I am an alumni and so is my eldest daughter. Sadly, this is becoming a different school than the one we loved and attended. When it was time for my youngest to apply, the admissions director had changed, the process was much more business oriented. If you did not learn a certain way or have a certain personality, you would be declined. Basically they used to say, "we grow women". Now they expect you to already be one. As for having a child with mild learning disability, we were told they didn't want to accept her and have her not do well (that would make THEM look bad, right?) I want to ask the question to them: For more than $$ 12,000, you are basically telling me your school is not equipped to or does not have the resources to teach MY child. My daughter is graduating from public high school, they weren't much better, expectially in a large environment. But I expected better from my alma mater. This change into being a competitive "business" prep school, I feel is selling out. Some things should remain sacred.
My daughter is a freshman this year at St. Gertrude's, and she absolutely loves it. She was always a bit introverted with just a couple of friends, and she is now blossoming. The academics are challenging, but the environment is so supportive. She is always happy to go to school, which is not something I have always seen. The school really strives to create an environment for young women to find success, and I have been impressed by what I have seen and the positive changes that I have already seen in my daughter. She came from a mixed middle school environment, and loves the all girls classes. The uniform makes life so easy and no one has to worry about fashion decisions and fitting in. The goal is to achieve individuality through your character, not your fashion accessories (or how much you can afford). Each class bonds together, and there is a strong emphasis on creating a sisterhood at the school. I have been amazed at how close the Gertie girls are, even long after graduation. It really is a connection for life. There is just an excitement to the school, and I would strongly encourage girls to consider it.
Saint Gertrude is really not what I thought it was going to be.. I attend the school as a sophomore and it is my first year there. I'm really disappointed in the school because there is way too much drama for high school, more than a usual high school. Not only this, but many of the teachers don't add up to how much money the school costs. I believe that the school just doesn't fit me well, because I do have some friends who really enjoy the school. On the other hand, I have friends who are wanting to transfer out like me.. I think the main idea is that before you choose this school, you visit and shadow the girls and make sure this is the type of school you want. I believe it's better to go to if you're catholic for sure too. Lastly, you have to be extremely diligent in your academics and spend many hours on homework.. and play sports or act. It's a lot to take on if you don't really love it.
I love Saint Gertrude. I would never want to be anywhere else. The whole school stresses community. Fellow students, teachers, staff... they all know everyone. I would have never guessed that some of my best friends as a freshman would be seniors. It is a fantastic school and a great place for anyone to be.
Saint Gertrude is the best decision my parents made for me. Although it was a bit of a financial stretch for my family, it was worth every penny. I went on to receive undergraduate and graduate degrees from UVa and found my first year of college easy. The staff is caring, demanding, highly competent, and accessible. They push students to achieve in academics, athletics, social and leadership skills, spirituality, and civic responsibility. The school has a mission to diversity socially, religiously, and ethnically. Its location in the museum district makes it accessible to students from all over the area. They particularly excel with students who otherwise would fall through the cracks in a larger public school setting. Not only do the teachers look after the students, but the girls look after each other and remain lifelong friends. Saint Gertrude will push your daughter to her limits but she will thank you.
My experience with the teachers and staff has been very positive. They are committed to teaching excellance. They have high expectations of the girls and get to know their strengths and weaknesses on a personal level and then encourage them. I find my daughter doing better, trying harder, and learning study habits and techniques that can translate into everyday skills. Without the daily distraction of boys the girls seem more serious about their academics and their importance, but socialize with the neighboring boys schools so it is a great balance.
Saint Gertrude provides an excellent environment for the nuture of intelligent, independent and caring young women. School activities provide each student with a sense of history and belonging. Studnet population is currently about 50% non-Catholic making the school a great choice for both Catholic and non-Catholic studnets.