OUR GUIDING PRINCIPLES
We provide a quality education based upon a caring Christian atmosphere that upholds the value of every individual student, teacher, and staff person.
We constantly pursue academic excellence through education of the “whole person”.
We foster a reverence for life, commitment to the lifestyle of Jesus, and love of our Catholic faith.
We exemplify the way of life upon which our faith is founded by assuring that school and family work together.
We offer children the opportunity to receive an education, regardless of their religious affiliation.
We work with families to allow financial access to our schools as our resources allow.
The Billings Catholic Schools, which includes St. Francis Elementary Schools and Billings Central Catholic High, operates under the direction of the Diocese of Great Falls-Billings, and is supported in part by the seven Catholic parishes in the city. The system is governed by the Billings Catholic Schools Board, consisting of community business leaders, the President of the Billings Catholic Schools, and a representative from the priests/pastoral administrators of the city.
The Catholic school system in Billings has a reputation of providing an excellent academic education. Typically, the elementary students on average test above grade level on national basic skills tests. Nearly all of the St. Francis students (98%) remain in the Billings Catholic Schools following eighth grade by enrolling at Central Catholic High School. Central Catholic High School enjoys a graduation rate of almost 100 percent. More than ninety percent of Central graduates enroll in a college or university. College entrance exams are completed by a high percentage of Central students (90 % take the ACT test, more than 75% take the SAT); scores are consistently above national and state averages.
Billings Central Catholic High School is accredited by the Northwest Association of Schools and Colleges, as well as by the State of Montana Office of Public Instruction. Letters of accreditation are kept on file in the high school office as well as in the administration office.
Billings Central maintains membership in the Montana High School Association, and competes in “Class A” music, speech, drama, football, cross country, soccer, basketball, volleyball, wrestling, swimming, track and field, golf, softball and tennis. St. Francis Upper School students compete in basketball, football, wrestling, track and field, cross country, volleyball, the Optimist Speech Contest, the District Spelling Bee, National Geography Bee, Math Counts and Montana Council of Mathematics Teachers Math Meet. A variety of clubs are also available to interested students.
St. Francis Elementary School and Billings Central Catholic High School serve a culturally and economically diverse group of families in the Billings/Yellowstone County area, where 1990 census figures show a population of 113,419. Only 3.84 percent of the general population of Billings/Yellowstone County is ethnically Black, American Indian or Asian. (Bureau of the Census, 1990.) However, 5 percent of the Billings Catholic Schools’ population is ethnically Black, Native American, or Asian. Four percent of the Billings Catholic Schools’ population is Hispanic. (NCEA Data Bank Summary 1995-1996.)