“Ninety-seven percent of the independent school’s AP language and literature students passed their AP exam last year (and more than half of them scored a four or five), one of the highest success rates in the state”
– Atlanta Magazine, January 2009

  • Department Goals plus-circle Created with Sketch Beta.
    1. To stimulate a lifelong engagement with reading as a source of learning and joy.
    2. To develop the moral imagination of students through literature and composition.
    3. To help students appreciate the value of reading as a way to explore another’s world without necessarily endorsing it.
    4. To integrate students’ emotional, intellectual, and spiritual ways of knowing as a way to effect personal change and thus societal change.
    5. To develop the unique gifts of each other.
    6. To help students learn to use language effectively, appropriately, and responsibly.
    7. To help students expand their spiritual growth, intellectual development, aesthetic appreciation, critical thinking, creativity, self-direction.
  • Department Philosophy plus-circle Created with Sketch Beta.

    The Father, knowing Himself, speaks that Knowledge through the Word, His Son, who in the Incarnation became flesh and dwelt among us. Through the study and use of language, teachers and students of literature and composition reflect an incarnation, engaging in the vocation of all Christians, which St. Paul says is to “restore all things in Christ.”

    We believe that, because all creation finds its fulfillment only in relationship with the living God, our deepest longing is for spiritual transcendence. As believers in the Gospel of Jesus Christ, we seek to instill a love of truth, beauty, and goodness into our learning community. We believe that word and story are gifts of God and that through them we create narrative to wrest order from chaos and to give structure and perspective to human experience. Word and story allow us to see the world and ourselves in connection with the ongoing human experience. As a result, we make story both to discover and shape who we are.

    Word and story allow us to see through the eyes of others and to seek self-knowledge. We believe that the respectful use of word and story is a way of ministering to others and ourselves. We believe that the use of language is a moral act. As such, it requires the exercise of intelligence, choice, and discrimination and fosters the habit of reflection and the discipline of thinking, all of which develop a critical but faith-filled ability to make decisions as Catholics in a secular world.

  • Department Standards plus-circle Created with Sketch Beta.
    1. Students read a wide range of materials to build understanding of texts, of themselves, and of the culture of the United States and the world; to acquire new information; to respond to the needs and demands of society and the workplace; for spiritual fulfillment and personal growth. Among these materials are fictions, nonfiction, poetry, drama, film, classic and contemporary works.
    2. Students read a wide range of literature from many periods in many genres to build an understanding of the spiritual, philosophical, ethical, and aesthetic nature of human experience.
    3. Students apply a wide range of strategies to comprehend, interpret, evaluate, and appreciate texts.
    4. Students adjust their use of spoken, written, and visual language (e.g., conventions, style, vocabulary) to communicate effectively with a variety of audiences and for different purposes.
    5. Students employ a wide range of strategies as they write and use different writing process elements appropriately to communicate with different audiences for a variety of purposes.
    6. Students apply knowledge of language structure, language conventions such as spelling and punctuation, figurative language, genre, and media techniques to create, critique, and discuss print and non-print materials.
    7. Students conduct research on issues and interests by generating ideas and questions, by posing problems, and by developing logical and critical thinking skills. They gather, evaluate, and synthesize data from a variety of sources to communicate their discoveries in ways that suit their purpose and audience.
    8. Students use a variety of technological and informational resources such as libraries, databases, computer networks, and video to gather and synthesize information and to create and communicate knowledge.
    9. Students develop an understanding of and respect for diversity in language use, patterns, and dialects across cultures, ethnic groups, geographic regions, and social roles while at the same time recognizing and applying their own Catholic beliefs.
    10. Students participate as knowledgeable, reflective, creative, and critical members of a variety of literacy communities.
    11. Students use spoken, written, and visual language to accomplish their own purposes of learning, enjoyment, persuasion, and exchange of information.