St. Barbara Elementary School has a long tradition of academic excellence. The school takes pride in its rigorous curriculum and strives to prepare its students for success at the secondary level.
Our graduates test and are accepted into the high schools of their choice. Graduates attend St. Ignatius College Prep, Mother McAuley Liberal Arts High School, DeLaSalle Institute, Queen of Peace, Mt. Carmel, St. Rita and Nazareth Academy as well as Whitney Young, Walter Payton and Jones College Prep.
Academic success does not end at the secondary level. Our students are accepted into some of the finest universities in the nation. In the last fifteen years are students have gone on to and graduated from: Northwestern University, Illinois Institute of Technology, DePaul University, University of California, Irvine, Penn State, Loyola University, Marquette, St. Xavier, Bryn Mawr, Roosevelt University, Milwaukee School of Engineering, the Art Institute of Chicago, the University of Chicago and the University of Illinois both at Champaign and Chicago.
Students in Archdiocesan Catholic schools have taken the Aspire standardized tests every March. Each year, St. Barbara School has been above the national average in all areas.
Implementation of the University of Chicago math program has made a positive impact on how our students learn and process mathematical concepts. Rowland Reading, “SuperKids” has been implemented in preschool through second grade. The program is grounded in the five pillars of excellent reading instruction; namely, phonics, phonemic awareness, fluency, writing and comprehension.
The primary grades (Preschool - fourth) are self-contained classrooms. Students receive instruction in whole group and small group setting. Most primary grades work in centers allowing for differentiation and use of technology.
The upper grades are structured in modified blocks of learning. Students meet in homerooms each morning and then rotate to content area instruction (mathematics, language arts, science and social studies). Religion and vocabulary are taught by the homeroom teacher. Each content area period is 60 minutes long.
All teachers at St. Barbara are certified in the State of Illinois. Teachers at St. Barbara are required to teach to the Core Curriculum standards currently adopted by most states. Teachers must show evidence of planning using the backward design approach indicating student outcome, assessment and daily procedures. Lesson plans are reviewed by the principal weekly.
Physical education: Physical education is an important component of a balanced educational program. The school has a large attached, indoor gym. Students have physical education two days per week.
Music: Students in grades Kindergarten – 8th grades attend music class one day per week. Primary grades have music infused into their daily curriculum in addition to weekly class. A beautiful Christmas concert is held every December. Students in grades Kindergarten through eighth grade perform.
Spanish: Students in grades Kindergarten - 8th attend Spanish class one day per week.
Computer education: Technology is infused into the curriculum at St. Barbara. To better help students with basic operation of the computer and word processing, students in grade 3-5 have a structured class one day per week.
Fine Arts: St. Barbara School has an outstanding fine arts program. The program incorporates the study of art as a culture and process. Students have studied the development of paper and print, Great Masters, Native American art, Asian art, architecture of Chicago and a study of Chicago through culture and people. The school was awarded the Picturing America grant in 2009. The Fine Arts program holds an annual Art Fair, displaying all of our students' art work.