"St. Paul's School has been providing quality Catholic education for nearly 100 y"
Students enrolled 207
Hours 8:00 AM - 3:00 AM
School leader Sr. Kathryn Camacho, SNDdeN
Transportation options None
Before school Yes
After school Yes
Summer program No

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Contact this school

1690 Church Street
San Francisco, CA 94131

School website
(415) 648-2055
Nearby homes for sale
Map of St. Paul's School address.

3 stars
Based on 85 ratings

Let others know what you
think about this school

October 08, 2014
I really appreciate the changes that Sister Kathy has made. She has great confidence in her staff, (as she should...they are excellent), and communicates with parents and families in an attentive and loving way. This is a great community to be a part of!

- submitted by a parent
May 09, 2014
Fabulous, inclusive community, strong academics and excellent, professional faculty and staff -- we could not ask for more for our children!

- submitted by a parent
October 24, 2013
Couldn't be happier! We have an 8th grader and Kindergartener and are so pleased with how things are going. We are especially excited about the Spanish and Technolgy programs--lots of great things happening there. My little kindergartener is excited to go to school and learning tons of new things. Miss Kiss and Espi rock! My 8th grader is a star! Applying to all the top high schools and fully prepared for what's ahead. The teachers are tops and Sr. Kathy (our new Principal) is great!

- submitted by a parent
October 22, 2013
We love St. Paul's both as a school and as a community. Both of our children are doing well in school and are enjoying participating in all St. Paul's has to offer: academics, sports, and various enrichment opportunities. The teachers, faulty and staff are all very approachable and are vested in the success of the students. The new prinicipal is a real go-getter and is making great things happen!

- submitted by a parent
September 20, 2013
We are very pleased that we chose St. Paul's for our children. The new principal is amazing and all of the faculty is top notch. The science program is available for all grades and is taught by enthusiastic teachers. The P.E. program, which is through CYO teaches health and cooking as well as the importance of exercise. The extra curricular activities are wonderful and include, dance, music, drama, chess and of course sports. St. Pauls is truly a great community.

- submitted by a parent
August 06, 2013
I have been a member of St Pauls Parish for over 17 years and an active part of the school Parent community for going on 9 years. We are very excited about our new Principal, Sr. Kathy Camacho. My 3 children have thrived at St. Pauls, been involved in sports, spelling and speech tournaments, numerous music and art classes and extracurricular activities. They have made life long friends, have learned the importance of community. They have recieved an excellent education. I have found so many great like minded friends that recognize and appreciate the time and effort that it takes to educate your kids and the benefits of being involved. I suspect my experience is more in the majority of what other families have experienced.

- submitted by a parent
May 23, 2013
It is a shame that disgruntled parents feel the need to post such negative reviews based on their personal experience. One parent cannot speak for all, and each student/family must find their respective fit. Each and every family should be able to decide for themselves, rather than take the word of a disgruntled family. Be more specific with your reason for the unhappiness -- that way, other families can decide for themselves whether it is an issue that steer them away.

- submitted by a parent
May 07, 2013
I have read over all 82 reviews and offer this wisdom: divided we fall. We have long since given up hope that this community can be cohesive. Some think it can rest on its laurels.....years old by now. Instead of placing the children first, this seems to be the case: 1. Money 2. Parent cliques 3. Power struggle Academics, which I understand used to be a strength are just so-so. Certainly not creative. Workbook driven. My children enjoy sports and that has kept us loyal to a point. 2013 will definitely see us move on. I mean! No principal? what next? No teachers?

- submitted by a parent
April 06, 2013
We LOVE this school!!!! Our family has been part of the St Pauls community for over 13yrs now. With 1 child still at St Pauls, we have never encountered anything as negative as these other post are saying. Every school has it's issues. Not one is Perfect!!! True in the past few years there has been changes. However change isn't always bad. True we have 2 teachers who are the principles, but KNOW that these two are very hard working, approachable individuals who are ALWAYS willing to to help when called upon. I believe that this is simply a Personnal Issue. What really was the issue? If it has NOTHING to do with the education of the child then this doesn't make St Pauls a bad school. From the education point of view our children have always made Honors not just in St Pauls but in High School. St Pauls has prepared them WELL and I'm sure this is the most important aspect when looking for a school. Please don't let other peoples NEGATIVE OPINIONS sway you into not looking at SP. This is a great community not just for the children but for the parents. It is truely a gem.

- submitted by a parent
April 03, 2013
While the kinder and 1st grade teachers are fantastic, kind, caring, communicate with the parents and show respect, you will NOT find the same with the other grades. We were not the only parents to pull our child out (6 out of 19) left the grade and moved on for various reasons. The principal was demoted and instead of hiring a new & affective principal, the diocese/school decided on having two co-principals, who are teachers at the school, be the ones in charge. We found the co-principals unwelcoming, rude and basically were told to just trust them. Our concerns and issues with the school were not welcomed and we tried our best to give this school a shot. I felt I wasted our money and I wish the diocese would come in and clean house. If you simply want to send your child to school and you're not going to voice your concern/opinion about anything, then this is the place for you. However, if you are like most parents and are active in your child's schooling and will be your child's voice, then this is NOT the school for you. Please do look beyond the first two grade and ask the hard questions. Do not be fooled...it will cost you!

- submitted by a parent
March 26, 2013
great community but lacks direction and leadership, what once was is sadly not the same.

- submitted by a parent
February 20, 2013
I could not find a better school to take my child everyday to receive an excellent education, life lessons, loving care, self confidence and excellent values. I am astounded to read the negative reviews as I am very blessed to have the opportunity to take my child to St Paul. The school does not run itself, we have an excellent principal and the teachers are the best out there. We chose to bring our children to this school and am shocked that there are negative reviews of parents that CHOSE to bring their children to this school. I am very happy with my child's progress and the support I have from staff. The principal has an OPEN DOOR policy. If you ever need to contact the staff, they are ALWAYS available. I have shown up at times and have never turned away. The principal has brought extracurricular activities to the school and although we have to pay for them (as any other private school) my child and I are happy with the diferent activities she has the opportunity to participate in. I highly recommend this school; if I felt differently, I would remove my child and enroll her elsewhere. By the way, I am not a board member as a parent suggested in his/her review.

- submitted by a parent
January 28, 2013
My daughter is in first grade at St. Paul's and I am very impressed by the curriculum and the staff. Our experience at the school has been very positive and we appreciate being part of such a wonderful community.

- submitted by a parent
January 14, 2013
My experience with St. Paul s has been excellent! I have experienced good communication with the school and appreciate their being so proactive in informing me of any changes happening in the school. The music and PE programs were not downgraded, but in fact, went through a vendor change. The new PE program currently includes a nutrition component that has received rave reviews from parents at every grade level. St. Paul s after school programs included ballet, chess and art in the fall. The Enrichment committee is working on a number of offerings for the spring. Our new co-principals are doing an excellent job of providing leadership to teachers, parents, and administrators. I always feel welcome to have meetings or discussions with them and feel that I am being heard. Given that the school budget has not been finalized and registration hasn t started, it is inaccurate to state that the school is having financial problems, or to speculate on rumors of merging classes. As a parent, who has children in 3rd, 7th & 8th grade, I could not be happier with the changes that have transpired so far this school year and I am looking forward to more beneficial changes the future holds.

- submitted by a parent
January 10, 2013
St. Paul's is a wonderful school with an outstanding faculty and families that care about the best education for thier son/daughter. Talking to past graduates, that are now at the best high schools in the city and better yet, at colleges in and outside of California, they have all said that St. Paul's prepared them well. The faculty here prepares the students for high school and beyond, which was the reason I have been proud to send my two sons here. There have been changes along the way, as in all schools, but the devotion these teachers have in preparing our kids for high school and be be independent young adults is their main job, and to be leaders who lead with integrity and self respect. I will be a proud parent to watch my second son graduate this year, and I am grateful for all St. Paul's has offered to our family. I am confident that the education he recieved at St. Paul's has prepared him for high school.

- submitted by a parent
January 02, 2013
St. Paul's is not what it used to be in it's heyday. While the school facility is fairly new, the academics are good, the school has gone through tumultuous changes, most for the worse, over the last 4 years. Communication to parents on the what's & why's is nonexistent (Google Fr. Flickinger) . There have been no substantial changes or improvements that affect the kids positively over the last few years. The changes have been deficits like downgrading the beloved music, choir & PE programs (Xmas concert was a substandard at its best), cutting the kids very reasonably priced art program (with no notice to date to the parents), & announcing the change to the PE uniform AFTER selling the excess inventory to the families at a discount (figured out on BTS night why I got that discount!). There is NO leadership at this school & it's been that way for years. Father M is so removed the school runs itself. The school is in the red & there is talk of combining some of the small classes. Take your time & do your research. The first faces you meet will be sweet as pie but don't be fooled. Just like the these 5 star reviews, most if not all, are written by board members.

- submitted by a parent
December 19, 2012
My 6th grader has blossomed into such a hardworking student and is learning time-management skills she'll take into college and beyond. This school emphasizes teaching the students "HOW" to learn which I think sets it apart from other schools.

- submitted by a parent
November 03, 2012
We have been a part of the St. Pauls community for over 8 years and I cannot express how disappointed we are with the lack of leadership this year. As you can tell by the previous comments, we are a very divided school. Morale is low among staff members and parents, and the decisions made by those in charge only seem to be hurting the kids. Having the 7th and 8th grade teachers as principals, has really affected my childs education and I am concerned how prepared they will be for high school. Keep in mind the extracurricular activities are not free and many parents cannot afford them. Before considering this school for your child, do your research.

- submitted by a parent
November 02, 2012
We love St. Paul's ! Our children are thriving! It is a great, diverse community of teachers, parents and kids. St.Paul's has a lot to offer: top academics, sports, enrichment programs and so much more.

- submitted by a parent
November 01, 2012
As a parent living in Noe Valley, I consider my 3 children to be extremely lucky to be attending St. Paul's School. St. Paul's has extraordinary teachers who provide a challenging, first-class education designed to ensure your child becomes a life-long learner and achieve success at every level of academics and life. The co-principals bring a fantastic energy that is inspiring an already strong parent community to do even more to help the school achieve. St. Paul's emphasis on reading, writing, mathematics, science, and Spanish and focused integration of technology at every grade level is transforming the classroom experience and preparing the students for how the world works and success in both high school and beyond. St. Paul's also offers a full range of enrichment activities, including music, art, drama, chess, piano, public speaking, and choir. Perhaps most important is the confidence the school and its community nurture in all the children. The students, my own included, feel they can succeed at any level at anything. And they do. 98% of graduates go on to attend their 1st choice high school. I most highly recommend St. Paul's. Your children will love it and you will too.

- submitted by a parent
October 26, 2012
A large number of families left after this past academic year. The school has gone through three principal changes in the past four years and another one is planned for next year, the faculty is not open to parent involvement in the classroom and school, the pastor does not prioritize the school and is not engaged with the children and their parents, and the parents, faculty and parish do not operate like a true community. There are a handful of parents trying to turn this school around but they have an uphill climb. Read the reviews going back years and you will see the same concerns keep coming up over and over again. The outcome is that good families leave and mediocre school leadership stays.

- submitted by a parent
September 24, 2012
We love St. Paul's School! We enrolled our son last year who is now in 1st Grade. He absolutely enjoys going to school. As parents we find that not only do the teachers, co-principals (Which by the way, is a great advantage because the principals are actually teachers themselves!!! They are very in tune with the students on a first-hand basis!) and faculty exceed our expectations, but the St. Paul's community as a whole does as well. NO OTHER school of this ilk can provide such a warm community feeling. Another reason we chose this fine institution was because of the fine education that it provides. Graduating students are accepted into some of the BEST high schools in the Bay Area and some of the FINEST colleges in the country! It doesn't get much better than that. As an educational stronghold in our community for nearly 100 years, St. Paul's continues to stand tall! By the way, did you know that the hit movie Sister Act was filmed there?

- submitted by a parent
September 24, 2012
Weekend discovered St. Paul's School just this weekend at a school fair. My husband and I were torn between a few schools in the vicinity but now we have made our decision. We, will be transferring our oldest child who is in 4th grade from a nearby competing school and we will enroll our youngest into kindergarten next year. At the fair we had the opportunity to meet a few of the parents, the co-principals (what a neat concept), and even some of the students. The warmth and sincerity we received blew the doors off of the other schools that were there. Referrals are in order for sure. Thank you for such a warm welcome. We look forward to joining the St. Paul's family.

- submitted by a parent
September 18, 2012
As an alum of St. Paul's, all I can do is sing its praises. This school made me the person I am today. Thanks to the teachers and community there, I have become a well-rounded person with an intense love of learning. I can truly say that St. Paul's prepared me for high school and beyond. The teachers were (are!) fantastic. Perhaps the issues some other reviewers are reporting stem from a lack of respectful parent-teacher collaboration? In my day, the parents and the teachers worked together to create a truly vibrant learning community. There was great support on each side. The teachers at St. Paul's always appreciate a respectful dialogue. The teachers here really do know how to reach students. Each year, I was inspired by new lessons, and I dared to achieve more. Whenever people ask me about great schools in San Francisco, I point them to St. Paul's. Frankly, I cannot say enough good things about St. Paul's. This school is fantastic.

- submitted by a community member
September 16, 2012
Sadly to say, St. Pauls school is not the same school that I went to. There is no strong leadership, having 2 co-principals who are also teachers, has really made things worse. There is no neutral party between the parents and the teachers, and no advocate for the children. After 7 kids left my childs class, we only have 12 students left. Our teacher is very nice, but lacks experience and skills. My child had harder work last year. I will not be enrolling my child next year and regret not leaving last June with her classmates.

- submitted by a parent
September 13, 2012
I have a great love for St. Paul's but over the last 5-8 years this school has lacked serious leadership. On the heels of a 1 term principle who left, the school is now being run by 2 middle school teachers who are doing double duty. Turnover from the PTA reflects the frustration of parents who see the staff as unwilling to work making any changes. The pastor was granted a permanent position at the school & is so far removed he makes no difference in the day to day activities. Most of the staff have been there for 10+ yrs & have been "grandfathered" into their routines & ways. The school truly is ruled from a bottoms up prospective & from what I see doesn't plan on changing. These issues which are widely known and have had a financial impact on the school. There was a large exodus of families LY & the school is having enrollment/financial concerns. On a positive note, the parents are great, the community is diverse & the academics are great. However if you are looking to find a place where the staff realizes that they are the stewards of your financial & physical investment, respects and is willing to consider your input, look elsewhere.

- submitted by a parent
September 11, 2012
My child attended this school but we left disappointed over a number of issues. If you are considering this school ask a lot of questions about school leadership, declining enrollment, and vision for the future. If you are looking for a dynamic school, open to parent involvement in the classroom, and incorporation of child enrichment activities beyond academics, this may not be a good fit for you.

- submitted by a parent
October 28, 2011
My daughter just started Kindergarten this year. She came from the attached preschool. She loves it. No complaints from me. I like how the school is small with one class per grade. I agree, everyone I've encountered has been very welcoming. The parents I've met attended this school also. I like that.

- submitted by a parent
October 28, 2011
I have a kindergartener at St Paul s and my child loves to go to school everyday. The kindergarten teacher is wonderful. She is engaged with the kids and teaches them values and social skills, not just academics. Kids get 45 minutes of play time built into their day, and there is a good balance of work and play at school. Science is top notch, hands on, and begins at kindergarten. PE 2x week, Spanish 2x week, Music 1x, Science 1x. After school chorus, sports and drama. The new principal is a breath of fresh air and has made many significant changes to improve the school so far. Parent community is growing and invested. Yes, there is some rigidity in the school culture; yes, some teachers can be downright cranky, but overall, the kids are happy, safe and learning. I ve learned that there is no perfect school, only a good fit for your child and family.

- submitted by a parent
October 26, 2011
My daughter just started Kindergarten at St. Paul's and we love the school. The kindergarten teacher and her assistant are passionate about what they do, which has made for a very easy transition. The academics are exceptional and the facilities are top notch. My daughter is excited to go to school each day and especially enjoys science class. There is a real sense of community among the parents and everyone I have encountered is very welcoming. I am so grateful to have found this school.

- submitted by a parent
July 25, 2011
With back to school rapidly approaching we need to make a decision for the coming semester. We have just been at this school a short while and feel ambivalent. While it is nice to have the religious education, we feel that there is an underlying mediocrity which has not been addressed though many speak of it. We did not research carefully enough before placing our child here, just assuming it would live up to its reputation of years ago. We will research our next move carefully and advise others to really talk to a lot of people before trusting that this is the right placement for your child. Though academics meet state standards, the curriculum is a bit dusty and there is not much energy put in to modernizing.

- submitted by a parent
June 01, 2011
Visiting schools and figuring out which school is the right fit for ones child yet meets the parent's requirements is a daunting task but absolutely necessary. After visiting so many schools both public and private this school was my first choice for many reasons but I only have room to list a few. The science class is hands and not only out of a text book or web site. The Spanish classes are part of the regular school curriculum. The kindergarten teacher guides parents on how to support your child's education at home. The building and school grounds are maintained well and located within a family friendly community. Parent, teacher, and staff involvement is key to the success of so many extracurricular activities and events. This school is a gem and it is because all the people who make up its community care and have made strides towards accomplishing goals that benefit our children and I look forward to the years ahead because it will only get better!

- submitted by a parent
March 30, 2011
Warm community, great education. I now have my third child enrolled at St. Pauls' School. My eldest long ago graduated and is now at college in a nursing program. My younger children are both blooming, learning and enjoy the varied programs. The science program is outstanding and starts with Kindergarteners. The teachers and staff give so much of themselves, it is a pleasure to be on the school grounds. The community is working with the parish to improve the play area for the children, which is much needed. Thank you, St. Paul's.

- submitted by a parent
October 18, 2010
This school is a gem that is now being rediscovered. The teachers care greatly about the kids and school, the parents are very committed and active and the principal is very effective. This school is a big value for the money you pay. Most importantly - the kids are learning, engaged and nice - no public school fights, bullies or behavioral issues. We are very very happy with St. Paul's in Noe Valley.

- submitted by a parent
April 12, 2010
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- submitted by a parent
March 15, 2010
The principal and pastor are extremely proactive and responsive. Niether sugar- coat responses and are responsible,yet personal when it comes to the well being of your child. As has been indicated in previous reviews, you get as much as you put in. As for clicks, I havent witnessed any out of the ordinary. I would encourage more services for various special needs. However, our experiences with our child's teachers has been very good and we feel we are getting the most out of our experience at St. Paul.

- submitted by a parent
February 23, 2010
This is our second year at St. Paul's, and we have been very pleased with all aspects of our daughter's education. The warmth and diversity are what attrated us, and the quality of the academics and the quality of the teachers are what make us stay.

- submitted by a parent
February 12, 2010
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- submitted by a parent
January 22, 2010
I have 3 kids at St. Paul's and it is a great school - I highly recommend this school. As with anything (school, job, life), the return you receive and your satisfaction depends on your effort and participation in the endeavor. My kids are doing great academically and socially, of course we take the time in the evenings to work with them and are involved as coaches and all in the school sports and activities. It is a great community, the parents who are involved are smart, warm and committed to the success of the school. Academically, the kids grades 5-8 recently tested 1 to 2 grades ABOVE the average for their grade, with graduates going to Lowell, SI, Lick-M and other good schools. Finally, the return on value is great - if anything it is under-priced. It is nice school, with good kids and a great community.

- submitted by a parent
January 04, 2010
We will agree with a lot that is said positive. And we will state that it is not enough because we are paying. Though the school gives academics that compare to others in the neighborhood, my friends tell me the public schools are also as good or a little better and no tuition. It is half year now and we will have decisions to make. If you are considering this school, take a good look at the competitions first. Those in charge here at St. Paul seem tired. (Principal and pastor too) My kids deserve so much more. I wish only the best.

- submitted by a parent
December 14, 2009
My child has been at this school for 5 years now, what first attracted me to the school was the warmth and friendliness that came from the parents. That has pretty much worn off as it is quite apparent to me as well as others that there are cliques within the school. They are not friendly nor are they interested in including other's in their groups. Hello, if you leave people out they will not want to volunteer for functions that the school has. The PTG meetings have turned into recrutments for volunteering and not actually listening to parents concerns and issues that the (the PTG) as intermediaries between parents & school staff are suppose to do. Another issue the lack of use of the 'school gym'. All the excuses that are given as to why there are not more than 1 home games per grade and they are unaceptable.

- submitted by a parent
November 07, 2009
We are all entitled to our own experience. Us? We've just gotta' go, though it hasn't all been bad. Nothing ever is. Sports, lunch, safety are good as others point to. We can ask a lot more though. Why are the teachers dis-spirited and a few just unpleasant? We can't in conscience stay to find out. There is too much inconsistency in academics. the principal is uninterested. So, if you are thinking of coming here...research well. Others have a good opinion and experience. some do not! Be sure you talk to a lt of people. Then decide and all the best to you.

- submitted by a parent
September 21, 2009
We have three children at the school. I would rate it a medium. Our kids make progress and are safe, but there is so much more to be desired. I would call the curriculum warmed over. Too much 'paper-pushing' and not enough critical thinking. Luckily we are able to provide that at home.I've approached admin about this and the principal was not helpful, seemed scared of conflict which I did not intend nor present. Our kids all play sports and the program is good. Principal and pastor might consider stepping down and giving the reins to someone with more spirit.

- submitted by a parent
September 18, 2009
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- submitted by a parent
September 08, 2009
We are a new family to St. Pauls. I was very surprised with some of the negative reviews as our experience has been great. The principal has been warm and helpful, the teacher caring and friendly, and the other parents extraordinarily welcoming.

- submitted by a parent
September 06, 2009
We've had 2 kids in St. Paul's, one now in 8th who started in Kindergarten, so we've been here 9 years. So we know the pluses & minuses, trust me, we know... The community is excellent. The parents & parent group are excellent. The education is far above average. You can find better, but pretty much only at schools with far greater resources. You can find problems, but you can find problems at all schools. All in all, it's an excellent neighborhood school, with a great community, and I'm very happy with the education. You will read negative reviews, and I bet I know who they are, and I may even agree with the issues they raise. But looking at the big picture, & talking with other parents I know with kids in other schools, I'm very happy we've stuck it out for the 9 years.

- submitted by a parent
no rating August 14, 2009
After this past school year we decided to take our son out of St. Paul's. For one, the principal is so rude and sarcastic. She rushes you of the phone, doesn't listen to the parents concerns unless you are buddy buddy with her. Second, the assistant secretary is also rude. Instead of helping answer a parents question she is too busy gossiping on the phone or with another staff member. They do have a fter school program but it lacks in enrichment. The education is just ok..considering you do pay. The one person who is very attentive is the secretary Vera she is courteous and get's the job done. I went to this school when I was young and it's sad to see how much it has changed.

- submitted by a parent
August 04, 2009
We finally just made an informed decision not to return in the new semester. Entrusting our most valuable assets (the children) to educators who have raised so many doubts in recent months is just not something we can do, though it was a difficult decision. We were content enough until the last few years, and the decision has come slowly and with difficulty. The good no longer outweighs the questionable leadership and the tired curriculum. A fond farewell to days gone by. Everything changes, they say.....

- submitted by a parent
July 11, 2009
Not as well organized as it could be. Focus seems to be an issue for most of the staff.

- submitted by a parent
May 20, 2009
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- submitted by a parent
May 11, 2009
We have been here a year. Though there are good qualities such as after school care, we find some of the curriculum and faculty to be mediocre. I listed before but my comments did not go through.

- submitted by a parent
April 07, 2009
Our son attends St Paul's now and we have found that it is wonderful. Though the teachers and staff are friendly, there are some moments when they can be much more inviting with parents and students.The principal is very nice and greets parents at the gate after morning assembly. Never seen or met the assistant principal. The office staff is great, could smile more, but they get what you need done. The office assistant is the most friendliest and most enthusiastic on the telephone and with the children. Very clicky with some parents. You find your niche, as with all places. Not so 'uppity,' as children from different backgrounds attend this school.The Parent's Group president is awesome even if you do not attend meetings. Curriculum is great, the children learn so much and improve greatly with a little push from parents at home and their teachers.

- submitted by a parent
March 20, 2009
We are a new family to St. Paul's this year, with a daughter in kindergarten. She absolutely loves the school, her teachers and all her friends. The curriculum is great and challenging. Her teacher is great and very approachable. All of the faulty and staff know my daughter by first name, some even know my three year old! I love the community of St. Paul as I have felt very welcomed. I try to participate in as many activities as possible (although I work full time). I find all the other families quite welcoming. I am very impressed with the kindergarten parents involvement. I have met some great people, as had my daughter. We are also very involved in the church. I am proud to be part of both St. Paul's school and church

- submitted by a parent
March 17, 2009
I am a former graduate of St. Paul's' & now my children atttend this school. I must say that things have changed dramatically since I was a student. The teachers are good and academics are great. The sports program is good however the communication across the board is lacking...to be nice. The principle is completely disconnected and hardly shows her face. The school is run by an elite group of parents so if you're not 'in' then your not 'in'. If you can tolerate all of that then this is the school for you.

- submitted by a parent
March 16, 2009
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- submitted by a parent
January 16, 2009
I am a new parent to St. Paul's this year and am very pleased with the welcoming, enriching community our family has chosen. The school offers many opportunities for parents to be involved. I was surprised during the second week of school when the principal called my daughter by her name. I could not believe she knew all the kindergartens by name already, then the 7th grade teacher used her name, and I quickly realized that all of the teachers and staff new every child by name! My daughter has learned so much in her first five months, I look forward to being part of the St. Paul's Family for the next 8.5 years. I would highly recommend St. Paul's!

- submitted by a parent
December 15, 2008
there is a coldness at the school that makes you feel like an intruder. Changes in attitude among other things have to happen to attract more parent involment. Same old people cant stay forever. New people are needed to keep the volunteerism going strong. Welcome and embrace everyone the same for the good of the children. Cliques come and go ....who suffer .....the children. Very sad.

- submitted by a parent
November 16, 2008
I am a parent of a high school student who graduated from St. Paul and currently have a child in the middle school classes. The teachers are decent, especially 7th and 8th grade. I've never had problems communicating with them, and any issues were resolved immediately. The principal is another story. She is very robotic (no emotions) and distant from the parents and children. Definitely doesn't appear to care about your concerns, and I have attempted to have discussions with her. I had better conversations with a brick wall. If this school's reputation goes down, I would give her the credit. The hot lunch program is a great plus, and the sports program is strong. I just wish the Father would offer his parish center (gym) to CYO more for home games. Sorry, but I can't understand how bingo nights and men's club could take priority over the children.

- submitted by a parent
no rating October 06, 2008
The principal is not only minmally involved, she is extremely judgmental, like the many of her staff, is frequently inclined to sarcasm. She has a reputation of not getting back to parents with their concerns which I have experienced first-hand. The school is resting on the laurels of a school it once was. The academics aren't any better than that of a public school. As well, the head priest is very short and poorly equipped at dealing with school issures which is unfortunate as the Archdiocese will encourage you to deal with him first. The school is in a 'safe' neighborhood, a few blocks east of Mission St. but along with the gentrification of the general area, you get the full blown snobbery of parents who yet can't afford to send their children to school in Pacific Heights or on Brotherhood Way. They are also extremely lacking in after-school enrichment.

- submitted by a parent
no rating September 16, 2008
We are back again for the '08 year. I am hoping for better communication and improved faculty energy, though there are other things that being us back that are more positive. Like the after sahool program for one. Not the church so much as it borders on exclusive nor the principal who is trying to improve. We are content enough to stay because the children are happy with it and they learn.

- submitted by a parent
August 06, 2008
I used to attend this school, when I was a child. It was such a wonderful school back then. I felt the teachers really cared about the students, back then. I have wonderful memories that I will never forget. I feel this new school with new staff just don't put the children first. I feel they are very disconnceted from the parents and aren't very welcoming. I feel that my child received an adequate education while there at this school I hope for the future parents that things improve. The accounting staff was terrible. They would tell you things weren't paid when in fact you would have proof they were. I hope they have since gotten someone who really knows what they are doing. Also, the staff does not care if a parent is struggling. It seems like all they care about is the money!!!!

- submitted by a community member
June 03, 2008
Thank gosh this school year is over! It has been so stressful trying to be a functioning member of a dysfunctional community. We enrolled for the church and the academics, but the school culture is stifling. Too much turn over. Too much snobbery and power playing. For what? I really mean it. For what, in the long run? The kids are who are really important, not who is seen in Church...with who. Back to basics, Christian and scholastic. Then things might return to something cohesive.

- submitted by a parent
January 21, 2008
We came new this year, our child being in fifth. We are not impressed, though are willing to ride it out and give the school a chance. The meals are convenient and good. The course of study seems adequate, but there are personnel issues that I think need resolution. The administrator is passive as far as my opinion goes. Sometimes the office seems tense and I have not been received warlmy there. My child says school is okay and she likes her friends. I wish we were experiencing a piece of the glowing reports below though. I think we all pay the same tuition, so why not all have a 'great' school experience. We're not yet, but still hope.

- submitted by a parent
January 08, 2008
I have had children at St. Paul's for 21 years and have great admiration for the diversity, the care, the commitment and the standards at this school. I was actively involved in volunteering in classroom projects, field trips, parent advisory board and athletics. As a teacher, my husband taught many years in other San Francisco schools and rated St. Paul's very highly in comparison. My children found their education at St. Paul's gave them a solid base not only in top-notched high schools, but also in college. As a parent, I appreciated the family involvement and the camaraderie at St. Paul's School, in addition to the solid academic education. As with any school, the best way to enrich your child's experience and improve communication is to volunteer your time at the school. I highly recommend St. Paul's School.

- submitted by a parent
November 28, 2007
We have 2 daughters at St Paul's, in 6th & 8th grade. I cannot imagine a better or more dedicated group of teachers. We have been happy with all of them and in particular 6th, 7th & 8th grades, but really, they are all good. All the faculty including the principal are available to parents if they have concerns about anything. I have found the principal to be very approachable.

- submitted by a parent
November 28, 2007
We have a daughter and son at St. Paul's, in the 6th and 4th grades, respectively. We have been extremely happy with the education and attention our children have received at this school--they've both been attending since Kindergarten. We believe that the teachers at this school are extremely dedicated and show genuine passion. I believe the administration to be approachable and candid in listening to parent comments and concerns--there are forums available to discuss. Anne and Dave O'Shea

- submitted by a parent
November 28, 2007
We are unsatified with the school. The administration is weak. The academics lean toward the uninspired, at least in Gr. 6. Lots of paperwork and manufactured workbook activity, not much original thought. I understand sports and hot lunch are attractions. As is the extended care. Overall, a new principal and a refreshed teaching force might boost a school which used to be a lot finer in years gone by. Many years gone by.

- submitted by a parent
November 13, 2007
Sad is a word repeatedly used in these reviews. And sad is how we feel. I am a teacher, and I am sad that the kids don't come first. I am sad that not all families are valued equally. I am sad we are so divided. I'm happy about the great sports program, and the new building. Otherwise I am tired and sad. I'm glad people are finally pointing and saying, 'The Emperor has no clothes!' There's a big elephant in our halls these days and it wasn't always so.

- submitted by a teacher
November 13, 2007
we are very happy at St Paul's. My children have always tested above average and have made wonderful friendships. My biggest concern would be if that last post WAS actually a teacher. They are all too professional for that. I have found them all extremely approachable via email or after school meetings. I would highly recommend St Paul's to any parent. It is too bad some parents waste their time posting negatives on this site rather than focusing on their children's education.

- submitted by a parent
November 11, 2007
My stepdaughter and son attend St. Paul's, in the 1st and 3rd grads. We initially enrolled based on good feedback from some family friends with older children who had a good experience here. Sadly, our experience has not been uniformly good. Pluses include the after-school program, which seems to be run by very loving, caring people. Sports also get a plus. However, I feel the administration, particularly the principal, is distant. It appears that without leadership from the top the academic standards have slipped. Sad.

- submitted by a parent
November 06, 2007
St. Paul's is a remarkable school with a fantastic school spirit and community. I have three children, all in the lower grades, and I am proud to say that they love the school and their extraordinary teachers. The IOWA nationwide test scores are out, and all of our children in the lower, primary schools scored extraordinarily high -- a major tribute to the excellence of the teaching and teachers in Grades K-3. The Parent-Teacher Group is both a great extended family and ferociously committed to supporting the school and its needs. Similar support comes from multiple other parent support groups who volunteer their time to coach and support our kids in a range of programs that begin at the Kindergrarten level -- from sports to arts to class field trips. You and your child will love St. Paul's. I am Jim Woods and I am proud to list my name.

- submitted by a parent
November 05, 2007
My family has been very disappointed this year (our first at St. Paul's.) I feel that there is very little communication between the classroom and the parents. We will likely be seeking out another school for the coming year.

- submitted by a parent
November 05, 2007
My child is happy there and I like all the teachers so far and the community feel of the place. I do think the current principal is not the best. But the other great things about the school outweigh that one negative.

- submitted by a parent
November 02, 2007
We stay because we know St. Paul's and our children like their teachers. And in fact the academics are good. We like most of the teachers, but have had some problems in the Junior High. The worst thing though is that decisions have been made by a principal who has poor communication. We are carefully monitoring the atmosphere, hoping to keep our children in the school.

- submitted by a parent
November 02, 2007
We like most of the teachers and the sports too. The big problem is pretty much the administration. It's kind of hard communicating with them. We'll probably remain in the school, but I'm hesitant to recommend it. Some big improvements need to be made starting with communication.

- submitted by a parent
no rating November 01, 2007
I've read with interest the many comments here. There are some strengths about St. Paul's, though it used to be much much better 3 or 4 years ago. The upper grades are academically solid, but may not remain so with the younger kids not having the same foundation. St Paul's is now failing to be a community where the children come first. I have friends in public schools that tell me their children come first and learn values; St. Paul's used to be this way, but seems to be concerned now with competition and the financial bottom line. It's hard to see this happen. this isn't a school where they take care of their own.

- submitted by a parent
November 01, 2007
St. Paul's School is a great place! Parent and Teacher involvement is huge. We have parents who take time out of their work schedule to come to help with hot lunch,coaching,field trips,etc. Teachers work afterschool in tutoring,sports,computers,etc. I do not see what other parents are talking about. St. Paul's School has many activities for students to participate in other than sports like yoga,art,student council,etc. St. Paul's School is a great school and like with many other schools there are always going to be parents who are not happy. We can not always please everyone but I believe St. Paul's does try. I would recommend this school.

- submitted by a parent
November 01, 2007
In the interest of constructive criticism, I can say that the sports program is strong, and the hot lunches are good. Not enough here though to continue spending my tuition money.

- submitted by a parent
October 30, 2007
St. Paul's is a lovely school, especially in terms of community: we parents look out for each other and each other's kids. Sports is a good example: Parents support the sports programs, in all kinds of ways, including the obvious, like coaching. But support happens in less obvious, but equally important ways, too: families in all grades will show up for games, even when their own kids aren't playing, just to cheer for friends. The third grade teacher has attended two of the girls' volleyball games, on her own time, because she thinks it's important. The Athletic Board makes sure that any student who wants to play, can, whether the family can afford it. Sports is only one example of St. Paul's community spirit. I hope that parents with complaints (and we all have them!) have attended Parent Group meetings and made them public. Mary Ann Koory

- submitted by a parent
October 30, 2007
We feel that there is much favoritism around, and the academics for the lower grades are going down hill. We really liked the school at first but after being their for a while you start to notice that you have to work there to fit in. I would not recommend this school to anyone.

- submitted by a parent
October 30, 2007
Facilities are nice, but academics are ok. Sports are strong, but no opportunities or encouragement to participate in academic or art-related competition. Unfortunately, the administrative leadership is sorely lacking. Parent participation is abysmal. There is a clique of very active parents, but unfortunately, they rule the roost. There isn't a true forum to address concerns. Not a lot of the old school spirit at this once great Noe Valley school. We're not staying.

- submitted by a parent
no rating October 29, 2007
There are good things about the school. The food service is delightful. The 7th and 8th grades are academically strong. The principal though is the worst ever. My child graduates soon, or I'd consider a move to brighter pastures.

- submitted by a parent
October 26, 2007
I'm really happy with St Paul's and highly recommend it. The building is new, bright and cheery, the teachers are great from what I've seen so far and the before and after school care is top notch. My daughter is in 1st grade as I write this in Fall 2007, attended K last year and started in their preschool Littlest Angels. Overall I love the family feel of the school and the real connection it has to the parish community unlike some other Catholic schools I've seen. And my daughter's reading and math skills surpass my expectations for a first grader.

- submitted by a parent
September 30, 2007
I do agree with what has been said in the below postings. The last 2 years plus have been a big slip here at St. Paul. In the little kids' grades there is not so much competence as before in the academic. The junior high kids are just mean this year and not so much done to fix this. I think the after school is still OK though. But it is sad the way things change over time and with newcomers to the office. To everything there is a season the book says. I hope that with it will come the Spring when a new principal starts. This is my prayer for the school.

- submitted by a parent
September 05, 2007
Current administration is dragging this once great school down to just average. Though the sports program and acadmics remain strong, there is not the spirit there once was among faculty, parents, and unfortunately the children. In fact, I would say that the children no longer 'come first.' It no longer feels like a school where Catholic values are held dear. Though communication remains open with teachers, this is not so with the Principal.

- submitted by a parent
August 25, 2007
Two of my children attend this school. The strength is in the 7th and 8th grades which do prepare well for high school. The intermediate grades are adequate. The primarey...not so much, needs administrative guidance. But truthfully, I've not come across a principal as uninvolved as this one. I've had no luck going to her with my concerns, time and again. Sports program is strong. Overall though, below average for this school. Considering a transfer.

- submitted by a parent
June 29, 2007
St. Paul's is the best! The teacher's are committed and makes it a point to check on each student's progress. I like the previous Principal though, he was much more open and sociable. Daycare people are great and very nice, my daughter loved staying at Daycare.

- submitted by a parent
January 31, 2007
Not a very good school! Prinicpal is not very involed.

- submitted by a parent
April 07, 2006
Excellent academic program, great teachers, very safe enviroment.

- submitted by a parent
August 04, 2003
This review submitted without content.


- submitted by a community member
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St. Paul's School
1690 Church Street, San Francisco, CA  94131
(415) 648-2055
Last modified St. Paul's School is a Private school that serves grades K-8
St. Paul's School Rating: 3 out of 5 based on 90 reviews. Top