An Educational Mission Begins
In the early 1960s the decision was made by Cardinal Lawrence Shehan to build an Archdiocesan Catholic High School on a seventy-two-acre site in Bel Air, Harford County.
The John Carroll School opened to 202 freshmen on September 9, 1964, under the leadership of Principal Reverend Raymond Wanner. In 1971 The John Carroll School, in an agreement with the Archdiocese of Baltimore, became an independent, Catholic School, operated by its own elected Board of Trustees and administrated by a Principal. In 2008 the Board of Trustees voted to change the organizational structure of the School to the president-principal model, which continues to this day.
"Archbishop John Carroll—priest, patriot, and scholar—laid the foundation for the Catholic Church in America. Almost 200 years after his death, John Carroll’s beliefs and values continue to influence the Catholic identity of The John Carroll School..."
From its earliest days, the School reflected a unique partnership of clergy, religious, and laity. Today, that partnership remains part of the School’s educational mission. More than 110 lay teachers and staff form the special character of The John Carroll School. The School is named for America’s first Catholic bishop. A member of one of the most prominent families of colonial times, John Carroll founded Georgetown University in 1789. Archbishop John Carroll—priest, patriot, and scholar—laid the foundation for the Catholic Church in America. Two hundred and twenty-five years after his death, John Carroll’s beliefs and values continue to influence the Catholic identity of The John Carroll School. Today students are encouraged to see that the true spirit of Christianity is a spirit of justice, charity, and compassion, and that they cannot consider themselves Christians without showing care and concern for their neighbors.
Infused by this spirit, The John Carroll School has flourished for fifty years. The physical plant has expanded three times: twelve classrooms were added in 1984, a Fine Arts Wing was added in 2000, and an athletic addition in 2003. In 2014-2015, through Phase One of the "Lighting the Way" capital campaign, we were able to air condition the auditorium and cafeteria. We also added 2 new turf fields with new stadium lights. During Phase Two of the campaign, we hope to add energy-efficient windows throughout the academic wing, air condition all classrooms, and renovate the locker rooms and science labs.