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What are the hours of the school day?

What is the average class size at ICSJ?

ICSJ leverages a co-teaching model, utilizing two full-time certified teachers in every classroom through Grade 5. A departmentalized structure is used for Grades 6 – 8 students, with teachers specializing in specific subjects. Each grade level consists of 2 classrooms.

    Prekindergarten – 10:1

    Elementary School  - 12:1

    Middle School - 20:1


Do you accept new students in grades other than PreK3?

While PreK3 is the main entry point for ICSJ, we do accept applications for other grade levels. We cannot guarantee that spots will be available in older grades. Admissions to Grades 1-8 will be determined by both space availability and a comprehensive review of the student's academic standing. Please see the Admissions Process for details.

When are applications accepted?

Applications become available in May and all required documentation is due no later than Friday, December 6, 2019 to be considered for the 2020-2021 Academic Year. If you have missed the application deadline, please contact the admissions office.

What does it mean if our child was placed on the waitlist?

If the Admissions committee determines your child to be an acceptable candidate, but ICSJ does not currently have the space to admit the child, he/she is placed on the waitlist. If movement occurs on the waitlist after acceptances are mailed, the committee will meet to accept from the waitlist by balancing the needs of the particular class.

Does participation in the ICSJ Tot Program improve my chance of acceptance to ICSJ School?

No. The ICSJ Tot Program is not a feeder program for the ICSJ School. Participation in the Tot Program does not strengthen an application to ICSJ. However, families participating in the Tot Program will given a unique opportunity to interact with the school and determine if ICSJ is the right fit for their family and meets their goals for their child’s education.

Do references from current ICSJ families strengthen my application?

While the ICSJ Admissions office welcomes references from currently enrolled or alumni ICSJ families, a reference is not a requirement for admission and does not weigh heavily on the decision.

Will participation in ICSJ Fundraising efforts strengthen my application?

In short, no. While we welcome applicant families to attend ICSJ fundraising events, we hope you engage as a method to evaluate the culture and determine if the community is the right fit for your family. You can learn much about our community by attending mass at one of our parishes, particularly a Family Mass (link to schedule) or the Children’s Liturgy (link to schedule). Your attendance at an ICSJ fundraiser will have no bearing on your application.

What takes place during the Early Childhood playdate?

All prospective Prekindergarten and Kindergarten applicants are required to attend a playdate on Friday, January 25, 2019. Enrolled early childhood students will not be in session on this day, enabling our teaching staff to fully engage with prospective students. Parents will escort their child(ren) to a prekindergarten classroom in groups of 8-10 where they will engage in centers and activities with ICSJ early education teachers. Parents will convene in the Parish Hall for a 45 minute mingle with current school parents and then return to the classrooms to pick up their child(ren).

What are you looking for during the Early Childhood playdate?

The ICSJ teaching staff engages the children in typical early childhood centers and activities. While the children are not being formally assessed, our staff uses this time to determine each child’s unique personalities and strengths. This information is used to establish fit within the school and determine the classroom makeup.

What takes place during a shadow day?

All applicants to Grades 1-8 are required to attend a shadow day in January or February. These days will be scheduled on an individual basis. Prospective students will have the opportunity to live a day in the life of a student in their applicant grade level.  Applicants will also meet one-on-one with a learning specialist for an individual assessment to determine his/her academic fit within the ISCJ program.

When will I receive my admissions decision?

The Admissions office mails decisions in mid-February.  Accepted students have two weeks to confirm their enrollment.

Does ICSJ offer financial aid?

Tuition assistance is available for families who qualify and is awarded based on need. All families must apply each year for the Tuition Assistance Program. Information about the Tuition Assistance Program will be sent with admissions welcome packets in February. 

What is the required age of admission?

In compliance with the State of Illinois Age Requirements, students must have their birthday on or before September 1st of the current school year in order to be accepted into their corresponding grade. A child must independently and successfully use the toilet in order to attend prekindergarten.

From what neighborhoods do you draw students?

ICSJ students represent over 28 Chicago zip codes. Approximately 30% of our students reside in the neighborhood immediately surrounding our campuses. The remaining 70% of our families travel from widespread neighborhoods, including, but not limited to, Bucktown, the Gold Coast, Lakeview, Lincoln Park, Lincoln Square, Logan Square, North Center, the South Loop, Ukrainian Village, the West Loop, and Wicker Park.


Do you offer a lunch program?

Yes. ICSJ contracts with Healthy Kids Kitchen to provide healthy lunches for our students for a fee ranging from $4.75 to $5.25 per meal. Families order lunches from a varied menu one month in advance, and have the option to receive lunch on specific dates or for the entire month. Alternatively, students may bring a prepared lunch from home. Please be advised that the school cannot refrigerate or warm any lunches brought from home.

Do students eat snacks at school?

Prekindergarten and Kindergarten students participate in snack each morning. Students are assigned one day per month to bring a healthy, nut-free snack to share with the class. Classrooms are equipped with purified water filters and students are taught to pour their own water and serve themselves a family-style snack.

First grade students are allowed to pack a nut-free snack for themselves to consume in their classrooms each morning. Students enrolled in the extended day program are also encouraged to bring a nut-free after school snack.

How do you handle allergies/special health needs at school?

Prekindergarten students eat morning snack and lunch in their classrooms daily. Kindergarten – 8th Grade students eat lunch in the cafeterias of each campus. Several tables in the cafeteria and early education classrooms are designated as nut-free zones.

Do ICSJ students wear uniforms?

Prekindergarten students wear comfortable play clothes. All Kindergarten – 8th grade students wear uniforms daily. All uniforms are purchased through Schoolbelles. Each spring, the Parent Association hosts a uniform swap for used uniforms.

What special programs do you offer?

Our curriculum includes a music and Spanish language program, a physical education program focused on both physical development and wellness education, as well as a fine arts program that includes drama, visual arts, and multicultural music and dance performance. Piano instruction and band are also available.


What extra-curricular programs do you offer?

Each trimester, multiple athletic and enrichment options are available to students in Kindergarten through Grade 8 to explore personal interests, develop talents and build community after school hours. Options vary each year based on student interest and have included: Lego Master Builder Academy, The Kid’s Table, Sew Crafty Studios, Ballet, Choir, Musical Theater, Rock Band, Chess, Yearbook, Student Government, Volleyball, Basketball, Baseball, Cross Country, Girl Scouts, and Cub Scouts.


Do you require a fundraising commitment from each family?

Like most private schools, ICSJ relies on the time, talents and treasures of its families for additional support. As tuition alone does not cover the full cost to educate a student, each family’s participation in ICSJ’s Annual Fund, and various fundraising activities is essential for continuation of our growth and the achievement of our goal to provide the highest quality Catholic education for your child.

ICSJ’s main fundraiser is an annual auction gala, Sparkle, which is typically held in February. Additional fundraisers such as school supplies, the Scholastic Book Fair, and Innisbrook support ICSJ funding goals throughout the year.

What types of opportunities exist for parents to be involved in the school?

Parents have ample opportunities to become involved, and the volunteering of parental time is crucial to ICSJ School. The ICSJ Parent Association is comprised of parents who volunteer their time throughout the school year to plan, organize and execute spiritual, charitable, educational and social events for parents, students and families.

Additionally, parents can volunteer in the school library or art class, chaperone field trips, coach athletic teams, lead an arts presentation, or make a visit to the class to read a book. Parent volunteers also assist the ICSJ Board of Specified Jurisdiction in executing long-term plans for school facilities improvement and program development.

Do you accept families with alternate religious beliefs?

While approximately 85% of our families are Catholic, we welcome families from all religious backgrounds.