Frequently Asked Questions — Notre Dame Prep

Where is Notre Dame located?
Notre Dame Preparatory School and Notre Dame Marist Academy-Middle Division are located together on our campus in Pontiac at 1300 Giddings Road (48340). Notre Dame Marist Academy-Lower Division is located at 1425 Giddings Road, also in Pontiac, just down the street from the main campus.

What are your school day hours?
For students in grades 6 to 12, the school day runs from 7:30 a.m. to 2:45 p.m. Our Lower Division students attend school from 7:45 a.m. to 3:05 p.m.

Are students able to arrive early and stay late at school?
Yes. Students are welcome to arrive at 6:30 a.m., and may stay after school in the Media Center until 5 p.m. On most days it is not uncommon for students to be at school until the evening for sports, clubs, rehearsals and other activities.

What is your average class size?
Our average class size typically is between 20 to 24 students. While larger classes do occur at times, we are committed to giving every student the time and attention they need to be challenged and successful.

How often do students attend liturgy?
Notre Dame’s main campus offers an optional liturgy every morning at 7 a.m. The entire school community attends liturgy together at least once a month. In addition, we begin each school day with prayer. Reconciliation services are offered during the Advent and Easter seasons.

Is transportation available?
Our current bus routes run every school day to and from the Oakland Twp./Rochester, Shelby Twp./Rochester Hills, Clarkston/Lake Orion, and the Waterford/White Lake areas, as well the Woodward corridor into Beverly Hills, Bloomfield Hills, and Birmingham. Some stops include Holy Family Regional School south campus, Holy Name, St. Hugo, St. Joseph, Our Lady Queen of Martyrs, and Our Lady of Refuge. We offer semester pricing, as well as single day passes. We continually explore adding bus routes to accommodate students from other areas.

Do students wear uniforms?
Yes. All students wear uniforms that may be purchased from Dennis Uniform, located at 1532 N. Opdyke Road, Auburn Hills, MI 48326 (248-340-8890).

Do you offer need-based financial aid and scholarships?
Yes. As a way to support families in their pursuit of a Catholic education, Notre Dame Prep offers a variety of scholarships and financial aid awards. For more information about financial aid and scholarships, please click on the Affording Notre Dame link on the right side of this page.

Does my student have to be a great standardized test-taker to be accepted?
The required High School Placement Test is just a part of our evaluation of students. In deciding on admission to NDP, we also look at grades, student evaluations, interview performance, and overall attitude toward school.

Do you offer an International Baccalaureate program?
Yes. All three divisions of Notre Dame—Lower, Middle and Preparatory School—are  authorized “World Schools” through the International Baccalaureate Organization. Notre Dame Prep was the first Catholic school in Michigan authorized to offer the IB curriculum, and NDPMA was the first Catholic school in the United States to offer the IB at all three levels. As of August 2017, Notre Dame was one of only 20 schools in the nation to offer the IB at all three levels.

What makes the school “college-prep”?
Whether students are taking traditional college-prep, honors, AP or IB courses, the emphasis in each course is on the development of college-level skills. As a result of this commitment, typically every graduating student from Notre Dame gains admittance to multiple four-year colleges. With rare exception, all matriculate to such institutions, though some students may choose other options based on their interests. NDP offers more than a dozen Advanced Placement courses, as well as the International Baccalaureate Diploma Programme. Students may begin taking AP courses as early as their sophomore year; they are encouraged to take these challenging and valuable courses whenever possible. On average, between 70 and 80 percent of our AP students earn scores of 3 or higher on AP exams, while our IB Diploma Programme students graduate at a rate higher than the worldwide average.

What colleges do most graduates attend?
Notre Dame Prep sends large numbers of students to the University of Michigan and Michigan State University. In addition, many of NDP’s graduates attend prestigious out-of-state colleges and universities, including Notre Dame, Cal Tech, Chicago, Columbia, Cornell, Duke, Georgetown, Harvard, MIT, NYU, Northwestern, Pennsylvania, Princeton, Stanford, the US. service academies, and many other fine public and private institutions. For more information, please click on the After Notre Dame Prep link on the right side of this page.

What leadership opportunities are available at the school?
Notre Dame Prep affords students the opportunity to explore and develop leadership skills in a variety of outlets, including athletics, arts, peer ministry, student council, robotics and many more. NDP students develop the confidence and independence to lead, as well as the ability to contribute to the goals of an organization.

What is the athletics program like at NDP?
In addition to academic development, students at Notre Dame Prep are encouraged to strive for athletic excellence. In our short history, NDP teams have won state championships in volleyball, competitive cheer, girls skiing, girls soccer, and boys golf. Student-athletes have won individual state titles in cross country, golf, swimming, and track.

What are the fine and performing arts programs like at NDP?
Notre Dame Prep believes the creative process is essential to students’ overall development. Therefore, we are committed to expanding our fine and performing arts programs and encouraging students to increase their appreciation of the arts. Our program boasts 11 different band, choral and theater courses, a winter musical, a spring play, and 11 different visual arts courses. For their efforts, students in the arts programs have received the highest marks in local, state, national and international competitions. In fact, our fine artists have earned 122 Scholastic Art Awards over the last three years, each year setting a new school record: 27 in 2016, 45 in 2017, and 50 in 2018.

May I visit the school? May my child spend a shadow day at NDP?
Yes and yes. Parents are invited and encouraged to attend Fall Open House (11/4), School Day Open House (10/11), Admissions Coffees (12/4, 4/11), and/or Notre Dame Info Nights (9/27, 2/5). We respectfully request that you register in advance for these events in order to help us anticipate your needs. Prospective parents also may schedule a tour during regular school hours. To schedule a tour, please call 248-373-1061.

Students are invited and encouraged to participate in our “Irish for a Day” shadow program almost any day throughout the year. To schedule a shadow day for your child, please complete the form by following this link: http://www.ndpma.org/shadow.

To give students the opportunity to experience Notre Dame in a different way, we are pleased to offer two "Lucky Days." Guests will be treated to brief programs to start and end the day, and in between will attend seven academic periods, receive a complimentary lunch, and work with their student hosts to complete a scavenger hunt. The winner will get a prize from the Irish Bookstore! Space is limited. To schedule your student for a Lucky Day (11/6, 11/8), please complete the form by following this link: http://www.ndpma.org/shadow.

What if I have more questions?
Please do not hesitate to contact Dean of Admissions Kathleen Offer at 248-373-1061 or koffer@ndpma.org.

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