My sons have attended SMS for 2 years now. I haven't dealt with rudeness of staff (sorry to those who have). I miss the intimacy of my son's previous school when I could call/text the teacher, but hey, the positives outweigh the negatives. My oldest son who had reading issues has made great improvement at this school. So for me, SMS gets a thumbs up.
As a parent my experience of St Michael is a mixed view, the last straw which broke the camels back was the distasteful rudeness I experienced with administrative staff. I must say there are some good teachers who are committed to the children and to what they do, but the supporting staff and the principle are the bottleneck which will bring the school down if something is not done about their attitude. I would advise the Principle who is the head to take a very good look at her attitude and really consider making some changes which will filter to the rest of her staff. i intend to inform the Newark Archdiocese of this matter as I'm very concern that a few bad apples will ruin it for the rest which is unfair for the dedicated ones amongst them.
The Principal, Administrative staff and teachers are so rude, it's unbelievable. They have no respect whatsoever for parents. If they allowed parents to get involved and bring in fresh ideas, the school will truly benefit. Their drop off and pick up procedure is so poor and such a waste of time that I am considering taking my child out as a result. The Principal should get off her high horse to allow some fresh ideas to take this school forward or just ship off.
I went to St. Michael's and now my daughter goes to kindergarten. Since September (4months ago) her reading has improved dramatically. I was skeptical about the school since in her kindergarten class there are 27 students, a teacher and an aide. Class size truly doesn't matter, her reading and math are advance, homework is about 45 min-1 hour long every day. During Sandy the school did not have power for a week, but they sent the parents a message that they will be opened for halloween, the school did NOT want the kids to lose their day to dress up and have fun. Dr. Cerino was principal when I went to St. Michael's and now she's my daughter's principal.... I could not feel more comfortable in having her manage my child's education. I love the school, the teachers and the students. Kindergarten and 8th graders are paired with a"buddy". The kindergarteners get to spend time with their buddy in 8th grade, they mentor them, have field trips together, eat lunch. These activities is what makes the students great and the school. Their location in Newark isn't the best, BUT they are safe, the students are polite, good kids who truly get along with absolutely everyone. No bullying at all.
I have a child in Kindergarten and find this school to be very organized, challenging and well staffed. I can honestly say, that this school has been an awesome start for my little girl. She has learned awesome manners and respect for religion. I am so pleased with St Michael's and am looking forward on enrolling my son when he's of age.
I'm sorry that that parent feels that way of the comment of March 2010, but St. Michael School is a fabulous school. I am a graduate of SMS and now my son is there. Unfortunately, due to the economy classroom size has dropped dramatically, but I have found that the size of the classroom does not matter - it's the teacher's managementthat counts. St. Michael has good strong teachers, my son is happy and his preparation for adulthood is fantastic. I strongly recommend this to all. Principal is strict, but fair and that is what makes this school special.
Once a strong school, strong community focal point, Saint Michael's has begun to fall on hard times. Lots more activities on paper than in reality. Great 1960's style Catholic school discipline still reigns supreme. ZERO parent involvement-parents are highly discouraged from the 'inner sanctum'. Something has changed in the last 3-4 years-outdated teaching methods and curriculum, overcrowded classrooms (30+ in kindergarten? Who's learning anything?) are beginning to reveal the school as a thing of the past. Safe ,though. May work for some but very harsh, bitter personal criticisms for my two boys made forego the $$$ for public. Oh, well.