Today, West Catholic Preparatory High School stands proudly at 4501 Chestnut St. in Philadelphia. West Catholic Prep serves the students of West and Southwest Philadelphia. Our 445 students receive a quality Catholic education in a co-educational setting, grounded in Lasallian values. They are educated by both clergy and lay people and after West Catholic Prep they go on to the next stage of life whether that is college, the workforce, or the armed services.
West Catholic Preparatory High School grew out of the proud traditions of two schools, West Philadelphia Catholic High School for Boys and West Philadelphia Catholic High School for Girls. In 1989 the boys school and girls school with the Christian Brothers, the Servants of IHM, the Sisters of St. Joseph, and over 1,000 students would merge to become West Philadelphia Catholic High School. In 2016, the name was changed to West Catholic Preparatory High School. We stand on the shoulders of the Alumni and Alumnae who came before us and honor the memory of those schools here at West Catholic Prep today.
West Philadelphia Catholic High School for Boys
West Philadelphia Catholic High School for Boys began in 1916 with students at both Transfiguration Parish School and later at St. Gregory's Parish School, the building that would later house the school at 49th & Chestnut Street was under construction. The administration and faculty were originally the Society of Mary (Marianists). However, in the fall of 1926, the de la Salle Christian Brothers took over what would become West Philadelphia Catholic High School for Boys.
West Philadelphia Catholic High School for Girls
West Philadelphia Catholic Girls’ High School was founded on September 6, 1927 and opened its doors as the second all girls Catholic High School in Philadelphia. His Eminence Dennis Cardinal Dougherty, the Archbishop of Philadelphia, officiated at the opening. Reverend Leo D. Burns, D.D. managed the new school along with serving as the Assistant Superintendent of Schools for the Archdiocese. Dr. Burns was assisted by sisters of 6 religious orders. The initial faculty consisted of four Religious Sisters of Mercy, two Sisters of Notre Dame deNamur, eight Sisters of St. Francis, seven Sisters of St. Joseph, six Sisters, Servants of the Immaculate Heart of Mary, four Sisters of the Society of the Holy Child Jesus, and three lay teachers. In 1928 two Sisters of Christian Charity joined the faculty. The day to day operation of the school was supervised by the Prefects of the seven religious orders.