A Historical Sketch of Cardinal Spellman High School
On October 20, 1958, Richard Cardinal Cushing, Archbishop of Boston, officiated at the dedication of Cardinal Spellman High School, blessed its buildings and laid the cornerstone. The school was named in honor of Francis Cardinal Spellman whose birthplace and paternal home was in the adjacent town of Whitman, Massachusetts. From Francis Cardinal Spellman's coat of arms, the motto "Sequere Deum" -- "Follow God" was selected as the school motto -- an assured guide and call to full Catholic living. It was at Cardinal Spellman's request that the magnificent gift bestowed by him on the school, namely, the auditorium, be known as the Cardinal Cushing Auditorium.
The Chapel, entitled Saint Joseph's, would serve as the source of Life for all those who in any way live their day, plot their work or seek their goals through this school. Through the thoughtfulness of Cardinal Cushing, aided by the generosity of Dr. Loretta W. Quinlan, the Chapel is in loving memory of Rt. Rev. Richard J. Quinlan, a native of Whitman and former Diocesan Superintendent of Schools. His Eminence dedicated the Chapel on July 18, 1958 at which time he celebrated the first Mass.
Registration for the first class was held in January, 1958 at St. Colman's Church Hall in Brockton. In September of 1958 three hundred students were enrolled at Spellman with Sister M. Vera, CSJ as the founding Principal and a faculty of ten Sisters of Saint Joseph. In the following years, more dedicated sisters, lay men and lay women joined the Spellman staff.
Cardinal Spellman High School was originally established to promote a Christian climate wherein the students would be provided with meaningful experiences that would nurture virtue and help them become active Christian consciences in the world. The school offered quality academic programs designed for essential, dynamic and purposeful excellence and geared to the needs and abilities of the students. The program of studies, prepared by the diocesan superintendent of schools, was designed to train the mind, give a wealth of thought, stimulate ideas, cultivate initiative and train leaders. Throughout its entire history to this day, Cardinal Spellman High School has remained true to its founding mission.
On December 6, 1963, Cardinal Spellman High School, along with several other secondary schools in the Archdiocese of Boston, was incorporated as a member of the Archdiocesan Central High Schools, Inc. In 1979, the New England Association of Schools and Colleges awarded Cardinal Spellman High School its initial accreditation; in 1989 and again in 1999, the school was re-accredited for successive ten-year periods. Having fulfilled stringent membership requirements, Cardinal Spellman High School was elected as a permanent member of the College Board in 1983. Spellman is also affiliated with the National Catholic Education Association.
As we entered the new millennium, the Board of Trustees of the Archdiocesan Central High Schools, Inc., having recognized the increased diversity and varying needs of the central high schools, determined that each of these schools would be best served by becoming an independent public juridic institution governed by its own Board of Trustees. As a result, Cardinal Spellman High School was newly incorporated in January of 2004. Members of our local Board of Trustees were appointed and, beginning on September 1, 2004, Spellman’s own Board of Trustees have oversight and governing responsibility of the school.
With our rich heritage behind us we have great confidence that God will continue to bless our educational ministry here at Cardinal Spellman High School.