My child has enjoyed Mary, Star of the Sea. The teachers here do a great job connecting with students; SOS feels like a small family. There is a wonderful art teacher on campus. This school also provides PE, Foreign Languages, Ukulele, Music, Band, Technology and after school activities. Because of the small class sizes, students receive much more attention than they would in public school or a big private school such as Punahou. This school is great for English learners and students with mild disabilities! The principal is friendly and available however I have noticed some favoritism towards some parents/families. This could be due to personal relationships as her children also attend the school. I think SOS has some growing to do. Very few teachers are actually certified, as I have checked on the Hawaii State Board site. Upon visiting my child's classroom and looking at his work brought home, the curriculum is nothing spectacular and the ways of teaching is nothing near innovative or great. This, for me is scary. One would choose a doctor with credentials and up to date training, right? Why would one pay to send their child to a school where all teachers are not teacher certified, highly qualified, and trained on current practices?
At Star of the Sea School, faith based character education is an integral component of the curriculum. Students grow to become self aware confident students with an active awareness of the needs of others and an appreciation for one another's differences.
My three children have attended this school for more than six years and we love it. They like going to school every day; they have teachers who really care about their learning and a wonderful support staff. The principal is also very hands on and involved in the school. Class size is small (averages about 14) and the homework is appropriate for the grade level, thank goodness! They learn a lot (their standardized test scores are great but I like the fact that they are not the main emphasis of the school). They have a very strong science program, too. The students are all involved in school activities and events, and have many opportunities to take leadership roles and participate. I like that everyone can play a role, not just a few of the "superstar" students. I also like that values and respect are part of the curriculum. And the tuition is "affordable" by Hawaii standards. I have found the teachers very approachable and responsive; they respond to my occasional emails the day I send them. Not all children do well at a small school, but if you think yours might, come check it out. If you tour the campus, you will see lively, engaged students going about their day.
My son came home dragging from this school everyday. The curriculum and way of teaching was old and uninspiring. The teacher played favorites depending upon who the parents were. She did not send out emails but relied on paper flyers to communicate info about upcoming events (which our son would lose). The schoolwork was repetitious and monotonous rather than challenging and innovative. We took our son out and put him in the local public school which was much much better. It's too bad b/c we liked the campus and the moral instruction he received here.
My child has attended Star of the Sea for the last two years. It has been a great experience. We felt welcomed at the school from the start after moving here from the mainland. The classrooms are large, light, bright and air conditioned. There is a specialized music teacher, art teacher, computer teacher and P.E. coach and a nice, well stocked library. The class size is small - less than 20 per class, with two classes per grade level. Homeroom teachers really get to know each student and their strengths and weaknesses. I think this school is a bargain - 1/2 half the price of many of the bigger more well known schools in Honolulu. Academics are good quality and on par with what we had at our mainland private school. My child is happy and thriving there.
My son has been at Star of the Sea ELC for both preschool and kindergarten. He absolutely love it and I love it too. The teachers are fabulous, kind, supportive, loving and full of amazing ways to teach. The facilities are state of the art, computer labs, incredible playground, soccer field, swings, jungle gyms, sand boxes, just to name a few. My son has flourished in this school and I couldn't recommend it more highly.
A decent school, but same old boring curriculum for middle school. Not inspiring love of learning in my child. Some behavior problems hold back classes. Wish there was better supervision between classes and recess.