This is a safe place to share your honest opinions of a school, whether good or bad.
Good Shepherd Catholic School5
Posted March 09, 2015
- a parent
I couldn't be happier with Good Shepherd. My children love it. The staff is highly qualified, the community is strong, and the academics are excellent. Not sure how the bad reviews came about, but if you surveyed all parents, I'm sure this would be a very different outcome. I know very few parents who are unhappy here, and most feel that their children are thriving. Good Shepherd kids have something like a 99-100% acceptance rate to the private high schools to which they apply and test scores are very high to show the academic strength here.
Good Shepherd is a wonderful school! It is filled with happy kids who are excited to come to school and learn. The parents are involved and supportive and many, many of the teachers have taught at Good Shepherd for over a decade. Just one visit inside the school and you can feel the warm sense of community and loving environment.
We have only good things to say about Good Shepherd after more than a decade of being there. Our children have been more than prepared for high school with exceptional grades and standardized test scores. More importantly, we have been told several times at high school conferences that students from Good Shepherd are consistently excellent -- intelligent, respectful, well behaved and very prepared academically. Socially, the school has been like family and has provided a wonderful community for our family for many years.
I agree with all the comments made already. This school gets worse by the year - academically & socially. My high schooler went into high school ill-prepared and well behind her peers. She scored two years behind in math and really behind in language arts. We did not know because she had always gotten good grades in middle school. The principle and vice principle ignore concerns. We have another child in middle school that we need to switch schools so we aren't playing catch up in high school again. We have brought up serious concerns of bullying that have also gone ignored. It is the way the principle and vice principle operate and just do not care.
We have not had a good experience with this school. Teachers with either little experience or very low moral. Every time we think we are going to get a good teacher the next year, the teacher leaves or asked to leave. We have tried talking to principle and vice principle but it goes nowhere. They always say things are fine or things are getting better and they are neither fine nor getting better. I guess they are in denial or don't want to put in effort to make things better. We have already lost a lot of good students and families and now I know why.
This school has gone downhill since the principle started over 6 years ago. She doesn't have any principle experience before this and it shows. She has very poor leadership skills: poor management of curriculum, poor training and management of staff especially on new programs, and no vision to move the school into future and keep good teachers. She rarely interacts with parents and students and when she does it's painfully awkward. My son graduated from here and was not prepared well for high school. We had to hire a math tutor because he was a full grade behind. I was surprised since received all As throughout middle school. He was also far behind his peers in grammar and writing skills. There is very low teacher moral and as a result very high teacher turnover. The principle hires poor teachers with very little experience. Some of the teachers don't even have their teaching certifications. There are some good teachers, but that number is decreasing quickly. The principle and vice principle only work 4 days a week which shows their lack of commitment to the school and its future. Parent involvement is great but a school is only as strong as its leader.
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.