LIfe At Prep
Frequently Asked Questions
The Student-Parent Handbook is your best place. It contains information about the mission of the school, academics, attendance, student health and welfare, discipline, daily routines, and clubs and activities.
The Student-Parent Handbook is a good place to start for those kinds of things, but your son will also learn a lot through his daily interactions with teachers, staff and students. And, if he has questions, teach him early to ask for help. It is a great life skill and there are so many people here who want to help. Start with his Big Brother or a teacher, but anyone is generally willing to help. The first semester as a freshman is a time of transition, and there will be some bumps in the road. Be patient with your son and help him build the habits that will help him become independent.
Students are expected to check their email, the school announcements, Canvas and the Dean of Students' bulletin board each day. If they do that, they should be on top of things. In that light, we tell our students that “ignorance is not an excuse.”
Email is the best way to contact our teachers or staff, but you should also feel welcome to phone them. Our goal is to provide a response within 24 business hours of your initial contact.
Raising an adolescent male is no easy task. There are problems that your son will face that are unique to the times in which we live. We at Prep offer a partnership with you as much as possible during these difficult years. People from the Guidance Office or the Dean of Students Office will be happy to meet with you or talk with you if problems arise. If we can be of help, please call. School counselors do not conduct family therapy or provide psychological services but can provide great resources for help in those areas.
A major role of the school counselor is to implement our career and college planning curriculum. They will also help your son with course registration each year. They work with our academic resource department for students who struggle with school work.
Creighton Prep offers three systems - PowerSchool, Canvas and Family Connection - that allow parents to monitor their sons in their Prep experience. Access to these sites requires separate logins with separate usernames and passwords. We also have an emergency notification service - SchoolMessenger - to provide timely information to you through text, email and phone. For more information on these systems, click HERE.
An adolescent will develop a better sense of self if he learns how to advocate for himself. In order to develop that skill, we encourage our young men to develop healthy ways to share their perspective with the other person. Sometimes we call this disagreeing appropriately. Some coaching or encouragement may be required in this process, but usually our students have a positive experience when they learn to approach a teacher (or anyone) to have a discussion (even when they don’t get what they hoped for).
If the interaction between the student and teacher does not resolve the issue, you may choose to approach the teacher. If that does not resolve the issue, you should contact your son’s counselor or the department chair of the related course. The Dean of Students, Assistant Principal for Student Affairs, Athletic Director or Assistant Principal for Academics would be your next point of contact followed by the Principal.
Teachers will list any needed school supplies on the course syllabus or in a supplementary handout. They will give you a reasonable amount of time to obtain these supplies.
Laughlin Hour (formerly known as Ninth Hour) is a 35-minute period after school from 2:55-3:30 p.m. Laughlin Hour Study Hall is required for a student who did not complete his homework for that day. Students may postpone one Laughlin Hour Study Hall per semester. Laughlin Hour Jug is required for a student who missed morning Jug. In addition, that student must also attend morning Jug the next day. There are no postponements of Laughlin Hour Jug.
Peer Tutoring is an intervention to help students who are struggling academically. Freshmen and sophomores who are failing two or more classes are required to attend a total of six after-school sessions over a period of three weeks (two sessions per week). After the initial three weeks, the student’s grades will be reviewed. If the student is still failing two classes, he must attend an additional three weeks. If the student has raised his grades to passing at the end of any three-week period, he will not be required to attend. Sessions are held on Mondays through Thursdays after school from 3:00-4:00 p.m. Peer Tutoring takes precedence over all clubs, activities, athletics, Laughlin Hour Study Hall, medical appointments, work study or other obligations except Laughlin Hour Jug. A student is allowed one postponement of Peer Tutoring per semester. The consequence for an unexcused absence from Peer Tutoring is Saturday Jug.
Prep recognizes that all students learn differently. The philosophy of the Cura Personalis Program is that fairness is when everyone gets what they need to be successful, not when everyone is treated the same. Prep will provide appropriate, individualized accommodations for students who can provide a clear statement of a specific diagnosis from a qualified professional made within the last three years. Contact your son’s counselor or the Learning Resources Coordinator if you think this program would apply to your son.
If the absence is unexpected, please call the school at 402-393-1128 to let us know and then follow up with a written note when he returns. If you know that he will be absent in advance for something like a doctor’s appointment, send a note prior to the absence. If you forget to send a note, we will need a call from you prior to releasing your son and a note upon his return. If you are planning a family trip, college visit or something like it, your son should complete a Planned Absence Form in advance of his absence. Of course, we encourage families to plan family vacations outside of school time.
The temptation for an adolescent is to define himself against the weaknesses of others instead of through sharing his gifts. As teens mature, they become better at recognizing this. We expect our students to respect everyone and to challenge each other if that does not happen. If your son experiences a lack of respect by others, he can sometimes work through the problem on his own. Other times he may need some coaching from you or an adult in his life, for example, a teacher or counselor at Prep. If a student reports a concern to us, we will listen and develop a mutually agreed upon action plan that supports him and, if necessary, confronts the student who is not behaving as a person for others.
It is the expectation that all students are completely truthful and forthright in every aspect of their lives at Creighton Prep. This honesty is a crucial part of the good character that we expect from Creighton Prep students. This is especially true in matters of academics and discipline. Failure to be completely truthful and forthright may lead to consequences up to and including dismissal from school.
Furthermore, students are expected to self-report as soon as possible (in general, the next school/business day) to the Dean of Students behavioral infractions which constitute major violations of school policies. Failure to do so in a timely and forthright manner will likely magnify the consequences.
Your son is part of the Creighton Prep community. As part of his growing maturity, he must learn that his actions also affect others, in particular, the communities to which he belongs. In the same way that his positive or negative actions affect your family life, we also experience some of the same benefits and burdens of our students’ actions. For your son, we can assist in the teaching process through reflection, appropriate consequences and clarifying future expectations.
As a school, we are also concerned about preserving the good name of our school and for the well-being of all of our students. As leaders and more highly visible representatives of Prep, students in activities and athletics have an increased obligation to represent themselves and their school in an exemplary manner. For those reasons, we have a strict expectation that any major violation be reported to us on the next school or business day. It is always better to let us know before we hear about it another way.
Contact us, usually his counselor. Information received from students or parents who voluntarily seek help from school authorities concerning the student's use of a controlled substance before being found to be using or possessing such substances will be maintained in confidence and will not serve as a basis for disciplinary actions. However, this does not provide immunity for disciplinary action should evidence emerge under our rules of apprehension. This basically means that we want to assist you in any way that we can, but we also must face consequences related to any incident that becomes a “public issue.”
Studies at Prep indicate that our students perceive that there is greater use than there actually is. The same studies indicate that the majority of our students do not regularly use alcohol or marijuana (or other drugs). Still, there is a lot of pressure to use and confusion about what is right. Set clear expectations that he does not use alcohol or drugs. Keep the conversation open. Be aware of where he is going and don’t hesitate to reach out to other parents, especially at homes where your son will be spending time.
As adults, we can struggle to determine what is right. Our approach at Prep is that it is never acceptable to host a party with illegal substances. We reject attitudes that our son needs “to learn how to drink socially” or “to celebrate on a special occasion (like Homecoming).” We also discard approaches that suggest that it is okay for my son and his friends to drink in my home because a parent will be watching. Most parents do not hold these positions, but negotiating with an adolescent can be confusing! Keep in mind that studies clearly indicate that the longer a person delays alcohol, tobacco or drug use, the less likely he or she is to abuse these substances in their lifetime.
All minor and some major offenses are handled on the spot in class, halls, commons, gym, locker room, anywhere on or off campus by the faculty or staff member through the use of the demerit card. Each semester, students receive a card with space for 40 demerits on it. After a student receives five demerits, he earns one Jug. In some cases a student may earn a Jug without receiving five demerits. Jug is a before-school detention that begins at 7:15 a.m. Jug must be served within one school day of the posting of the Jug list. Students receive one regularJug and one SaturdayJug postponement per semester. Students will also be allowed one work Jug per semester. Personal appointments, jobs or cocurricular activities are unacceptable reasons for missing Jug.
Demerits are part of our process of teaching about appropriate behavior or a social skill. If your son is earning demerits, look for a pattern and discuss it with him. For example, if your son earns demerits for being tardy to class, it may be because his locker is a mess and he can’t find his books. The solution is pretty simple in that case. Sometimes the issue can be more complicated. In any case, don’t hesitate to call his teacher, counselor or the Dean of Students to discuss the issue. Of course, if it is something major, you will hear from us. Otherwise, we will continue to teach our students in areas beyond the academic realm.
A few demerits as your son is transitioning to Prep are not unusual as he learns the new routines and adjusts to high school. Don’t worry too much about these. If things don’t settle down during the first few months of school, you might want to give us a call.
The average number of demerits earned by a student in a semester is about five. A very small percentage of students earn 25 demerits. You will hear from us if your son does, but you can always check your son’s discipline status on PowerSchool.
All students who have unexcused absences from morning Jug are required to attend Laughlin Hour Jug on that same day and serve Jug the next morning as well. Laughlin Hour Jug meets every day, Monday through Friday, for 35 minutes after school. If the student is assigned, attendance is mandatory. Missing will result in a Saturday Jug. Personal appointments, jobs, rides, meetings or cocurricular activities are unacceptable reasons for missing Laughlin Hour Jug.
Saturday Jug is from 8 a.m.-12 p.m. for more serious or repeated offenses. The Dean of Students assigns Saturday Jug. Attendance is mandatory. Personal appointments, jobs or cocurricular activities are unacceptable reasons for missing Saturday Jug. Students who are unexcused from Saturday Jug will generally be assigned multiple Saturday Jugs and be suspended from cocurricular activities.
In a single phrase, the dress code can be described as “neat and clean business casual.” Basically, this means conventional colored (khaki, for example) pants or shorts with a dress belt and tucked collared shirt. Tennis shoes and dress shoes with visible socks are the basic footwear. Hair must be a reasonable length and well-kept with no facial hair. Only Prep sweatshirts may be worn during the school day. Coats must be kept in the locker during the day. Students may not wear earrings or other piercings or display tattoos at any time.
Because adolescents sometime push limits, there are some clarifications in the complete dress code which we recommend reviewing carefully in the Student-Parent Handbook. We expect our students to dress up a bit to reflect the serious academic nature of what we do here at Prep. When a student is not in dress code, he will receive disciplinary consequences and be required to resolve the problem before returning to class, even if that means that he must go home to change.
Several times throughout the year, we will have spirit days called Blue/White Days. On those days, students wearing a Creighton Prep shirt, T-shirt or sweatshirt may wear jeans or non-athletic pants or shorts that are of reasonable size, clean, and worn appropriately. All other points of the regular dress code are in effect.
On announced days, such as the Mass of the Holy Spirit, students are required wear a solid button up dress shirt with a tie and dress pants. The following are not permitted on these formal dress days: shorts and polo shirts. All other points of the regular dress code are in effect.
The best course of action is to put his name on his books and other materials followed by securing his valuables in his school locker or on his person. If something is missing, it is usually lost. Whether something is lost or stolen, he should check with the Dean of Students Office where he may find his item in lost and found or make a theft report. Valuables (books, wallet, phone, etc.) should not be stored in the locker room.
No. Backpacks must be stored in his locker during the school day. He may carry a laptop in a protective case, but it cannot double as a backpack.
Prep students must have their demerit cards for admission to athletic contests. Simply stated, have fun, cheer for his team and always be a man for others in the way that he treats others, including players, coaches and fans from the other team and officials. On occasion, our young men forget that being a man for others applies to all areas of our life. Our culture promotes trash talking at sporting events. This is not appropriate at Prep because we cannot hold true to our values when we act that way. We expect our students to be counter-cultural.
Prep students must have their demerit cards for admission to the dance. The school sponsors several dances throughout the school year. Dances are an opportunity for students to socialize in a supervised and safe environment. Student behavior and manner of dress should reflect this guiding principle. Young men must wear a shirt with sleeves and pants or shorts that are secured around the waist. Shoes must be worn at all times. Hats and coats are not permitted. Young women who attend a dance must wear clothes that meet the following guidelines: Tight or revealing clothing is not permitted. Shoes must be worn at all times. Hats and coats are not permitted. All dance styles must comply with standards of Christian morality, standards that include modesty and safety.
Prep, Marian, Mercy and Duchesne students are admitted to Prep dances with their demerit card (Prep students) and student ID (Marian, Mercy or Duchesne). Students from all other schools must have a Prep host. Guest passes are available in the Dean’s Office and on the Prep website.
The school is open from 7 a.m. to 5 p.m. with supervision provided 30 minutes before and after school. During non-school hours, students may congregate in the commons (upper and lower), gym lobbies and in the hallways. Students may reasonably access their lockers to retrieve materials at any time. Some days the commons or other areas of the building will be closed to set up for events. Students are expected to clean up after themselves at all times. Students should not gather in the locker rooms (without legitimate reason), classrooms, offices, gymnasiums, secured athletic fields or other unsupervised areas at any time outside of school hours.
Students may enter and exit the building through the Heider Center entrance, west commons entrance and administration entrance. Students may only use the administration entrance during arrival and dismissal times. Depending on the season, coaches will inform student athletes of the proper entrance for athletic practices or games. Parents who pick up their sons after athletic practices should pick up at the Heider Center or west commons entrances. Please follow the traffic flow and pull to the right when dropping off or picking up your son.
Smaller (handheld) devices like a phone may only be used in designated common areas of the school. A teacher would have to grant specific permission to use a smaller device in the classroom. Laptops and iPads (required) may be used for academic purposes in the classroom unless the teacher indicates otherwise. Devices that are misused may be confiscated.
In cases of real need, if you must contact your son, you should ask for the Dean of Students Office. We must concur with the importance of the call. Delivery of non-emergency messages creates unnecessary interruptions in the learning process. The school recommends leaving non-emergency messages on your son’s phone where he can most easily retrieve it during a free period or at the end of the school day.
All parents and other visitors are asked to enter and leave the building through the administration entrance on the east side or the Sullivan Campus Center entrance on the west side. Visitor parking is provided at both locations. School doors are secured. Access control buttons are available near the left door at each location. Visitors to the school must sign in with the receptionist in the administration lobby on the east side and with the receptionist in the Counseling Center on the west side. Visitors are required to wear a visitor badge while on campus and to sign out when leaving the building.
Students who are taking prescription medication during school hours must complete a medical authorization with parent and doctor authorization. The form is available in the Dean's Office and through the Dean's Office web page under Documents and Forms. The Dean of Students Office will assist by keeping the medicine for the student and verifying that it was taken on schedule. School personnel will not dispense any medication for any reason to any student except under doctor's written orders. Student may not carry or self-administer prescription medication, with the following exception. Students who, due to a life-threatening condition, need to carry or self-administer prescription medication must complete the medical authorization form available through the Dean's Office.
A limited amount of non-prescription medication may be carried and self-administered by students. Suspected abuse of this policy may require additional documentation and may also be treated as a disciplinary matter. Students should never share prescription or non-prescription medication with another student.
There are so many opportunities to get involved in clubs, activities, student council, fine and performing arts, athletics, service and retreats. We encourage our students to stretch and try something new. Leadership opportunities arise partly from being involved in cocurriculars at an early stage. It also helps get to know people and feel a part of the community. Lists of clubs, activities and sports are posted in the Student-Parent Handbook and on the website HERE. There will be an activity fair during the first few weeks of school to expose your son to some possibilities.
All students trying out for a sport (both NSAA and club) must complete and turn in the following four forms prior to participating: (1) Athlete/Parent Contract, (2) Health History, (3) Physical Examination Form and (4) Performance Enhancing Drug Policy Consent Form. All four forms must be signed by parent and athlete, and the Physical Examination Form signed by doctor. These forms are available on the Prep website.
Contact the Business Office at 402-393-1190 for help with any work grant issues. They will be happy to help your son or answer any questions for you.
If your family needs to work out a tuition payment problem, it is important to communicate your situation to the Business Office prior to the due date. Regardless, it is important to keep the lines of communication open. Please contact the Business Office at 402-393-1190 to discuss your issues. We will make every effort to assist you.
All Prep financial aid applications are processed through FACTS Grant and Aid Assessment. Students taking the entrance exam in January will receive information regarding financial aid application at the exam. Sophomore, junior and senior families with aid will be sent information in January regarding the online FACTS application process. Parents are responsible for the annual application fee. Required documentation must be submitted to FACTS prior to the financial aid deadlines. Families with need must apply annually for financial aid. Detailed information and deadlines regarding financial aid applications will be posted on Prep’s website in January. For more information, contact the Business Office.