With a View Toward History and a Desire to Strengthen Catholic Education

Saint Gertrude High School, Virginia’s only all-girls Catholic high school, has served the educational and spiritual needs of young women for 100 years. 

In 1922, Saint Edith Academy, a boarding school for girls in Bristow, Virginia, was closed, and the high school department, consisting of four Benedictine Sisters, was transferred to Richmond. Together, these four Sisters (Sister Gertrude Head, O.S.B. who served as the first principal and the three-member faculty) began the educational program that is now known as Saint Gertrude High School. The school grew and thrived in its original Museum District building, eventually reaching its highest enrollment of 286 students.

Since its founding, Saint Gertrude has served as the “sister school” to Benedictine College Preparatory, intertwining many ceremonies, traditions, and programs between the two single-gender Catholic high schools. For 90 years, the two schools operated just 400 feet apart in the Museum District of Richmond. However, in 2013, Benedictine College Prep relocated to Goochland County on a 73-acre campus off River Road. 

With a view toward their history and a desire to strengthen Catholic education, Benedictine and Saint Gertrude unified under a single new corporation, the Benedictine Schools of Richmond, in January 2020. And, in the summer of 2020, Saint Gertrude joined its brother school on the Benedictine Abbey campus, where the schools were once again in close proximity. Together, the schools now share a peaceful, modern, and sprawling campus including the campus’s new, world-class athletic facilities.

In the fall of 2020, Saint Gertrude broke ground for a new state-of-the-art academic building and celebrated the grand opening August 2023, just after Saint Gertrude’s Centennial Celebration. 

From its inception, no matter the location, the high standard of academic excellence and the strong bonds of sisterhood have remained steadfast and will continue to do so for years to come.

New Home for Saint Gertrude

The SGHS building is a leadership-focused, STEM-ready school that supports educational excellence, extra-curricular activities, athletics, and spiritual development. This 44,480 square-foot building features: a great hall, grand terrace, dining hall, fine arts and science wings, and an iconic bell tower emulating the original. In addition, a new chapel is currently under construction which will complete the project.