This is a safe place to share your honest opinions of a school, whether good or bad.
St. Peter School5
Posted April 24, 2015
- a parent
Our son is thriving in preK. He wakes up excited to go to school and can't wait to tell us about his day when he gets home. He likes to recreate some of the science projects at home and often makes observations about concepts he is learning at school. I like that the students are largely from Capitol Hill making St. Peter's a true neighborhood school. It is fun for him to run into classmates at the playground and during sports activities. St. Peter's is a great value and has provided our son with the building blocks he will need as he progresses through the elementary grades.
My children have attended St. Peter School for many years, and we have been very happy with the quality, creativity and the level of passion of the teaching staff. The teachers there are truly committed to their vocation and continually demonstrate their desire to help each child achieve their best. We have also appreciated the broader spiritual and service focus of the school. Student family projects that bring children together across the grades, service projects that benefit St. Peter's Church's twin parish in Haiti as well as service projects that benefit those in the District have helped my children to focus not only on what school can do for them, but how they can contribute to the larger community outside the walls of their school. The small community of St. Peter School truly nurtures close connections between the children as well as the parent community. We have all made life-long friends at St. Peter School!
St Peter School is everything we wanted for our children: a small, nurturing environment with top notch academics and a real commitment to helping its students grow into their best selves. St Peter School takes advantage of all the educational opportunities in this city, but it remains a safe haven for our kids. St Peter School is helping our children develop both roots (in the city, in academics, and in faith) and wings. The combination will surely allow them to soar.
Our children have been at St. Peter School for several years, and we truly love our school community. Our kids are happy, the academics are rigorous, the teachers are dedicated and caring, and the principal is an excellent school administrator. Principal Ketchum has really good judgement, hires fabulous teachers, and has implemented numerous policies that have improved our school. My only regret is that St. Peter doesn't go through 12th grade!
I am a parent at St. Peter School. I was not asked to write this response but I believe a review below does not accurately reflect my children's school. The statement below that the school is no longer affordable, especially after a Fall tuition hike of 114% to over 10k per child next year is not correct. Next year Catholic tuition will go from $8,950 to $10,200 (2015-16) which is a 14% increase. For non-Catholics it is going from $11,300 to $13,000 (15% increase). PK and K are higher because they have extra aides in the class. The tuition increase is taking place to ensure continued financial stability and certainty for the school. It is the result of an almost two year process by a parent working group conducted in close consultation with the administration and priest. St. Peters will still be on par or less than other peer DC Catholic schools. To help families financially, tuition assistance is a critical part of the school s mission. We have found St. Peter School to be an incredible school and part of our life and community. The teachers and administrators are outstanding and caring fostering a great education for our children. Lindsay S. (PK and 3rd)
It's been a joy to work at St. Peter School for the past six years. I work alongside an outstanding principal and committed faculty and staff who are dedicated to our mission of loving God, serving others, and providing an excellent education for our Blue Ribbon students. Principal Ketchum provides invaluable leadership for our school. She makes decisions in the best interests of the school community, doing so by working closely with Fr. Byrne, the Home School Association, Archdiocese of Washington administrators, faculty, and staff. I am proud to teach at St. Peter School - where students are eager to learn, parents are very supportive, and the administration works collaboratively with others. I thank God every day for this school community.
I have worked with the principal at St. Peter for 11 years, both as a peer and later as a member of her teaching staff. I am, to this day, blown away by the principal's dedication to the Church, children, parents and staff at St. Peter School. She expects 100% from her teachers, but sets fair and precise guidelines so that that the school and community can work together. Due to the hard work and care of the principal, pastor and staff, St. Peter School is now a Blue Ribbon School. I am so proud to say that I have worked there and am so happy with the accomplishments that the school and community have made. Go St. Peter School!
Unfortunately the last two posts from 2015 seem to be spurred by the St. Peter School Administration "thought police." We got out last year and count ourselves lucky, but we have Hill friends still in the school that feel trapped. First, the school is no longer "affordable," especially after a Fall announcement of a huge tuition hike of 114% to over $10K per child next year and it won't end there (It s more for non-Catholics like us). Our Virginia Catholic Schools are half the cost and all Blue Ribbon schools. Second, we did not find the Principal at all approachable or interested in interacting or communicating with parents in any way, shape or form. And unfortunately, parents don't feel like they can express their true concerns to the principal or pastor. The fear of retribution is very real and parents across all grades feel like they need to always have their "game face on." Its unfortunate that the Principal holds so much power that she can intimidate parents and teachers alike. Not a healthy environment!
I was drawn to St. Peter School (StPS) because it offered excellent academics and felt like a good "fit". The lower grades have always been excellent but years ago, some expressed concern with the middle school. This is no longer the case. With Mrs. Ketchum as principal, the caliber of teachers and curriculum at has increased dramatically. The middle school has excellent instructors and a rigorous academic program. StPS provides free after-school help in several subjects. An excellent array of activities are available: school musical; student council; student newspaper; ski club; sports; field trips; and a volunteer program requiring the upper school to give back to the community. As HSA president I was fortunate to meet many parents, teachers, and school personnel. We held fundraisers and never had difficulty recruiting parent volunteers. Social nights were always well attended, never failed to be a good time, and parents enjoyed mixing it up with others outside of their child's grade. We benefitted, but more importantly, our children see the importance of working together and caring for others.
We have three children at St. Peter School, and we expect all of them to be "lifers" (Pre-K - 8th grade). We've been extremely impressed with the turn-around in academic rigor that Principal Ketchum has brought to the school; and we are more than happy with the choice we made to send our children to the school. The school is small (one class per grade), which allows teachers and staff to know all of the children well, and the children easily develop close relationships with the the teachers/staff and each other. I expect that my kids have made life-long friends at the school, and I'm confident that my current middle-schooler is not only well prepared to attend one of our regions highly competitive high schools, but I expect he will excel as well. A great school, and a great experience for our family overall.