About Brother Martin High School

Brother Martin High School
Brother Martin High School is founded on the conviction that each person is created free and unique by God and is to be treated with dignity because of being loved and redeemed by Christ. Because of this, Brother Martin High School is conducted with the belief that, although an individual might do evil, each person has a basic tendency towards good and, therefore, a right to hope and strive for personal happiness.

Our aim is to provide the experience and the environment that will best enable members of the Brother Martin community to be secure in themselves and that will encourage them to reinforce what is good in society and correct what is wrong and, in this way, participate generously in the building of a more Christian nation and world.

We believe a holistic approach to education is the best means to pursue these goals. Each person learns from the total experience of the school environment and, therefore, we attempt to address the religious, academic, social, psychological, physical and cultural development of each person through the school’s programs, courses and policies.

Because of our belief in this holistic approach, we devote ourselves to build within Brother Martin High School a family spirit that is characterized by a pervading influence of Christian values, a strong insistence on an orderly and disciplined atmosphere, a caring approach to education, and a firm commitment to academic excellence.

History of the Schools

St. Aloysius
In 1869 New Orleans Archbishop Jean-Marie Odin invited the Brothers to open a school in New Orleans. St. Aloysius opened on September 26, 1869 with six students. It was located at Chartres and Barracks Streets, the current site of the Richelieu Hotel. In 1892 the school was moved into a larger building on the corner of Esplanade Avenue and Rampart Street where it remained until 1925 when Rampart Street was widened. The new school building was opened at 1137 Esplanade Avenue. The enrollment was 500 students in 1925 and would ultimately grow to 980 during the next forty-four years. Over 5,000 young men graduated from St. Aloysius during its 100-year history.
Cor Jesu
Eighty-five years after opening St. Aloysius, the Brothers of the Sacred Heart opened a second school in New Orleans. Cor Jesu was built in Gentilly at the request of Archbishop Joseph Francis Rummel and was designed to meet the needs of the vastly expanding Lakefront and New Orleans East areas.

In 1954, Cor Jesu High School opened with an enrollment of about 700 students. It was built on Elysian Fields Avenue and would serve ultimately as the location of Brother Martin High School. Its thirteen graduating classes produced over 1,300 alumni.

Brother Martin
In September of 1969, celebrating the 100th year of their educational commitment to the youth of the New Orleans area, the Brothers of the Sacred Heart consolidated St. Aloysius and Cor Jesu High Schools under the title of Brother Martin High School.

Brother Martin High School was founded on the principle that in an extraordinary age, students must have teaching of extraordinary caliber. It was designed to meet this challenge with modern facilities, new programs, and an innovative concept of high school organization and scheduling. In selecting the name, the Brothers honored one of their confreres. His contributions to the Brothers and to education are inscribed on the plaque in the lobby of the school: Brother Martin High School honors Brother Martin Hernandez, S.C., a Brother of the Sacred Heart, whose lifetime of dedicated service to the youth of New Orleans is perpetuated by this building.

Among the many honors and awards he received were that of being named to the New Orleans Sports Hall of Fame in 1980 and being selected Loyola Alumnus of the Year and recipient of the Adjutor Hominum Award in 1982. Brother Martin was a founder of the New Orleans Prep League for Catholic, private and public schools. He also held the office of Treasurer for the National Association of Major Superiors of Men and was a member of the Executive Board. Brother Martin was on the Executive Committee of the Louisiana High School Athletic Association as a representative of Catholic, private and public schools of the New Orleans area.

Brother Martin High School is currently engaged in a long-range plan for buildings and programs to support capital and endowment needs through the year 2015.

Phase I, of the three-phase plan, resulted in the Thomas F. & Elaine P. Ridgley Fine Arts and Athletic Center which was dedicated in 1999. The Center includes an art room, the St. Aloysius Class of 1944 Gymnasium, athletic facilities, band and choral rooms, classrooms and the Brother Mark Thornton Terrace, a large multi-purpose room. Phase II included renovations to E.A. Farley Field and the completion of the Roland H. and Macy Paton Meyer Science and Mathematics Building and The James B. Branton Chapel.

Phase III involves additional construction, renovation of existing facilities, increased endowment for academic and need-based scholarships, additional support for spiritual formation of faculty, and program development efforts.

The Brothers of the Sacred Heart and their partners have touched the hearts and shaped the lives of over 18,000 young men in their 147 years in New Orleans. These alumni are a testimony to the love of service and dedication to excellence modeled by the faculties and staffs of St. Aloysius and Cor Jesu that continue at Brother Martin High School.


Blending the tradition of the past with momentum for the future, the crest of Brother Martin High School symbolizes the true Crusader spirit. On the top of the shield is the helmet of a crusader symbolizing Christians of the past who were willing to give their lives for the preservation of the faith so that future generations might grow up Christian. Under the helmet is a chain which represents the consolidation in 1969 of St. Aloysius and Cor Jesu High Schools into Brother Martin High School. From the five Brothers of the Sacred Heart who first opened St. Aloysius College in September 1869 has grown Brother Martin High School, a continuation of the past, ever moving toward the future.

The shield is divided into four quadrants by the Cross of Christ. In the upper left corner is a heart which represents the Brothers of the Sacred Heart and recalls their ministry of 147 years in New Orleans. The Fleur de Lis in the lower left corner represents the French heritage of the city. In the lower right corner, a torch symbolizes striving for excellence while the book in the upper right corner represents learning in the fullest sense.

Brothers of the Sacred Heart

The 147 year educational tradition of the Brothers of the Sacred Heart is grounded in a holistic approach to education. We believe that young persons learn from their total experience of the school setting. We attempt to address the religious, academic, social, psychological, physical, and cultural development of the young person through the school programs, courses, and policies.

Because we believe that students learn through their experience of the total school environment, we devote ourselves to build within the school a community spirit that is characterized by a pervading influence of Christian values, a strong insistence on an orderly and disciplined atmosphere, a personal approach to education, and a firm commitment to academic excellence.

Father Andre’ Coindre, founder of the Brothers of the Sacred Heart, was born in Lyons, France in 1787. Devoting his life to the restoration of the Church following the Reign of Terror at the end of the French Revolution, his chief mission became the moral, intellectual and religious development of young orphan boys left in distress by the disintegration of family life following the Revolution.

In 1821 he formed the Brothers of the Sacred Heart to further his efforts, resolving to establish a community of Brothers trained to work for the poor through the establishment of schools. Following the death of Father Coindre in 1826, the efforts of Brother Polycarp, the first Brother Superior General of the Institute, led to tremendous growth. By the time of his death in 1859, the Institute had grown to over 400 Brothers and 70 schools.

In January of 1847, five missionary Brothers of the Sacred Heart arrived in Mobile, Alabama at the request of Bishop Portier to do charitable and educational work. With their arrival in America the congregation began its transformation into a worldwide institute comprised of many nationalities.

Christian Values
The most important aspect of any Catholic education is the development of Christian values and the transmission of the Catholic heritage. We accept this task as the call of the Church and as the primary goal of our school apostolate. Our efforts to have religion permeate the school environment include: pastorally oriented religion and campus ministry programs, modeling of Christian values in dealings with others, the presence of religious activities in the school calendar and religious symbols in school facilities, classroom instruction in all disciplines which reflects the Church’s teaching and Christian values, and a commitment to service to others. In general, we aim to help students experience religion as the love of a personal and loving God who cares for them, and who is their ultimate source of true happiness and freedom.
We also believe that an orderly and disciplined environment is essential to teach love of God, love of neighbor, and love of learning. Our emphasis is on a friendly discipline which corrects and punishes but at the same time teaches and encourages. While we expect and demand respect for authority and adherence to rules and regulations, we advocate discipline which is respectful of the dignity of the individual, is consistent and fair, and is based on a relationship of mutual trust and cooperation.
We view academic excellence as the development of our students to the maximum of their potential. We commit ourselves to this goal as a means of helping students become the whole and complete persons that God created them to be. To accomplish this end we pursue our own ongoing professional development, establish a demanding curriculum which emphasizes command of the basics, work at presenting well-prepared and interesting classes, and continually adapt our curriculum and methodologies to meet changing needs.
Personal Attention
To promote an environment characterized by Christian concern and friendly discipline, we attempt to know our students personally and individually. We look for opportunities to work with students outside of class time and in less formal settings. Realizing our partnership with parents in the education process, we extend a warm and friendly welcome to parents.  We give our personal attention to developing a spirit of openness and cordial relations with students and parents.
Share Button