I love this school from it's teachers to the the principal, from the campus to the community. But really, it's all about the community here. I know that my children are making lifelong friendships in addition to preparing for admission to the best high schools in LA (and the students do matriculate to the very best of the best schools). You can spend more elsewhere, and perhaps have a smaller class size, but I have seen no noticeable benefit in terms of where the kids end up after elementary school. Parental involvement is a key component of the school culture. The athletics program is top-notch and allows for students to participate in many sports, and at varying levels of skill. The "middle school" classes (6th/7th/8th) have particularly excellent teachers, but the Kindergarten teacher is a bit of a local legend. While it is a Catholic school, it is just the right level of sincerity and simplicity - not judgy or "holier than thou", we are a VERY accepting school and parish. I consider myself and my children truly fortunate to have landed in such a fantastic place.
St. Brendans has an amazing community of involved parents wonderful children and a excellent staff. I love that we are right in the middle of a huge city and yet we feel totally embraced by this fantastic school with a close knit down to earth small town feeling.
K5 this year. Comparing apples to apples, this is a great school. Catholic school is slow growth in early years. Go to Citizens if you want project based education that, at first, seems more "advanced." Pack extra pants for the long hike to the bathroom though, assuming teacher/escort's not too busy with the many mainstreamed special Ed kids. 3rd Street expects 6 kinder classes. HP Elem, Page, Weho, Larchmont, or math magnet lacks funding. My son's high level reading/math but, he does 10 mins of same letter book he did when he was in JK/Pre-K. Meh, whatever. Real conversations with the teacher and other parents helped me work through it. Kinder teacher is standoffish but, she and all the teachers I spoke with are kind, open-minded, fair and consistent. Finally, the afterschool offered Lego, Chess, Soccer, Taekwondo all year and T-Ball starting up now. Want Echo Horizon abacus math? Rock climbing at St. James? Well, go pay for it, then. "Malignant influence" and high sugar content rendering kids violent. Really? Maybe wake up a little earlier and pack a lunch. Lunch vendor has changed recently with organic offerings, btw.
My child went to Saint Brendan for a year, and my general impression was that the level of academic rigor was poor. For homework, my child received the exact same type of worksheet everyday for the entire school year. There is no cafeteria, but occasionally lunches extremely high in sugar are catered to the children rendering the students violent and disobedient. I did not perceive the diversity that previous reviewers proclaimed, as the school is predominately white and middle class, accompanied with the according hypocrisy. The principal is genuine, however, she is incapable of controlling the malignant influence that some teachers are exercising.
St. Brendans has an incredible community of involved parents, wonderful children and a great staff. We treasure the fact that we're smack dab in the middle of a huge city and yet we feel totally embraced by this wonderful school with a close knit, down to earth, small town feeling.