Academics » Byrne Pathway

Byrne Pathway

As a Catholic school, we are called to meet all people with equal dignity and respect, and to serve all, to the best of our abilities. Educator Michael Boyle has compared our Catholic schools to a banquet table, “a place for us to gather, for ideas to be shared, and where family comes together to belong and love.” Our identity as a Catholic school moves us to find ways to invite more students to sit at the table and enjoy the opportunities of a Regina Dominican education.

This is why we launched the Byrne Pathway. We named it the “Pathway” because it does not represent a specific room, or a tracked program of classes, or a labeled group of students. Rather, the Byrne Pathway is an opportunity for qualifying students to be admitted to Regina and to thrive, withfff an individualized educational pathway designed specifically for her, with support tailored to her needs, allowing her to succeed at her highest academic potential. (If a student has a significant learning disability in Math, for example, she will receive support in Math, but perhaps she doesn’t need that support in her other classes).


We now have the ability to admit students who want the Catholic, single-gender, all-girls experience that a Regina Dominican education provides at a level of support that will allow them to succeed and grow.


Who is eligible for support through the Byrne Pathway?


Students who have a documented Individualized Education Plan (IEP), 504 Plan, or a Catholic school education plan in certain diagnosis categories, and who are in need of accommodations or modifications of curriculum requirements are eligible for support through the Byrne Pathway. The capacity of students admitted to Regina Dominican with support offered through the Byrne Pathway is limited so we can provide the needed level of service to each admitted student.


We are committed to the academic success of every young woman who is offered admission to Regina Dominican, and we pledge our support and the resources needed to help her attain her educational goals. We are able to admit students who have certain documented and diagnosed “high incidence” conditions, including:


  • Specific learning disability, dyslexia, dyscalculia, dysgraphia, processing deficits
  • Developmental delay
  • Mild intellectual disabilities
  • Attention Deficit Disorder (ADD), Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder (ADHD)


Supports and Services not offered at Regina Dominican High School

We are not staffed to support, and are therefore unable to offer admission to, students with:

  • Emotional disorders (severe depression, school refusal)
  • Behavioral disorders (oppositional defiant disorder, intermittent explosive disorder)
  • Traumatic brain injury
  • Moderate to severe intellectual disabilities
  • Students with Other Health Impairments (OHI) who are medically fragile
  • Students who require assistance with physical mobility or toileting or who require a 1:1 paraprofessional 
  • Students who have been recommended for a therapeutic placement or who require a therapeutic or rehab setting 
  • Students requiring substance abuse treatment
  • Students with currently unresolved, ongoing, and untreated mental health needs


What services are included in the Byrne Pathway?

  • Access to the support of a licensed special education teacher (Learning Behavior Specialist) who will serve as her case manager and liaison, and as a teacher, co-teacher, or consultant in her academic classes, as defined by her IEP or Regina plan
  • Resource study period with the LBS to receive assistance and academic coaching
  • Individualized class schedule with co-taught classes provided where appropriate and needed
  • Curriculum and assessments in identified areas of need are modified so the student is able to access the same concepts as their classmates.
  • Regina Dominican High School diploma, received by meeting all Illinois requirements. Graduation requirements may be modified as prescribed by her learning plan
  • Fully included in school life, attending classes with general education friends in the least restrictive environment possible
  • Weekly with our school social worker for additional support and guidance


Additional Steps

  • Attend a Regina Shadow Day, Girls Night In, and other Enrollment Department sponsored events to become familiar with our community.
  • Complete the application form on our Ravenna admissions portal.
  • Upload the required documents with a complete diagnosis and most recent educational recommendations. This would include:
    • The most current complete IEP, 504, or Catholic school educational plan
    • The most recent complete neuropsychological report
    • Grades for 7th and 8th grade
    • Standardized test scores from 7th and 8th grade
    • Any other data or progress monitoring information that has been done at her current school
    • Signed parental release for our staff to consult with school personnel or outside therapists, tutors, or academic coaches
  • Meet with RDHS academic staff to discuss her educational needs and current accommodations in place.
  • Consent for RDHS staff to visit her school and do a classroom observation.
  • Consent for RDHS staff to attend her Spring IEP meeting or staffing in order to participate in the transition to high school recommendations.

*In order to be eligible for admission, parents must disclose educational needs and provide the required documentation during the application process; if the needs are not disclosed, the student will be ineligible for Byrne Pathway services.

What happens once we are admitted?

All newly admitted Freshman students, including Byrne Pathway students, attend a course registration night when classes are selected and placement recommendations are made.

A student’s academic success at Regina Dominican is dependent on a strong, trusting partnership between the home and the school. We will work together as a team throughout her four years at Regina in order to chart a course for her education that will help her succeed at the highest levels of her potential, and allow her to meet her goals for post-secondary education.bbb

For further information about the Byrne Pathway, please contact our Principal, Dr. Kassie Porreca. [email protected]