St. Peter Hall

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The Evolution of St. Peter Hall

Upon entry, bright red lockers line St. Peter Hall on either side. Decorations, banners, and colorful posters fill the narrow walkway, making it feel like home. Middle school students have spent countless hours walking this hall to get from class to class, charging it with an energy unlike any other. It is the students’ excitement, ambition, and dedication that flood the halls everyday, starting with the 7:50 AM tardy bell. As the school year progresses, the hall becomes filled with leaning, after school activities, class projects, club meetings, and sports practices. From these halls, students take with them the foundation of faith: prayer, worship, and service. These lessons remain a vital part of their Catholic High education all throughout high school.

The hall’s name, St. Peter’s Hall, honors the Christian Brothers who founded St. Peter’s College in 1918. The Christian Brothers followed the teachings of St. John Baptist De LaSalle and established an all-boys school in New Iberia. The school was opened on September 9, 1918 and was formally dedicated to St. John Baptiste de La Salle the following year. With the passion of the brothers and the support of the community and church parish, St. Peter’s College grew, becoming an important part of New Iberia’s Main Street. In 1957, SPC moved to the current de La Salle location, but since the move was outside of St. Peter’s Parish, a new name was needed: Catholic High School.

Today, St. Peter’s Hall is home to Catholic High School’s 6th, 7th, and 8th grade students. This was not always the case for CHS middle schoolers. After an influx of students in 1988, CHS decided to use the Mt. Carmel Academy building to host classes for the 4th, 5th, 6th, and 7th graders. They attended their classes in this crammed hall for the next two years with the 8th and 9th graders. In 1990, 8th graders started attending classes in the high school wing. That same year, the 4th, 5th, and 6th graders moved to Live Oak Elementary, and the 7th graders rejoined the 8th graders in the Mt. Carmel Academy building. The situation was less than ideal, and the students and teachers alike were hoping for more spacious classrooms.

It was not until the destruction of Hurricane Andrew that a perfect opportunity arose to renovate the Catholic High campus. In 2002, renovations began. A brand new middle school wing was under construction to accommodate the 6th, 7th, and 8th grade students.  


A Picture Is Worth 1000 Words


St. Peter’s College after its opening in 1918


The old Mt. Carmel building that hosted 4th, 5th, 6th, and 7th graders from 1988 to 1990


4th, 5th, and 6th grade students of Live Oak Elementary in 1990


The present-day outside view of St. Peter Hall


Present-day view, upon entry, of St. Peter Hall


A middle school classroom


Members of the graduating class of 2013 as 6th grade students


Middle school math in action


A Voice from the Past 

A Personal Memory Mashaera Alexander, CHS Senior Class of 2013

“Lockers, more classes, and a whole new building were the new experiences I looked forward to as I entered my sixth grade year in the fall of 2006. I barely remember orientation day, but what I’ll never forget is my confusion of the room numbers. I ended up in the wrong class twice. It took some getting used to, but I eventually got the hang of it. I still cannot believe that the small hallway fit all three grades. It was such a hassle getting to and from class because we could all barely move. Despite some difficulties, junior high holds some of my best memories at Catholic High School. Sometimes I miss how simple everything was back when we didn’t have as much to worry about, like we do now. It was new, exciting, and completely different from elementary school.”

“What I looked forward to the most all throughout middle school was finally being an 8th grader. Back in 8th grade, we thought of ourselves as “the big dogs.” The best part was the privileges (not to mention we were one grade away from being freshmen). We got to get out of class five minutes before lunch and eat first. We even got to wear the black shirts that the lower grades could not wear. The black shirts are reserved especially for 8th graders and high school.”

“My favorite memory in junior high was getting to the playground at the end of our 8th grade year. We had a whole afternoon to swing, play foursquare, or just hang out. It really made me miss elementary, and I realized that the next year, I would be in high school.”



Alexander, Mashaera. Catholic High School. 2012. Photograph. Private Collection. 23 May 2012.

Segura, Eugenie. “This is CHS.” English III. Catholic High School. New Iberia, Louisiana. 19 Jan. 2012.

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