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830 West Broad Street
Falls Church, VA 22046

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(703) 533-1182
(703) 532-8316
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Map of St. James Catholic School address.

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September 21, 2013
St. James Catholic School is one of the best academic schools in NOVA. It obtained Blue Ribbon status in 1999, and has maintained it ever since. Recently, the Johns Hopkins Center for Talented Youth (CTY) search ranked St. James #4 in the state. The middle school offers 3 math tracks: pre-Algebra, Algebra, and Geometry, as well as National Junior Honor Society. SJS offers LabLearner, a 100% hands-on supplemental science program for K-8 with a fully equipped in-school lab in its dedicated science room. My daughter was recently accepted into CTY, and we just learned that my son, qualifies to test. CTY will soon be offered on-site at SJS. The class size for both my children was 21 students. In addition to the great teaching and spiritual training, SJS facilities and staff are wonderful. It offers a light filled, spacious art room with two art teachers, a large music center with great acoustics and a wonderful music teacher who goes beyond the call of duty, an up-to-date library, a state-of-the-art computer room, and regulation size gym. SJS recently purchased ipads for students' use. Most important and best of all, my children look forward to school every day!

- submitted by a parent
September 20, 2013
I have a daughter who went to St. James and it was HORRIBLE! The teachers were strict and she barely learned anything. They do not have any advanced English or math classes, everyone is at the same level. They do not have a foreign language choice, everyone learns Spanish. And the parents and teachers judge people by how much money they have, what they wear, if they live in a bigger house, if they're from the U.S., ect. I thought this was a Catholic school, but its a school for really rich people. I moved my daughter to public school and she is much happier and her grades are better. She I more social and don't discriminate anyone by race or if they are poor.

- submitted by a parent
May 21, 2013
This school has a great religion program, as expected at a Catholic school and has some great teachers. However, the resources/staff are so limited (one teacher shares an aid with several other classrooms), the classroom size so big for a private school that there is little if any effort to differentiate learning among students or to provide any individualized teaching to advanced learners or students with difficulty learning. Everyone is taught the exact same way regardless of the level of knowledge at the start of the module. In terms of improvement, besides some differentiated learning, the school could benefit from more attention to its art, computer science, and music program. Also, there needs to be more adult supervision at recess because it is basically a free for all and the kids have to fend for themselves against potential bullying and harassment. Overall, the teachers are totally committed and do their best; they just need more support from the administration/pastor and/or congregation in terms of resources and planning time.

- submitted by a parent
April 17, 2013
I have one child who attends Saint James. The teaches are excellent. They really push the kids to achieve there full potential.

- submitted by a parent
January 24, 2013
Our son and daughter attend St. James and have had terrific experiences, both academically and socially. The facilities are terrific, the homework assignments are meaningful and challenging but not daunting, and the parents and faculty communicate well together. Our kids love the school, look forward to seeing their classmates each day, and have a great time in the aftercare program each afternoon -- so much so that our son asks us to leave and come back later if we try to pick him up early. It's been a great experience.

- submitted by a parent
August 07, 2012
I have 3 children at St. James and all have had wonderful experiences. The teachers have been caring and sensitive to our personal issues. They want to help each child do their best whether they need more assistance or more challenge (I have children on both ends of the spectrum). I am very active in the school community and continue to be impressed by the dedication of the faculty, staff and families. I have read the previous posting about behavior management, but I don't believe giving children choice cards and positive feedback for good behavior is a negative. I have friends who have transferred to St James and they have told me that the good behavior in the classrooms is a welcome change from their previous school and has really enhanced their children's learning. It has been a wonderful community for us.

- submitted by a parent
June 18, 2012
WARNNIG TO ANY PARENT CONSIDERING KINDERGARTEN AT THIS SCHOOL. If you want to pay thousands of dollars to damage your child s self-esteem this is the school for you. This school still practices exclusion and humiliation as part of its routine for behavior management on KINDERGARTNERS. And in their dealings with parents they use bullying and deception to coerce parents into agreement. No kindergarten student s behavior can be so bad that it deserves such a poor response from the school system, which is designed to pull students up rather than tear them down. When I brought all these issues to the principal, St. James was unwilling to move my son to another room. I wrote to all the senior members of the Archdiocese of Arlington and had no response. Sadly it was only after leaving St. James that I found many parents with similar experiences here. Perhaps in our typical Catholic fashion we find it difficult to criticize the Catholic Church or its systems.

- submitted by a parent
May 20, 2012
Great school -- academics, socially, seasoned teachers, science, enrichment programs, being a community for the parents, teachers and kids together. The leadership is wonderful and the only criticism would be that they are not bragging enough. Our first son there (a bright, chipper, fidgety little 2nd grader) is happy and things are only about to get better!

- submitted by a parent
February 29, 2012
I totally disagree with the comments posted on Feb. 12th. My children currently attend St. James and the teachers and curriculum have surpassed my expectations. Keep in mind the teachers and staff have to hear all sides of every situation they encounter and make the best decision possible based on the information they have. They certainly address bullying issues and are always looking for ways to improve their teaching, technology and communication. I believe they can teach to all levels of the classroom. My children have needed extra help at times and they received it. They've also needed more challenge and received that too. I love St. James!!!!

- submitted by a parent
February 29, 2012
We have been so blessed to be a part of St. James School. My children have thrived here, because of the rigorous academics and the love of Christ that permeates the school. The IHM sisters model Mary in all that they do. Children are disciplined with love and faith, using the teachings of Jesus Christ.

- submitted by a parent
January 06, 2011
St. James School has been a great experience for our family. We had several wonderful schools in our area to choose from, but we decided upon St. James because of the level of education, the community involvement, the morals that are part of every day life, etc. No school is 100% perfect, but I'd say St. James comes very, very close.

- submitted by a parent
January 06, 2011
Both of my children attended St. James K-8 before going on to Bishop O'Connell High School. They were well prepared for high school, both academically and socially. The teachers and staff at St. James care about all of the students and will work with the parents to resolve any issues.

- submitted by a parent
October 25, 2010
I am astounded at the reviews from June 2010-Sept 2010- so many HIGH ratings. Did they get paid to write all that. how much teacher turn over in just this past year? All I can say to any parents reading the reviews is BEWARE! What we experienced was quite disturbing. To know that the staff and leadership single out families or a students rather than treat everyone with equal respect (as the below reviewers apparently received)-is disgraceful. Our family thought the school taught Christian values, and that it was "Catholic", not catholic. Te reason most parents are so involved is to gossip and judge other kids and families, I heard plenty. The leadership listens to the gossip from the parents rather than try to stop it, learn the truth, and correct it, They do not act on truth. Very sad to know how the staff and leadership actually behaves. Enjoy!

- submitted by a parent
October 02, 2010
I have 2 kids enrolled at Saint James and have been very happy with the experience. The teachers are responsive and attentive. My children have thrived academically and personally. The values the school instills in its students is very important to our family. It is truly a great school and community.

- submitted by a parent
September 07, 2010
Terrific school and community. Generally strong teachers, excellent administration, and highly involved parents in a very positive way. Two of my children went to St. James from kindergarten through eighth grade and are doing very well at an academically challenging high school and my third child is a current student. School is a very supportive compassionate environment with plenty of extra activities to get all the children involved.

- submitted by a parent
August 08, 2010
We transferred to St. James and thus have the benefit of a direct comparison between St. James and other schools in the area. In short, St. James is superb. The teachers are professional, smart, and care about the kids and the school. The parents are involved -- in a very good way -- in their kids and the school and, most importantly, in building a community for all the families. Yes, it is a Catholic school, but this should not dissuade persons of all faiths from attending. It reflects the best a Catholic school (or any faith-based school) can be, without being judgmental and harsh. The focus is on respect for each other, teachers, parents, faculty, and the community. Teaching a child to care for others and to be aware of the world can make a huge difference in how the child approaches learning -- and life. A great school.

- submitted by a parent
August 06, 2010
St. James is a wonderful school. I have two children at SJS and we have been at the school for 6 years. The teachers are very bright and engaged, the academics are strong, the principal is fantastic, and the families and parents that we know through the school are also very engaged. Our children are thriving, score exceptionally well on the end of the year standardized tests, and are learning the Christian faith and how to be kind to one another. St. James has been a wonderful experience in shaping our children for the future.

- submitted by a parent
August 04, 2010
We love this school--Great academics, competitive student body, broad course offering: music, art, computer, science, etc. St. James offers impressive after school programs and day care, which we need. The school has strong administrative team and great teachers. The values taught will shape our children for life.

- submitted by a parent
August 03, 2010
After a full year I can honestly say "what a great experience St James has been". The Teachers and Aides are fantastic, and the families are wonderful. Everyone is so involved with the child and focused on the children gaining a competitive and broad educational experience. As a family, we love how the christian beliefs are tied to all aspects of the curriculum. The classes are small and the families are so supportive of each other. I would highly recommend this school as a wonderful preparatory school because it truly encompasses the whole child and the experiences necessary to succeed in the future. In addition, while all the local schools are affected by budget cuts, St. James still offers a full and expansive program. St. James offers: Art, Music, Computers, PE and Spanish to all children every year: kindergarten through 8th grade. I believe that is most impressive,.

- submitted by a parent
August 03, 2010
We have two children at Saint James School and have had a very positive experience with the school and church community. We have found that if there is a need or problem which we are concerned about regarding one of our children, the principal and teachers have been very willing to help. Saint James is academically competitive with the public schools and other private schools, and doing a great job reinforcing/teaching our Catholic faith in the classrooms.

- submitted by a parent
June 10, 2010
My son has been at St. James for 8 years. While I have to admit we had a rocky start, over the years I have seen this school grow & make changes that have really helped the children of St. James. As with any school, I realize some children require more attention/discipline, however I feel the teachers & administration are good about becoming involved while also appreciating their boundries in allowing & encouraging parents to be part of the solution. My son was in resource for several years for either math or reading and I found he excelled within the small work groups. There are always opportunities for parental involvement - especially in the K-4 grades. The school has recently launched an enriched math program that allows the children who qualify to take Geometry in 8th. This school is excellent at preparing your child for high school, college & life.

- submitted by a parent
May 20, 2010
If your child is gifted, or has any sort of challenge, dont even bother here. Ive had two children here, both of whom consistently place high in standardized testing academically .. both of whom had issues (one went through some depression, one was eventually diagnosed w adhd) Both children, the adhd child in particular, have been singled out and bullied by the staff .. no problem was ever identified .. and if anything, the teachers were condescending to us as parents implying that we should punish our children harsher at home. the 'resource' and 'counselor' folks werent even brought into the conversation until a year into the process of resulving problems, Very unchristian and unloving environment

- submitted by a parent
March 25, 2010
We chose this school for many reasons, its reputation, academics, blue ribbon, religion, solid comments from parents and supposed close-knit community. Unfortunately, what the experience revealed was an environment that was unnurturing, unloving, unchristian and very punitive toward children rather than developmental. The school emphasized a 'no bully' policy, however, it is the staff and administration that will target and bully a child and/or family. They will label and place judgement on a child. What we experienced was total negativity from the school. This was a terrible disappointment and let down. I would never have imagined such an experience at a school with such an alleged reputation.

- submitted by a parent
March 19, 2010
This review submitted without content.


- submitted by a parent
January 25, 2010
We loved this school. Our child was specifically encouraged to leave because he had a learning disability. We were told he would be better served at a public school. One of the reviews specifically praised the resources for children who had learning disabilities. We found this not to be the case. We identified the learning disability ourselves with outside testing as our child who was a First grader and we noticed was not reading. We were not told by the school that there was a problem. We raised it with them. Significant pull out time did not make a difference.When we switched to public school after being told not to register for the next year we got quick significant improvement in reading.

- submitted by a parent
November 20, 2009
As a parent with two children at St. James, one of which has a learning disability, I can say St. James has done a remarkable job in addressing the needs of LD students, making accomodations and working as a team with the parents. We have lived in other states and have found that it's unusual for Catholic Schools to have a resource department. The resource department's highly trained staff has the ability of teaching a student with an average to above average IQ with a learning disability. If there are more severe issues a public or specialized school may be a better fit. St. James offers a very challenging curriculum where the teachers instill a love of learning in a warm, nuturing environment.

- submitted by a parent
September 23, 2009
We have been at St. James for five years and love it. The teachers are committed and caring. The IHM sisters who run the school are well-educated, professional and compassionate. We chose St. James because it is a Blue Ribbon School of Excellence and have been very satisfied with our children's education, both academic and religious.

- submitted by a parent
May 27, 2009
We had our 2 kids attend SJ for 1 year & we couldn't wait until the year ended so that we could transfer them out. About 75% of the curriculum focused on teaching religion, which sacrificed the necessary teaching of primary subjects like grammer/English, math, science, & social studies. Homework usually covered these primary subjects even though they were rarely/briefly addressed during the school day (if at all) with the expectation that the parents teach their kids these subjects. During the school day, when the primary subjects were addressed, such time was used for drilling/testing what the kids memorized from their homework. Critical-thinking & problem solving were just not taught at SJ. Overall, SJ is fine if your child can learn independently from books, etc. without any guidance from a teacher & is self-motivated. If your kid needs a teacher to actually teach them the subjects, then look elsewhere.

- submitted by a parent
no rating March 25, 2009
I would have to say we are very pleased with St James. Excellent academics, thoughtful and involved teachers and staff. We have been very impressed.

- submitted by a parent
March 25, 2009
This review submitted without content.


- submitted by a parent
July 22, 2008
This review submitted without content.


- submitted by a parent
June 12, 2008
This review submitted without content.


- submitted by a student
May 22, 2008
I agree. The policy concerning special needs is at the back of the handbook and is not addressed or discussed at any of the parent orientations. Given the number of kids (at any school) with learning and other disabilities that only become apparent when a child first enters school, I believe it's something that should be openly and directly discussed up front with parents during orientation, particularly, how these issues will be handled by the school. There doesn't seem to be a procedure or an approach, it's ad hoc and on the fly, and in the end it's, 'we don't have the resources, go to your public school, wherever that is, we don't know' and you end up being sent on your way. Leaving special needs aside, I found that the curriculum was identical to the public schools, with the exception of religious instruction.

- submitted by a parent
February 20, 2008
We have now been at St. James for 7 years now and we love it. We are not in the parish and attend this school because we find it to be the best Catholic school in the area. St. James is seen as a school that challenges their students to be the best they can be. This is also the cause for the majority of the 8th graders to be accepted into their first choice of high schools. The teachers are top notch. The current principal addresses issues head on and is a great communicator. It's a larger school with 3 classes for every grade, but parents are still able to feel welcome and participation in school events is encouraged.

- submitted by a parent
August 09, 2007
This review submitted without content.


- submitted by a parent
May 22, 2007
My children have attended SJ since they were in Kindergarten. Every year has been a delight. Academically my children excel and every one of their teachers has been exceptional. In addition to the curriculum, the teachers and staff at SJ go the extra mile to nurture the children throughout their educational and spiritual journey. Parental involvement is strong and welcomed in every grade. There are plently of extracurricular activities for the children to participate in -- Scouting, choir, tennis, basketball and more! SJ also provides an opportunity for before and after school day care for those parents who work out of the home. I can't say enough about the quality of this wonderful school! The addition of Sister Mary Anne as principal can only improve an already A+ school!

- submitted by a parent
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St. James Catholic School
830 West Broad Street, Falls Church, VA  22046
(703) 533-1182
Last modified St. James Catholic School is a Private school that serves grades K-8
St. James Catholic School Rating: 4 out of 5 based on 36 reviews. Top