Frequently Asked Questions

When is the deadline to apply for the 2017-18 school year?

Cistercian is no longer accepting applications for the 2017-18 school year. Please contact Director of Admissions, Jim Taylor, by email at or call 469-499-5400 if you have specific questions.

How do I get an application?

Cistercian uses Ravenna, a web-based application service for the registration of events and for submitting an inquiry or application. Applications for 2018-19 school year will be available in early fall 2017. By completing an inquiry, you will be notified by email when the 2018-19 application comes on line.

Does Cistercian offer financial aid or scholarships?

Cistercian has a generous need-based financial aid budget. The admission process is need-blind, so applying for financial aid will not affect the school’s admission decision.

How does having multiple children applying for different grades affect the admission process?

Each candidate is considered for admission based on his own application and appropriateness of fit for Cistercian, regardless of siblings or relatives going through the process at the same time.

How do I learn more about Cistercian?

We invite you to attend Open House in either Fall or Spring to experience first-hand the daily classroom, talk with current parents and faculty, and see our school from the student perspective. You may also want to schedule a personal tour or attend a school event, such as a Friday football game, to get a feel for our community. Your son may wish to attend a Cistercian Summer Program, where all courses are taught by full-time Cistercian faculty or coaches.

When is the best time to tour the campus?

The best time to tour our campus is in the fall prior to the year you wish to enroll. Cistercian offers an Open House each fall for both Middle and Upper School. Prospective students and their parents are encouraged to tour the campus, speak with faculty and students, and attend classes for a day. You will also hear from the Director of Admission about the application process. Open House is the one date in our fall schedule when our classes are open to visitors. If you do not attend the Open House but still wish to see our campus, please contact our office to schedule a tour.

Can prospective students visit a class or spend a day at Cistercian?

We look forward to getting to know your son if they visit our campus for a tour. However, to preserve the daily academic focus of our classes, Open House is the only date which visitors have the opportunity to visit classes at Cistercian. Individual tours are available by appointment any day during the school year.

Who do I contact for information about applying to Cistercian?

Please contact Director of Admissions, Jim Taylor, for all application questions at 469-499-5400 or

How much is the application fee?

The 2018-19 application fee is $125. There is no additional testing fee.

How many new students are admitted in each grade?

Each fall Cistercian typically admits 40 boys at the entry level, Form I (grade 5). These boys are accepted with the expectation that they will complete the full eight-year program. In addition a limited number of qualified candidates are admitted each year to Forms II-V (grades 6-9), and to Forms VI – VII (grades 10 and 11) on a wait list basis.

If we choose to re-apply for admission, do we need to submit a new application this year?

Yes. Students must apply each year that they wish to be considered for admission to Cistercian.

What does the testing process involve?

Cistercian does not utilize the ISEE. Instead, all applicants are assigned an on-campus testing date. All admissions testing is completed on campus, and no other testing reservation or fee is required. The test date is scheduled upon submission of a completed application.

The entrance exam for Forms I & II (5th-6th) is completed on campus the last Saturday in January from approximately 8:30 a.m. – noon. The exam for Forms III – VII (7th – 11th) are held on the first Saturday in February. Students are tested in a classroom setting by full-time faculty in a daily school structure. They are evaluated on their performance, communication and behavior throughout the testing session. Administered tests include mathematics, reading comprehension, short essay, and aptitude.

What is the best way to prepare for a testing day?

We encourage you to consider the admission process as a way of finding the best school for your son. As a result, we hope that your son will feel calm and relaxed throughout the process. Keeping your family’s standard routine the night before testing will help ensure your child is well rested on testing day.

Should I call to find out if my required documents have been received?

No. Utilizing the Ravenna system, you can log onto your account to see that documents have or have not been received any time 24 hours a day.

What should I do if my school issues grades after the required document deadline?

Schools issuing grades after our deadline should mail or upload the grades to us as soon as possible. They may also fax them to 469-499-5440 or send grades by email to

Are alumni and sibling candidates given preference in the admission process?

Sons of employees, alumni, and siblings of current and former students will receive preferred consideration to Form I (grade 5) when all other factors are considered equal. First and foremost, admission decisions are based upon the qualifications of the individual candidate. Applicants to Form II-VII (grades 6-11) are not given preferred consideration.

Is financial aid available?

Yes, approximately 23% of Cistercian students received financial aid for the 2016-17 school year. Admission decisions are made prior to financial aid decisions. Therefore, no financial information is required during the admission process. To apply for financial aid, indicate your interest on the application and if your son is accepted, additional materials will be mailed to you.

Does Cistercian have a wait list?

Yes, we typically have wait lists for each grade level. Those applicants whom we believe are qualified for Cistercian, but for whom we simply do not have a spot are offered a place on the wait list. There is not preference in the wait list and it does not carry over from year to year.

My child’s application was placed on the wait list. What does this mean?

Each year, Cistercian receives more applications from qualified students seeking admission than we have room to accept. A wait list is created to offer these qualified students an opportunity to remain in consideration for admission, should space become available.

What is the probability for wait pool applicants to be invited for admission?

Probability varies every year, depending on many factors.

How soon will we hear on the status of our application?

The deadline for accepted students to reply to Cistercian is March 20. Initial wait pool openings, if any, are determined soon after this date. In past years, additional openings have become available when there are changes in a student’s plans to attend Cistercian or when families move from the area. It is possible for a wait list candidate to be invited for admission as late as August.

If your child is selected from the wait list, you will receive a telephone call from the Admission Office.

Are wait pool applicants ranked in any way?

Cistercian DOES NOT rank applicants in the wait list. As space becomes available, all wait list candidates are individually reconsidered using the same process as applied to the initial review. The Admission Committee will meet to review files and make decisions.

Can my child do anything to strengthen their chances of being selected from the wait list?

The fact that your child’s application was placed in the wait list indicates that Cistercian believes they are qualified to attend Cistercian Preparatory School, so no additional action is required. We welcome any new information, however, that could be relevant to the admission process. Examples include a copy of a fourth-quarter report card or notice of awards received or other significant accomplishments. Please mail these materials to: Cistercian Preparatory School, Attn: Admissions Office, 3660 Cistercian Road, Irving, TX 75039.

What grade levels attend Cistercian?

Cistercian serves grades 5 - 12.

What are the school hours at Cistercian?

Students arriving before 8:00 a.m. are to go to the lunchroom for general supervision. At 8:00 the opening bell will ring and students may go to their Form rooms. Between 8:00 and 8:25 students are permitted to leave the classroom to take care of business i.e. returning a book to the library or meeting with a teacher or coach. Classes begin at 8:30 a.m. and conclude at 3:30 p.m. for all Forms (grades).

What are the average class sizes at Cistercian?

The faculty to student ratio at Cistercian is 7 to 1. There are approximately 22 students in each class section in the Middle and Upper Schools.

Are there after-school programs for students in the Middle School?

The School’s lunchroom is supervised on school days from 7:30 – 8:00 a.m. Boys may remain on campus after school to attend club activities, to receive extra help, to study in the Library, or to wait for a late ride home. In the afternoons, the lunchroom is supervised from 4:00 – 4:30. Students must be picked up by 4:30 p.m. Students may work in the school only under supervision.

Does Cistercian provide bus transportation?

Yes. The School operates buses to and from school on certain established routes across the metroplex.

Does Cistercian have a Cafeteria?

Cistercian has a lunchroom, but not a cafeteria. Students bring their lunch from home each day. On Tuesday and Thursday of each week the Student Council and Community Service Council sell pizza.

Does Cistercian accept exemption affidavits in lieu of a current immunization record?

Cistercian does not accept exemption affidavits, whether medical exemption or exemptions for reasons of conscience, under any circumstance.

At what grades are there competitive sports?

School-sponsored sports teams begin in Form III (grade 7). In grades 5 and 6, most boys play on teams organized by parent volunteers that compete in various leagues.

What percentage of seniors go on to colleges?

100 percent of Cistercian students attend a four-year college or university.