Verbum Dei High School (“Word
of God” in Latin) is an
all-male, Archdiocesan four-year
college preparatory in the
Jesuit tradition located in the
heart of Watts in southern Los
The Mission of Verbum Dei High School centers upon empowering its students to help themselves attain intellectual, emotional, social, and spiritual maturation toward becoming gentlemen who serve “with and for others”. As a member of the national Cristo Rey Network of schools, The Verb is committed preferentially to serving students and families who could not afford otherwise the opportunity of a private, parochial college preparatory education. If a family can afford the higher tuition of another Catholic or private school, Verbum Dei's mission normally would not be the appropriate fit.
The school is operated by the Roman Catholic Archdiocese of Los Angeles and co-sponsored by the California Province of the Society of Jesus (Jesuits).
It was founded in 1962 by Bishop Joseph Francis and his companion Society of the Divine Word Missionaries to provide young men with financial need from Watts and surrounding areas a quality college preparatory education.
Since 2002, an innovative Corporate Work Study Program is the primary means of financial support for the school. Parents are asked to contribute $2700.00 a year in tuition, plus a $200.00 registration fee, plus a $50 book rental fee and $100.00 S.O.A.R. fee for the mandatory summer session for all new students. No student is denied admission for financial reasons.
The work study program requires all students to work five days per month, as a member of a four-student team employed by local firms who pay the school for services rendered. Students perform entry level clerical work in professional environments such as law, accounting, financial service firms, health care, etc. The money earned by each student ($6875.00) goes directly to the school to help fund his education at Verbum Dei.