2410 S. 9th St. Lafayette, IN 47909 765.474.7500

Beyond the Grade: Measures of Catholic Identity and Catholic Intellectual Tradition



A ratings by the Indiana Department of Education for all four LCSS schools serves as a strong reminder of our staff’s commitment to the rigorous intellectual development of all students. The “A” ratings are based on a combination of factors; including high ISTEP+ growth and proficiency rates, measures of college readiness, and graduation rates. In 2017-2018, only 29% of schools in the State of Indiana achieved this designation.

Behind the Grade

While we encourage you to celebrate the A grades awarded to our schools, a more nuanced look at area high school performance reveals why in 2016 LCSS established rigorous measures of performance beyond those provided by the state to assess the performance of our schools.

Performance Points: Points awarded based on the percentage of students performing at or above expected grade level performance.

Growth Points: Individual students are awarded points based on how well they perform as compared to students that performed similar to them on last year’s ISTEP. The average of the points earned becomes the schools “growth” score.

Measures of academic growth are helpful in identifying if a student is on track to catch-up to his or her academic peers. However, it is performance points that indicate students’ readiness for the next grade level. In our view, it is problematic that a school can receive a rating of an “A” or “B” when fewer than 1 in 2 of the students in that school are performing at grade level.

Beyond State Measures

In 2017, LCSS began a comprehensive annual review of school performance. This empowers schools to identify opportunities for improvement in areas that matter to you, the supporter or parent, and to the long-term success of our students.

Mission Statement
The Lafayette Catholic School System, centered on Jesus Christ, educates the whole person in a culture that is:


To critically assess our performance in what matters most to you we implemented an annual survey with questions aligned to the five pillars of the Mission of LCSS. Parents, teachers and students are asked to take this survey. A summary of the results of the survey are shown below.

Feedback from the survey is combined with multiple measures of student performance to identify priority focus areas for each school. The priority focus areas are translated into goals and placed in the school’s annual school improvement plan. Performance against these goals will be measured in the spring of 2019 by the next annual survey and measures of student performance.

Delivering on Our Promise

It is your feedback that helps refine the student experience in LCSS. This experience is rooted in Catholic intellectual tradition, a tradition that manifests itself in the actions of teachers, administrators and coaches to cultivate students’ personal, moral, and religious formation. The end results are truly extraordinary.

Not only do more LCSS graduates enroll in college than any other area school system; those that enroll choose to pursue more challenging, higher-paying degrees (fig. 5). Further encouragement is found in the astoundingly high rates of college persistence. More than 9 in 10 CC students will persist to year two of college and of these students nearly all will be successful in attaining a 4-year degree (fig. 6).

Why are our graduates so successful relative to their academic peers in other area schools? We believe it is our holistic approach to education and the intentional infusion of faith in all we do.

In Lafayette Catholic School System we focus on a curriculum with rich experiences in subjects beyond math and English/language arts.

  • We study the arts to free students from the tyranny of the present and the immediate; to open students’ imaginations to a wider world of possibility in which things are more than meets the eye.
  • We study science so students can know God through the glory of His creation; to teach students to search for truth wherever analysis and evidence leads.
  • We study history to expose students to a world different from the one they know today, to stimulate students to think of ways the world could be different now, and to give students confidence in the application of faith and reason to shape the future.
  • We study the Catholic faith so we hear and understand the Word of God.

Continuous Improvement in LCSS

The Catholic intellectual tradition’s simultaneous capacity for continuity and change gives LCSS a growing edge. It is along this edge that you’ll find LCSS staff engaged in continuous improvement focused on the success of the individual learner. It is this intentional focus that we believe will ensure the graduates of tomorrow will exceed the high bar established by recent alumni.

6C’s + 3P’s = Learner Success

This August, teachers began deep exploration of the 6C’s and 3P’s of learner-centric instructional design.

The 6 C’s

  • Critical Thinking and Problem Solving
  • Communication
  • Collaboration
  • Creativity and Innovation
  • Character and Faith
  • Cultural Competency

The 3 P’s

  • Personalization
  • Participation
  • Productivity

The multi-year focus on the 6C’s and 3P’s will help LCSS continue to improve upon what many of you already define as the most valuable elements of a Catholic school education in LCSS; small, personalized learning environments and the incorporation of the faith in all aspects of the student experience.

Our Future is Bright!

Below are some recent developments triggered by our pursuit of greatness; defined as the perfect blend of the timeless focus on what is “True, Good, and Beautiful” with modern culture and metrics for success in the 21st century.

Knight360

Knight360 offers students the opportunity to initiate the college and career planning process beginning in the 7th grade. The program has been designed to go beyond traditional guidance services by taking students through a formation process to help them discover their gifts and God’s plan for them. Knight360 incorporates a combination of self-discovery assessments, career exploration activities, individual learning support, and one-on-one academic advising to develop a college and career plan for each student.

+1 Dual Credit Initiative

The average cost of freshman year tuition + room & board at Indiana University is more than $25,000. The +1 dual credit initiative is expanding student access to dual credit offerings. More college credits opportunities in high school translates into real savings when it is time for your child to go to college. This past year, Central Catholic added several new options to its expanding portfolio of dual credit classes.

Immersive real-world experiences

From presenting to international audiences to traveling globally, real-world immersive experiences are the new norm at Central Catholic.

  • Click HERE to read about the CC tech team’s presentation to an international audience at the Filewave Alliance Conference.
  • Click HERE to read about the amazing experiences of students who opt to partake in the German trip.

Conclusion

This past fall our faculty reviewed the concept of the “20 mile march” from Jim Collins book, Great by Choice. We learned that sustained progress and improvement do not really come in leaps and bounds, but rather the application of discipline, patience and perseverance. Sometimes, when you are in the middle of things, it is difficult to notice the improvements, but they are occurring, and it is through our commitment to the 20 mile march that we will continue to reach ever closer to Greatness. Thank you for your personal commitment to our schools.


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