Athletics first. Catholicism second. Academics third. Just look at the physical spaces and you'll see the priorities. Not a single kid who graduated in 2016 is attending an Ivy League school. Zero out of 220! Maybe this was just a weak class. Or maybe the school didn't transform this crop of boys as we expected.
Both of my sons attended Damien and are now in Ivy League schools. Students are well prepared for college and many attend prestigious universities including Cornell, Brown, Yale, Stanford, Harvard, MIT, Cal Tech.. a wide variety. There is a deep sense of community and tradition at Damien. Students must log 100 hours of volunteer service but many students exceed the minimum requirement. Students do not need to be Catholic to attend. Outstanding school in all aspects.
My son graduated in 2008 and recently graduated from the United States Military Academy at West Point. Damien made it possible by preparing him academically for the rigors of West Point. A measure of the school is that each year several students will be accepted into one of the academies and many other fine universities and colleges. If we had to do again, we would send him to Damien. Like any school, you get what you put into it. If a parent expects Damien to raise his son, no school will fit that build.
I couldn t have chosen a better school for my son. Damien is big on preparing the students for college. You have to completely not want to go to college, or have parents that do not participate in the process to not make it on to higher education. It s all male so it s less austerely, and all the staff is approachable. The teachers respond to every email and concerns within hours. You will receive news letters with detailed information twice a week. They start the college workshops as a sophomore. My son is a senior, plays ice hockey for Damien, has made friends with some quality young men, and has been accepted to ASU and San Jose State. Thank you Damien High School for all that you ve done.
Damien has provided me an excellent education, and I can easily recognize that after only two years there as a student. I recommend students consider taking Honors and AP courses, as I have. The classes are understandably more difficult, but the teachers' excellence make them doable. The homework load can be challenging at times, particularly during a sport season, though ultimately teachers are very understanding and fair. What I appreciate most about Damien is that you completely control your experience when you're there. The student is able to decide what their four years will be like. An extremely diverse course offering if available, both in terms of subject matter and difficulty. As such, the student determines how challenging his four years at Damien will be, and how much he wishes to challenge himself. I highly recommend this school, and believe the only drawback is the limited nature of a single-gendered school. The school initially assures you that much tri-school community activities are available, This is not the case. Many activities take place early in the year, but after January, these opportunities dry up, and the non-coed nature of the school becomes apparent.
My son is a freshman at Damien and I have been very pleased with our experience thus far. I have seen tremendous growth in the the effort my son puts forth on a daily basis towards his academics, and a heightened sense of maturity. He is already thinking seriously about his career choices. This is due to the fact that Damien expects and assists the boys to prepare for their future and gives them tools and technology to help them. My son has made many friends and speaks highly of his teachers and coaches. I would highly recommend this school.
I am a parent who was once very excited about Damien because I thought our child would attend school with parents whose values were similar. Unfortunately, this assumption was wrong. Please be careful about the parties and sleepovers. We discovered that many of the parents hosting these social events are oblivious to the activities of their children. Despite the fact that the school is Catholic and character development is a big part of its philosophy, we learned that there are large numbers of children involved in using drugs and under aged drinking. We were also surprised by the parent cliques, materialism, and bigotry among students. My spouse and I figured our child could get that dysfunction from any run-of-the mill public school. We were expecting something more from the Damien community. The school now includes a mandatory drug testing fee in its registration costs. Hopefully this will help.
My son was a 2011 graduate, and he just finished his freshman year at Pepperdine. He made the dean's list both semesters because Damien prepared him for the rigorous expectations he has at Pepperdine. My sons teachers at Damien were awesome especially Mr. Pearsall, Mr. Goldstein, Mr. Douglas, and Mr. Gates. Mrs. Curry is awesome too. She is the reason my son is planning on going to medical school. Damien offers so many AP classes that students should take advantage of them. If you want your son to be prepared for colllege and have wonderful teachers, Damien is the high school your son should attend. My son's memories there are everlasting.
Its sad when you hear some parents give this HS a bad review and put down such great school. I've had three family members go through Damien HS and every one of them have gone off to an Ivy League College with a decent academic scholarship (one of them is now at Harvard getting a Masters Degree.) One has consider the source when you read these bad reviews. Ultimately, the kid is the one that needs to step up and not the parents. For a parent who has to come on this site to complain, its no wonder your child didn't excel at this school. Damien makes boys out of men, but it hard when the parents want to continue to raise babies. I highly recommend this school. This school is not there to babysit, its there to make a boy a man of value and be held accountable.
By far I know this school is outstanding in many ways. Sure you can avoid the tuition and send them to a public school where they may not care at all. I have had several friends and relatives attend here. I went to last year s graduation and noticed how many kids went to great schools: USC, Loyola, Pepperdine, Harvard (1)..etc, etc, etc.. Damien has passed a national average above other schools to get students into USC. Call me a nut but that's a "real" University. After hearing this I think Damien is doing its job. At Damien they discipline students to grow with integrity and values. It is discipline which is a huge element to help students in college. Once students graduate and go to college they do fell adequately prepared. In regards to sports, yes if a student can play the sport well he will play.. Best of luck all hope this helps