Top 50 Catholic High Schools Announced for 2006


GRAND RAPIDS, Mich. (Sept. 27, 2006) - The Catholic High School Honor Roll today announced its third annual selection of the best 50 Catholic secondary schools in America. The Honor Roll provides a powerful resource to parents and educators by acknowledging those schools that best maintain high academic standards, uphold their Catholic identities, and prepare students to actively engage the world.

To see a list of the top 50 schools, along with lists of the top 25 schools in each category, please go to www.chshonor.org .

Nearly 1,300 Catholic high schools were invited to apply to the Honor Roll by completing surveys that measure academic excellence, Catholic identity, and civic education. With this high level of competition, inclusion on the Honor Roll indicates outstanding success in each of the disciplines examined.

This year's list includes 20 new honorees and 12 schools that have earned recognition each of the past three years. Honorees range from newcomer diocesan schools such as Bishop Machebeuf Catholic High School in Denver to repeat honorees such as Mount Carmel Academy in New Orleans, a Carmelite school that had a miraculous recovery following Hurricane Katrina. The state of Texas led with six schools selected, followed by California with five schools. Overall, 25 states are represented on the Honor Roll, including new states Colorado, Massachusetts, New Hampshire, and North Carolina. Eleven different religious orders sponsor honorees, including the Dominicans, Legionaries of Christ, Jesuits, and Norbertines.

Advisory board member Gerard Bradley, professor of law at the University of Notre Dame Law School, said the Honor Roll serves an important purpose. “High schools that are fulfilling well their mission to form students morally and intellectually deserve to be recognized,” he said. “The Honor Roll brings recognition to these outstanding schools.”

“The Honor Roll has certainly developed a greater awareness among Catholics that excellence in Catholic education means more than just excelling in academics,” explained Honor Roll consultant Kevin Schmiesing. “The best schools also have a vibrant Catholic identity and prepare students for fruitful vocations in politics, business, and the Church.”

The Catholic High School Honor Roll is an independent project of the Acton Institute, an international research and educational organization. The Honor Roll was produced in consultation with a national advisory board comprised of Catholic college presidents and noted Catholic scholars. For more on Acton, please go to www.acton.org .

About the Acton Institute
With its commitment to pursue a society that is free and virtuous, the Acton Institute for the Study of Religion and Liberty is a leading voice in the national environmental and social policy debate. The Acton Institute is uniquely positioned to comment on the sound economic and moral foundations necessary to sustain humane environmental and social policies.

The Acton Institute is a nonprofit, ecumenical think tank located in Grand Rapids, Michigan. The Institute works internationally to "promote a free and virtuous society characterized by individual liberty and sustained by religious principles." For more on the Acton Institute, please visit www.acton.org.

Interviews with Institute staff may be arranged by contacting John Couretas at (616) 454-3080 or at jcouretas@acton.org.