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Bishop O Dowd High School

Private | 9-12 | 1125 students

Academic and co-curicular excellence, counseling and support, healthy peers

 

Living in Oakland

Situated in an urban neighborhood. The median home value is $191,000. The average monthly rent for a 2 bedroom apartment is $1,340.

Source: Sperling's Best Places
 
Last modified
Community Rating

4 stars

Community Rating by Year
2014:
No new ratings
2013:
Based on 2 ratings
2012:
Based on 2 ratings
2011:
Based on 1 rating

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31 reviews of this school


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Posted November 12, 2013

After reading the reviews I had to add my own. One said he did not like the school,because he was put on academic probation,tough.This school prepares kids for college if you are getting a 2.0 you will not go to 4 year and that is what they are preparing you for. My child has learning disabilities & gets a 3.75! The teachers are fantastic & want to see the kids succeed. There is a place for everyone at this school it is not just for the athlete.As far as being Catholic, they do not shove it down their throat they have mass,retreats,services. As in anything it is what you put into it, if your child is not participating in the Christian aspect of the school that is their own choice. My child is having an excellent experience, and growing into a smart, self assured, compassionate person.
—Submitted by a parent


Posted January 13, 2013

As a parent, this school is large on publicity and short on dealing with or responding to problems. My child identified and photographed a teacher out of line, the administrations response was to do nothing, typical of BOD. IThis truly is a paid for private school, nothing more!
—Submitted by a parent


Posted September 11, 2012

The low rating is due to the lack of support and care students receive from the counselors and administrative staff. 4 years at the school and the counselor still doesn't know my child's name. 2 laptops, 1 phone, numerous books and clothes stolen from lockers, classrooms, etc. No catholic identity and very ghetto. On a positive note, a lot of the teachers are amazing and the sports programs are great. However, it's unfortunate that the people that are most involved in college planning and transition are uncaring and unaware.
—Submitted by a parent


Posted July 13, 2012

I loved this school so much. Its my freshman summer (going into sophomore) Sadly I cannot attend next year due to financial issues. But the school is so warm. Once you find your friends you know that you will be friends with them the rest of your lives. The atmosphere is beautiful, you are surrounded by high achieving students like yourself. The catholic education is not forced on students who aren't catholic, but it is explored. I'm so so very sad that I will not be able to attend, every day I cry my eyes out. I hope that whoever gets the chance to attend this school is very thankful because it is truly the best school on earth <3 The english department is amazing, however freshman! Do not be intimidated if you take honors english it all pays off and you realize it at the end of the year. All the departments are quite magnificent.
—Submitted by a student


Posted October 14, 2011

Sadly, this school has lost its catholic identity, and administrators just put on a good facade. It may as well be Oakland's private college preparatory school with a cross to decorate the buildings, so I think Bishop Cordiolione should sell the building to the folks with money in the Oakland Hills instead of pretending it is a Catholic School, because it already has been sold out of its Catholic values.
—Submitted by a parent


Posted November 15, 2010

i enjoy the school tremendously. the teachers are always there for you and I feel that each member of the staff is there to help you. I recommend this school to everyone.
—Submitted by a student


Posted April 13, 2010

Sadly, the meaning of the word 'Catholic' is lost here. This school is more concerned about it's image than about teaching and demonstrating true Catholic values. The administration is a joke. They know how to spend your money though, all glitz and no substance. It's all a facade! Save your money and spend it on a good college! If a true Catholic education is what you are after, send them to CCD instead.
—Submitted by a parent


Posted October 5, 2009

Academically challenging ... spritually grounded ... diverse staff and student body ... rich music and arts program ... excellent athletic tradition!
—Submitted by a parent


Posted October 1, 2009

This school gets better each month. Kids support each other, academics are superb, technology is the best in the Bay Area. Religious values are inclusive and helpful to kids.
—Submitted by a parent


Posted July 23, 2008

I graduated in 2007. I must say that I love O'Dowd. Besides college, O'Dowd years have been the best of my life. I met my best friends, was envolved in the athletics program, drama, as well as student government. There has been some concern regarding the egocetrism of the students at O'Dowd..GET OVER IT!!...high school is only a microcosm of any given society, especially at O'Dowd where the demographics are diverse. The curriculum is chellenging, so if you are a slacker, you might not like the school. Also, it is very hard to NOT find friends at O'Dowd. Even the shyest, quietest people had at least one person to talk to. Over all the school is great and I would like for my kids to go there one day. M. McFarland
—Submitted by a student


Posted May 29, 2008

My child is an average-slightly below average student and has been at BOD HS for 2 years now. She loves the school overall, the people, teachers, athletics, etc. She simply struggles acedemically and has been frustrated as a result. Although, I must say I have found a great support system there with the counselors, the new special needs counselor and the staff overall. They have all been amazing. The school offers so many great resources and programs for all students of every level that it is all up to the parents and the students themselves if they CHOOSE to succeed. I imagine this is the same in any school environment - how much do you really want to suceed? How much effort are you willing to put in? If you are dedicated and want to do well the help is there for you at BOD.
—Submitted by a parent


Posted May 14, 2008

I went to Bishop O'Dowd for part of freshman year. At first I liked it there, the people where friendly and the classes where focused and students where never out of line or disruptive. But once you get used to the school you can see that the students are very competitive, judgmental, stuck up, overacheavers . The schedual changes every week/day and its ridicoulus. The teachers are rude and they expect way to much. I was on academic probation because i had less then a 2.0 GPA which in my opinion is stupid. the school is also very boring there is no drama, fights, or anything. it is all about school and everyone is so in love with everyone but they are all very fake .


Posted March 16, 2008

The epitome of a brotherhood, this all-boys school is the most nurturing environment one could ask for. With superb academics and one of the best sports programs in the nation De La Salle is a place where brilliant minds can gather. I have been blessed to be a student at the school. They provide after-school and lunch tutoring in all subject areas every day. Probably because the school is not strictly 'colege prep' students are able to thrive more peacefully and with less stress from teachers and fellow schoolmates. The population is very diverse and the studetns go to the some of the top colleges and universities in the nation.


Posted February 28, 2008

O'Dowd is known for their sports and academics. While it is true their academics are high, it is actually easier. I get less homework and actually a 3.0. However the reason for the low rating is the student problem. I feel they are cruel. Also untrustworthy. Honors classes require the required Gpa, aruged with department chairs, cannot change due to policy. Better public schools are alameda or monte vista
—Submitted by a student


Posted May 27, 2007

This is a very good school if you are gifted in academics, sports or drama. If your an average student you will be swallowed up. I would have to say as good as the school is its more about wealth and status than anything else. The principal poses as a devout catholic when in fact, hes nothing but a politician. The school is good for some but not for others. My daughter, my sister and I all attended this school.
—Submitted by a parent


Posted December 19, 2006

This is an outstanding educational institution. The academic rigor is consistent and pervasive. The schools athletic programs and state of the art Theater are world class. Parents care. Parents participate.
—Submitted by a former student


Posted October 2, 2006

A horrible school. The environment is all about money and privilege. If that is what you want for your child so be it. If your child is an average student and/or athlete do not put them through this school. Terrible teachers. Biased Administration. They know they are one of the few private high schools in Oakland and they offer a sub standard product because they can. Do not waste your money! It is all about $$$$.
—Submitted by a parent


Posted August 24, 2006

O'Dowd offers more than academics, more than sports, more than drama, more than music, more than community service, more than religion. They offer it all. Kids come away from O'Dowd as well balanced, confident young adults. I have had one child who attended O'Dowd and enjoyed every day. The staff cares and are well qualified teachers and human beings.
—Submitted by a parent


Posted December 30, 2005

I am a senior at Bishop O'Dowd and I have thoroughly enjoyed my four years here. I suggest taking advantage of honors courses, mostly because the teachers challenge students more, and I am better prepared for college and my future. The athletics are superior to most schools, and they are a great way to make friends and have fun. The drama department is also excellent for students involved in theatre and those who enjoy watching. I have found that almost everybody finds a way to fit in a Bishop O'Dowd and I recommend this school because of the vast oppurtunities it supplies to its students.
—Submitted by a student


Posted December 22, 2005

I have had four kids attend Bishop O'Dowd High school, and overall the experience has been extremely positive. The academics and adminitration is greatly imporving, and I can see an upward trend in the school in all aspects. My kids have utelized A.P. and honors classes and recieved an excellent education. There are numerous sports available, which my kids took advantage of as well. The teams are relativly rigorous and competitive to get a spot, but the coaching and level of play is high. The art and drama departments have also excelled, and put on great shows. With the new administration, it looks as if the school will be getting a lot more funds and donations, and I've heard that it will become a wireless campus, where each student uses a computer while learning. Bishop O'Dowd has provided a very solid education and place for development for all of my kids.
—Submitted by a teacher


Community ratings and reviews do not represent the views of GreatSchools nor does GreatSchools check their accuracy or verify the reviewers' identities. Use your discretion when evaluating these reviews.

About these ratings

The Community Rating is the school’s average rating from its community members (e.g., parents, students, and school staff). The highest possible rating is five stars; the lowest is one star.

We currently do not have any test score information for this school. Unlike public schools, private schools are not always required to report data about their schools or not required to take the same tests as public schools. Many private schools take different standardized tests; however, that information is often made available only to families of enrolled students. We strive to acquire additional private school data whenever available.

Student ethnicity

Ethnicity This school
White 53%
Black 21%
Hispanic 12%
Asian 8%
Hawaiian Native/Pacific Islander 5%
American Indian/Alaska Native 1%
Two or more races 0%
Source: NCES, 2009-2010

College readiness and student pathways

Students typically attend these schools prior to attending this school Parochial
Independent
Public
Percentage of students going to 2-year college 5% (2013)
Percentage of students going to 4-year college 95% (2013)
Colleges most students attend after graduation Many attend UCs and State Coll
30% attend Privates
Many attend Out of State
Read more about resources at this school
Source: Manually entered by a school official.

Teacher resources

Special staff resources available to students Poetry/Creative writing teacher(s)
PE instructor(s)
Music teacher(s)
Math specialist(s)
Librarian/media specialist(s)
Instructional aide(s)/coach(es)
Gardening teacher(s)
Computer specialist(s)
College counselor(s)
Art teacher(s)
Assistant principal(s)
Priest, pastor, or other religious personnel
Reading specialist(s)
Robotics/Technology specialist(s)
Security personnel
School psychologist
School social worker/counselors(s)
Special education coordinator
Tutor(s)
Foreign languages spoken by school staff Tagalog
Spanish
Japanese
Italian
Hebrew
German
French
Dutch
Chinese (Mandarin)
American sign language
Read more about programs at this school
Source: Provided by a school official.

Awards

Community service awards received in the past 3 years
  • Voted Best by Diablo Magazine (2012)

Special education / special needs

Level of special education programming offered
  • Basic - the school offers or partners to provide services based on the needs of individual students
Specialized programs for specific types of special education students
  • Specific learning disabilities
Extra learning resources offered
  • Differentiated learning programs
Staff resources available to students
  • Special education coordinator
Clubs
  • Special olympics

Science, Technology, Engineering, & Math (STEM)

Specific academic themes or areas of focus
  • Engineering
  • Mathematics
  • Science
  • Technology
Staff resources available to students
  • Computer specialist(s)
  • Gardening teacher(s)
  • Math specialist(s)
  • Robotics/Technology specialist(s)
School facilities
  • Access to farm or natural area
  • Computer lab
  • Garden/Greenhouse
  • Outdoor learning lab
  • Science lab
Vocational or skills-based training offered
  • Computer programming
  • Engineering
  • IT support
Clubs
  • Math club
  • Recycling club
  • Robotics club
  • Science club
  • Technology club

Arts & music

Specific academic themes or areas of focus
  • Arts (all)
  • Music
  • Performing arts
  • Visual arts
Staff resources available to students
  • Art teacher(s)
  • Music teacher(s)
  • Poetry/Creative writing teacher(s)
School facilities
  • Art room
  • Music room
  • Performance stage
Vocational or skills-based training offered
  • Industrial / graphic design
Visual arts
  • Ceramics
  • Design
  • Drawing / sketching
  • Painting
  • Photography
  • Sculpture
Music
  • Band
  • Choir / Chorus
  • Jazz band
  • Orchestra
Performing and written arts
  • Creative writing
  • Drama
  • Improv
Media arts
  • Computer animation
  • Graphics
  • Technical design and production
  • Video / Film production
Clubs
  • Anime club
  • Art club
  • Arts and crafts
  • Dance club
  • Drama club
  • Literary magazine
  • Student newspaper
  • Television/Radio News
  • Yearbook

Language learning

Specific academic themes or areas of focus
  • Foreign languages
Foreign languages taught
  • Chinese (Mandarin)
  • French
  • Spanish
Foreign languages spoken by staff
  • American sign language
  • Chinese (Mandarin)
  • Dutch
  • French
  • German
  • Hebrew
  • Italian
  • Japanese
  • Spanish
  • Tagalog
Clubs
  • Foreign language and culture club

Health & athletics

Staff resources available to students
  • Gardening teacher(s)
  • Instructional aide(s)/coach(es)
  • PE instructor(s)
  • School psychologist
School facilities
  • Access to farm or natural area
  • Access to sports fields
  • Garden/Greenhouse
  • Gym
  • Kitchen
  • Multi-purpose room ("cafegymatorium")
Clubs
  • Cooking club
  • Special olympics

Gifted & talented

Instructional and/or curriculum models used
  • Accelerated credit learning
  • Advanced placement courses
  • Gifted / high performing
  • Honors track
Extra learning resources offered
  • Acceleration
College preparation / awareness resources offered
  • College prep programs/courses during the year
  • College presentations or information sessions
  • Community college courses
  • SAT/ACT prep classes
  • School-sponsored trips to college campuses
  • Service Learning & Immersions
  • Summer college prep programs
  • Visiting teachers or lecturers from colleges
Clubs
  • Debate
  • Forensics club
  • National Honor Society
School leaders can update this information here.

School basics

School start time
  • 8:30 am
School end time
  • 3:00 pm
School Leader's name
  • Mr.Steve Phelps, President
Best ways for parents to contact the school
  • Email
  • Phone
  • website
Gender
  • Coed
Boarding options
  • Day school
Is there an application process?
  • Yes
Affiliation
  • Roman Catholic
Associations
  • NCEA

Programs

Instructional and/or curriculum models used

Don't understand these terms?
  • Accelerated credit learning
  • Advanced placement courses
  • College prep
  • Core knowledge
  • Direct instruction
  • Gifted / high performing
  • Honors track
  • Hybrid
  • Outdoor / Farm-based
  • STEM
Specific academic themes or areas of focus

Don't understand these terms?
  • Arts (all)
  • Engineering
  • Environmental
  • Foreign languages
  • Humanities
  • Mathematics
  • Music
  • Performing arts
  • Religious
  • Science
  • Service learning
  • Social justice
  • Technology
  • Visual arts
  • Writing
Bi-lingual or language immersion programs offered

Don't understand these terms?
  • No
Level of special education programming offered
  • Basic - the school offers or partners to provide services based on the needs of individual students
Specialized programs for specific types of special education students
  • Specific learning disabilities
Foreign languages taught
  • Chinese (Mandarin)
  • French
  • Spanish
Level of ESL/ELL programming offered
  • None
Vocational or skills-based training offered
  • Computer programming
  • Engineering
  • IT support
  • Industrial / graphic design
  • Pre-law
  • Sustainability

Resources

Staff resources available to students
  • Art teacher(s)
  • Assistant principal(s)
  • College counselor(s)
  • Computer specialist(s)
  • Gardening teacher(s)
  • Instructional aide(s)/coach(es)
  • Librarian/media specialist(s)
  • Math specialist(s)
  • Music teacher(s)
  • PE instructor(s)
  • Poetry/Creative writing teacher(s)
  • Priest, pastor, or other religious personnel
  • Reading specialist(s)
  • Robotics/Technology specialist(s)
  • School psychologist
  • School social worker/counselors(s)
  • Security personnel
  • Special education coordinator
  • Tutor(s)
Foreign languages spoken by staff
  • American sign language
  • Chinese (Mandarin)
  • Dutch
  • French
  • German
  • Hebrew
  • Italian
  • Japanese
  • Spanish
  • Tagalog
Extra learning resources offered
  • Acceleration
  • Career/college counseling
  • Counseling
  • Differentiated learning programs
  • Mentoring
  • Remediation
  • Tutoring
College preparation / awareness resources offered
  • College prep programs/courses during the year
  • College presentations or information sessions
  • Community college courses
  • SAT/ACT prep classes
  • School-sponsored trips to college campuses
  • Service Learning & Immersions
  • Summer college prep programs
  • Visiting teachers or lecturers from colleges
Transportation options
  • Buses/vans for students only
  • Shuttle from San Leandro BART
School facilities
  • Access to farm or natural area
  • Access to sports fields
  • Art room
  • Audiovisual aids
  • Auditorium
  • Cafeteria
  • Chapel/spiritual reflection center
  • College/career center
  • Computer lab
  • Garden/Greenhouse
  • Gym
  • Internet access
  • Kitchen
  • Learning lab
  • Library
  • Multi-purpose room ("cafegymatorium")
  • Music room
  • Outdoor learning lab
  • Performance stage
  • Science lab

After school program 1

About the program
  • We offer several support programs and students are on campus from 6 AM until 9 PM.
Types of activities
  • Academic
  • Arts
  • Athletic
  • Debate, Environmental Science
Is enrollment limited to students who attend the school?
  • Yes
What grades can participate?
  • 9-12
Is there a fee for the program?
  • No
Website
Phone number
  • 510-553-8626

Summer program 1

About the program
  • Many different levels for kids aged 8-18. See website.
Types of activities
  • Academic
  • Arts
  • Athletic
  • Language
  • Science nature
  • Technology
Operated by
  • Brian Cushing
Dates offered
  • June 17, 2013 - July 19, 2013
Days offered
  • Monday
  • Tuesday
  • Wednesday
  • Thursday
  • Friday
Is enrollment limited to students who attend the school?
  • No
What grades can participate?
  • 3-12
Is there a fee for the program?
  • Yes
Is financial aid available?
  • Yes
How can parents find out more about fees?
  • Visit website
Website
School leaders can update this information here.

Sports

Boys sports
  • Baseball
  • Basketball
  • Cross country
  • Diving
  • Football
  • Golf
  • Lacrosse
  • Power lifting / Weight lifting
  • Rugby
  • Soccer
  • Swimming
  • Tennis
  • Track
  • Water polo
Girls sports
  • Basketball
  • Cheerleading
  • Cross country
  • Diving
  • Golf
  • Rugby
  • Soccer
  • Softball
  • Swimming
  • Tennis
  • Track
  • Volleyball
  • Water polo

Arts & music

Visual arts
  • Ceramics
  • Design
  • Drawing / sketching
  • Painting
  • Photography
  • Sculpture
Music
  • Band
  • Choir / Chorus
  • Jazz band
  • Orchestra
Performing arts
  • Creative writing
  • Drama
  • Improv
Media arts
  • Computer animation
  • Graphics
  • Technical design and production
  • Video / Film production

Student clubs

Clubs (distinct from courses)
  • Amnesty international
  • Anime club
  • Art club
  • Arts and crafts
  • Book/reading club
  • Boy scouts
  • Chess club
  • Community service
  • Cooking club
  • Dance club
  • Debate
  • Drama club
  • Foreign language and culture club
  • Forensics club
  • Literary magazine
  • Math club
  • Mock trial competition club
  • National Honor Society
  • Recycling club
  • Robotics club
  • Science club
  • Special olympics
  • Student council/government
  • Student newspaper
  • Technology club
  • Television/Radio News
  • Yearbook
School leaders can update this information here.

School culture

Dress Code
  • Dress code
Bullying policy
  • This school has a bullying and/or cyber bullying policy in place.
Parent involvement
  • Attend parent nights
  • Chaperone school trips
  • Coach sports teams or extracurricular activities
  • Organize cultural events
  • Organize fundraising events (school auction, bake sales, etc.)
  • Present special topics during curricular units
  • Serve on school improvement team or governance council
  • Tutor
  • Volunteer in the classroom
  • Volunteer time after school
School leaders can update this information here.

Apply

 

This school accepts applications on a

rolling basis

 
Apply now
 

What are your chances?


4 out of 10students were accepted for the 2013-2014 school year.


Students accepted for the 2013-2014 school year
300
Applications received for the 2013-2014 school year
760
Students typically come from these schools
Parochial
Independent
Public

What does it cost?

Tuition range for the 2013-2014 school year
$15000 - $16000
Vouchers accepted
No
Financial aid offered
Yes.
School-based aid
Outside scholarships

Planning ahead

Students typically attend these schools after graduating
Many attend UCs and State Coll
30% attend Privates
Many attend Out of State
College preparation / awareness offered
College prep programs/courses during the year
College presentations or information sessions
Community college courses
SAT/ACT prep classes
Summer college prep programs
School-sponsored trips to college campuses
Visiting teachers or lecturers from colleges
Service Learning & Immersions
Students' post-graduation plans in 2013
2 year college - 5%
4 year college - 95%
Notice an inaccuracy? Let us know!

9500 Stearns Ave
Oakland, CA 94605
Website: Click here
Phone: (510) 577-9100

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