I went to Santa Fe for 6 years as a student, and it was certainly a mixed bag. I had some genuinely good teachers. But I also had some really, really bad ones. Compared to other schools it's not very strong academically. Only half of my AP teachers were actually AP accredited. It's VERY cliquey. If your kid fits in, they should be fine, but if he/she doesn't they won't have a good time.
This is our 5th year at SFC and is the best decision we made. Both of our boys are in high school and have been blessed by the amazing and loving teachers and staff. They have been challenged academically and have discovered many new gifts and interests with all the opportunities available. Our whole family has made life long friends and wonderful memories at SFC!!!
This school has been an amazing blessing for our family! We have three students there and have been at the school for six years. We are waiting for the honeymoon to be over!! The curriculum is challenging and cutting edge. The high moral standards are instilling strong values in my kids' lives. My kids are all thriving academically and socially, not to mention they are all three ten times more confident than I EVER was. We love SFC and feel a great sense of community there that is unparalleled with what we would receive in a public school because of our common faith.
Our children both started at Santa Fe Christian last year in the 3rd and 6th grade. The school offers many wonderful opportunities to get involved. The new middle school principal is implementing some amazing new programs. The extended studies program has opened up new opportunities for the lower and middle school to get involved in many activities. The teachers have a genuine concern and interest in helping your children succeed academically, socially and spiritually. There is a wonderful community with many opportunities to get involved and meet other families.
We entered the school with enthusiasm and med-high expectations which, unfortunately, have not yet been met. I was not prepared for the "hit-and-miss" quality of the teachers. There are some truly outstanding teachers but there are many more that should be of higher quality for a private school. All schools, whether public or private, have their share of poor teachers but I would have hoped that a private school such as Santa Fe would not take so long in making personnel changes. That's why we chose a private school over public - because they have the autonomy to hire and fire, tweak their curriculum and run the school according to their mission. Santa Fe moves in slow motion in some respects which puts the students at a disadvantage. There are always better improvements with each new school year, but by the time the school is where it needs to be, my kids will be long gone. I feel that some of the glowing reviews are more in relation to the faith based aspect of the education, which is outstanding. I am just one of those faithful Christians that see a bigger picture. It breaks my heart to say that I would only recommend the school with strong reservations.
SFC has its pros and cons. The curriculum is limited because of the size of the school but still offers enough to keep my kids active and engaged academically. The major drawback is the inconsistency of teacher quality. If the opportunity were available, I would have had my children taught outside of the classroom (home schooled) for language and math. Some teachers are either going through the motions or appear not to have any experience working with teenagers (even though I know that is not the case). My kids feel safe at SFC, enjoy their friends and like that the school is not "too big". For the most part, there are really good kids at the school, well behaved and well mannered but some are really indulged by their parents and it shows. The faith aspect of the school has not disappointed, I think both my children are better human beings by way of going to SFC. The college counseling dept is a great asset to the school, although I am starting to have doubts about how prepared my kids will be for college. Projects to get the students thinking about careers, interviewing professionals, guest lecturers, etc. are badly needed.
Santa Fe Christian has been an amazing blessing to myself and my family. The Community is like family, and has supported us through many challenging family issues. My children are prayed for throughout their day, and their teachers are genuinely interested in each of them as individuals. The incredible opportunities that they are afforded are unmatched at other schools, where they can play sports, pursue the arts, go on mission trips, participate in clubs, and still get a fantastic and highly rated education. Students coming out of Santa Fe have high aspirations, and are achieving great AP scores, showing that they truly are prepared for their college work. While my kids are not and have never been part of the social "in" crowd, they are treated with respect for who they are by both their peers and teachers. I would not trade the valuable experiences they have had here for anything.
SFC is a mixed bag of experiences for many people. Having graduated from Santa Fe Christian after 7 years there, I went on to attend a top tier school and felt very poorly prepared for my science classes. I struggled through my first year of classes because I didn't have the basic background knowledge that was expected of students who had taken basic high school science courses (even though I took AP Biology, Honors Chemistry and Honors Physics). Some of the teachers at SFC are excellent but others are rather sub-par. I was told that because I was going to a secular school I would become an atheist - a message that was repeated by administrators and teachers. I can honestly say that my faith has only grown stronger since going to my "secular university". In addition, do not automatically assume that because SFC is christian that bullying is not a part of the school - it never happened to me but I constantly saw it happen to my peers and teachers. SFC is a great school for some but I personally wish, in hindsight, that I had gone to a public school and saved that tuition money to pay for college and graduate school. However, my experience is not everyone's experience.
My child is graduating after 13 years at SFC (lifer) and I have a freshman too. I have a very objective view despite our many years at the school. The school offers a solid, but not stellar academic experience. The high school quality is much better than the middle or lower schools. It is a classical approach to education, with a strong writing curriculum (this is essentially absent in public high schools). It isn't Bishops and TP or LCC offers more breadth of science and art. I kept my child there despite this because of the social environment and the teachers. They call it the Santa Fe bubble and at first I hated that idea. But now I see how it preserved the goodness and sweetness in my child despite our vulgar society. We just had the mother/son luncheon for seniors and the boys each read a letter to their mother. I left thinking that sending my kids to SFC is one of the best decisions of my life. The teachers in the hs are good, and are amazing role models. They honestly do care about the students in a sincere way. It is a loving and caring environment of conservative Christians offering a solid, traditional education.