Students enrolled 363
School leader Kathleen Marie Gerritse
Type Religious

Contact this school

Po Box 368
Hopewell Junction, NY 12533

(845) 227-7777
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Map of St Denis-St Columba School address.

4 stars
Based on 32 ratings

Let others know what you
think about this school

September 01, 2014
Can't believe it's really true about the second grade teacher leaving because of the dog...that's UNBELIEVABLE!!!!!

- submitted by a community member
September 01, 2014
It's so sad that the 2nd grade teacher left b/c she's allergic to the principal's dog. Why is that dog allowed in school anyway? Isn't that a health department violation? I thought that the only dogs allowed in schools are seeing eye dogs? What a shame...she was so nice and always seemed so happy. It's so sad that a good teacher had to leave because of that dog! Aren't people supposed to be more valuable than animals?

- submitted by a community member
October 15, 2013
This school is an amazing school. I wish we did not move too far away and had to leave. My son went here for 2 years, 1st and 2nd grades. He still talks about how much he misses his friends and the staff. Trust me when I tell you that no school is perfect but this school is close. The teachers and principal work hard to make every child feel safe and loved. If I could I would go back to this school in a second with my 2 boys.

- submitted by a community member
September 24, 2013
I am a recent graduate who obtained many honors throughout my educational years at St. Columba. I disliked this school so much because I was constantly ridiculed and excluded by the other students in the class. The teachers were well aware of the problem, yet it was ignored. Nothing was done to promote friendship or acceptance. In spite of this, I did really well by focusing and looking toward the future with all it had to offer. I wish my experience had been better, and that respect and dignity was incorporated into my learning experience, but unfortunately, it wasn't . Yes, I also agree that favoritism prevails! In fact when scholarships were presented at graduation for the most prominent high schools, they were given to those whose parents volunteered or were constantly involved in school functions. I am so very grateful to have finally graduated, and freed from that uncomfortable situation. I am doing amazing at my new high school; respect and friendship is promoted and encouraged. I have made numerous friends, and finally gained a sense of pride that I never had while attending St. Columba. I would not recommend this school to anyone, nor will I ever send my children there.

- submitted by a community member
April 15, 2013
I am very happy with the school. I have 3 children in various grades. We have been to the local public school and a nearby Catholic school (classes of 35++kids). SDSC is the best fit for my children. I guess sometimes you have to experience other things to really appreciate what you have. The school is not perfect (no school is ). The Principal is extremely approachable and understanding. I think she is doing a great job! I know my children are SAFE and are LEARNING. They all come home happy. The bottom line is no school can please every parent and people love to complain! Many are looking for excuses not to pay tuition anymore because the economy sucks, our taxes are higher and they simply can't or don't want to pay it anymore. I wish the problems that some disgruntle parents are having be kept at the school and be addressed at the school not on the web. Please don't tarnish our reputation because your unhappy. Catholic school is not the right fit for every child, some children do need special ed services offered at the public school and that is not SDSC fault. I will agree that the 3rd grade teacher is a little lacking-but my child likes her and is doing great in her class.

- submitted by a parent
March 02, 2013
We transferred our daughter her this year and she is VERY happy at SDSC. She is making many new friends with great children from lovely families. The PSA does a great job running events that include the whole family. The other parents are warm, welcoming and proud of their school. The course work was far harder than what she was accustomed to in our public schools. For example, we were studying vocab and a public school 7th grader asked what grade she was in, because she couldn't spell those words. She used to be able to get excellent grades with little studying but at SDSC she works harder for the same results. I have 2 other children in public school but will be transferring them to SDSC. I volunteer in both schools and feel all teachers could be a little more nurturing. Sometimes as parents we are more sensitive to others being warm to our children than our children are. But what SDSC has that other schools do not, is an ever constant presence of clergy. There are 3 sisters in the school and Msg and Fr. Chris are at the school daily, leading prayer, teaching classes or playing ball with the after school students. No place is perfect but we are very happy!

- submitted by a parent
January 13, 2013
We are very happy with the school, administration and teachers. My children are learning and are HAPPY to go to school in the morning! Their work is challenging, however not to point where it has caused us to seek help from tutor's, but we don' t stressed out if they don't get 100's... We love the emphasis on religion and giving back to our community. The children at SDSC are learning their faith and practicing it. The amount of "required" fundraisers is none, my children have only come home with one request thus far. The class sizes are normal (~25) there's a separate computer lab, art room, library, lunchroom and a lovely playground for the children to enjoy. The after school programs have been a big hit for my kids and I love the option of having after care at the school when we do need it. When they are at after school the older children help the younger children with their homework. So their homework is done when you pick them up. Parents can be as active as we like. The Parent Association has been welcoming, but not pushy. Overall we are very happy with the school as a whole and we feel blessed that our kids go to SDSC. My only regret is not sending them to SDSC sooner.

- submitted by a parent
July 25, 2012
It looks like there will be new teachers in grades 2, 4, 5 and 7. Last year 2 classroom teachers left. Why are so many teachers jumping ship?

- submitted by a community member
January 19, 2012
I spoke with a John Jay High School Counselor yesterday who said, "St. Columba students are so far above and beyond the other children in academics when entering this school, and they are so respectful." I have also heard from families at Lourdes that teachers say, "You're from St. Columba, aren't you? I could tell." Children come out with great study skills, a solid foundation, well-organized, respectful, kind, and thoughtful. I don't understand why people who I see in the hallway can say such nasty things and hurt the other families who decide to stay with St. Columba. I understand that the additional fees, tuition increase and enforcement of the policy to contribute to the church (most other schools do this - St. Pat's in Yorktown has down this for over 10 years) is a challenge for many families. But, the fees are in line with other parochial schools. Call St. Mary's or St. Martin's - do you think their tuition and fees are less? Whether or not you decide to stay, please don't hurt the families that remain by blemishing its reputation. Many parents are involved here and work to make the school a great place for our children to get an education. Lisa Jeanneret, a parent

- submitted by a parent
January 12, 2012
Yes it does appear that we are asked to pay more and more each year. I see the importance of technology,however why dont' we simply get back to the basics ? Oh and maybe just maybe, it would be a good idea for our children to be able to write or highlight in the religion books we paid for ! What ever happened to workbooks for the upper hall students? I never ever heard of 7th and 8th graders not having math workbooks! Did someone mention the Rosary ? WE AS PARENTS BETTER START PRAYING IT!

- submitted by a parent
October 18, 2011
As I read the remarks from parents railing against fundraisers for the school, I wonder where do they think the money comes from to improve the school beyond the allotted monies needed to keep our school s doors open? Nobody twists your arm to donate. Many parents are happy to help the school grow and add to the curriculum and class rooms. Our children benefit from these improvements. We are lucky that our donations can go towards the extras that make St. Columba a better school. Many schools use their fundraisers just to keep their doors open. We do not have the benefit of tax payer dollars to provide the school with these extras, but we are lucky that we can use the donated dollars to add to the school. I feel the few disgruntled parents would find fault with any school their child goes to. My guess these few have no idea what it takes to make a competitive school and would also complain if St. Columba did nothing to improve its academic offerings.

- submitted by a parent
October 14, 2011
In regards to the walk-a-thon...What a great idea to bring the kids together and collectively work towards a goal. The kids love it, the parents have fun and the teachers enjoy walking with their students. Many parents and kids are excited for this event...it takes very little effort from the families and is fun. The Top Taste of the Town was a wonderful event that adults could enjoy. The idea for this particular event came from a collection of parents who wanted to host/organize this great fundraiser. Over 50% of people who attended where not from the school....So when you make a statement that "they keep asking for money", you are wrong, and perhaps you should know the facts. If a parent does not wish to participate in a fundraiser, then don't....it is unfair to post such negative remarks about OUR school.

- submitted by a parent
August 28, 2011
Our children have had wonderful experiences at this school. From the teachers, principal and even the maintenance gentlemen, we are so happy to have such a great school for our children to attend. We feel fortunate to have met so many wonderful parents through the school and look forward to all the positive changes that will be so beneficial to all the children.

- submitted by a parent
August 14, 2011
As an alumni and current parent of a 5th grader at St. Denis - St. Columba, I think the school is great! Lots of positive changes are being made and the administration is working hard at providing new programs including better technology as well as extra-curricular clubs for the children. Writing negative reviews on websites makes you part of the problem. The grass is greener where you plant your seeds and water it. The solution to making our school even better is by working for the greater good - our children. Be part of the solution, not the problem! This is a CHRISTian school, and our children learn from what we say, write and how we act. If you are not willing to sign your name to a review, then you should think twice about what you are writing. My son absolutely loves this school and his friends. I, too, am lucky to have made wonderful friends with so many wonderful parents. We are lucky to have leadership who walk our faith, teach our children and share our love for such a warm, community-minded school. As with anything, the more you put into it, the more you will get out. Heather McHoul Sulca, Proud Alumni and Parent

- submitted by a parent
August 14, 2011
We are very happy with the school. My children are very happy. They love their teachers and love going to school every day. It is a very caring, warm and friendly school with a great academic program. They also have a wonderful art program. We feel they are doing their best to improve the school even more and are trying to keep tuition the same so all parties will bestill be able to continue to attend this wonderful program. We would highly recommend this school.

- submitted by a parent
March 21, 2011
Great school! Lots of great changes with the new administration. The students are happy and definitely love the technology that has been brought to the school.

- submitted by a teacher
February 01, 2011
On this snow day, I stumbled on this web site. Last Sunday, my grandchildren who attend this school, asked me if I would like to take a tour during Open House. The first thing that I noticed upon entering the school were the large number of student volunteers who were eagerly waiting to give tours. I couldn't help but notice how proud and happy they were to be there on a Sunday afternoon. My grandchilden introduced me to many of the teachers who were in attendance, again on a Sunday afternoon. The children were very proud of the Smart Boards in every room and many rooms were filled with both students, families and teachers actively using the Smart Boards. Both of my grandchildren are kind, well mannered students who enjoy attending school. As I have worked in the public school system for twenty years, I am aware of what is expected academically. They more than meet the criteria. The tour ended in the gym, with many of the parent volunteers sharing their experiences. I have witness the involvement of the student's families during many of the events sponsered by St. Columba. As an outsider, this school promotes all the right values both in education and life.

- submitted by a community member
April 09, 2010
I feel sorry for the kids who go to school there. Christian principles are being taught? Huh? Maybe the teachers should first learn those principles. I bet most of them are clueless about the Bible. Try anothr Catholic school if you really want Catholic school.

- submitted by a parent
November 15, 2009
St. Dennis St Columba is excellent academically especially in english. Science and Social studies. The studets build excellent study habits from grade 1. Strong basis in traditional moral and academic philosophy

- submitted by a parent
May 21, 2008
My son has attended St. Denis/St. Columba School for the past two years. I am amazed at how much he has learned and accomplished! His peers are good children raised in faithful, caring families. Both teachers he has encountered have fueled his desire to do well in school, encouraging him to voluntarily complete extra credit assignments and independent research. The playground used for recess is new and well kept. The school has 100% participation every year in the annual Science Fair. Parent volunteers are heavily involved in making the school a place you want your children to be for 180 days out of the year. I recommend this school to anyone who values a great educational experience for their children. Submitted by Leigh Viviano, parent

- submitted by a parent
no rating May 17, 2008
I have been in this school a very long time and things have gone down hill drastically. One thing I must stress, is that Sr. Anne is doing the best she can with what she has. Unfortunately there is this thing called tenure which allows the teachers who really should not be around children to stay there. There have been alot of changes in recent years with some of the best teachers leaving the school. No one can possibly fill their shoes. The children are being pushed too hard and most of them are stressing out, both physically and mentally. The children are taught to be respectfull but some of the teachers are not respectfull of the students. They talk down to them, embarrass them and make them feel stupid. It never use to be that way. Why am I still in the school? It is still better than public school.

- submitted by a parent
no rating February 18, 2008
I have been involvoed with this school for seven years and would never recomend it to any parent. The education is not that great and the rules/staff are to strict.There is no football and the baseball team isn't in a real league. There is only basketball. The phsyical education is not very satisfying with the students only having gym once a week and sometimes once every two weeks.I am also dissapointed in the bullying goin on not only between students but from teachers as well. overall i would recomend a differnt school.

- submitted by a parent
January 25, 2008
I have been in this school for many years and have seen the quality of teaching go down. Christian principals do not always prevail here. There are other options available in the private school sector- and this is not the only school around. Proceed with caution.

- submitted by a parent
April 22, 2007
This school is different than many other schools. The Teachers have their pros and cons. Some of them are far too strict for children. Others are loving and understanding. But, this school teaches faith and love. That is what is important. The only bad part is that the uniform code ad rules are far too strict. It gets to a point where I write the teachers notes. Parent/Teacher communacations is the key at this school. get to know the teacher and your child will have a better chance of being understood.

- submitted by a parent
March 03, 2006
My children attend the Ark and Dove pre k and kindergarten class. They enjoy the program and the interaction with the other kids is very good for preparing them for the next level. My one complaint is that there are a lot of days off. Otherwise this a very good school.

- submitted by a parent
October 04, 2005
Excellent academics, high level of parent involvement. Music, art and sports are all good programs.

- submitted by a parent
December 06, 2004
The statistics speak for themselves. The school ranks unbelievably high statewide and nationwide in all academic areas. Beginning with the principal and pastor, and ending with the evening maintenance staff, everyone cares for the children and the school. It is not wrong to enforce uniform regulations. Are we not sending our children to the school because of the structure and the discipline, along with the education? We can not have one without the other. When my daughter was going through a time of surgeries and biopsies my family would not have been able to cope if it were not for the support of the school staff and the prayers of the children. For the very few that have removed your children, I am sorry for your loss, because I have seen the academic achievements my children have reached because of the outstanding teaching staff. - James Gallagher

- submitted by a parent
December 02, 2004
We are blessed to have our children attending a school where a wonderful principal and her great staff emphasize, model, nurture, and encourage a child's faith in God. We are grateful for the importance our school places on the moral and spiritual development of children. One way this is accomplished is through the establishment and enforcement of rules. The rules are not unfair. Due to relocations, we have attended other schools and know what a special environment our children are in. As we researched schools, St. Denis/St. Columba's excellent reputation for having a strong academic curriculum and high, but not unreasonable, personal standards for students kept surfacing in conversations with past and present students, parents and the community. None of the above is possible without outstanding leadership. We have that with our principal. Her love and concern for children is obvious. Thanks Sister Anne!

- submitted by a parent
November 30, 2004
The Principal needs to go! Way too strict on rules that do not make sense! A daily inspection of socks is quite ridiculous! Some of the teachers need to go too! Its a great experience for the first 4 yrs, after that you are wasting your money.

- submitted by a parent
November 04, 2004
My son is a new third grader at St Denis/St Columba and everyone has really gone out of their way to make us both feel at home. It reminds me of my Catholic elementary school 25 years ago - superior education with strict discipline and a school where Religion is just as importatnt as Math. Children can get a good education almost anywhere, but here they can get a great Catholic education - worth every penny!

- submitted by a parent
September 13, 2004
I removed my child due to the principal lacking vision and focus. She has been in place for far too long. She gives little latitude for teacher creativity and rules with an iron fist. The faciilities are out dated. No lunchroom or science lab. Gym is inconsistent and computer class does not position the children for real life computer needs. The rules are inconsistent and favortism runs rampant. The principal holds one of the last jobs for life. Seems like her continued inability to lead and archaic discipline techniques have the wrong people's attention.

- submitted by a parent
May 22, 2004
This school has been a big disappointment. The facilities are not updated - no lunchroom, no science lab, dirty, old bathrooms. There has been no waiting list for this school for the past few years. The teachers offer very little help to the students. Tuition is raised each year, but no improvements are made to the school. The principal overall seems more concerned with making daily uniform inspections of shoes, socks, etc. than fixing the problems. Students do well in some areas but I was disappointed to learn the Catholic HS teachers making comments that if you went to St. Columba please stay after class since we know you did not learn this. Money better spent elsewhere.

- submitted by a parent
February 23, 2004
St. Denis-St. Columba School has the highest quality education available in this area. (It is the only grammar school in the county with a waiting list for every grade!) The principal is the best I have ever encountered - business-wise she could easily step in as CEO of any company! Her compassion, devotion to the children and the fairness she shows everyday are a great example for the children. The teachers are fabulous, caring and smart. There is really nothing I would change. We feel lucky and privelaged to be in this school!

- submitted by a parent
August 27, 2003
I feel very safe when my children are at St. Denis St. Columba School. The environment is Awesome!! The children are enriched Spiritually and I am proud to be a parent of the school. What an excellent Job the teachers and principal are doing!! Keep up the great work!

- submitted by a parent
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St Denis-St Columba School
Po Box 368, Hopewell Junction, NY  12533
(845) 227-7777
Last modified St Denis-St Columba School is a Private school that serves grades 1-8
St Denis-St Columba School Rating: 4 out of 5 based on 34 reviews. Top