• Home and History of the Santa Rita Wildcats
    Santa RitaMission Statement
    The staff of Santa Rita Elementary School is committed to “raising the bar” for all students regardless of their previous academic achievements. It is our belief that the primary purpose of the instructional emphasis of the school is to set high standards of academic performance for all students. These can be accomplished by implementing instructional programs designed to meet the academic standards set forth by the state of Texas; yet provide the necessary support system and scaffolding for each student.

    The school staff accepts the responsibility to establish a learning environment which enhances all students emotionally, as well as academically, and will continue to provide a learning environment that fosters and nurtures support for the total child. Every effort will be made to assure that all students take pride in the opportunity to learn so that they become successful in their educational endeavor.

     The Namesake
    In 1983, Santa Rita Elementary opened its doors. In keeping with tradition, the 1982-1983 school board wanted a name relating to Texas history. They also wanted a name that was close to home. After several names had been entered into a contest, the school board chose the name Santa Rita, after the famous Santa Rita No. 1.

    In 1921, digging for the Santa Rita began in Reagan County. The process of digging was slow and expensive. Driller, Carl Cromwell and investor, Frank Pickrell were desperate after shutting down drilling a couple of times due to lack of funds.

    Pickrell was on a trip to New York looking for funds when he came across two Catholic nuns. After seeking approval from their priest, the women decided to invest on one condition.

    Pickrell, would have to take a rose the priest had blessed and climb to the top of the well and christen the well. Pickrell did just that after returning to Reagan County--blessing the well after the Patron Saint of the impossible, Santa Rita.

    On May 28, 1923, Santa Rita No. 1 blew its top. For a period of time, the well unloaded almost 100 barrels of oil each day. The well was located on the lands of the University of Texas when it blew, resulting in profits for the school.

    We believe in our school, just as the investors believed in the possibilities of the oil well. Patience, commitment, and dedication are all attributes you will find in the teachers, students and parents who work together daily to make Santa Rita Elementary a great place to learn!
    Webster’s New Collegiate Dictionary defines a wildcat as:
    1. any of various small or medium-sized cats (as the lynx or ocelot)
    2. of, relating to, or being an oil or gas well drilled in territory not known to be productive

    Due to the history of the Santa Rita and the name of our school, what other mascot could be more fitting than a wildcat? The Santa Rita was definitely drilled in a location not known to be oil rich.

    Also of interest, the location of Santa Rita was also once home to wildcats (bobcats) that still roam the terrain just north of town. A variety of cats have been used to represent Santa Rita Elementary throughout the past 20 years!