St. Anthony Catholic School is a Year Round School that is a religious and educational ministry of St. Anthony - Mary Help of Christians Parish. We have been serving the families in the diverse San Antonio District of Oakland since 1877. Our qualified and dedicated faculty provide a quality education in a small school environment from Kindergarten to eighth grade. We prepare children to actively participate in their Catholic faith and toward achieving their full potential as productive and responsible members of tomorrow’s world. We accept students of all faiths who are willing to live by our school philosophy.
St. Anthony Catholic School is dedicated to educating the whole child by recognizing the importance of combining the abilities of the family as primary educators and the experience of trained professionals on staff to provide the most comprehensive learning environment for all students. This environment allows the development of the special talents of each student while stressing the need to respect the dignity of all. Students are enabled to grow personally while beginning to recognize the need to become responsible citizens through service to God and each other.
The challenging program provided by all staff allows students to develop their self-esteem as well as their self-discipline and helps them become ever more responsible for the development of their own learning and faith life.
The present St. Anthony’s Catholic year round school began in 1877. As Our Lady of Lourdes School, it first opened its doors to fifty students. The original school established by Reverend William Gleeson and staffed by the Sisters of Mercy, served the Catholic population of East Oakland and Alameda. In these beginning years, students frequently came from as far south as San Leandro. Before the turn of the century, several major changes occurred. A high school was added in 1881. With the expansion of the convent in 1886, a limited number of boarders were accommodated. Then in 1890, a school for boys called St. Anthony’s was opened by the Christian Brothers, thus transforming Our Lady of Lourdes into an academy for girls.
When the Christian Brothers found it necessary to withdraw in 1914 because of other commitments, the girls in the elementary grades transferred to the boys’ building. Once again, the Sisters of Mercy taught both boys and girls. Our Lady of Lourdes continued to operate as a high school until its closing in 1931.
After nearly 70 years of service, the old wooden structures of the convent and school were deemed to have outlived their usefulness so Monsignor Hammond began a building fund to build the new school. The students moved into the new structure in January of 1949, at which time, the old building was torn down. On May 14, 1950, Archbishop Mitty of San Francisco dedicated the present school complex consisting of eight classrooms, kindergarten, library, cafeteria, a full-size gym, and clubroom.
In its early years, the Catholic population of St. Anthony’s Catholic School was predominantly Irish and Portuguese. Through the years the Latino population grew and became the major ethnic group. Now, into it’s second century, St. Anthony’s Catholic School presents an interesting assemblage of Americans of diverse racial and ethnic origins.
In 1982, St. Anthony’s Catholic School began to adhere to a year round calendar schedule. Now, the school year begins in the first week of August and ends in the third week of June, with three-week breaks and the month of July as holidays.