school has flourished. In the 2009-2010 school year a PreK4 class was added and in 2015-2016 a PreK3 class was added. As we reach the centennial we also reach a transformative moment in the School’s history. We hope you will be a part of it.
A special chemistry is at work at St. Austin Catholic School solidifying the strong faith, exceptional academics and active community participation that have been hallmarks since the School’s founding. It finds expression in the academic achievements of our students preparing them for high school and beyond. It is visible in the appreciation and acceptance that our students have for diversity in all its guises. It is most apparent in the interactions between our students, our faculty, our community and God. AND, it is you! – Our school community, friends and neighbors.