We have not been at the school very long, but we are easily very happy with it. We initially went the public route, but failed to get any of our top picks, so we decided to go here as it was local. Funny, now I'm happy how things turned out - it really has been great/solid experience. Pro's: Smaller school so you do feel a bit more care. Easy to talk to teachers, other parents, etc. Very nice (and involved!) parents (get ready to be as well if you attend..but it's worth it). Also, this may sound odd but I don't find the school 'too Catholic'-ly bent - it's not crammed down or anything. Only one of us (parents) was raised Catholic (and didn't do Catholic schools growing up) so that was big. The cost is not nearly as high as other privates but I feel you get way more for your $. Also, I like how this provides us grade 6-8th solution and (if we want) potentially sets us up with a few good Catholic high schools options. The public route had me a bit worried about Jr. High and High School. Only a few cons I can think of: no real big playground, which is a bit of a bummer. And of course, there is a cost.
St. Philip School is quite accepting to children with Learning Differences. Kids are not asked to leave once they are diagnosed. The school had a math and reading specialist but children attend these activities in groups. Most teachers agree to aid the progress of the child but no additional individual attention in given. Teachers are open to children using electronic aids (calculators, ipads etc) but this really only applies to the older grades. Diagnosed children are given extra time to complete timed testing. The homework load remains the same however. My son is dyslexic and his hand is ready to fall off after we have spent 3 hours completing his homework each evening after he has attended specialized tutoring. He is also emotionally and physically exhausted. I think that the school could improve on this by somehow incorporating the particular grade curriculum with outside tutoring work completed or having it count as part of the grade.
I have one child in the preschool and one in kindergarten at St. Philip. The school's marketing may not be slick, but don't misjudge. This school is great - excellent teachers, good discipline and academic rigor, great parents. I feel confident that my children will be well educated and well rounded. My husband and I intend to raise our kids in San Francisco, so we feel lucky to have found this community.
I feel the bad reviews about the middle school are a bit unfair. My child is now at Lowell, and doing great. She had the organizational skills and knowledge to transition easily into high school. She was extremely well prepared in English and literature. Math was a bit different. I had been warned that students who arrived at Lowell from small school did not do as well as students from big middle schools. At smaller schools, teachers tend to make sure that all students have mastered a subject before moving on, and parents of kids who do well need to make sure that their kids get challenged (and cover all the material in 8th grade before the high school math placement test... please learn from my shortcomings.) If a small school would be a good fit for your child, St-Philip is as good a place as any, led by a wonderful principal, with a caring, knowledgeable staff. They do their best to help students, but like anywhere else, you need to know what's happening, and be an advocate for your child.
We just moved here from another School and LOVE IT! The Kids are happy and learning in a positive environment. We have been very impressed with the Third grade teacher, she is truly passionate about teaching! The parents are dedicated and upbeat and always working on how they can do more to support the kids and school staff.
I have one child at a top-notch elementary public school and one at St Philips middle school and I can tell you that the expectations and teaching standards are quite different. At St. Philips, the teachers are excellent and the curriculum is challenging. The kids are engaged, caring and thoughtful individuals. Kids are given lots of homework and although you are not required to take notes of your textbook, my child does so because he wants to get honors. The academics are tough so if your child is too stressed, the school may not be a good fit.
The middle school has been a great experience for my daughter. In one year she learned organizational skills, dedication, respondibilty for her own homework, and of course contents. And most positive surprise after 6 grade, for the first time she said she enjoyed school and would miss her 6 grade teacher over the summer.
Two of our children attend St. Philip School in Noe Valley. I find it sad that one or two of the families are feeling frustrated. I honestly do not believe that any teacher or member of the faculty hold grudges or do not want to hear about complaints that parents or students may have. Even though my children are still in the lower grades, I have easily gotten to know the teachers of the upper grades. The Principal is very open to new suggestions, ideas and is willing to deal with the smallest of concerns. My sons learning difficulties were quickly identified and he is receiving extra curricular attention for this. The community spirit at the school is very, very impressive and families from many diverse backgrounds and culture attend. St. Philips truly is a hidden gem in the Valley!
LOL! It is a Great School for teachers! The middle school teachers are now in the process of cramming in all the lessons over the last few weeks school that they did not cover during the year. No regards for the students. Where did they find these parents to write 5-star reviews? I hope highschool is not like this. Student
St Philip's School is a wonderful neighborhood school with a strong sense of community. It's teachers are dedicated hardworking professionals. The principal is a very caring, compassionate person who in my experience has always been available to answer questions or concerns and very receptive to suggestions and ideas from parents.
St Philip s is an excellent school with amazing teachers. I have three children at the school, including one in the middle school. The teachers are very committed to providing a great learning environment for the children, and we feel lucky to be part of the St Philip s community. St Philip s is a small parochial school and is anchored strongly in the local community. The parental involvement is incredible. Students are well prepared for and go on to the best high schools.
I don't agree with the recent negative review of the middle school and I know there are many who also disagree with it. Frankly, I don't recognize the school they describe. I am a parent of a child in the middle school and my child is extremely happy there. I know many kids that have gone to the best high schools from St. Philip and were well prepared for that step. The school, like many others, is not without its faults, but the teachers, parents and administration all have the best interests of the children at heart at all times. The school community is second to none.
The "terrible middle school" reviewer hit the nail on the head. The parents are all talking about that post and nobody disagrees with it. There are lots of fed up parents that are too scared to speak up because their kids will be singled out by the teachers or they will get poor high school recommendation letters.
This school has a terrible middle school. The students are afraid of the teachers and therefore don't ask questions. The teachers DO NOT communicate with the parents and DO NOT want to hear from the parents. The Head of School does not control the school. The teachers run the show and not very well. They don't communicate with each other. The parents are afraid of speaking out in fear of not receiving a HS recommendation. The children spend lots of time studying for test that never take place. TO MUCH STRESS! The teachers don't talk to each other to coordinate schedules. Kids can end up having 4 large test on the same day as a paper being due. Moreso, the feedback from children in highschool is that they are behind their peers in math, science, reading, and technology. They have to drop their AP classes because they are inadequately prepared at St. Philips. Too bad because the families and kids are wonderful. But that is not enough to compensate for having a fearful, stressed out, exhausted child with no time for any joy besides because of the chaos at this school.
St. Philip School is a Catholic, family style school with the care and education of the students at heart. Parents have been very supportive of class activities and the Fr. Tony, the pastor is present and and very supportive of the students, teachers and educational and spiritual development of all. Mrs. Everett is an open door policy principal, who is a supportive Catholic administrator and believes in and implements the values of a Gospel life and Gospel values for all at St. Philip School. Phone for a tour and see for yourself.
Popular after school programs include Science Adventures, Music, coordinated and well organized off-campus sports led by volunteer parents and Cub Scouting. There is a need however for afterschool assistance for students who desire to do their homework while waiting to be picked up by their parents.
Our 2nd Gr son's transition from an independent school was very smooth. The school is well run, parent involvement is VERY high. Lots of sports, science adventures, music clubs, and Cub/Girl Scouts. The library is expanding. But a global school email is needed for more effective communication.
St. Philip's is one of the best values in San Francisco. The combination of a dedicated faculty and activist parents, supported by a parish who puts a high value on education, creats a community which works together to ensure the finest education for our children. Though we have endured a few rocky spots this year, we have worked together to prevent these problems from affecting our childrens' education. St. Philip's graduates can get into any school to which they apply.
The school was okay but not enough diversity and they ask for alot of money donation request...
This school is just amazing! Students are happy, confident, caring and well balanced individuals, academically and emotionally ready for high school and beyond! Schedule a tour and experience for yourself what makes St Philips special...
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