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Cistercian Preparatory School

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

Cistercian Preparatory School
Cistercian Preparatory School logo.png
3660 Cistercian Road

, ,

United States
Coordinates32°51′19″N 96°55′17″W / 32.85533°N 96.92143°W / 32.85533; -96.92143
MottoArdere et Lucere
(To Enkindle and Enlighten)
Religious affiliation(s)Roman Catholic
Established1962; 59 years ago (1962)
CEEB code443-558
HeadmasterRev. Paul M. McCormick, O.Cist.[2]
Teaching staff53 (2020-21)[1]
Enrollment355 (2020-21)[1]
Student to teacher ratio7∶1 (2020-21)[1]
Campus size82 acres (33 ha)[2]
Color(s)  Black
  White [3]
Athletics conferenceSouthwest Preparatory Conference[3]
MascotHawks [3]
AccreditationIndependent Schools Association of the Southwest[4]
PublicationReflections (literary/art magazine)

Cistercian Preparatory School is a private school for young men located in Irving, Texas, in the Roman Catholic Diocese of Dallas. Serving grades five through twelve (though previously having a 4th grade pre-form),[5] the school has a population of about 350 boys. Each grade is assigned a priest or a dedicated teacher as a "Form Master," who follows the class over the years and is responsible for building a feeling of community.[6]

Throughout their 8 years, the boys follow a pre-set all honors curriculum, with a focus on a wholistic education, while maintaining a focus both towards writing and STEM. Middle schoolers take Latin, while high schoolers choose between French and Spanish and may elect additional courses in Latin or German.


Cistercian was founded by a group of monks from Hungary’s Zirc Abbey, who had fled their country in the context of ongoing Soviet pressure following WWII. In 1948, Cistercian secondary schools in Hungary had been closed, and in 1950, their monasteries had been confiscated. Zirc monks began immigrating, with many of them ending up in Dallas, where they created a new abbey and found leadership and teaching roles at the University of Dallas. Cistercian monks had been involved in secondary education in Europe since the 18th century, and by 1962, they founded the Cistercian School in Dallas. [7] [8]Among the early teachers at Cistercian was Fr. Bede Lackner.

Current Program

The class of 2021 has 46 students, and there are 355 total students in grades 5-12. The curriculum is single track and consists of all honors courses, but no AP classes. While community service is not required, the typical class averages 8000 hours of volunteer contributions. All graduates attend 4-year colleges. In 2021, 19% of the students received financial assistance. Of the 53 faculty members, 30% are Cistercian monks and 85% have graduate degrees.[9]

Cistercian’s academic program has been highly rated, both regionally and nationally, for many years.[10][11] For example, Cistercian was ranked among the 50 “smartest private high schools in the United States” by one independent group[12] and, in 2021, was named the 3rd best Catholic high school in the country.[13]


Students are encouraged to participate in sports in every season. Cistercian fields teams in eight varsity sports in three athletic seasons: football and cross country (fall); basketball, soccer, and swimming (winter); baseball, track & field, and tennis (spring). The school is a member of the Southwest Preparatory Conference, which hosts championship tournaments and meets at the end of every season. The school's mascot is the Hawk. Its colors are black and white.[3]

Notable alumni


  1. ^ a b c d e f "2020-2021 Academic Profile" (PDF). Cistercian Preparatory School. Retrieved 23 March 2021.
  2. ^ a b "Headmaster's Welcome". Cistercian Preparatory School. Retrieved 24 March 2021.
  3. ^ a b c d "Cistercian Preparatory School - Southwest Preparatory Conference". Southwest Preparatory Conference. Retrieved 23 March 2021.
  4. ^ "Independent Schools Association of the Southwest: School Directory". Independent Schools Association of the Southwest. Independent Schools Association of the Southwest. Retrieved 23 March 2021.
  5. ^ "From the First Day of School to the First Graduation". Cistercian Preparatory School. Retrieved 23 March 2021.
  6. ^ "The Form Master System". Cistercian Preparatory School. Retrieved 23 March 2021.
  7. ^ "The Founding of Our Lady of Dallas". Our Lady of Dallas Cistercian Abbey. Retrieved 23 March 2021.
  8. ^ [1]
  9. ^ [2]
  10. ^ "Dallas boasts trio of smartest private high schools in U.S. — and No. 1 in Texas". CultureMap. CultureMap. Retrieved 29 December 2015.
  11. ^ "Ranking the Private High Schools 2002" (PDF). D Magazine. University of North Texas. Retrieved 29 December 2015.
  12. ^ "The 50 smartest private high schools in the US". BusinessInsider. BusinessInsider. Retrieved 29 December 2015.
  13. ^ "2016 Best Catholic High Schools in America". Niche K-12. Niche. Retrieved 24 February 2016.
  14. ^ "Will F. Hartnett - Partner". The Hartnett Law Firm. Retrieved 23 March 2021.
  15. ^ "Texas Legislators: Past & Present - Mobile". Legislative Reference Library of Texas. Retrieved 23 March 2021.
  16. ^
  17. ^
  18. ^
  19. ^
  20. ^ "Marslett, Geoff Assistant Professor". CU Experts. Retrieved 23 March 2021.
  21. ^ "About Geoff Marslett". Swerve Pictures. Retrieved 23 March 2021.
  22. ^ "SMU grad student discovers river in Peru so hot it boils animals alive". Southern Methodist University. Retrieved 23 March 2021.
  23. ^ "Texas Railroad Commissioner Sitton Honors Texas A&M Science Teachers". Texas A&M University. Retrieved 23 March 2021.

External links

This page was last edited on 26 May 2021, at 08:00
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