This is a safe place to share your honest opinions of a school, whether good or bad.
St Mary Magdalene School5
Posted October 08, 2013
- a parent
SMMCS is a wonderful Catholic school with a great sense of community and academic excellence. My children have been students for many years and we are very pleased with the quality education they have received thus far. At SMMCS religion is one of the core subjects taught. Students attend Mass weekly, get to celebrate holidays like Christmas and Easter (unlike kids in public schools) and are taught the morals and values you want your child to have. Students also participate in service projects and which will hopefully lead to a lifetime of volunteerism in their community. The academics are strong and teachers are excellent. The teachers have the ability to personalize your child s education in the sense that students who can work ahead do and those that need extra help get it (I believe the buzz word is differentiation). I love knowing that my children are not bored with their classwork and are constantly being challenged. With regards to extracurricular activities, SMMCS has plenty to offer. The school has soccer, volleyball, football, basketball, track, chess club, NJHS, etc. All in all, SMMCS is a great school that your child will enjoy and thrive in.
SMMCS provides a quality education with a wonderful sense of security and community for my kids. There are also many activities to get involved in: sports (volleyball, basketball, soccer, football...), NJHS, choir, spirit club....and more. The teachers we have encountered thus far have all been top-notch and invested in the students. If you are looking for a commitment to academic excellence, a faith-based education, and a place where your child feels part of a family, you should definitely schedule a visit!
Reading the review below made me laugh. St. Mary Magdalene has never had anywhere close to 600 students nor is the school facility itself large enough to enroll 600 students. The school currently has over 280 students, which is the largest enrollment it has ever seen. There is actually a wait list for several grades right now. The school also has an Academic Coach who is charged with running the enrichment program and each core class uses differentiated instruction groups to allow high performers to progress while also being able to spend more time with the students who require it. St. Mary Magdalene offers a number of extra curricular activities including a football team, basketball, volleyball, baseball, softball, gymnastics, National Junior Honor Society, Choir, and I am sure there are more. The previous post is inaccurate, incorrect, inappropriate, inconsistent, inept, incompetent, incredulous....you get the point!!!
When we originally were looking for a school in 2006, St Mary Magdalene had almost 600 students. Now, there are barely 200 students, and more than half the classrooms are empty. There were unqualified teachers, and staff, in place for so long, that truly responsible parents could see that this was not the school for people who wanted a premium education. The school doesn't even offer advanced/gifted tracks/programs for students. Every student in the class is taught at the same level. A do not expect very much in extra curricular activities for you child. This school does not have them. It does have nepotism, cronyism, favoritism, and all of the other "negative-isms" that will hurt your child's education.
Now that the principle is starting to clean house, there is renewed hope that the school will become the jewel of Northeast Houston that it could be. The cronyism, nepotism, mismanagement, and incompetence of the past severely held the school back. If the principle can mend the rift between the church, and the school, that was created by the previous principle, and stop letting school policy be influenced in the short term by people dangling trinkets/think long term, the school will rise up and be great. I am giving two stars to show the hope for the future, but no more than two stars, because the school has a long way to go.
When I was researching schools to enroll my daughter in last year, some of the negative reviews on this site made me very apprehensive about enrolling her in SMMCS. However, the positive reviews all made points that were most important to me. Now, I am so happy that my husband and I decided to enroll her! So much so, that we have decided to enroll our other daughter in their PreK program for the next school year. Everyone I have come across has been absolutely wonderful. My daughter's Kindergarten teacher is everything I prayed for. She goes out of her way to challenge my daughter in areas where she excels, is kind and patient, but authoritative and strict when necessary. Seeing how much she has learned in less than 1 year at this school has made me so proud. Spiritual and moral formation is also exemplary. We are so lucky to have parish priests so involved in our students' lives. It can get expensive, but what you receive in return is priceless. My daughter wakes up every morning actually excited to go to school, and my youngest daughter can't wait to start going to SMMCS. Truly the best decision my husband and I have made for our daughters.
I am very pleased with the school. I have two children who attend the school. Small class sizes and caring teachers make it a great school. I couldnt be happier as the before and after program is great for working parents. You get what you pay and saint mary magdalene is worth every penny. Seeing the smiles on my childrens faces is all i need to see
The school is under new leadership and has shown great improvement. There are many caring and well qualified teachers. They have a new updated computer lab. Academic and atheletics are strong. The pre-k department is excellent. My children have done well at this school. They are strict about their rules and expectations but I consider this a strength.
There was some hope for the school when the new principle came on board. That hope has faded away. She is continuing the same mismanagement that was started by the previous principle, and she continues to keep blatantly unqualified people on staff. There is one teacher who is so unqualified that she can't do basic tasks concerning her job. I would steer clear of this school, and look elsewhere. At this school, Your children will not get what they need for their future. They will get caught up in a lot of drama, cronyism and nepotism.
The legacy left behind by the previous principle is still hurting the school. There are still unqualified teachers and staff at the school, and the school is still far below the level of what other private schools in Houston reached 10 years ago. More parents need to really get involved, instead of just showing up for PTO meetings SOMETIMES, and letting 5-10 of the truly dedicated parents do everything. Hopefully, the new principle will continue to show the promise she has shown in the past, and will not be afraid to do what needs to be done to make the school great.