President - Mr. Kevin Shaw

Dear NDA Community,

February 1-5 is Catholic Schools Week at Notre Dame Academy and throughout the United States. It’s a fine occasion to celebrate our school, the GRACE system of schools and all Catholic schools as places where students can achieve, believe and belong.

Catholic education has always been at the heart of the Catholic mission. Catholic education, and the students who are the product of it, have been called “the greatest work of the Church”. Below is the research that states the case for Catholic schools:

Catholic Schools are good for the community.

·         Catholic schools tend to operate as communities, rather than bureaucracies, which links to higher levels of teacher commitment, student engagement and student achievement (Marks, 2009)

·         The Catholic school climate, mission, and purpose positively impact student achievement and attendance (Bryk, Lee and Holland, 1995)

·         A faith-based orientation builds coherence and integration of schools and school community (Bryk, Lee and Holland, 1992)

Catholic schools help students achieve academically.

·         In Catholic schools, the student achievement gap is smaller than in public schools (Jayne, 2007; Marks and Lee, 1989)

·         In Catholic schools, overall academic achievement is higher (Coleman, Hoffer and Kilgore, 1982; Sander, 1996)

·         In Catholic schools, students math scores improve between sophomore and senior years (Carbano and Covey, 2010)

·         Latino and African American students in Catholic schools are more likely to graduate from high school and college (Grogger and Neal, 2000)

·         Students with multiple disadvantages benefit most from Catholic schools (Greeley, 1982; Evans and Schwab, 1995; and Neal, 1997)

·         The poor and more at-risk a student is, the greater the relative achievement gains in Catholic schools (York, 1996)

·         More research on student achievement from Catholic Education: A Journal of Inquiry and Practice

Catholic Schools help build a better society.

·         Graduates of Catholic high schools are more likely to vote (Dee, 2005)

·         Graduates of Catholic high schools are more likely to earn higher wages (Neal, 1997)

·         Catholic schools are more likely to produce graduates who are more civically engaged, more tolerant of diverse views and more committed to service as adults. (Campbell, 2001; Wolf, Greene, Kleitz and Thielhammer, 2001)

·         When a Catholic school closes, neighborhood disorder increases. (Brinig, Garnett, 2009)


May God continue to bless Notre Dame Academy and the GRACE system of schools in 2016!

In Christ and Notre Dame,

Kevin J. Shaw, President
Notre Dame Academy