Mission » Mission and History

Mission and History


The Saint Stephen Advantage of educating the “whole child"…

Founded in 1928, Saint Stephen of Hungary School is a Pre-K through 8th grade award-winning Catholic school with a rich heritage of academic excellence. By nurturing each student's mind, body and spirit in the Franciscan tradition, Saint Stephen School prepares its students to be passionate leaders and self-confident life-long learners.

Our holistic, differentiated approach to learning creates an environment where students are supported to take calculated risks and explore the world around them. Students are challenged to think critically and creatively in order to solve complex real-life problems. Working collaboratively students learn to clearly communicate diverse opinions and resolve conflict. Students are celebrated for their unique differences and curriculum is tailored to meet the needs of each individual student. Through a self-reflective process, students are empowered to be active participants in their own decision making abilities. Saint Stephen School provides students with the skills to be successful in our ever-changing global community.



Saint Stephen School welcomed its first students on September 10, 1928, a few weeks before the building was complete. While awaiting the completion of the building, classes were held on the roof garden. The school was entrusted to the Daughters of Divine Charity and Sister M. Gabriella was the first principal.

Initially, the school educated 130 students from Kindergarten through Sixth Grade. The school provided a safe, secure learning environment for the children of working families in the Yorkville area. In order to accommodate the community's working parents, the school's operating hours were 7:00 a.m. to 5:30 p.m., tuition was $0.50 per month, or $5.00 for the year, books cost $1.50 in first grade, $2.50 in second grade, and the parish paid for all books starting with third grade.

From its earliest days, Saint Stephen School welcomed students of all religions, races and creeds. Although much has changed since 1928, the standards upon which the school was founded remain the same. Saint Stephen School continues to provide a safe, secure, learning environment for many children of diverse backgrounds. To this day, we strongly value the Franciscan tradition of kindness and consideration for all creation which is an essential part of our school culture.

At a Glance

Pre-K 2 - 8th grade
335 students
21 Head Teachers

11 Assistant Teachers