What Do They Teach in Catholic Schools?

The Diocese of Des Moines Catholic Schools follows the Common Core program, which is mandated by the State of Iowa. Standards and benchmarks are used in each subject area to guide instruction. Students are assessed on these standards and benchmarks using a web-based Standards-Based Reporting System.

In addition to Common Core-aligned curriculum, we offer early childhood education, STEM education, language immersion (offered exclusively at St. Anthony Catholic School) and diverse learner support.

Early Childhood Education

Our early childhood education programs offer services and classes designed to support brain development, cognitive function and the social-emotional growth of children ages 2 - 5 (before they begin kindergarten). Our age-appropriate, evidence-based curriculum supports all areas of development with assessments to enhance student learning and identify individual needs.

Learn more about the benefits of early childhood education.

STEM Education

STEM programs in elementary schools continue to grow in popularity and availability. Our STEM education is integrated within our core curriculum using the following principles: collaborative learning, hands-on discovery, and individualized instruction and pacing.

Learn more about STEM education and how it can benefit your child.

Language Immersion

At St. Anthony Catholic School, students have the option to experience classroom learning in a whole new way through the school's Two-Way Language Immersion (TWI) program. The TWI track began in 2010 and is available to students in kindergarten through 5th grade. Students in the TWI track experience core subjects like reading, science, math and social studies in both English and Spanish. The goal is to provide students with an opportunity to become bilingual and bi-literate by the time they reach middle school. St. Anthony Catholic School is currently the only school in the Diocese of Des Moines to offer TWI.

Diverse Learner Support

Schools throughout the Diocese of Des Moines have faculty endorsed in special education to meet the needs of diverse learners. Moreover, all faculty benefit from professional development designed to aid our schools in differentiating instruction to ensure academic growth and success for all students. Contact your specific school location for more information about diverse learner support programs.

Social-Emotional Learning

Social-emotional learning (SEL) plays a vital role in the classroom and can positively impact the school culture. SEL helps foster empathy, aids in conflict resolution, and improves interpersonal skills among students. At the Diocese of Des Moines, our schools incorporate social-emotional learning in the classroom through Positive Behavioral Interventions and Supports andRestorative Practices

Win Time

"What I Need" or WIN time is a flexible period of time incorporated into the daily school schedule where extra help or enrichment opportunities are available for students. WIN time fosters student autonomy and goal setting, creating a learner-centered environment where students proactively address challenges with teacher support or collaborative learning.