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St. Isabella School

Private | K-8


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Living in San Rafael

Situated in a suburban neighborhood. The median home value is $505,000. The average monthly rent for a 2 bedroom apartment is $1,970.

Source: Sperling's Best Places
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3 stars

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22 reviews of this school

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Posted July 8, 2014

We left the school last year. The teachers are nice and well-meaning but our children were not being challenged academically. Their new school (also in Marin county) has an atmosphere that is not only more welcoming but more inclusive and a superior administration.

Posted May 17, 2014

Our son has thrived at St. Isabella School. The teaching staff are excellent - challenging academically, supportive, engaged with parents, attentive to the children. Our principal exudes an "open door" policy - she is open to input from parents and eager to recognize the success and accomplishments of students. St. Isabella offers state of the art technology for all grades, a gifted music teacher and children's choirs, an award-winning Debate Club, and a spacious campus that the kids take full advantage of every day. If you are looking for a small, K-8 school with a wonderful community, conveniently located in Central Marin, you would be wise to consider St. Isabella School!!
—Submitted by a parent

Posted April 3, 2014

We are very happy with the school. Both kindergarten and first grade have been a great experience for our son. The principal has been fantastic.
—Submitted by a parent

Posted January 29, 2014

I am a current student at this school and enjoy attending. There are some problems though. Even though the some teachers are friendly, others need to be a bit nicer. Another thing is that we used to have good hot lunch. Now we have a service called schoolfoodies. This service is nasty and one of my friends got moldy pizza. Also, schoolfodies produces so much trash and waste. Another thing is the playyard policy. We are not allowed to have a football, because they say its "too pointy". A football is about as pointy as my finger or tip of my shoe. I also think the uniform policy is ridiculous. We are not allowed to wear black Nike socks because there is a white swoosh on them and they say that is not matching.

Posted September 27, 2013

St. Isabella in San Rafael is wonderful catholic school to educate your children not only in the normal education subjects but also in many of life's greater lessons. Things like being community minded, being respectful, caring, honest and giving are also taught. The classes are well structured and the teachers and staff are strong. This is our 3rd year and our kids love it at St. Isabella.
—Submitted by a parent

Posted September 21, 2013

This school should not be considered to be parochial let alone religious in anyway. It is disappointing as both my husband and I both attended parochial many years ago and felt our experiences are no where where this school should be. Discipline is negative as are the teachers, especially in KG where you need empathic, warm-hearted individuals for the young ones. If you have a bad teacher, then you are stuck - only one class per grade..... and there are a lot of bad teachers. The good teachers have moved on as they too did not like the principal, vp and staff. I agree with the prior post that parents are clicky and gossip more than I have ever experienced in my life. Overall would not recommend - a VERY NEGATIVE EXPERIENCE AT THIS SCHOOL. We will be transferring our child to another parochial school in Marin.
—Submitted by a parent

Posted September 8, 2013

This school has been great for my son. The staff are wonderful and always willing to help and support him. In the last year I have seen many great changes in and around the campus. Thank you St. Isabella school for all that you have done for us.
—Submitted by a parent

Posted September 8, 2013

We have been part of the SI community for 8 years. The parents that volunteer consistently are amazing workhorses and can be counted on to do just about anything for the school. The kids feel safe secure and having come from the Catholic school system myself I like that they wear a uniform and must follow a code of conduct that is basically treating others as you would like to be treated. The school is tucked away off of Freitas Parkway and I like that it's not a thoroughfare for general traffic. I am very happy with the school.
—Submitted by a parent

Posted August 28, 2013

If you are looking for a good Catholic education, the answer is to look elsewhere. This school does not have a christian, let alone catholic philosophy or morals. There are plenty of excellent Catholic schools in Marin but sadly this is not one of them. The low admission is a TOTAL giveaway. The principal, vp and staff are about the worst you can imagine and the good teachers have left. The parents are clicky and gossip at every chance possible. All around pathetic,immoral and in no way should be referred to as being a religious school that practices what it preaches. I had to chose one star to post this or I would have given it a ZERO.
—Submitted by a parent

Posted June 6, 2013

Considering enrolling our child and have gotten the cold shoulder repeatedly from their Principal and Assistant Principal. Showed up for Tour and they had no record of appointment, got tour from Principal and wanted to do more due diligence and said they would accomodate. Wanted to talk to enrolled parents and ask some basic questions on community and culture and they seem to be afraid to accomodate after repeated inquiries. Thought this might be a good program but now is off our radar.
—Submitted by a parent

Posted June 5, 2013

This s a good school. The new principal is doing an outstanding job, and the teacher and parent community is wonderful. We've been at St. Isabella for 8 years, and the school is wonderful!
—Submitted by a parent

Posted January 22, 2013

The school is terrible. There is a reason enrollment is at 50% in the early grades. The teachers are sub-par, the teaching method is outdated by 20 years and there is no progressive/innovative teaching that is found in other private schools. I agree with the prior post that the principal is apathetic, as are most of the teachers. Discipline is archaic and overall not a supportive positive environment. Exclusions are the PE teacher, after-school care and the supporting aides/helpers in certain classes. Save your money, look elsewhere.
—Submitted by a parent

Posted June 30, 2012

Not up to par for the amount of tuition per year, teachers have been there too long to have a fresh outlook on education, less than healthy hot lunches, not a great experience- unorganized and apathetic principle.
—Submitted by a parent

Posted August 16, 2011

Excellent school, great teachers, highly active parent community. We've been there for 6 years, and have enjoyed every year. Our children are excelling, and the school has good academic programs and plenty of after school enrichment programs as well.
—Submitted by a parent

Posted April 22, 2010

I don't feel that this is the case at all. I am currently a kindergarten parent at St. Isabella, 4/22/10. I feel that the kindergarten teacher and full time aide are very competent. We value and respect our religious beliefs and that is why we enrolled our children in a Catholic school. If you want less religion, go to a private school. There is only 30 minutes of religion taught in each grade throughout the day. I don't feel that is taking away from the academic workload. The California state requirements are followed.
—Submitted by a parent

Posted July 10, 2007

St. Isabella School is a closely knit community ... both school and parish. My three children have been attending this wonderful K-8 school for seven years and it just gets better with each passing year. Our teachers and administrators are exceptional. They encourage high academic success and maintain high moral standards in each of our nine classerooms. Parent volunteerism and our phenomenal fundraising efforts ensures that our facilities and programs improve and grow every year. We love St. Isabella School!
—Submitted by a parent

Posted April 4, 2005

excellent, dedicated teachers. well structured lesson plans. involved pta.
—Submitted by a former student

Posted February 24, 2005

School provides an excellent education and the skills for a child to succeed. There is a high paent envolvement and everyone is made to feel part of this schhools success.
—Submitted by a parent

Posted February 24, 2005

We are very pleased with the education our children are receiving at St. Isabella School. The faculty and staff are outstanding and extremely dedicated.
—Submitted by a parent

Posted February 24, 2005

St. Isabella is a wonderful school. The teachers are caring professionals. The parents work very hard and raised over $200K last year. The graduates get into the best Catholic high schools in the area! We love it at St. Isabella!
—Submitted by a parent

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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 State average
White 81% 26%
Asian or Pacific Islander 11% 11%
Hispanic 5% 52%
Two or more races 3% 3%
American Indian/Alaska Native 0% 1%
Black 0% 6%
Hawaiian Native/Pacific Islander 0% 1%
Source: NCES, 2011-2012

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School facilities
  • Computer lab
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School basics

  • Coed
  • Roman catholic
  • NCEA
Fax number
  • (415) 479-9961


Specific academic themes or areas of focus

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  • Religious


School facilities
  • Computer lab
  • Library
Partnerships with local resources and organizations
  • Archdiocese of San Francisco
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Po Box 6188
San Rafael, CA 94903
Phone: (415) 479-3727


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