We have been with Holy Family school now for 4 years (pre 3-1st grade). It has truly been a wonderful experience. EVERY SINGLE teacher we have worked with has shown excellent communication skills, knowledge and passion for their work and most importantly genuine care for my children.
As a parent of both a "typical" and a "special needs" child, I am thrilled with how Holy Family embraced, prepared and educated and loved each one. The fact that Holy Family honors neuro-diverse students with learning differences is something to shout from the rooftops, not apologize for. Holy Family leads the Archdiocese in their approach, and has been instrumental in changing the attitudes and philosophy surrounding special education s rightful place in Catholic education. My typical child was well-prepared for a rigorous college prep high school. She now thrives at a university filled with the valedictorians from across the country. She is arguably better prepared for life as a result of living with and being educated alongside of special needs students. She is compassionate, kind, patient, works well with others and has a depth and wisdom to her that will take her farther than any degree. My son is now in high school and also thriving. Students from Holy Family remain caring, considerate, and walk upon this earth differently than most. Lessons from their years together run deep and will forever shape the trajectory of their lives, at least the lucky ones.
Most of the teachers at Holy Family are strong, however some remain, even as parents have complained time after time that they are no longer effective. Programs have recently been cut, as money appears to be going to support both special ed and tuition assistance. Nearly 10% of tuition goes to these programs, and not directly to my child that I am paying tuition for. This is not what we signed up for. In addition, this school has the second highest tuition of all the Catholic Schools in Portland. Programs continue to be cut, with art no longer in existence. Meetings are called to discuss the crisis, with nothing ever changing. I'd take your money to a school with strong leadership from the principal; it is visibly lacking at Holy Family. There is a revolving door as people come in, experience disappointment, then leave.
Holy Family is a wonderful school. Our daughter started out in the preschool and she had a great experience. By the end, she was well prepared for Kindergarten. There is a new Kindergarten teacher this year and she is incredible. My daughter is excited to go to school each morning and absolutely adores her teacher. It is a very nurturing environment and the curriculum is well thought out. My daughter is reading and writing better than I would have expected for her age. We are so blessed to have found such a wonderful school and are thankful she will be there until high school. It is worth every penny we pay and would not spend our money any other way or place!
This is truly one of the best schools in Portland. As a graduating 8th grader of '09, i feel incredibly well prepared for high school. By going to this school, i have had incredibly high expectations that I am expecting to carry on into high school. The teachers, though the home room teacher is pretty weird, are honestly irreplaceable. Mrs. J, the 7th grade and US History teacher, is an incredibly tough teacher, and she doesn't let up. She's actually a person who is easily related to. She prepares you really well for what's to come in high school. Mrs. Mccarty only wants the best for her students. The curriculum we cover is extremely challenging, as we have high school level math books. Many of the algebra 1 students move on to honors geo/trig and geometry. I am personally going into Honors geo/trig at Central Catholic. A highly recommended school.
I can't imagine my children at any other school. The principal is a wise and caring leader. All of the staff are dedicated and well trained. The diversity of the school (typical and special needs) is what really makes us a school founded on Gospel values. I love that my 'neuro-typical' child has the opportunity to be friends with children who have special needs. It teaches my child compassion and understanding. In no way does this hamper my child's education. I have seen first hand how these special students have enhanced our classrooms. It makes us truly a 'Holy Family' by including all in our community.
As a parent of a 'typical' and of a 'special needs student, both attending Holy Family since kindergarten, I could not disagree more with the posting of 3/31. Last year the graduating classes of Central and La Salle had five Holy Family alums in the roles of valedictorian, or salutatorian. Five in two schools, in one year. There are Holy Family alums attending Stanford, Penn, Scrips, and Smith, and those are just the siblings of my 'typical's' friends. If you are looking only for accelerated learning for bright students, might I suggest CLASS Academy in Portland. If you are looking for a school that 'gets it,' where your child will be embraced as a whole person, and not just a brain, Holy Family is the school for you. Regardless of their 'needs,' or their amazing abilities, all are welcome here. It's called a Catholic Community. It's what you signed up for.
Holy Family is an amazing school and has been a wonderful and enriching experience for each of our 3 children. Underlying the Holy Family philosophy is respect. Respect for the child, the teachers and each other. Respect creates an environment which learning comes easily. I am thrilled my children are learning not only academics but important values that will serve them well in life.
If your child isn't special needs be prepared. With so many 'special needs' kids flocking to this school and inadequate training in special education by the teachers your child will be restricted in his/her academics. This is not a school for bright kids or will accelerate your child's learning, you are buying into a community and it has become a community of parents hiding their kids from being label 'special ed' in the public schools. Avoid it if you are looking for an education!
So far our experience has been outstanding. Unlike the public school in our neighborhood, this school asked me to come talk to the entire staff about Aspergers and Autism. They valued what I had learned for the 9+ years I had been dealing with it. From our first day there we have felt the warmth and acceptence we did not get from Duniway. Our kids report that all the teachers care about them. (Their words) At Holy Family they seem to care for the 'whole' child - not just educating to meet benchmarks and earn ratings. Leadership is so important and this school has a great administration and a strong connection to a fabulous parish. I highly reccomend this school to anyone. Many parents wrongly feel they need to keep kids with special needs in public school for services.....wrong...the right school will support you and what's best for your child.
I love the wonderful community. Holy family is a great school! The eight graders get to read to the preschool and kindergardeners. It is so darling! every class has another class as their buddys. Its is a great way for us to get to know each other and if the younger kids ever have a problem they can talk to us about it. As an eigth grader i am truly sad this is my last year, but holy family has made me ready for high school.. I love this school!
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The Community Rating is the school’s average rating from its community members (e.g., parents, students, and school staff). The highest possible rating is five stars; the lowest is one star.
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