Welcome to Saint Paul of the Cross School . . . SPC the place to be! We are so happy to have this opportunity to share Saint Paul of the Cross School with you.
From the moment upon entering the school campus, a community grounded in a faith-filled education supported by a strong parent community surrounds you. At each grade level, students are encouraged to be active participants and to serve their community. Along with our SPC families, our goal is to involve all students in the mission of Jesus, the love of God, and the love of their neighbor.
SPC strives to provide an inclusive, collaborative, and differentiated curriculum, instilling a strong faith foundation for our 700 students in preschool through eighth grade. The dedication of our highly educated and trained faculty members makes this possible. Core and practical fine arts teachers collaborate to support interdisciplinary learning at each grade level in Spanish, physical education, art, music, and STEM. Grade-level unit teams work together to implement a rigorous and inclusive vertically aligned curriculum.
Beyond the classroom, we take a comprehensive approach in advancing students' social, emotional, physical, and spiritual growth by providing a variety of co-curricular service, learning, and athletic programs. As a result of this holistic approach, our graduates are faith-filled leaders equipped with 21st-century skills, prepared to succeed in an evolving global society as committed Christians and loyal citizens.
On September 24, 2020, Saint Paul of the Cross School was named by the U.S. Department of Education a National Blue Ribbon Exemplary High Performing School for 2020. I am so proud of the faculty, staff, and students for all they have done to make this award a reality for a second time. The first National Blue Ribbon Award was in 2011. This prestigious recognition is a validation of the commitment, dedication, and collaborative efforts of the faculty and staff, parents, and parish community, both past and present, to ensure our mission of academic excellence in Catholic education.
We invite you to join us for any of our Monthly Virtual Campus Tours/Presentations to see what SPC is all about! You may RSVP here.
Once again, thank you for exploring St. Paul of the Cross School. I look forward to personally meeting you and your family soon!
Dr. Erika Mickelburgh
On Thursday, September 24, 2020, Saint Paul of the Cross School was named by the U.S. Department of Education as a National Blue Ribbon School for 2020. Saint Paul of the Cross School is 1 of 7 non-public elementary schools in Illinois (all 7 are part of the Chicago Archdiocese) to receive this honor. This award was given to Saint Paul of the Cross School for being an exemplary high performing school.
“This is an exciting day for the St. Paul of the Cross community. I am so proud of the faculty, staff, and students for all they have done to make this award a reality,” said SPC Principal, Dr. Erika Mickelburgh. This is the second time Saint Paul of the Cross School has been named a National Blue Ribbon School of Excellence. The first National Blue Ribbon of Excellence Award was in 2011. “This prestigious recognition is a validation of the commitment, dedication, and collaborative efforts of the faculty and staff, parents, and parish community, both past and present, to ensure our mission of academic excellence in Catholic education.”
"SPC is the place to be," is a motto you'll hear children, parents, and faculty consistently declare at St. Paul of the Cross School, a vibrant community where joyful learning and spiritual and personal growth have transpired for 95 years. Located in Park Ridge, Illinois, a suburb bordering the City of Chicago's northwest side, SPC attracts families from Park Ridge and the surrounding area who desire academic excellence and faith-filled education for their children.
SPC strives to provide an inclusive, collaborative, and differentiated curriculum, instilling a strong faith foundation for its 620 students in preschool through eighth grade. The dedication of SPC's highly educated and trained faculty members makes this possible. Core and practical fine arts teachers collaborate to support interdisciplinary learning at each grade level in Spanish, physical education, art, music, and STEM. Grade-level unit teams work together to implement a rigorous and inclusive vertically aligned curriculum.
This collaboration, along with support from the dynamic parent and parish community, has allowed SPC to innovate continually, further enhancing the curriculum, instruction, and overall school programs since being recognized as a National Blue Ribbon School of Excellence in 2011.
Beyond the classroom, SPC takes a comprehensive approach in advancing students' social, emotional, physical, and spiritual growth by providing a variety of co-curricular service, learning, and athletic programs. As a result of SPC's holistic approach, graduates are faith-filled leaders equipped with 21st-century skills, prepared to succeed in an evolving global society as committed Christians and loyal citizens.
“Congratulations to this year’s National Blue Ribbon School awardees,” said Betsy DeVos, Secretary of Education. “It’s a privilege to recognize the extraordinary work you do to meet students’ needs and prepare them for successful careers and meaningful lives.”
The coveted National Blue Ribbon Schools award affirms the hard work of educators, families, and communities in creating safe and welcoming schools where students master challenging and engaging content. Now in its 38th year, the National Blue Ribbon Schools Program has bestowed almost 10,000 awards to more than 9,000 schools, with some schools winning multiple awards. Schools are eligible for nomination after five years.
Up to 420 schools may be nominated each year. The U.S. Education Department invites National Blue Ribbon School nominations from the top education official in all states, the District of Columbia, Puerto Rico, the Virgin Islands, the Department of Defense Education Activity, and the Bureau of Indian Education. Private schools are nominated by the Council for American Private Education (CAPE). Due to COVID-19, the 2020 National Blue Ribbon Schools Awards Ceremony will be held virtually Nov. 12 and 13. During this ceremony, the Department of Education will celebrate the 317 public and 50 non-public school honorees.
Fr. Britto's All-School Mass, June 2, 2021
A very big thank you goes out to Alex Ramirez for this very special video he created for SPC. This video made it's premiere at Celebrating the Spirit at the Oscars on February 8, 2020!
St. Paul of the Cross Early Childhood program follows the Archdiocese of Chicago and Illinois State Board of Education Early Learning Standards in a safe, inviting, and faith-filled classroom environment for your child.
We strive to provide a positive atmosphere in which each child can develop at his/her own pace. We believe that a child's play is their work and that children learn best by experiencing their world through all of their senses. The daily schedule includes both self-directed and teacher-directed play experiences. Play gives your child the freedom to select from a variety of activities. Teacher directed instruction takes place through stories, music, and projects completed in small group settings. Fine motor skills are developed and strengthened through cutting, pasting, playing with manipulatives, and a variety of other activities.
Throughout the year we also focus on concepts such as: color, shape, and name recognition, reciting the alphabet, prayers, and counting numbers. Students grow socially and emotionally as they are taught to express their feelings appropriately and to show concern for others. Students are encouraged to become more independent and learn self-reliance skills. We always look for and applaud each child’s individual accomplishments both great and small.
We incorporate weekly themes, utilizing a variety of interactive approaches to reinforce the concepts being introduced. Through both self-directed experiences and teacher-directed lessons, the program incorporates the following areas of education:
Religion – The children are introduced to the Catholic Faith through songs, prayers and Bible stories. We present God to the children as our good and loving God who made them and loves them, and that they are special. God made all that is, and we engage the students in activities that show respect and care for all God's people and all living things.
Reading Readiness - Language skills are developed through dramatic play, singing songs, listening to stories, reciting poetry, and playing rhyming games. We work on listening comprehension, oral language, alphabet awareness, and phonetics throughout the curriculum. Letter sounds, formation, and recognition are explored and reinforced through art projects, manipulatives, puzzles, and matching games.
Math – Developing math concepts through hands-on materials in preschool lays the foundation for later abstract mathematical thinking. We incorporate math concepts, such as sorting, patterns, numbers, and shapes every day. Using art and games, children focus on color, shape, size or texture to develop comparison and patterning skills. Children learn counting each day through calendar activities, number games, building blocks and playing with manipulatives.
Science – Children engage in scientific explorations daily. Children’s play is a way of asking questions as they attempt to figure out how things work. Discovery lessons typically revolve around each weekly theme, allowing children to experience hands-on science concepts. Children explore many things including growth of plants, the parts of fruits, space, and weather.
Music – Music is a very important part of our curriculum and our teachers incorporate music and movement throughout each class. The children learn and sing songs, while rhythm and large motor skills are developed through marches and dances.
Physical Education - Children learn and develop through physical play. Motor Skills continually develop through activities in gym, outside (weather permitting), and in the classroom. During this time the children play games, which explore and develop movement, balance and large motor skills.
Classroom Celebrations - We have fun each and every day - but some days are extra-special. With the help of parents, the children participate in many special celebrations throughout the year. Halloween, Christmas, Thanksgiving, and Valentines Day are just a few of the wonderful celebrations throughout the year.
Welcome to St. Paul of the Cross School! We are happy to have this opportunity to share St. Paul of the Cross with you. As you tour the school, you will experience a community committed to outstanding Catholic education. At each grade level, students are challenged by a rigorous curriculum that utilizes developmentally appropriate best practices designed to meet the needs of learners in the 21st century. Our mission and philosophy are dedicated to all aspects of your child’s growth: spiritual, moral, emotional, physical, and intellectual.
Our early childhood program offers three different early childhood programs: Preschool (3-year-olds), Prekindergarten (4-year-olds), and this year we are piloting a Multiage classroom (3 & 4-year-olds). We also have four kindergarten classrooms. Our certified teachers, assisted by full-time instructional assistants, utilize curricula that reflect Illinois early learning and development and national and international learning standards. These standards provide reasonable expectations for children’s growth, development, and learning in the early years.
As you listen and learn about our program, please feel free to ask questions. This is a big step, and we value the opportunity to be partners in the formation and development of your child.
Thank you for your time and consideration.
Mrs. Catherine Hart
Director of Early Childhood
We, at St. Paul of the Cross School Park Ridge, are concerned with educating the total child in our Catholic faith based curriculum. Our goal is to appreciate and support the individuality of your child. We believe that a child’s social, emotional, cognitive, physical, and creative growth is nurtured through play, discovery, and meaningful hands-on experiences. We will assist your child in developing a positive self-image and positive attitude toward school.
Preschool and Prekindergarten
Our Preschool and Prekindergarten programs are both flexible and structured. Our teachers and staff provide a faith-based, positive developmental atmosphere for your child through knowledge of the ways in which play can support cognitive, emotional, moral, social, and physical development. They include many opportunities for dramatic play, art, music, and language development. Such curriculum design equips your child with skills aimed at independence, readiness, verbal fluency, and the ability to work independently as well as in a group.
Daily schedules include both self-directed and teacher-directed play experiences. Play gives your child the freedom to select from a variety of activities. More structured teacher-directed learning takes place through stories, music, and projects. Your child’s creative expression is encouraged through dramatic play, art, music, and sensory activities. Your child’s self help skills and independence are continually developing. Fine motor skills develop and strengthen through cutting, pasting, playing with manipulatives, and a variety of other activities.
Throughout the year, your child works on enhancing basic concepts such as: color, size, shape, letter recognition, numbers, more than, less than, sequencing, Bible stories, and prayers. All our children are constantly encouraged to explore their changing environment and become responsible independent learners.
We invite you to learn more about our philosophy, curriculum, class offerings, or to schedule a classroom visit. We want to partner with you to make the early education experience great for you and your child.
2022-2023 Preschool/Prekindergarten program
THREE-YEAR OLD PRESCHOOL
Child must be 3 years old by September 1st
2 Day Program
Preschool 3 (Two Full-Days)
Preschool 3 (Two Half-Days) Mornings Only
3 Day Program
Preschool 3 (Three Full-Days)
Preschool 3 (Three Half-Days) Mornings Only
5 Day Program
Preschool 3 (Five Full-Days)
Preschool 3 (Five Half-Days) Mornings Only
Monday - Friday
FOUR-YEAR OLD PRESCHOOL
Child must be 4 years old by September 1st
3 Day Program
Preschool 4 (Three Full-Days)
Preschool 4 (Three Half-Days) Mornings Only
5 Day Program
Preschool 4 (Five Full-Days)
Preschool 4 (Five Half-Days) Mornings Only
Monday - Friday
Before and after school care (Extended Day Program) is available for both Preschool and Prekindergarten students. Please refer to the current EDP informationby clicking on the link below.
We are pleased to offer a new program called Lunch Bunch, an opportunity for students to stay at school for an additional hour after the morning classes. Lunch Bunch extends the morning preschool or prekindergarten experience on one or more of their class days by incorporating lunch and constructive playtime. It is designed to align with the SPC philosophy of teaching socialization, cooperation and respect in our faith-based environment. Children should bring their own lunch and drink each day. The fee is $10 per day and would be billed monthly.
See Why SPC is the Place to Be!