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Fr. Tolton Regional Catholic High School opened in the fall of 2011 with grades nine and 10. It is located south of Columbia, just off U.S. 63. It is Columbia’s first Catholic high school.
The school will expand in 2012 and 2013 to include grades 11 and 12, respectively.
Year opened: 2011
Principal: Kristie Wolfe
Address: 3351 E. Gans Road
Phone number: 573-445-7700
Tuition costs: $5,000 to $6,000 a year
- One full payment in July 2011.
- Two semester payments in July 2011 and January 2012.
- Twelve monthly payments from July 2011 to June 2012.
In 2007, the Catholic Diocese of Jefferson City announced plans to build a regional Catholic high school in Columbia. It is located north of Gans Road and west of Highway 63 in the Bristol Lake development. In October 2009, Bishop John Gaydos chose the name Father Augustine Tolton Regional Catholic High School. The school accepted no more than 200 students during its first year but may eventually have as many as 400.
Tolton was the first black Catholic priest in the United States and is a Missouri native. He later served as a priest in Quincy, Ill., and Chicago and died at age 43 in 1897.
The diocese's original professional fundraiser, the Steier Group, is based in Omaha and had one fundraising event in Columbia to raise money for the high school. The contract with Steier ended early in 2009, and the diocese has a new fundraiser that started efforts in mid-December of that year. Cosgriff Co., also based in Omaha, is a 50-year-old national Catholic fundraising firm that is working with three Columbia Catholic parishes to raise money for construction through donations. The Cosgriff contract lasted through March 2010, and the company aimed to raise the remaining money necessary to reach the $13 million goal needed before breaking ground on construction. Fundraising came to a standstill in February 2009 due to an economic recession. About $8 million of the goal had been reached. The campaign, called “Make it a Reality,” needed another $5 million to begin construction on the high school. Fundraising picked up again in early 2010 and the school was opened in fall 2011.
Now that fundraising goals were met, the school is taking donations in order to build enrollment.
Links and sources
Updated: Feb. 26, 2012