Academics At St. Pius X School

Accreditation
St. Pius X School is fully accredited by Western Catholic Educational Association (WCEA) and is recognized for providing and maintaining a high-quality and well-balanced educational program.

Curriculum
St. Pius X School provides a broad and relevant curriculum that is based on our Mission, Philosophy, and School-Wide Learning Expectations. St. Pius X School students are held to high academic standards. This is evidenced by a strong curriculum including: religion, reading, writing, spelling, handwriting, math, science, health, social studies, physical education, foreign language, computer science, library, music, and art.

Utilizing a variety of learning modalities, students are given opportunities to acquire and practice academic skills including problem-solving, critical and creative thinking skills, active listening, public speaking, writing with purpose and clarity, and reading for understanding, knowledge, and enjoyment. Archdiocesan grade level curriculum expectations provide the basis for curriculum planning and scope and sequence at St. Pius X. They foster academic excellence equipping each student to develop moral excellence as they grow into life-long learners witnessing the real presence of Jesus Christ in our global community, the Body of Christ. Core subject curricula and methodologies are reviewed yearly on a rotating basis using a Process for School Improvement outlined by the Western Catholic Educational Association (WCEA).

Highlights

Completed the accreditation renewal process.

  • First graders created exhibits to show what they had learned throughout the year, including a video center with student-directed and filmed Earth Day commercials and cultural celebration videos, a listening center where they recorded student-written poetry and manipulated their voices in Audacity, and presented student-directed plays.
  • The Outdoor School curriculum for the 6th grade students was completely rewritten to better meet the needs of SPX students.  The experience was expanded to 3.5 days with 2/3 of the curriculum time spent on Natural Science related activities and 1/3 on Retreat  type activities.  The overall theme focused on Being Good Stewards of God’s Creation.
  • A new Science Curriculum was implemented K-8 allowing for better consistency and sequencing of materials as well as an improved incorporation of inquiry and engineering skill building activities.
  • 15 to 1 student to teacher ratio in middle school ability grouped language arts and math classes.
  • All grades competed in the MATHCOUNTS American Online Math Challenge.
  • 8th grade participated in the Courthouse Experience Program through Classroom Law Project.
  • Middle school social studies classes participated in historical simulations including Ancient Egypt and Greece, the Middle Ages, and the Civil War.
  • All students participated in author Robert Young’s presentations and workshops.

Media Center

The new Media Center provides expanded space for students to seamlessly access print, digital and multimedia resources, and then communicate their knowledge using a range of technologies. The blending of the library and technology space creates instructional options that will allow students larger blocks of time to complete research tasks. The new shelving provides extra display space to promote a variety of books that will appeal to diverse readers.  The wide variety of seating options supports students in their reading endeavors as well as their academic work.

Beyond the Classroom

Learning certainly also takes place outside the St. Pius X School classroom. Students are encouraged to serve in other areas of life to develop and grow.

Student Council
The purpose of the Student Council is to provide leadership to the student body for various activities, and advise the principal and teachers regarding student interests and concerns of a general nature. Each class has a representative at General Council meetings as elected or designated by the 7th and 6th grade teachers. Elections for the officers are held each spring for the upcoming school year.

Service Projects
St. Pius X School students participate in various service projects throughout the school year. The St. Vincent de Paul food drive, Christmas giving programs, and the annual Penny Power competition are all-school projects. Individual classes frequently head up various smaller projects, and all middle school students complete a minimum of three hours per trimester of Christian service.

Highlights

  • Penny Power competition raised $1890 during Lent for the St. Andre Bessette Parish’s Pennies for the Poor program.
  • The Student Council’s Hats-On-Day raised $795 for the Children with Cancer Foundation.
  • Middle school students completed well over 1,000 hours of community service.
  • Raised 670 lbs. of macaroni and cheese for the Mac Attack food drive competition.
  • School held 14th annual Veterans Day celebration assembly for our veterans in the school and parish community.
  • Collected over 1000 items for St. Vincent DePaul food drive.
  • Raised over $1200 in the Jump Rope for Heart Program.

CYO Sports
Governed by the Catholic Youth Organization through the Archdiocese of Portland, students are able to participate in girls’ volleyball, boys’ football, and cheerleading in the fall, basketball and swimming in the winter, and track and field in the spring. Practices are typically twice per week (weekday afternoons/evenings), and competitions are on weekends.

LEGO Robotics
The LEGO Robotics program develops teams that compete in the First LEGO League (FLL) competition that is held in December every year. These teams that include 3rd-8th graders who are presented with the national challenge that is released in early September. The challenge each year has a theme which is chosen from relevant world science topics. The students develop mindstorm robots to tackle physical LEGO challenges set up on a challenge course. They also develop an approach to the research project that they in turn present to a team of judges. The LEGO robotics program is designed to introduce kids to basic engineering principles while they develop their creativity, teamwork, and gracious professionalism.

Math Festival
Math Festival is an annual event hosted by Central Catholic High School (usually on a Saturday in January) in which four 7th graders and four 8th graders compete with students from other Archdiocesan schools in a variety of math related games.

Speech
Speech is offered after school twice a week for 6th-8th grade students beginning in January and ending with the Valley Catholic Speech Tournament (usually held in March). Students practice memorized elocution, impromptu speech, and extemporaneous reading.

Pentagames
Pentagames is an annual state-wide math competition held on the last Friday of April for teams of three students each of 7th grade math, 8th grade math, and algebra. Practices are twice a week during April.

Battle of the Books
Battle of the Books is a reading competition that encourages and recognizes students who enjoy reading, broadens reading interests, and increases reading comprehension. Middle school students compete in a statewide sponsored competition each winter, in addition to a spring competition with Cathedral School students. 4th and 5th graders participate each spring in a separate competition with Cathedral School students.

Highlights

  • Six students finished in the top 10 in the state in the American Math Online Challenge, and the school finished 3rd in the state.
  • First graders completed a waste audit.  From that, created a “green team,” established goals, and helped the school become Green School-certified in Oregon.
  • Two 7th graders placed first and second at the Valley Catholic Speech Tournament.
  • A team of two 6th grade students captured 2nd place in the Consumer Product Testing category with their project at the Northwest Science Expo (Intel Science Fair).
  • An 8th grader received an Honorable Mention in Plant Sciences for her project at the Northwest Science Expo (Intel Science Fair).
  • A team of two 6th grade students captured a 2nd place in the 6th grade Chemistry/Earth Science division at the Valley Catholic Regional Science Fair.
  • A team comprised of a 6th grade and a 7th grade student placed 3rd in the Life Science division at the Valley Catholic Regional Science Fair.
  • A Lego Robotics team won 1st place in the project category at the first Lego League Robotics competition.
  • Twenty-four graduating 8th graders received the Outstanding Christian Service Award.
  • Fourteen graduating 8th graders received the President’s Award for Academic Excellence with cumulative GPAs of 3.5 or higher.
  • 8th grade graduated eleven scholar athletes.
  • A fifth grade student received an honorable mention for his Christmas Card competition entry.
  • A sixth grade student won the 11 year old boys’ division in the Knights of Columbus State Free Throw Contest.
  • The 8th grade volleyball team won their 2nd straight city championship.
  • The track team won 1st place in the championship meet.

The school was honored during the  Jog-a-thon with a visit from Olympic gold medalist sprinter, Shelly Ann Fraser-Pryce.