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Paul Vi Catholic High School

Private | 9-12 | 941 students

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Living in Fairfax

Situated in a suburban neighborhood. The median home value is $418,500. The average monthly rent for a 2 bedroom apartment is $1,750.

Source: Sperling's Best Places
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32 reviews of this school

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Posted September 17, 2014

School had some dinosaur administration personnel who show favoritism and preferential treatment to students they like. The student government body election is "rigged" according to many of the students which is unfortunate as it prevents others from running for a position. Of course this won't ever be admitted by faculty and staff but it's a reality in the students minds. How unfortunate for a Catholic High School. Wish the administration would wake up, quit favoring certain staff and students and make some changes within the organization to prevent these instances from happening.
—Submitted by a parent

Posted March 18, 2013

Great school. Definitely not a 'big box' school like the public schools available in the area. I have put two kids through PVI and have another one attending there now. Both graduates are in college and they have both said they were very well prepared for the structure of college classes. I am very happy with Paul VI
—Submitted by a parent

Posted December 22, 2011

I'm a junior at PVI and I LOVE IT! I can't imagine going anywhere else. I have learned so much and I have amazing relationships with my classmates and teachers (who are always willing to help). You know PVI is a great school because everyone has so much pride and spirit. We are all truly proud to be panthers. From day one, the administration hosts events so you can meet lots of people (I didn't know hardly anyone as a I have loads of friends). You couldn't pay me to go anywhere else because I know I wouldn't be half as knowledgeable or happy!
—Submitted by a student

Posted September 29, 2011

PVI.... where to begin? We will start with the rules they do not enforce such as the uniform. On the first dat students are given a lecture on the correct uniform yet it is not followed and just the polo all year DOES NOT model a Catholic school- there needs to be a tie worn in the winter, in my opion. Religion teachers believe that religion shouldn't be hard and they don't even take their classes seriously sometimes. The MAth dept goes around yelling at people and some teachers in all depts dont know what they are teaching! The athletics are good but a lot of money goes into the unsucsessful football team. The assistant principle of students needs work as he likes to stand in the middle of the halls and yell at people. There is a lot of favoritism shown towords students on athletic teams and by athletic teams i mean the football, baseball, basketball, and lax teams. Otherwise your team is hardly mentioned. School needs work but there are sme positives such as SOME of the teachers and the Catholic beliefes are avaliable if you find them (confessions and mass) but over all I would take my money elsewear/

Posted January 14, 2011

PVI is a great place!!! There are so many ways to get involved. The upperclassmen really reach out to you; however, YOU have to want to get involved! I think it's easier to fit in at PVI than at public schools because kids come from so many middle schools that in the beginning, everyone is new. The work is challenging but I absolutely feel like I am getting a better education than my friends at other public and private schools. PVI's goal is that no one will be a "ghost." This means the administration, teachers, and students reach out to make you feel welcome. It's a cool place to go to school!
—Submitted by a student

Posted January 12, 2011

My two children are PVI students. My daughter is a PVI graduate and presently attending the college of her choice and my son will graduate this June. I can't believe the number of colleges that have contacted my children to encourage them to apply. It is clear to me that the academic program and the school's networking are two of the main reasons for this outreach by the colleges. PVI has great academic programs which are challengeing and prepare them for college. The teachers go out of their way to help and make themselves available for student that need extra help. The teachers are so advanced in their teaching and make student success a first priority. My children love PVI and all that they stand for academically and socially. Its a great place to send your children.
—Submitted by a parent

Posted October 12, 2010

This was THE toughest decision to put my daughter into a private school let alone a Catholic school since we are not Catholic. She was excelling academically at the public school but the social setting was such that there was way too much partying, to put it mildly. She does play sports at PVI and does work out daily which is why I assume they can compete in the highly competitive WCAC!. She also has strong parental follow up from this single mom who monitors homework through teacher contact and B;ackboard access. Your children rise to the level you expect of them so I had to speak up on behalf of the teachers and curriculum here which I feel is VERY strong. She was in all honors and AP at her Fairfax County secondary school and feels these classes are quite challenging ! She LOVES PVI ! Go Harvard or UVA!!
—Submitted by a parent

Posted May 12, 2010

My son is a rising senior at PVI. We were initially so excited to send him there but soon realized we were disillusioned. The administration is self serving, it is not about the children, just about sports, like most Catholic high schools. The school recruits, so most of the students on the sports teams are there on 'scholarship' which leaves little to no room for children whose parents are actually paying for the school. The children are rude and cliquish, not allowing any 'outsiders' in. I had to pull my daughter after 6 weeks because she was tortured there by other girls. If my son wasn't going into his senior year, I would definitely move him to John Paul the Great. What an awesome school! I wish it had been open when he was entering 9th grade.
—Submitted by a parent

Posted July 25, 2009

I am a rising sophmore at Paul VI and I absolutely love it. I'm on dance team and student government and I just cannot say enough good things about PVI. I've read many of these reviews and it seems to me that the people who don't like PVI are the kids who don't try. I would not say that PVI is easy, but it is also not impossible to get a good grade in a class. If you use all the resources provided and study, you will get an A, and that is the way it should be. If someone is not struggling at all, they need to be put into higher classes. The teachers are always enthusiastic and the classes ARE up to date; in fact, they update the curriculum every year. I recommend this school to anyone, regardless of their level of learning.
—Submitted by a student

Posted February 21, 2009

I live in Fairfax. Deciding to go the Catholic school route instead of FCPS system was based on our observations, of what was happening to the public school system in this area. We choose PVI based partly on location. My child liked nothing about the school. The academics were not at all challenging, the students were not very friendly, they stayed within their small elementary group clicks. It just never seemed welcoming. My child transferred to O'Connell after the first year. It was a fantastic choice. The academics blew PVI's academics away. The student body was very inviting and friendly. The faculty excellent. It is larger in size, and student body which also works to its advantage. It is a further commute granted, but well worth the extra time. I will send all my children to O'Connell. It is a wonderful high school environment! We love everything about.
—Submitted by a parent

Posted October 5, 2008

Paul Vi in my opinion is a very bad school. It concentrates more on giving you detentions rather than helping you learn. The teachers have no connection with the students and dont give a damn about their students. The student to teacher ratio is very high and in this case, meaning the teachers dont personally give help that the students need. Every test or assigment the teachers give are from the book or another source. They never make tests or quizzes themselves. Overall this is one of the worst private schools that you can send you children to.
—Submitted by a parent

Posted September 29, 2008

PVI is not a bad school. You certainly get the tools you need for college, but very few will go out of there way to help you with that extra mile. Very few will go out of their way for anything at all, unless your tie is loose around your neck. Which, if frequent enough, will earn you a polite request to not return the following semester. If you're really willing to sacrifice quality of education for rigidity and good old-fashioned catholic guilt, PVI might be for you. In fact, in most other parts of the country, PVI would probably be better than average. What I can't understand is why, with access to one of the best public school systems in the country, anyone would send their child here.
—Submitted by a student

Posted July 28, 2008

I have gone to public school all my life until high school when I went to this excellent school. The academics are extremely challenging and everyone is pushed to succeed. There is a group for everyone and people are just plain nice to eachother. Going to PVI was one of the best choices I've ever made. Within one week I had gone from knowing nobody to having a large group of very close friends. If your kid is willing to work, but also have fun, PVI is the perfect place.
—Submitted by a student

Posted July 5, 2008

My three children two boys and a girl. have received a great education at PVI and have made friends for a lifetime. Wonderful small Christian atmosphere.
—Submitted by a parent

Posted May 24, 2008

im a student at PVI. the school is overpriced. they really should update it with its tecnology and classrooms, everything has been the same since PVI was formally Fairfax high school (since the 80's) The school is not very much 'catholic' t. The teachers dont seem to know what they are doing. and everyong i talk to says they hate this school.
—Submitted by a student

Posted May 22, 2008

Joining the PVI family as a step-parent of 3 b - I have been horrified at the quality of education each of these boys has received. PVI did not provide adequate guidance for balancing extracurricular activities (such as drama, theater, music) with grades and homework. Students are allowed and sometimes required to participate in too many hours of play practice or set building when their grades were far below acceptable for college entrance. Even community college has been a struggle for the eldest. I agree with other parents on this forum - FUN does NOT equate to a good academic school. Although service and morals/values are important - those can be taught in conjunction with high academic standards. As a product of Catholic schools myself - I know what a difference a good academic preparation can make in college success. PVI does not make the grade.
—Submitted by a parent

Posted April 9, 2008

Paul VI has provided a quality academic and spiritual education for my two children. When I ask them if they feel that PVI prepared them for the rigors of their competitive Catholic colleges, they answer 'yes'. When I ask them if they worked as hard they could in high school, they say 'no' however they feel as though they have had a healthy balance of academics, social and service. They left PVI as happy young adults, knowing how to balance work and play and understanding the importance of giving back to society. If I had it to do all over again, I would indeed send my children to PVI.
—Submitted by a parent

Posted October 31, 2007

PVI, for me, was one of the best college prep high schools that I am proud to have gone to. My 4 years at PVI were the 'Lyle years' where because of one man the school suffered. Even with the rough times, PVI not only prepared me to be a successful college student but a great man, son, brother, husband, and father. I didn't realize how well it prepared me until after college looking back amongst my friends. All of my PVI friends breezed through college. They doubled majored, finished early, graduated with honors. My friends who were not from PVI struggled, they needed help understanding, writing papers, they finished late, they werent involved in as many activities. This is what makes PVI special. The professors there really care. I remember a particular Algebra teacher staying 3-4 hours after school had ended to help students understand. I highly recommend PVI.
—Submitted by a former student

Posted April 20, 2007

I am ecstatic about the preparation my children received a PVI. Both received significant merit scholarships from quality schools such as UVA, VT, Notre Dame,and Villanova. They did very well at the schools they eventually attended. PVI was a great investment.
—Submitted by a parent

Posted January 10, 2007

As a parent - I am horrified at what is passing for 'college preparatory' at Paul VI. Kids are not receiving adequate college entrance requirement counseling or assistance in choosing high school classes to promote a strong pre-collegiate transcript. Just because it is 'fun' does not make Paul VI a good school for students who are serious about a college education.
—Submitted by a parent

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School basics

School Leader's name
  • Virginia Colwell
  • Coed
  • Roman catholic
  • NCEA


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  • Religious


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  • Computer lab
  • Library
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  • Diocese of Arlington
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10675 Fairfax Boulevard
Fairfax, VA 22030
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Phone: (703) 352-0925


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