School History

Founded in 1961 as a school for boys, Padua Franciscan became co-educational in 1983 and is now the largest private, co-educational secondary school in northeast Ohio. Today, it is one of less than twenty high schools officially chartered by the State of Ohio as college-preparatory. In 2004 and 2006, Padua was named one of the nation’s top 50 Catholic secondary schools by the Acton Institute.

Black and white image of Padua Franciscan ministers Padua is accredited by the North Central Association of Colleges and Schools as well as the Ohio Catholic Schools Accrediting Agency. An Ohio corporation, Padua was founded by the Franciscan Province of the Sacred Heart of Saint Louis, Missouri, and bases our educational philosophy on the life and spirituality of Saint Francis of Assisi. As a school in the Franciscan tradition, our mission is to develop the unique talents of each student, while giving them the skills they need to succeed in college and beyond.

Padua’s very reason for existence is based on values rooted in the life and spirituality of Saint Francis of Assisi. These values clearly remind us of the unique talents possessed by each individual as a creation of God. This spiritual approach to all living things has endured for nearly 800 years, and would become the tenant of thought for many great educators, from Saint Anthony of Padua (patron saint of Padua Franciscan) to Saint Bonaventure. As a school in the Franciscan tradition, it is our mission to develop the spiritual, intellectual, emotional, social, and physical characteristics of young people during their critically formative years. It is our goal to instill in these men and women the skills necessary for a lifetime of learning, giving them an appreciation for others and those less fortunate, and developing in them a personal relationship with Jesus Christ.

As we look to position Padua Franciscan High School for the 21st century, we remember our Franciscan heritage. Like Saint Francis of Assisi, at Padua Franciscan we believe that one does not impact society through large groups, but rather on a person-to-person basis. In this tradition, we look to finding positive ways to meet challenges and seek to respond to the individual needs of students with careful planning and compassion.