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116 Montecito Avenue
Oakland, CA 94610

School website
(510) 285-9600
(510) 899-7298
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Map of St. Paul's Episcopal School address.
December 04, 2014
St. Paul's is an amazing school that offers a tremendous amount of resources to students. My son entered Kindergarten this year and truly loves going to school every single day! He is learning Spanish and even participated in a toy robotics type class. I wish I went to this school when I was a child. The campus is state of the art with all of the technology bells and whistles (Ipads, Projectors, New Apple Computers) and the music and art program are top notch.

- submitted by a parent
November 15, 2013
Our child is currently in the 7th grade at SPES. He joined in the 6th grade, and we could not be happier. We love the philosophy and social mission of the school. Not only is our child receiving a top-notch education, he is in an environment that fosters his emotional well-being and sense of social responsibility. We have found the teachers to be phenomenal. They know our child very well, both his strengths and his weaknesses. Teachers and staff have been terrifically approachable and responsive, and there is an incredible level of parent engagement. The greatest measure of success, though, is the happiness of our child. He genuinely enjoys school, very much likes his teachers, is engaged outside of just classwork, and has lots of terrific friends. So for us, SPES has been a win-win academically and socially. Cannot recommend more highly!

- submitted by a parent
October 17, 2013
Our child recently completed kindergarten at SPES. We were very happy with the experience. Our child has thrived both socially and academically in this environment. She looks forward to going to school each day. We were looking for an academically challenging environment that also fostered a love of school and learning. We feel that we have found the right school for our family. Our child's teachers were supportive and nurturing, but also took the time to work with us on building self-advocacy skills in our child. We have found the school fosters positive and respectful relationships amongst the children. We are very pleased with our decision and are looking forward to the years ahead.

- submitted by a parent
November 08, 2011
We are in our third year at St. Paul's and while our first two years (K-1st) were wonderful, we've hit a roadblock. We love the philosophy of the school, the sense of community, the diversity, but we're dismayed by the great number of teachers who left at the end of the school year last year (two teachers did not return and gave less than two weeks' notice before the school year began). There are wild inconsistencies between teachers per grade (one first grade teacher can be warm, engaging and exceptional; the other cold, belligerent, and disengaged). We question how hires are made and how much the school is committed to attracting exceptional teachers who love their kids. St. Paul's has had an excellent reputation in the past. I hope that they take action to keep good teachers, and moreover, good kids. It would be a shame to see them continue this downward slide.

- submitted by a parent
October 17, 2011
We are very happy at St. Paul's; teacher engagement and excellence is one of the strongest parts of our educational experience. Every teacher we have had has been caring, smart, creative, capable, and inspirational. The teachers do a wonderful job of keeping students engaged in the curriculum, integrating the social and academic curricula through thoughtful pedagogical best practices, and have been available and responsive to parent questions. We are on the middle to lower income scale at St Pauls--we are a multiracial family, receive 50 percent aid and have a tiny house in a marginal neighborhood. We have play dates here and in people's Piedmont mansions; while economic differences are real, they do not stop our community (kids and parents) being authentic and connected.

- submitted by a parent
June 22, 2011
SP's is really pretty average in that some teachers are good while some others are pretty uninspired and fairly traditional (and sometimes shaming) in their discipline. Yard vigilance could be better since that's where bullying seems to happen most. Some kids who are real behavioral problems are allowed to stay at St. Paul's, and per another poster, the head of the school can be pretty autocratic. Although my children don't have learning disabilities, parents of kids with learning disabilities complained that their kids really didn't get what they needed this year in the way of support and follow through. St. Paul's seems to do a good job when it comes to their students knowing how to behave in public. Chapel can be sweet and sometimes unending and boring. There seems to be a divide along class lines--the kids from Montclair don't seem to have play dates with the kids from E. Oakland.

- submitted by a parent
April 26, 2010
I cannot say enough good things about St. Paul's. We have a kindergartner and a 3rd grader currently at the school and both are thriving. My children's learning styles could not be more opposite so I am particularly appreciative of the Differentiated Learning techniques used throughout the grades. From my first tour as a perspective parent to just yesterday every visit to the school has put a huge smile on my face. I only wish I could have attended St. Paul's!

- submitted by a parent
April 15, 2010
St. Paul's has been an amazing place for our entire family. In addition to excellent academics, superb music program, consistent athletics and a nationally recognized service learning program, the community our family has come to be a part of and thrive within has been the biggest gift. The school and its administration have done much to bring the school to the forefront of educational institutions. The school has a brand new website through which a great deal of information is consistently disseminated to the parent and student bodies. This has tremendously enhanced communication between the parents and the administration and also permits parents up-to-the-minute access to their kids' programs, assignments and activities. Look for yourself: www.spes.org. You can see the vitality of the school and its student body. The dedication of the faculty and administration to the education of the whole child at St. Paul's is truly inspirational.

- submitted by a parent
April 14, 2010
St. Paul s provides a rich academic experience, fosters a love of learning, and empowers its students to make a difference in their communities. At St. Paul s, we have found talented and loving teachers dedicated to really getting to know each of our children as an individual and helping them to reach their full potential. The Administration does a great job of communicating and is always accessible. You can nearly always find the Head of School out in the morning warmly greeting the children and helping them prepare for the day ahead. I don't think you will find a cooler group of parents anywhere. In short, after 9 years, St. Paul's has been a great place for our kids and for us.

- submitted by a parent
no rating April 13, 2010
St. Paul's has been a wonderful experience for both our kids and us. The school offers superb academics in a nurturing and supportive environment. The teachers and staff are super dedicated and their tenure exceeds the average of many private schools. The school administration does a great job of communicating to the entire community in a thoughtful and inclusive way. The administration strives to include faculty, administration, students, etc. on decisions/initiatives. There are a number of joint committees where teachers/staff are members are asked to engage and share their thoughts and ideas. Our community also empowers our students; kids are leading committees on issues that affect their daily lives. While no academic institution is prefect, St. Paul's is pretty close to utopia for our family.

- submitted by a parent
April 13, 2010
St. Paul's is a school with a soul -- a uniquely Oakland institution whose spirituality, academic excellence, service learning, diversity, community, advocacy, and vitality are part and parcel of the city in which the school resides and in which our children experience the changing world in all its wonderous, miraculous moments. Our family has been part of the St. Paul's community for six years. We most appreciate 1) the unbelievable teachers whose inspiration, love, professionalism, diversity, and passion for teaching thoroughly engage our children 2) parents - we are a unified team with shared values and a collaborative approach to resolving any issues that arise -- we are good friends. 3) the values of the school are evident in each inquisitive, compassionate St. Paul's student. St. Paul's is our gift to our children and ourselves.

- submitted by a parent
January 31, 2010
There are so many great things about St. Paul's: diverse student body (for private school), urban setting, high academic standards, real attention to compassion and respect among students, a fantastic music program, and many great teachers. However, the school is run in a very authoritarian top-down way that may be off-putting to some. Decisions that impact all families at the school are made with little or no parent input. The administration does not do a good job of disseminating important information, and at times relays inaccurate information in order to portray the school in the best possible light. There seems to be quite a lot of turnover in the staff, too, perhaps due to the heavy hand of the administration. Despite these problems, St. Paul's is still an excellent school, but families should be prepared to accept a somewhat dictatorial administration.

- submitted by a parent
no rating November 03, 2009
Our school grows real human beings who know how important it is to be a part of and give back to community. We are a community of critical thinkers, who lead with our hearts. We are a family of singers and writers and watchers and doers. This is my eighteenth year teaching accapella singing and our music program is second to none. I LOVE THIS SCHOOL!!!!!

- submitted by a teacher
no rating October 01, 2009
This is my tenth year as a teacher at St. Paul's. It is a great place to work, play and learn. It is a very supportive and diverse community.

- submitted by a teacher
September 16, 2009
Academic excellence, the most beautiful diverse student body, art, music, math and myth. Service Learning starts in kindergarten. We grow leaders at St. Paul's. Our graduates have founded clinics in Africa and schools in Asia. The world needs more like us!

- submitted by a teacher
no rating September 16, 2009
It's a great place for your child to grow! It's a place where your child can be comfortable being exactly who she/he is and get all the support necessary to thrive in the outside world.

- submitted by a parent
no rating September 16, 2009
St. Paul's is a beautiful and complex community within the city of Oakland - a model for other compassionate leaders to follow to insure that all our children thrive!

- submitted by a parent
September 11, 2009
St. Paul's is an amazing school. I have one child who graduated, very well prepared for high school, and one who is now in middle school. The teachers are incredible -- they worked very well with both of my kids, one of whom is high-achieving and one who needed extra help. The administration is responsive, and has improved recently with new staff. St. Paul's has a challenging mission -- to educate a very diverse student body and prepare them to be strong citizens of the world. It carries out that mission exceptionally well. Also, the parents are the coolest! I can't believe what a diverse, fun, welcoming, interesting and hard-working group they are.

- submitted by a parent
September 08, 2009
I have a Freshman at BOD who was a lifer at St. Paul's, and we feel the school is directly responsible for her excellent academic preparation (she has straight A's in HS), her compassion for others, and her mature world view. She embraced St. Paul's diversity and is well prepared for living a successful life. We couldn't be happier with the results as her parents. That is not to say that everything at the school is perfect, but I have seen a willingness to address issues and a culture that creates great kids.

- submitted by a parent
no rating September 08, 2009
I have a 5th grader at St. Paul's, and we feel the school has done a good job with her education and a great job making her a better person. Through service learning and the school's culture of acceptance of diversity in religion, culture, race and economic circumstances, she has learned about people less fortunate than her and is also ready to be a good global citizen. While not every academic experience has been perfect (few schools are unless they are overly selective in acceptance and excessively funded), the excellent teachers have more than compensated for any weak ones along the way. We are very happy as parents there with the administration and staff.

- submitted by a parent
August 20, 2009
My son graduated from St Paul's, went to high school at CPS and will be a freshman at Occidental this fall. My daughter will be an 8th grader at St Paul's this year. We have found the academics to be rigorous without being overwhelming. My kids learned to be organized, learned how to study, and did homework without much parental involvement. The teachers have been caring, creative and engaging, and the administration approachable and easy to communicate with. The community is down to earth, supportive, interesting and varied. The service to the community program is wonderful and provides a wider view of the world to students. Kids graduating from St Paul's are good kids who are prepared for their next step.

- submitted by a parent
June 09, 2009
The middle school is a disappointment. A couple teachers are barely competent, and while the school emphasizes respect, that seems to work only one way, which is to say that students are often not respected as individuals nor are they listened to if they voice concerns. There is also little response to parent issues. A number of good teachers have left in the last several years. We attended for the academics and the philosophy. Neither lived up to the way the school is sold.

- submitted by a parent
October 24, 2007
My two kids transferred to St. Paul's from another private school two years ago and have thrived. The academics are terrific and the parent community is active. My daughter struggled with reading and her third grade teacher was very supportive. She read one-on-one with her. My daughter loves the supervised study hall in the St. Paul's after-school program, where she can get her homework reviewed. My son is extremely active and athletic and, to my relief, has always found enough space to run around in. The kids play football in the grassy areas across the street and basketball and wall ball in the playground. The homework has been just the right amount to improve their math, reading and writing skills. When my son was having difficulty staying in his seat during class, I spoke with his teacher and we strategized. She was very open and we found a solution.

- submitted by a parent
September 26, 2007
I have two children at St. Paul's School. It is a wonderful school, with most of the teachers being exceptional. The academics are demanding (especially in the middle school) and children learn a great deal about contributing to their community and each other. The principal leaves a lot to be desired...rarely responds to parent's concerns, does not return phone calls or emails. The school would be an ideal learning environment if they had better leadership.

- submitted by a parent
August 22, 2007
I have two children attending this school...one for eight years and the other for five years. I believe it used to be a great school, but has gone downhill significantly since the new Principal, Karen Merry, took over. Teachers don't stay, there is no response to parents' concerns and issues...and this is from a school that charges close to $14,000 a years.

- submitted by a parent
March 20, 2007
This review submitted without content.

- submitted by a parent
May 03, 2006
This is one great school. I have two kids in elementary there. One expects any private school to do the job academically, and St. Paul's does very well. More importantly, St. Paul's teaches kids to be thoughtful members of their communities, from home to school to city to planet. Its morals curriculum is very humanistic and well-integrated into the general curriculum. It has a full-time service learning (i.e., community service) coordinator! St. Paul's also has a commitment to SES diversity, manifested by 30%+/- of its students being on financial aid. It wants to reflect Oakland and it does. It does a pretty good job of discussing race and ethnicity and making people of color comfortable, though hey, it's still a white-dominated school. Very gay-friendly (this said as a straight white woman who is involved in diversity work there.)

- submitted by a parent
April 19, 2006
This review submitted without content.

- submitted by a parent
February 07, 2006
We had one child attend, and we have mixed impressions of the school. Strong academics, a challenging social environment with somewhat passive and ineffective approach to addressing teasing and bullying. Good arts and music curriculum. Strong teachers. School management tend not to pay much attention to parental input. Awkward urban location.

- submitted by a parent
February 16, 2004
I have sent two children through St. Paul's. The school prides itself on being a 'private school with a public purpose'. Diversity is real at St. Paul's and the school has great academics and teachers in a warm environment. The facilities are improving, but the school takes advantage of local areas, such as the park at Lake Merritt. Overall, I would send my children there again over any other private school in Oakland.

- submitted by a parent

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St. Paul's Episcopal School
116 Montecito Avenue, Oakland, CA  94610
(510) 285-9600
Last modified St. Paul's Episcopal School is a Private school that serves grades K-8
St. Paul's Episcopal School Rating: 4 out of 5 based on 30 reviews. Top