Rigorous College Prep Academics

Message from the Principal

It’s a new day at Cristo Rey!

Holy Family Cristo Rey Catholic High School is one of the premier Catholic high schools in Birmingham, Alabama. Our school is a part of the rich history of Birmingham with alumni in prominent careers in our city and various cities across the country.

Holy Family Cristo Rey integrates a rigorous Catholic college preparatory curriculum with a Corporate Work Study Program to empower and prepare our scholars to persist in college and flourish in life. Our Corporate Work Study Program provides our scholars with the unique opportunity to experience the corporate workplace firsthand.  As a result our scholars acquire essential professional skills needed to be successful and to flourish in life. Additionally, our scholars’ experience directly impacts the trajectory of their long-term career choices.
Holy Family Cristo Rey Catholic High School is part of the Cristo Rey Network (CRN) which is comprised of 37 schools across 24 states. The CRN mission is translated in each school by the integration of college preparatory education combined with a unique corporate work study experience.

I am honored to serve as Principal and look forward to seeing you at Holy Family Cristo Rey Catholic High School.

Sincerely,
Mrs. Bethany Knighten, M.Ed
​Principal, Holy Family Cristo Rey Catholic High School

205-263-0140

Academic Administration

Mrs. Bethany Knighten

Principal

Mr. Yihsrael Vélez Alicea

Assistant Principal

Mr. Donnell Robinson

Director of Student Relations & Assistant Athletic Director

Mrs. Ania Hardison

College Counselor

Mrs. Chrysanthea Thomas

Social Worker

Mr. Franklin Ball

Registrar

Ms. Emily LaRussa

Alumni Advisor & Mission Advancement Associate

Mrs. Cheryl Matthews

Office Manager

Academics Overview

Regular Day

Period

Time

Locker Time
7:50 AM - 8:00 AM
Homeroom
8:00 AM - 8:10 AM
Period 1
8:10 AM - 9:00 AM
Period 2
9:03AM - 9:53 AM
Period 3
9:56 AM - 10:46 AM
Period 4
10:49 AM - 11:39 AM
Period 5/Lunch
11:42 AM - 1:05 PM
Period 6
1:08 PM - 1:58 PM
Period 7
2:01 PM - 2:51 PM
Period 8
2:53 PM - 3:45 PM

At Holy Family Cristo Rey, the school day begins at 7:50 AM with Locker Time, so students can put away their belongings and prepare for the day. Homeroom begins promptly at 8:00 AM; scholars arriving after 8:00 AM must report to the front office to receive a tardy pass.

There are eight class periods in the day, each averaging about 49 minutes in length. Period 5 (Period 6 on Afternoon Assembly Days) is a split class/lunch period; freshmen and sophomores will eat lunch during the first 30 minutes of the period, and juniors and seniors will eat lunch during the last 30 minutes of the period. The school day ends at 3:30 PM.

In the PowerSchool Parent and Student portals, each scholar's class schedule for the week, broken down according to bell schedule, is available on the "My Schedule" page. Click here to access the PowerSchool Portal.

Looking for the Academic Calendar?
Click Here

Mass/Morning Assembly Day

Period

Time

Locker Time
7:50 AM - 8:00 AM
Homeroom
8:00 AM - 8:05 AM
Mass/Assembly
8:08 AM - 9:12 AM
Period 1
9:15 AM - 9:57 AM
Period 2
10:00 AM - 10:42 AM
Period 3
10:45 AM - 11:27 AM
Period 4/Lunch
11:30 AM - 12:45 PM
Period 5
12:48 PM - 1:30 PM
Period 6
1:33 PM - 2:15 PM
Period 7
2:18 PM - 3:00 PM
Period 8
3:03 PM - 3:45 PM

Afternoon Assembly Day

Period

Time

Locker Time
7:50 AM - 8:00 AM
Homeroom
8:00 AM - 8:08 AM
Period 1
8:08 AM - 8:50 AM
Period 2
8:53 AM - 9:35 AM
Period 3
9:38 AM - 10:20 AM
Period 4
10:23 AM - 11:05 AM
Period 5/Lunch
11:08 AM - 12:23 PM
Period 6
12:26 PM - 1:08 PM
Period 7
1:11 PM - 1:53 PM
Period 8
1:56 PM - 2:38 PM
Assembly
2:45 PM - 3:45 PM

A Day

Every Tuesday

Synchronous: 10th & 11th
Asynchronous: 9th
CWSP: 12th

B Day

Every Wednesday

Synchronous: 9th & 12th
Asynchronous: 10th
CWSP: 11th

C Day

Every Thursday

Synchronous: 9th & 12th
Asynchronous: 11th
CWSP: 10th

D Day

Every Friday

Synchronous: 10th & 11th
Asynchronous: 12th
CWSP: 9th

Mondays rotate through A, B, C, and D days. See the academic calendar page for more information.

Graduation Requirements

Subject

Credits

CWSP
4
English
4
Mathematics
4
Science
4
Social Studies
4
Religious Education
4
Electives
4
Foreign Language
3
Physical Education
1
Christian Service Program
1
SAT Prep
1
College Counseling
1
Fine Arts
0.5
Health
0.5
Total
40 Credits

Grading Scale

Letter Grade

Range

GPA Points (Standard)
GPA Points (Honors/AP)
A
90-100
4.0
5.0
B
80-89
3.0
4.0
C
70-79
2.0
3.0
D
60-69
1.0
2.0
F
0-59
0.0
0.0

Students who fail a class or classes during the school year must make arrangements to earn the necessary credits through Summer School. Students must be on grade level to remain enrolled at HFCR. Therefore, any student who fails 3 or more classes will not be invited to return to HFCR. Seniors who fail any course(s)required to fulfill graduation requirements will not be permitted to participate in Commencement Exercises and will not receive a diploma until the failed course(s) is completed successfully.

English Courses

  • English 9
  • English 9 Honors
  • English 10
  • English 10 Honors
  • English 11
  • AP English 11
  • English 12
  • AP English 12

Mathematics Courses

  • Algebra I
  • Honors Algebra I
  • Geometry
  • Honors Geometry
  • Algebra II
  • Honors Algebra II
  • Algebra III
  • Precalculus
  • Calculus

Social Studies Courses

  • World History
  • Honors World History
  • US History I
  • Honors US History I
  • US History II
  • Honors US History II
  • Government/Economics
  • AP Government/Honors Economics

Science Courses

  • Physics First
  • Biology
  • Honors Biology
  • Chemistry
  • Honors Chemistry
  • STEM & Scientific Research
  • Anatomy & Physiology
  • Environmental Science

Religion Courses

  • Religion 9
  • Religion 10
  • Religion 11
  • Religion 12

Foreign Language Courses

  • Spanish I
  • Spanish II
  • Spanish III
  • Spanish for Heritage Speakers

Physical Education Courses

  • Health
  • Physical Education

College Readiness Courses

  • Tools for Success (9th & 10th grade)
  • SAT Prep (11th grade)
  • College Counseling (12th grade)

Elective Courses

  • Visual Arts
  • Introduction to Music
  • Band
  • Sociology
  • Criminology
  • Psychology
  • Creative Writing
  • Yearbook
  • Genetics

Uniform Code

Our personal attire tells the world a lot about who we are individually and as a collective. The dress code reflects our values of respect for ourselves and others, pride in our institution and conveys professionalism to our community. For that reason, and in keeping with Catholic School tradition, each scholar will wear the Holy Family Cristo Rey school uniform each day both at school and in Corporate Work Study.

This dress code is not meant to be oppressive or limit self-expression, but moreover to create order and consistency. What is written here constitutes what is acceptable for the school uniform. Thank you!

Uniform Code

Top
  • All shirts must have the HFCR logo embroidered on the left breast pocket/side. 
  • All shirts must have a collar and be white, light blue, navy blue, or light gray.
  • Long and short sleeve oxford cloth shirts must have button down collars.
  • Short sleeve polo-style are appropriate on all days except Mass Days.
  • All shirts must be tucked in all the time.
Bottom
  • Bottoms must be navy or black twill fabric pants or skirts in our school plaid.
  • Skirts should be no more than 2” above the knee and should not be rolled at the waistband.
  • Belts should be plain black or brown without a large belt buckle.
  • Jeans, jeggings and leggings are not acceptable.
Tie
  • Necktie or bowtie should be navy and gold striped.  
Sweaters
  • Navy or gold V-neck cardigan. 
  • Navy or gold V-neck pullover. 
  • Navy or gold V-neck sweater vest. 
Outerwear
  • Navy blazer with the HFCR emblem (school issued).
  • Blue or gold jackets, HFCR zip up sweatshirts, and hoodies. 
  • The hood of the hoodie shall not be worn inside. 
  • No hoodies in Mass.
Socks
  • Black or navy socks and tights
  • Socks or tights must be worn everyday.
Shoes
  • Black or brown solid loafers. 
  • Solid black or white sneakers.
Hair
  • Hair must be neat, cleaned and combed.  
  • Subtle highlights of a natural color are acceptable - no rainbow colors.
  • Hair must be held from eyes by headband, barrette, or hairband.
  • Braids and hair extensions are acceptable and should not touch the skirt/pant waistband. (females)
  • Locks must be neat and held out of the eyes.  Locks which touch the shoulder must be collected in a hairband off the neck. (males)  
  • Facial hair must be very short and well groomed. (males)
Jewelry
  • Earrings must be modest and may not be so large as to hit your face when you turn your head. (females)
  • Nose/septum piercings are acceptable with small unadorned stud or small loop. (females)
  • Small unadorned stud earrings are acceptable. (males)
Makeup and Nails (Females)
  • Makeup should be natural in application.
  • Lipstick should be softer and more natural in color.
  • Nails should be less than 1” in length and have minimal adornment - nails must not constrict daily activities. 
Tattoos
  • Forearm tattoos must be covered when out of the building by long sleeve shirts with buttoned cuffs.
Other
  • Clear and prescription glasses only, in building or at work-site.
  • Hats outside only.
  • Cultural head wraps are allowed.
  • Bonnets are not acceptable.
Mass Attire
Mass is a time of reverence, therefore scholars will elevate themselves and their attire on this day.
  • Navy School Blazer. (To be provided by HFCR)
  • Long/short-sleeved white oxford cloth shirt, sleeves rolled down and cuffs buttoned. 
  • School tie.
  • Uniform pants or skirt.
  • Uniform socks and shoes.
Lanyard
  • Lanyard with connected ID card must be worn at all times.
  • The school will provide an HFCR lanyard, or you may wear one college lanyard of your choice.

Cell Phone & Smart Device Policy

  • Students may only use cell phones and ear buds/headphones during lunch-study. Cell phones and other devices must not be used during class, class changes, or CWSP unless permission is explicitly given.
  • Cell phones must be placed on silent and stored inside student bags or lockers at the beginning of the day (8:00 AM), and may be retrieved after school is dismissed (3:30 PM). Phone may also be retrieved during lunch-study, but should be promptly returned before afternoon classes begin.
  • Cell phones should not be visible at any point during class, class change, or CWSP unless permission is explicitly given.
  • Students who violate cell phone policies will have their cell phones confiscated for the day and returned after school is dismissed.
  • Smart watches and other smart devices are not permitted on campus.
Consequences for Cell Phone Policy Violation
  • First Offense: Cell phone or device will be taken up and returned at the end of the day.
  • Second Offense: Cell phone or device will be stored with a school administrator during school hours for two consecutive school days. The cell phone or device will be returned at the conclusion of each school day.
  • Third Offense: Cell phone or device will be stored with a school administrator for three consecutive school days. The cell phone or device will only be returned when a parent or guardian can come to retrieve the phone at the end of the third day. The school will NOT be held responsible for any lost, stolen, or damaged cell phones or prohibited smart devices.

Honor Code

Holy Family Cristo Rey Catholic High School believes that a constructive Christian community cannot function without honor and trust. The Honor Code is an expression of this belief and seeks to instill and remind each member of the Holy Family community of the principles of decency and self-discipline. These, along with honesty, integrity, and respect, are the Gospel values that should permeate the entire learning process in accordance with the ideals shown to us by Christ.

“On my honor, as a Holy Family Cristo Rey Catholic High School Student, I pledge that this work assessment/ assignment /project/quiz is solely my own.”

Any and all reports of the Honor Code violations are strictly confidential. All parties involved will be summoned discreetly and/or questioned privately by the Principal, Dean of Students, and/or Counselor.  Violators of the Honor Code, as determined by the Principal, are subject to the disciplinary actions outlined in the handbook.

Maintaining the Honor Code

All students enrolled at Holy Family Cristo Rey Catholic High School are automatically subject to the Honor Code. It will be the responsibility of each student to:

  • Uphold the honor and integrity of the student body of Holy Family Cristo Rey Catholic High School.
  • Promote a Christian atmosphere where fellow students can develop character, scholarship, citizenship, and an understanding of the value of hard work.
  • Report any violations of the Honor Code to any faculty member and/or the Principal.
  • Write and sign the Honor Code pledge statement for any assignment, project, quiz, etc., as required by their instructors.
Breaking the Honor Code

It is understood that the students and faculty have a Christian moral obligation to themselves and to the members of the Holy Family Cristo Rey Catholic High School community to report any violations of the Honor Code of which they are aware. The following are examples of Honor Code violations:

  • Leaving books or notebooks open during a test
  • Writing answers on desktops, hands, legs, arms, or any part of the body
  • Copying another student's homework, or giving one's homework to another student for the purpose of copying
  • Looking at another student's test or quiz
  • Copying answers from another student when tests are being handed in
  • Giving and/or receiving answers during examinations, tests, or quizzes using unauthorized technology, include cell phones and programmable calculators
  • Turning in a paper/project that has been composed or created by another student
  • Submitting a paper or assignment in class that has been translated by another person or any electronic device (internet websites, pocket translators, etc.)

Taking a copy of a quiz, test, or exam without the teacher's knowledge or express permission is a serious offense. It will automatically be considered a more serious infraction.

Individualized Instruction

​At Holy Family Cristo Rey Catholic High School, our goal is for every student who walks through our doors to not only earn a high school diploma, but beat the odds and graduate from college. Our scholars come to us facing innumerable challenges. We employ cost-effective teaching strategies—quality feedback to learners, meta-cognitive strategies, peer tutoring, collaborative group learning—which allow our scholars to make the developmental leaps necessary to graduate high school prepared to persist in college. Our efforts work: since the school’s founding, 100% of our graduates have been accepted to college.

Holy Family Cristo Rey scholars are met where they are, and given the boost up to get to where they want to be. All incoming freshmen and transfer students begin receiving academic enrichment before their first year ever begins during our two-week Summer Bridge Program. Our curriculum is rigorous, with several honors and Advanced Placement courses available. We offer courses that engage our students with content relevant to their lives, like African American History and Spanish for Heritage Speakers. Every student receives college counseling beginning in ninth grade, and ACT test preparation is available to all students. The academic support we provide has effects that last beyond high school graduation: Cristo Rey students are two times more likely to complete a bachelor's degree by age 24, compared to the total U.S. low-income population.