St. Rose of Lima is a small school with a very strong sense of community. As with every school, it has its strengths and weaknesses. But overall, our experience has been that the good far outweighs the bad. The students are very high achieving academically and there are many excellent teachers. The students are also generally very kind and look out for each other. Of course there are always exceptions to the rule and I do not discount anyone else's experience. With respect to there being "cliques" among the parents at the school, I can see how someone brand new to the school might have this first impression. It is a small place and the families are tight knit. However, there are many social events to which all families are invited and tons of opportunities to volunteer. It takes a little time and requires a willingness to extend yourself a bit. Once people get involved, I think they find it is quite a friendly place. It is also a school that is inclusive to all types of families, including families with two working parents. Three of the six members of the Home & School Association Board are full-time working mothers.
My child attended this school as a transfer middle school student and was completely excluded by her peers. We were also excluded by the parents at school functions. Academic performance was greatly affected by the constant antagonistic behavior from fellow classmates. We turned to the principal to let her know of the issue and she denied knowing and seeing the problem, and simply suggested that our child would better fit in, if she were to follow school uniform code. The principal asserted that other children were turning away from our child because she wore an earring that they deemed inappropriate, and the length of her sweat pants for gym were too short. The principal did not work to help our child in any way or to guide the class to have a more welcoming spirit towards her. Our child was pushed, told that she was stupid, not a good "fit", and told directly to go away because she was hated. This all happened in a matter of 4 months. As for academics, I was shocked that so much pressure for rote memorization as emphasized instead of meaningful and holistic approaches to learning.
I went to this school from K-8 I graduated and I am a sophomore in HS. Throughout my years at St. Rose I saw that the parents and kids were very cliquey and if you did not have a big house or nice things you are left out. I am part white and part Spanish and I had nice things but the girls were mean because I was not fully white. I played basketball and I was good cause in 7th grade I got asked to be on the 8th grade team the girls got jealous of me cause they were not asked. Then the couch HAD to say that everyone can play up. They would leave me out of a lot of things. The Staff is not good. The Spanish teacher she did nothing I didn't learn anything in her class. I took Spanish form K-8 and took Spanish 2 in HS i was not prepared cause all we did was color. I was like a lost puppy in Spanish 2 but I had a good teacher in HS who went over everything I didn't know. The teachers always put you down in some way mostly the HIstory and English teacher. I loved the religion teacher cause she taught me. I ran cross-country I did not like how it is run by parents cause we practice in an open park and 1 time HS students were being mean to K-6 graders and the coaches did nothing.
I gave this school a low score. The teachers so far are good. Again my son just started this year. As for diversity it is certainly not. As I am in the minority with regards to race I do feel that if you are not of a certain color you are not part of the circle. My son doesn't notice this as the children in class are all young and innocent. However at morning prayers In the gym it clearly obvious there's a divide. I do not feel comfortable but again the school and teachers so far is good. But camaderie, there is none. I'm a working parent and my son is in aftercare. Invitations to parties during work hours are prevalent. Indicative of lifestyle and ignorance of the people in the area.
The teachers here are generally terrific as are the kids and most of the parents. The Principal is okay (not great) and the curriculum is quite good. The kids do very well on standardized tests but this may be attributable to many factors. Overall, a warm, nurturing environment with good emphasis on Catholic values. Not the most diverse school, that's for sure. The car line comment below is out of date now that there are buses offered for many of the kids (especially for those from Maplewood and South Orange).
SRLA is a second home to my family. My children feel safe and comfortable walking each morning. I am always uplifted my the warm greetings and children holding doors for each other as we walk in each morning. Our experience with different teachers has all been positive, with some teachers being extraordinary. I agree that our school is a special place. My husband and I also feel a great sense of camaraderie and support from the other parents - a strong majority of whom contribute their time, money and skills to keep the school community consistently improving. We are very happy at St Rose.
St. Rose of Lima Academy is a warm and inviting elementary and middle school with strong Catholic values and an excellence in academics. As a parent of two children at the Academy for more than 7 years, I believe the faculty and administration care deeply for the students and their ability to succeed in and out of the classroom. My kids also love the athletics with well-rounded basketball and track programs as well as the community service and "family days" with the older kids. The preschool has also grown by leaps and bounds over the past few years and they have a great lunch and extended "poppins" option for young families. Its a special place.
I went to this school and I was pushed down stairs and verbally bullied; my parents had to transfer me out of it. the kids don't accept their peers unless they are from the same ethnicity and wealthy. If you're different your excluded and made fun of. Plus the teachers don't do anything about it. For example: my old spanish teacher just sat there playing on her Ipad while I was being ganged up on. Is that really the environment you want your child/children to go to? I just left about 2 years ago
Would you like to wait in car line all morning and evening? Take your kids here. I actually had 2 sweet little girls until they went here. This school turns your kids into something else. Leadership is laughable, agenda having religious figures trying to scare kids instead of gaining their respect. I wouldn't send an animal to this school.
Two of my children attended St. Rose. One is now in High School and the other is entering Third grade. We are entering our eleventh year at St. Rose and I can't say enough good things about the school. I was very pleased with the education both of my kids received. Academics are excellent and the teachers inspire a love of learning. You don't have to choose just one thing to specialize in. My oldest child became a lover of classics and all things science. All of the teachers know all of the kids and it's my impression that they watch over them and care about what happens. There are moms that work and moms that stay at home and as a working mom I was always welcome at whatever was going on in school. I would recommend St. Rose highly.