This is a safe place to share your honest opinions of a school, whether good or bad.
Good Shepherd Catholic School1
Posted November 17, 2014
- a parent
I must say I agree with many points made below concerning the lack of leadership an "unfriendly" attitude of the Principal. We were one of the many families who left GS after 10years. Not a call, a letter, a phone call or email asking us about our experience or opinions on the direction of the school. They could care less and it showed. The administration just this year started kicking out families who had concerns with the administration. Even after the school year started the admin kicked a family out for no real infraction other than disagreement. There are a few great teachers at GS who did truly appreciate our kids Apathy to those who spent countless hours volunteering to help our kids grow academically and athletically was apparent everyday. Trying to move outside the box was met with road blocks. Now that they have resorted to kicking people out of school who have concerns and are unhappy I would reccomend not sending your child here. The mass exodus speaks volumes although with the same Principal, Vice Principal, and hand picked student moms who worked themselves into jobs at the school, that used to be done as volunteer positions, the school will not change.
This is the most un-Catholic Catholic school on the planet. Principal is stubborn and unresponsive to parent concerns...I wonder if she is even Catholic? Schedules a book fair with foods and treats on Ash Wednesday?, Teachers are unaware that confirmation is even happening, gets rid of great math teacher who inspires kids (especially girls) to be good at math, yet hires an ex-pro basketball player to teach technology (oh...and run the athletic program)? Have never even seen the music teacher at Back to school night or conferences...Academics and Catholic values are NOT the priority here....
We've been at GS for many years. The Montessori program is wonderful, the teachers have been wonderful & parents so involved. One of my children has a learning difference & the teachers were so accommodating & cooperative in working with her specialized tutor. The sports and extra programs are numerous and such fun.
Our family moved to CO in August from CA and were fortunate enough to be admitted to GS. We reviewed several top schools in Denver-private, public and religious. Immediately we were impressed with the admissions office, admin staff and leadership. The Good Shepherd community, parents, teachers and school welcomed our family with open arms. The teachers are very communicative, supportive and well qualified. Both the elementary and middle school faculty have worked to help develop the "whole child" for both our daughters. Good Shepherd also offers wonderful support in the learning specialist department, technology, counseling, PE and arts/religion. As a new family we could not be more impressed with Good Shepherd and the community. Obviously by some reviews listed not everyone shares my appreciation for the Good Shepherd faculty and administration...luckily for Denver residents you have other options for education which may in fact be a better fit. If you are looking to join a warm, faith based, parent involved, supportive & communicative school --- look no further. Good Shepherd has a long wait list for a reason...it's an outstanding school. E Stribley
We have been at Good Shepherd for 4 years. We have been extremely happy with all the aspects of our family's experience here. There is a strong academic program with amazing teachers, rigorous programs and consistent expectations from grade to grade. We are also extremely impressed at the involvement of the parents at this school and the amazing sense of community we have experienced at Good Shepherd since the first day we walked in.
I sadly agree with several comments below - which seems to boil down to a common thread: principal leadership or lack thereof. Dictatorial approach, deficit based thinking, no flexibility or creativity when it comes to providing students what they really need to engage in learning. Punitive and judgmental approach when students as young as four do not comply. Seem to overreact for unacceptable but age appropriate behaviors. No desire to listen to parent feedback - answers like : "There is always "that kid" and "i am a great educator" happen in the same conversation. Leadership seems more concerned about protecting staff than about ensuring that ALL kids are learning given their interests and talents. Teachers, office and counselor have good intentions, parents are highly involved, yet the sense of community is not there.
I went to Good Shepherd, and wish so much my parents had sent me somewhere else. The children are cliquey, and have a disdain for individuality. The parents are no better. They teach values, but exhibit the opposite. The leadership has zero interest in helping with any concerns the parents and students may have. Overall terrible experience.
Before enrolling at Good Shepherd we had heard such wonderful things about it. After several years at the school, our experience has unfortunately not been what we had expected and we decided to leave this year. The class sizes are very large, especially in the youngest grades. It just seems to be very crowded at the school and we believe our kids will get more individualized attention elsewhere. Socially it seems rather cliquey, and teacher turnover is very high. Thus, the sense of community is greatly lacking. Parents are, however, very involved at the school.
A push by administration to maximize school capacity at 28 kids per class has resulted in what we feel is overcrowding in each small class room and has significantly effected the quality of education that the children are receiving. The level of teacher turnover and the principles lazy approach to recruiting new talented teachers is alarming. Further the principle is not approachable and is very defensive to parent input and feed back. The level of parent involvement is very high which is the saving grace of Good Shepherd. However there is not a great sense of community due to poor leadership and the numerous cliques that exist in the school. Sadly it is not the school it used to be.
Sadly the school has systematically disassembled/undermined its previous sense of community. Unfortunately the principal takes a dictatorial approach, becoming very defensive when approached for discussion.