This is a safe place to share your honest opinions of a school, whether good or bad.
St Walter School2
Posted February 06, 2014
- a parent
Formerly a really good school. Parent involvement is declining and I believe it to be the unwelcoming atmosphere led by the principle. Teachers are great but need better leadership; they are bound to the principle rules which is not parent or student friendly. Academically this school is average in comparison to some public schools so, definitely not worth the money. It's unfortunate as our family has long history at St. Walter. I wish the Pastor and School Board would recognize the problem and change the principle. Unfortunately even if they do for next year, it's too late for us. We are leaving after this year. Can't wait but feel sorry for those who will stay.
My son went to school for 2 years there. The Carmelite Sisters are very good and extremely dedicated. I really cannot rate above 5th grade teachers, as I do not have the experience with them. However; the principal, as one person previously described as standoff-ish, but the main reason we left is because the principal is inexperienced, has no open door policy (not comfortable interracting with parents). In addition, there are several half-days, and do not always seem reasonable. The paperwork, administrative letters are not very organized. Not sure if this is due to disorganization or lack of help. It is pretty obvious that this school used to be highly ranked exceptional, but is not the case anymore.
St. Walter use to be a very family oriented school. In recent years, since the new administration came aboard, all of that has changed. I am a parent of a St. Walter graduate and of a current student; unfortunately, this will be my last and final year (along with other families). The academics are mediocre, at best and the school and most of the programs and organizations are very unorganized. The faculty for the most part are pleasant, however the principal is VERY standoffish and VERY unapproachable. I chose to send my children to a Catholic school versus a public school because I felt the education and classrooms would have more structure and although this use to be the case, it is no longer a fact. I am currently seeking other options in the area both public and private. I would like for my child to maintain the diverse experience.
I took my child out after 2 weeks. After moving back to the Beverly/Morgan Park neighborhood, I thought it would be nice if my child could attend St. Walter's since all of us graduated from there. The curriculum was far inferior. My child was being taught everything she had learned the previous year at her private Catholic all girls school on Sheridan Road. I was heartsick! The teachers were rude and unwelcoming. I was ready to start driving back to 6100 North on Sheridan Road when I found another private school on 111th Street like her previous school. We were very pleased. You can't put a price tag on education, nor can you repeat the past!
After personally experiencing other Catholic schools, it is sadly evident that St. Walter School is at the bottom of overall quality in large part due to the prinicple but also some not all of the teachers.. To walk the halls and read the posters against bullying has made me want to vomit after how we have personally experienced bullying that was due more to certain parents and staff than children. This combined with leading children away from their faith by bad example rather than to it, vastly outweighs any academic advantages which are mixed at best. The bullying problem had gotten so bad that we actually had to get the superintendant of the Chicago Catholic Schools involved which only added to the problem. In the end we were forced to leave the school because of the physical danger to our whole family. The messages this school is sending to their kids about faith is a lie, and academically the kids are behind what they should be learning at their level. Not worth the $4000 per year. At this rate you'd be better off in a publc school, believe it or not!
School is declining in academics and administration no longer cares for its families. Used to be a great school many years ago when my first son attended, now it has made a huge turn since the new principal's arrival. School calendar has excessive days off or half days unnecessarily, class room size has increased and many good families have strayed. There needs to be a change for the better very soon. Educational programs are lacking, leaving kids behind after graduating 8th grade.
I am the parent of an African American child at St. Walter. I have had good and bad experiences there. I believe as with any school it is important to be involved and make your presence known. The biggest concern is the outdated Black History assignments given by some of the more seasoned teachers, but again it is important to get involved to make positive changes that impact the outcome of the learning process for our children.
St. Walter is a good school. The one thing I don't like is the class size. There are too many students. I was not expecting such a large class in a privare school. Which in turns makes it a little more difficult for teachers to assist the students that might be struggling in certain areas.