We have 3 students here - our experience so far is disheartening. The school counsellors mislead about AP requirements, the school does not correct this. We have three current students - also in orchestra/band - the penalty is that other grades are sacrificed. We complained and requested a meeting, therefore a teacher and then the head of academics painstakingly explained how what had happened was not against rules and regulations ( loading all test scores for a semester into the band trip period when the students were absent, with make up during noisy advisory etc). The school is determined to show how school rules are observed -it fails to comprehend that rules and that allow this should be updated into this century, just because teaching guidelines allow grading to be skewered into a small timeband doesn't make it right, rather its time to reconsider such policies. Students learning is,needless to say, furtherest from consideration. At no point were we asked our views, just heard recitation that everything was in order accordance with governing regulations( this does explain why orchestra and band have few students - hence the music department suffers ). Ex post justification of poor teacher decisions and disorganization abounds, the school is right at any cost - it is at the cost of motivation and teaching of students. An outdated poorly-run school - wish we'd never begun, now the bigger decision of whether to move to somewhere better or put up with the appalling lack of care for the students and bad policies and sanctimonious upholding of their self-made regulations ( in the face of these being arbitrary and capricious) or put our students through having to leave during high school years and start again elsewhere with all that entails. Especially as they had made great friendships in the student body. Do not send your children here. Further the preaching sister who heads academics was at such pains to explain why extending a deadline date helped students who had stayed up to meet the deadline failed to appreciate what poor planning and breach of student-teacher trust was exemplified by such behaviour. Run by a bloated blinkered faculty, you can do better - and as for the school, it really needs to raise the bar and accept some responsibility.
I have a student currently at DJO and my student is having a great time. The teachers are caring and helpful, they have even created more time during the day for the students to obtain extra help should it be needed. Academically, my student went from being an average student to one who is engaged in learning and excited for the next school year. The new class additions are great!
The counseling staff is wonderful, they are doing a great job to get the kids ready for college. It is a friendly, caring environment. There is an emphasis on athletics but there is also an emphasis on the arts-be it musical or theatrical or art for arts sake. They are trying to ensure that the students are graduating as well rounded individuals.
One of the things we like best is that there is a place for everybody at this school. The administration is supportive and helpful. There have been some great changes over the past two years. This is a great school! Please check it out!
What a mistake; not only once but twice. After our daughter begged to get out of Bishop O Connell after her second year we relented and sent her to a much better school in the area. She complained that she was not being taught by the instructors. She had to teach herself. We just didn t really believe her. We asked why such low grades, why do you think you re not learning. She was student of the quarter seven out of eight quarters in Jr. High. It wasn t until she arrived at her new school and the English instructor told us how ill prepared she was in English. Her last school did her no favors. Her new school prepared her and has accepted an appointment to a service academy. I only wish my wife had listened to my daughter when we sent our son there. Two years of misery again! Worst money spent.
I love Bishop O'Connell and everyone I know does too. There's not a single one of my friends who wishes they could go elsewhere. At O'Connell everyone fits in! No matter what, each person has at least some friends and that's what's important. The uniforms are cute and tasteful for girls and standard for boys. The teachers are so nice and genuinely care about the students. Overall the vibes are REALLY good! It's a much better environment than public school. (I went to public school before OC and now often times in class i want to pinch myself because i cant believe how much nicer people are!) I knew from the second I stepped foot here that I would love it and I don't think I'll ever change my mind. It really is a gem of a school. If you decide to attend Bishop O'Connell your High School memories will be wonderful!!!! take my word for it :) this is a place where people respect you and are always incredibly supportive!
When I read the reviews below I wonder what kind of grudge former students/parents have to discredit a good school like O'Connell. Our son went and thrived. Great caring teachers and guidance couselors, good coaches and lots of challenging honors and AP classes. He did well in college placement exams and was accepted to his first choice university. He was well prepared for university classes by the O'Connell staff and maintains a high GPA. I highly recommend this high school.
Ok, I recently just graduated from Bishop Denis J. Oconnell and dont really know where to beign about this school. First off before you even send your kid here, stop. The school is terrible and i have probably a list of 50 reasons but i will sum it down to five. 1) The academics here are an complete joke, even my parents agreed with me sophmore year, but i decided to stay because of my friends. 3/4s of the teachers just pound you with home work and massive amounts of work that does not accomplish anything productive but stressing you out. I learned more in my first month in college then all 4 years at O'Connell. 2) The rules their are absurd, half the time kids dont even follow them so their set up to fail from the beginning. The administration needs to easy up and stop hosting a prison where kids have little freedom. 3) i could have gotten into better or the same colleges that i did from a public school and saved $40,000. 4) The kids their are all rich so that means for all your parents that dont know, Lots of drug use and alcohol use. 5) at a public school your childs friends are all in a close designated area, not all over Virginia like some of my friends were
O'connell was a great time, however I felt very unprepared for college once I graduated. I always thought the teachers and security guards were more concerned with pointing out students flaws rather than preparing us for the real world. If you are a girl or low key boy you will do fine there. The sporting teams there are ok. Football and lax teams need the most work. Overall, not worth the money. There were alot of babes though :)