The 'fortress Catholic' attitude may be wonderful for some, but don't believe that AA has a 'classical' education, by any means. Beside the obligatory study of Latin, any other remnants of a liberal arts model left when the new 'Academy Administrator' became the de facto Headmaster. Wonderful liturgy, but total lack of intellectual content.
After seeing the post regarding 'unqualified' teachers, please see the school website to discover that all teachers have BAs and almost half have a MA or PhD. Perhaps the problem is that we do not emphasize fun. Because our goal is to have 100% of our students go on to great colleges and succeed, we probably fail at teaching 'fun'. I like to think that my classes can be fun, of course! And I have a great relationship with my students -- but it is definitely professional. As a parent I really don't want my kids having 'relatioships' with teachers. That's what their peers are for! If fun is not a requirement for you and your family,but strong academics in a Catholic college prep environment are, come and see for yourself!
I have made lifelong friends at the AA and the teachers were very nice. However, only 2 of them were qualified to be teachers. The administration doesnt care about its students as long as the parents are paying them money. Going to public school now has changed my life only for the better. Unless you completely agree with the bias ways of the administration 100%, I wouldn't even go on the campus. This is a never-been-so-sure-in-my-life unequivocal dont ever go there ever!!
I was a former student at AA, and an A-B student, the work load was ridiculous and the enviornment wasn't fun at all. The teachers dont even try to build relationships with the students and all it is is strictly 'work'. A little discipline isnt that bad but they just take it way too far. As far as sports and extra curriculars go it's not good at all. I'm very happy in another Catholic high school, where the teachers care about the students and are allowed to have FUN. One thing the AA taught me was to be thankful to go anywhere else. Oh, and the school seemed great at first just like it does to everyone else after a year you'll see.
I just graduated from the school, and now that I am in college, I can honestly say that all that homework was well worth it. I watched as my classmates (many of whom attended Catholic schools) struggled to get ready for our first mid-terms. They also struggled with the first papers they had to write, staying up most of the night wasting time because they didn't know how to get it done. I also encourage my new friends to go to some of the daily masses. I don't make it every day, but I definately gained a love for the mass from my time at Atonement. Anyway, I will be coming back at Thanksgiving to tell my teachers how much they helped me, and that yes, 'they were right!' - a former and very grateful student
The AA is not for everybody, prospective parents take note and proceed with caution. Excessive homework and large classes dominate the curricula. We don't care that our children were ahead of their public school peers or cousins. We have one shot at parenthood and want happy/balanced kids. They now attend a Catholic school that is authentic and nurturing Praised by Jesus!
This is a fantastic school where the staff are truly interested in the education and spiritual growth of the children.
As the father of three children at the Atonement Academy (the oldest, now a sophomore and has been enrolled since pre-k) I can attest to the fact that there is no other educational institution that comes close to the Academy in every area imaginable. The religious structure, discipline, academic foundation, experience and education of the faculty speak to the success of this school. I agree with those that have said the Academy isn t for everyone. Those that prefer the public school methodologies for education should definitely not apply.
This is our son's third year. He had a great summer and naturally wasn't excited about going back to school, that is until Open House. The teachers have worked very hard in preparation of the first day of school. The students were welcomed with enthusiasm and a joyful spirit. Our world is not perfect and to expect a perfect school is asking a lot. You can not find a better school in San Antonio or the Texas Hill Country that offers a more challenging curriculum, with quality teachers that sincerely care about your child. I can drop my child off in the morning feeling secure that my child will be with a community that will encourage him to be the best that he can be. This school teaches the whole child; spiritually, mentally and physically. In chosing this school, I was very impressed with the upper class students' manners and courtesies.
Our children attended AA from PreK through 6th, we had hoped that our children would graduate from there. We did everything we knew how to do to help our children be successful and well adjusted. When we left AA, after 7 years nobody bothered to inquire why we left (is that authenically Catholic?). We spoke to administratin at the beginning of the school year, but we found they were difficult to reach - phonecalls/emails were easily not returned. Our personal experience was that the environment at the Academy was not friendly or open.
As the father of two AA students (and counting), I thank God for this wonderful, unapologetically orthodox, authentically Catholic school. Sadly, it seems that most parochial schools are almost designed to destroy the faith of their students. AA could not be more different from such institutions. I could not be happier with this uniquely excellent school. There can't be more than a handful of educational institutions in the world that compare favorably with AA. As for the naysayers, well, I suppose even Tiger Woods has his critics.
My daughter is going into kindergarten this year and was in pre-K at the Atonement Academy last year. Last year she was so excited to be at the school and looks forward to coming back. Last year, of her daily activities were educationally nutritional and her teacher was always gracious and accomodating towards her and towards me. I love the fact that the school strives to educate my child as a whole person, physically, intellectually, and spiritually. The daily mass is a blessing and Father Phillips makes sure that the sermon reaches the children at all levels. If you do not believe that your child is a whole and undivided person, you would probably be better served at public school where morals and decent comportment are not expected. If you want a school where your child is truly valued and their welfare is of concern to everyone there, go here!
My son has attended private school throughout his entire education and I have been extremely pleased with the results in his increased maturity, self discipline in his studies, and overall development as a young man...this was until I enrolled him in the Atonement Academy. Atonement seems to have a very good grasp of what it takes to educate and develop younger students but then loses focus and ability in their instruction of high school students. Additionally, the staff is underpaid and overworked, thereby resulting in a lack of attentativeness and respect towards their students - one of the main reasons I like private schools. Lack of communication and unresponsiveness is the main complaint I have with the faculty. I have left messages directly with the staff via their secretary, through phone messages and via email. Not once have my messages been answered.
As I was saying in my last review the Atonement spoils itself. The principal does everything the priest tells him to do and always spouts nonsense whenever the students ask him questions. He believes that people should suffer and not complain about or try to do anything to stop it. Most of the teachers are tempermental or too full of themselves to listen to students. They will assign five tests on the same day and if a student complains or tries to object they will brush him/her off. The handbook changes every time the administration feels they want more power and if you try to express your opinions publicly they will ban you from all school activities that are in the least bit 'fun'. I warn you do not go to this school, unless you want your child to be a theologian.
Atonement is a no nonsense school. The school is very much a reflection of Father Philips . He believes in a strong spiritual foundation is as important as a strong educational foundation. As such, the kids go to mass every day and the material the students do in class is challenging for most. It is not for every child and parent however. Neither the kids, nor the parents will be coddled. I love the school, while my wife is not as enthusiastic, because she thinks they get too much religion. What we both cannot deny is that the kids are way ahead of their peers in similar grade levels elsewhere.
Well above average school. We are not Catholic but we wanted a solid college prep program for our son and he is getting it. He does not like mass each day and as Lutheran's do not feel he should be forced to go, but it isn't going to hurt him. This school has excellent honor system, very good academics, a student body of kids who have parents who CARE at it shows. Uniform and rule enforcement outstanding. Boys and girls have separate classes until 9th grade; makeup rules, hair cut rules, moral behavior rules excellent. This school's administration KNOWS how to effect learning. Some teachers are outstanding, others a bit young and naive. Students are taught personal responsibility and 'blame game' is not acceptable, which is the way it should be. If you are a parent who wants to blame teachers for your kid not learning, don't bother to apply.
This is a fantastic school -- we have been here for eight years and see incredible development and growth with each subsequent year. It is interesting to see and read the applause as well as the criticisms. Obviously, people (parents, students, and teachers) either love the place or hate it! Obviously, it is NOT for everyone -- best bet: drop in for a visit at the weekeday 9:15 student sMass, then ask for an impromptu visit! Rather than believe too many glorious reviews or ignorant, ill-informed opinions, you should see for yourself!
What can we say, Atonement is a fabulous school, all the effort put into the way it looks, all the PHD faculty, Wow! It is a great school, but, for very intelligent children. Our kids tried it for a while, but, our kids are just average. It is sad that this school is not equipped to handle 'regular' kids. One would need to exceed in music or academics, that is about it. If you have children who want to excel in sports or other, this is not the place to be.
Please think carefully before putting your children in this school. Music program is the only good thing about this school. The hallways and lobby are decorated beautifully and that seems to be their main focus: outward appearances.
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