January 20, 2012

Catholic schools named Four Star schools by Department of Education

Criterion staff report

Four Catholic schools in the archdiocese have been named as Four Star schools by the Indiana Department of Education for the 2010-11 school year.

Brebeuf Jesuit Preparatory School, Cathedral High School and St. Luke the Evangelist School, all in Indianapolis, earned the recognition. So did Oldenburg Academy of the Immaculate Conception in Oldenburg.

Overall, 11 of the 238 non-public schools in the state received this honor while 162 of 1,780 public schools were honored with this recognition.

“These schools encourage a culture of high expectations for their students,” said Tony Bennett, Indiana’s superintendent of public instruction, in announcing the Four Star Schools on Dec. 22, 2011. “The students and educators who meet these expectations on a daily basis should be extremely proud of this honor.”

The recognition was based on schools achieving certain levels of success in academic testing, according to information from the state’s Department of Education website.

“To be considered a Four Star School, a school’s combined English 10 and Algebra 1 End of Course Assessment or English/Language Arts and Math ISTEP+ passing percentages must fall into the top 25th percentile when compared to schools statewide,” the website noted.

The Indiana Department of Education also noted that standards for non-public schools to receive the recognition were higher than for public schools. As an example, schools were evaluated on the percent of students who passed both English and math “end of course assessments.” For public schools, the cut score was 77.575 for its students in the 10th grade. For non-public schools, the cut score was 95.8 for students in the 10th grade.

“Historically, Catholic schools have always provided high-quality educational opportunities for students and their families,” said George Frampton, director of the office of school accreditation for the Indiana Department of Education.

“Not only did the Archdiocese of Indianapolis place four schools on this prestigious list, but four additional Catholic schools in the remainder of the state were recognized as well. That’s approximately 73 percent of the 11 private schools recognized.” †

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