As we began the search for a high school, my wife and daughter were dismissive of an all-girls, catholic education. My wife and I were each successful in public high school, we were not catholic and private school opportunities seemed out of reach financially and logistically. As a father of a gifted daughter, however, I wanted to be sure to explore all options. We have a friend and neighbor who sent three daughters through Ursuline, so, at my urging, we all attended the fall open house. (They readily admit that I dragged them there.) What impressed us the most at the open house was the fact that the girls lead the event themselves – from the overview of the school to the panel discussions to the tours. Our daughter will likely mature to a science related career, and seeing the empowerment and leadership opportunities that an all-girls environment could develop made me believe that this was the best option for her. More importantly, my wife and daughter came away thinking ‘this is not so bad, we can do this.’ The open house lead to a shadow day and personal tour. As my wife and I toured the school ‘in action’, all I could see were girls just like my daughter – focused and eager to learn. We saw small class sizes, engaged, considerate students and committed faculty. As she begins her second year at Ursuline, there is no doubt that this was the best decision we could have made. She is finally in an environment that can challenge her academically, and she is amongst girls who are equally as eager to learn. We look at the financial and logistical aspects of attending Ursuline as a commitment and not a burden. And we look at an Ursuline education as fostering opportunities not possible through other schools.
My daughters have been students at Ursuline Academy since pre-kindergarten. Our experience has always been positive. They have both been challenged academically, in different ways as they are different students. Small class sizes and individualized curriculum has kept us at UA through high school for both girls. The community is very strong and active. The counseling department is excellent, we are just starting the college process with our oldest and always feel supported and informed. Athletics are accessible to every student, UA has a "no cut" policy, so any student can participate. The girls are encouraged to be leaders through every phase of school at Ursuline Academy. We are proud to be a part of such a strong community!
My daughter is a freshman at Barnard College at Columbia University who received straight A's in her 1st semester. I believe going to Ursuline was the best thing she ever did. She didn't start Ursuline until her sophomore year transferring from a public school where she felt students weren't serious about their studies or respectful of their teachers. At Ursuline my daughter was more of a loner but participated enough to succeed and feel part of the Ursuline community. I was recently proud that she chose to go to an alumni event at the school during her winter break to discuss college with members of the Ursuline senior class. I am divorced and didn't have any help with tuition from my daughter's father; however Ursuline worked with me and we received financial help from the school. The great counseling team was supportive and superior in helping my daughter apply to all the colleges and universities she wanted to (18!). Her teachers were patient and supportive with my daughter. My daughter is a self starter and was always on top of what was going on school. She wants to go into the medical field possibly as a doctor.
I have gone to Ursuline for 6 years now, I am currently in my Sophomore year. Over the summer I came to realize that Ursuline no longer cared about how well individual students preformed, it is all about the amount of scholarship opportunities they get in sr. year. I have ADHD, and while in lower and middle school, I got plenty of help. In my freshman year i felt i no longer needed the help from Ursuline, so I stopped asking for it. And this year (10th grade), I began to feel I needed it because of the class load, and I went to administration to ask how I should go about getting a tutor for my classes, and their response was something along the lines of 'That isn't our job.'. Many of our teachers have no respect for us students, I have been sick and in the hospital for three years now, and I never had a problem with making up work, and this year my teachers were so very uncooperative to help me out in any way. The English dept. hasn't held a position for more than two years in about 5 years, If i was to take the SAT English section, I am confident I would fail if I had not gotten extra help on my own. I have decided to leave Ursuline, because I still need assistance.
As an Ursuline grad, I can say Ursuline used to be a great school. Not anymore. Unless your child is perfect, uber organized, never forgets anything, & you, the mom, are driven to be the teachers' pet, then this school is not for you. They have forgotten that their students are still kids & are not perfect. Kids forget things, they make mistakes; everyone does. Ursuline does not allow for those mistakes. They have taken the idea of accountability & put it on steroids. You will not get sympathy or understanding. The curriculum is designed so the girls are buried under homework & have little to no time for outside activities, let alone time with family. And, That s okay. Ursuline needs to stop looking at SATs as the guideline for how & what to teach. Everyone has to take all the basics (& more) over again in college; why not teach the girls how to learn & to enjoy learning. I suggest Ursuline change its attitude. Start being a loving, welcoming, healthy environment again. Love the students, encourage them, & embrace their differences for real instead of just only on the website. These are all smart girls with wonderful potential. Why beat them down to teach them they are strong?