Academics

“It is Jesus who stirs in you the desire to do something great with your lives, the will to follow an ideal, the refusal to allow yourselves to be ground down by mediocrity, the courage to commit yourselves humbly and patiently to improving yourselves and society, making the world more human and more fraternal.” - Saint John Paul II

Academic Advantage

The academic program at Pope John Paul II Preparatory School reflects our namesake’s belief that our young people are called to do something great with their lives.  By providing a diverse academic program that balances rigor with exceptional support, Pope Prep embodies the optimistic belief that students can discover their unique God-given talents in our transformative program.  The middle school curriculum is divided into year-long core academic courses and semester-long Arts, Innovation and Entrepreneurship courses. Please see our Course Catalogue for a complete list of courses.

Unique from other middle schools, Pope Prep offers high school-level courses for middle school students. After successfully completing entry-level high school courses, students may begin their high school classes at a more advanced level. Credits earned through middle school courses do not count towards high school graduation requirements or the Grade Point Average (GPA) the school reports to colleges. 

The following high school-level courses are offered to middle school students:

  • Foreign Language 
  • (Spanish I, Latin I, or American Sign Language I) 
  • Honors Physics
  • Honors Algebra I
  • Honors Algebra II
  • Honors Geometry
  • Yearbook

Middle School Required Courses

2021-2022 Course Catalogue  
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Standardized Testing and Student Course Placement

Pope John Paul II Preparatory School annually administers standardized tests to students. Doing so allows us to track data to measure our academic programs' success and assist in placing students in courses that appropriately challenge students. Grades and teacher recommendations play a role in student placement. However, these standardized test scores play a key role, so students are encouraged to take these tests seriously. Test prep skills for high stakes testing are built into courses across the curriculum. The annual approach to these tests helps prepare students for the high stakes tests that play a role in the college admissions process (ACT, SAT, AP exams).

In sixth and seventh grades, students take the Iowa Test of Basic Skills. In eighth and ninth grade, students take the ACT ASPIRE. In tenth and eleventh grades, students take the PSAT/NMSQT test.

Students also regularly take the Assessment of Religious Knowledge (ARK) throughout their time at Pope Prep to ensure we are grounded in our foundational mission. Pope John Paul II Preparatory School registers and hosts students for Advanced Placement exams for courses offered by and at the school (see the College Board for the yearly AP Exam schedule). Although our school counselors can walk students through the ACT and SAT registration process, students are responsible for registering for these entrance tests. Pope Prep hosts the ACT and SAT on Saturdays throughout the year.