Cistercian Preparatory School

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Cistercian Preparatory School
Cistercian Preparatory School logo.png
3660 Cistercian Road
Irving, Texas 75039
United States
Coordinates 32°51′19″N 96°55′17″W / 32.85533°N 96.92143°W / 32.85533; -96.92143Coordinates: 32°51′19″N 96°55′17″W / 32.85533°N 96.92143°W / 32.85533; -96.92143
Type Private
Motto Ardere et Lucere
(To Enkindle and Enlighten)
Religious affiliation(s) Roman Catholic
Established 1962
CEEB code 443-558
Headmaster Paul McCormick[1]
Faculty 43
Grades 512
Gender Boys
Enrollment 348 (2015-16[2])
Student to teacher ratio 8:1
Campus size 80 acres
Color(s) Black and White         
Athletics 8 sports
Athletics conference Southwest Preparatory Conference
Mascot Hawk
Accreditation Independent Schools Association of the Southwest (ISAS)
Publication Reflections (literary/art magazine)
Newspaper Informer
Yearbook Exodus

Cistercian Preparatory School is a Roman Catholic 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), 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.

The school's roots lie with a group of Cistercians who came to Texas in 1956 to help found the University of Dallas, located adjacent to what would become the Cistercian campus. Later that year, an uprising in communist Hungary allowed a group from Zirc Abbey in western Hungary to escape, and they joined their colleagues in Texas. The monks of Zirc had a long tradition of teaching in the abbey's college preparatory schools, so in 1962 they started Cistercian Preparatory School to continue their work in secondary education.

Noted for its academic rigor, Cistercian has been rated one of the most prestigious private schools in the Dallas-Fort Worth region,[3][4] and was ranked #50 in Business Insider's 2015 ranking of the "smartest private high schools in the United States,"[5] and as the second-best Catholic high school in the country by Niche in 2016.[6] One distinguishing feature of the school is that many of its classes are taught by monks from the Cistercian Order, who comprise 25% of the school's faculty.[7][5]


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.

Notable alumni[edit]


  2. ^ "2015-16 School Profile" (PDF). 
  3. ^ "Dallas boasts trio of smartest private high schools in U.S. — and No. 1 in Texas". CultureMap. CultureMap. Retrieved 29 December 2015. 
  4. ^ "Ranking the Private High Schools 2002" (PDF). D Magazine. University of North Texas. Retrieved 29 December 2015. 
  5. ^ a b "The 50 smartest private high schools in the US". BusinessInsider. BusinessInsider. Retrieved 29 December 2015. 
  6. ^ "2016 Best Catholic High Schools in America". Niche K-12. Niche. Retrieved 24 February 2016. 
  7. ^ "2015-2016 School Profile" (PDF). Cistercian Preparatory School. Cistercian Preparatory School. Retrieved 14 December 2015. 

External links[edit]