Middle School

Grade 8 at SJ

Goals & Overview

The Eighth Grade High School Preparatory Program for the Brother Robert Treanor, CFX Middle School Division of Saint John’s High School offers an opportunity for boys in grade eight to hone their skills in a targeted program while allowing them to grow into young men of academic and moral excellence in the Xaverian tradition that has served the community for more than a century. Saint John’s has developed this specialized program in response to the unprecedented need created by the COVID-19 pandemic and the resulting disruption of in-person learning in March of the 2019-2020 school year. Participation in this one-year program is intended to streamline the students’ return to on-site learning and ensure that they will be prepared for the rigors of the Saint John’s High School experience.  

The curriculum for the Eighth Grade High School Preparatory Program is being designed as a skills-based academic program that will draw on the research done by our School Model Transition Committee to ensure that students enter grade nine prepared with the tools necessary for success. Instruction for these students will be delivered by the dedicated Middle School specialists that have already been selected to provide the individual support and challenge that will promote the skill development that students need to be fully prepared for their high school experience. Saint John’s recognizes the unique challenges students faced this year in terms of both academic and social development given the pandemic, and so curriculum development for this program will focus particularly on identification of skills and content for review at the start of the school year, with consideration given towards any missed instructional and social development during the latter portion of the 2019-2020 school year. As is the case with our rising seventh graders, students participating in this program can expect to receive a thorough and challenging educational experience in all academic departments. 

In keeping with the school’s tradition of focusing on the education of the whole person, students will also have the opportunity to develop their talents spiritually, socially, physically, creatively, and aesthetically in addition to intellectually. Extracurricular and athletic programs offered in conjunction with the seventh grade will enable students to grow together as well-rounded individuals and as members of a larger, connected community.  

Though this is a unique program for Saint John’s, the Xaverian mission to bring the spirit of Christ to life through a rigorous curriculum delivered in an atmosphere that promotes respect, compassion, and humility remains unchanged.  Students will have a five-year opportunity to excel academically while developing a deep relationship with God as well as a profound sense of brotherhood that will last for a lifetime.  

We recognize that a rigorous eighth-grade experience is essential to ensure that students are well prepared to embark on a comprehensive college-preparatory high school journey, and that concerns about the pandemic have come at a crucial time for rising eighth-graders, and so we are excited to offer this opportunity to ease the transition for students back to a formal school setting. 

Please reach out to Sean Dillon, Assistant Principal for Middle School at sdillon@stjohnshigh.org or Justin Smith, Director of Admissions and Enrollment Management at jsmith@stjohnshigh.org with any questions.

Grade 8 FAQs

List of 9 frequently asked questions.

  • Q:
    Why open this unique Grade 8 program now?

    The decision to open the Grade Eight High School Preparatory program was explored as a result of significant interest from families towards the end of the 2019-2020 school year. At Saint John’s, we understand that eighth grade is always a time of significant change for adolescents - with boys developing physically, emotionally, socially, spiritually, and intellectually. This past year, with their face-to-face schooling abruptly terminated in March, we believe it is more critical than ever to provide the appropriate environment and experiences to nurture their growth. These experiences will include a review of content from the end of the previous school year in addition to thorough preparation for a competitive high school experience.
  • Q: How many students are expected to enroll in Grade 8 for the 2020-2021 academic year?

    Saint John’s has committed to accepting a small cohort of students for the eighth grade at Saint John’s High School. This is a unique one-year experience for these students, with the Middle School Division moving forward with its plan to open a traditional eighth grade section in the 2021-2022 school year.
  • Q:
    Who will teach Grade 8 classes?

    Our talented and knowledgeable middle school teachers are experts with this age and stage. In classrooms and labs, on playing fields, in administrative offices — whether upfront or behind the scenes — they will work tirelessly with one common goal: to make sure that we are doing the best we can for our middle school students.

    Information about our incoming Middle School teachers can be found here.
  • Q:
    Is there enough physical classroom space to add this eighth-grade program?

    Saint John’s is currently undergoing a $1.2 million renovation of the north side of the second floor of Conal Hall. This renovation includes all classroom, lab, office, and student support space for a fully enrolled seventh and eighth-grade middle school. There is a substantial amount of space to include the eighth-grade program at this time.
  • Q:
    What will the curriculum look like for Grade 8 at Saint John’s? 

    The curriculum for the 2020-2021 Grade Eight High School Preparatory Program at Saint John’s is being developed from the foundation built by the School Model Transition Committee, which engaged in a competitive audit of our partner schools as well as an internal review of our high school program during the 2019-2020 school year in order to develop a comprehensive list of skills to be fostered in each curricular area in preparation for success in grade nine. 

    Our talented middle school teaching team will utilize this research in conjunction with a thorough admission and orientation process to determine the curricular paths that will best serve this cohort of students. 

    This unique one-year program will focus on a review of previous skills to ensure all students are well prepared for a rigorous eighth-grade experience that will position them for success in high school. As with our seventh-grade students, members of the Grade Eight/High School Preparatory Program will have the opportunity to receive instruction in each of the core and elective courses that are offered to students in grades nine through twelve at Saint John’s High School.
  • Q:
    How will this impact athletics in the middle school program?

    The overall goal of the athletic program for all middle school students at Saint John’s High School is to provide opportunities to grow in their understanding and skills of a sport in order to compete at a high level. 

    Between selective and no-cut teams, along with intramurals, there will be ample opportunity to actively participate in the Saint John’s athletic program for students in both seventh and eighth grade. Provisions will be made, based on interest level, to meet the needs of students in both grades.
  • Q:
    What extracurricular activities and/or retreats will be available for Grade 8?

    Extracurricular activities will be developed in conjunction with current programming for Grade 7 and will include middle school-specific activities as well as opportunities for collaboration with the High School division. 

    Campus Ministry opportunities will be available specifically for the Middle School division, and will include opportunities for both Grades 7 and 8 - such as Masses and service opportunities, as well as grade-level specific opportunities for retreat experience and the like.
  • Q:
    Can Grade 8 students take high school classes?

    While eighth graders will not be taking high school classes, our eighth grade curriculum is developed with the adolescent brain and learning styles in mind, serving not only as a transition between the foundation of middle school and the rigorous college preparation of high school but also as an important academic journey of its own, filled with engaging work leveled to meet the needs and challenge the capacities of every learner.
  • Q:
    Will Grade 8 students need to reapply for Grade 9?

    No, students who matriculate from eighth to ninth grade at Saint John’s do not need to re-apply. At the end of their eighth grade year, all students will take the school’s high school entrance exam to assist with their academic placement.

Tuition & Financial Aid

Tuition & fees for Grade 8 at Saint John's High School for the 2020-2021 academic year is $14,900.

To view the full tuition & fee breakdown, along with payment plan options, please click here.

Financial Aid is available to families in need of assistance. 

To read more about our 2020-2021 Refund Policy, please click here.
Please contact our Admissions Department at admissions@stjohnshigh.org for more information.

Grade 8 Inquiries

Thank you for your interest in Grade 8 at Saint John’s for the 2020-2021 academic year. 
Update July 2, 2020 - Due to an overwhelming demand for admission for the small cohort of the 2020-2021 Eighth Grade High School Preparatory Program at Saint John’s, we are no longer accepting applications at this time. 
If you remain interested in the Grade 8 program for next year, we encourage you to contact Mr. Justin Smith, Director of Admissions, via e-mail or at (508) 842-8934 ext. 230 to express your continued interest and we will place you on the waitlist and contact you should seats in our one-year, specialized eighth grade program become available.