St. Agnes Catholic School is a Roman Catholic school for students in preschool through grade 8. The school aims to deeply instill Christian virtues, strong academic skills, and community values and aims to send all students to college and heaven. Established in 1943, the school originally enrolled 72 students. That number has since grown to 229 students with an average class size of 22.

St. Agnes continues to grow and thrive, encouraging students to use rational, intuitive thinking. At St. Agnes, students develop personal and social responsibility through classroom expectations, school activities, and community involvement while fostering an open line of communication between home, school, and community.

Humble beginnings
In 1943, founding pastor Fr. Robert J. Donohoe planned to build a school just outside of Phoenix with the newly opened St. Agnes Catholic Church. Parishioners helped construct two temporary classrooms until the new school was completed on March 9, 1946. The Sisters of Charity of the Blessed Virgin Mother came to teach the school’s 72 students in grades one through four. The school held its first graduation of 22 students in 1947.

St. Agnes School today
The Sisters of Charity remained with St. Agnes Catholic School until the 1980s, but their presence and values are long remembered. In 1952, the temporary building that St. Agnes Catholic School had been using as the church became Donohoe Hall, the current gathering place of the school where teachers and students host school and parish activities.

The statue of Saint Agnes located on a side altar in the church was created by an Italian sculptor. The sculptor referenced pictures of the school’s eighth-grade class in the statue’s creation. The goal was that each student would be able to see themselves in the statue of Saint Agnes, who was only 13 herself when she became a martyr.

Encouraging lifelong learning
Led by visionary principal Christine Tax, St. Agnes Catholic School is one of the only elementary schools in the Diocese of Phoenix with a fully integrated blended-learning environment that integrates technology appropriately to meet the learning needs of all students. Each student is also provided a faith-filled environment promoting respect for the environment, a love of life, and a desire to be a lifelong learner. At St. Agnes, students are formed to become:

  • Active Catholics
  • Gracious and giving citizens
  • Novel problem solvers
  • Effective communicators
  • Self-disciplined individuals

In 2019, about 5.8 million U.S. students attended private schools like St. Agnes Catholic School. You can help to support a student’s Catholic education by directing your private education tax credit contribution to Catholic Education Arizona. For more information on how Arizona tuition tax credits work and how they can help form future leaders, contact Catholic Education Arizona today at 602 218-6542 or visit