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10630 Gravelly Lake Dr SW
Lakewood, WA 98499

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(253) 588-6621
(253) 588-6693
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Map of St. Mary's Episcopal School address.

March 23, 2015
When the principal promising to do this or check into that, she never would follow through, and then deny it all at a later date. Communicating with her was nearly impossible, she wouldn't allow us to get a word in edgewise. It reached the point where I asked to speak to someone else besides her because of her communication style and was told by the new priest that he personally liked her, and our daughter wouldn't be welcome if we didn't accept her communication style. The new principal specialized in selling a program to help schools and implementing it prior, she was a salesperson. She hid anything negative, such as deficient funds or problems with classroom management, and instead manipulating numbers in public service announcements to attract new families. She quit right before the announcement came about the school closing to avoid questions, and even afterwards she sent parents emails from her personal account, trying to confuse parents about her role in hiding the numbers. There was so much obfuscation present here at all levels that some parents were being misled first one way and then another all the while touting the virtues they believed present.

- submitted by a parent

February 28, 2014
We love this school! We moved to St. Mary's after a very stressful year at another private school. The last 2 years have been wonderful. The teachers, para's, and other staff are all amazing. They truly care about the children at their school and strive to make the experience a great one. The small class size allows teachers to accommodate students, such as mine, who have special needs and some educational struggles. My son entered 1st grade barely being able to write his name and now he is excelling in all areas. He loves going to school and is truly happy and motivated to learn. I recommend this school to anyone looking for an enriching, loving environment where children and parents are treated like family. I can't say enough about how much we love this school. I am crossing my fingers that they are able to extend their enrollment to higher grade levels in the future so we can stay longer.

- submitted by a parent

February 11, 2014
This really is the 'best little school' and my kids LOVE it. The faculty and staff truly love the children. They have a heart for nurturing and teaching our future leaders. The smaller classroom size is perfect for individual levels of learning. The teachers and staff work with parents to address concerns, advancement, high achievers and challenge the children at their level. My kids have FUN learning everyday! I highly recommend this experience and school family to anyone looking, new to the area, or searching for a place to perfect learning for your children. Dana Mickley

- submitted by a parent

February 03, 2014
Our daughter attended St Mary s School for 2nd and 3rd grade and it was a fantastic experience. Her teacher for both years, Ms. Quail, developed and expertly managed an academic environment that both challenged the students and drove them to achieve beyond their stated grade levels. Our daughter is now in the 7th grade at a prestigious private school in Washington D.C. We believe the academic foundation she received at St. Mary s was the cornerstone to her success -- and the character and spiritual guidance provided by the school contributed greatly to the wonderful young woman she has become.

- submitted by a parent

October 19, 2012
A GREAT beginning for toddlers and beyond! Being a small, privately funded program it may not have all the bells as whistles of larger day care/preschool programs in the area...but they make up for it with the high level of personal care for each family and passion for providing child-centered education. The principal, teachers, and staff MAKE this school such a special place for children! It is evident that what is best for students is their top priority. This is our first year at St. Mary's school. Our child is in the 2 yr old classroom and I can honestly say her teacher is EXCELLENT! The loving, nurturing, and engaging environment in the classroom and the school leave me feeling confident that my child is safe, well-cared for, and VALUED each day. The smaller classes let my child to develop a true bond with her teacher and classroom aides. If you are looking for an alternative to the McDaycare setting where you may feel more like a number and desire a early childhood care and education that is personalized and family-oriented look no further than St. Mary's!

- submitted by a parent

October 17, 2012
St. Mary's is a loving and nuturing place for both of my boys. Our four year old is now in his third year of enrollment at St. Mary's and watching him blossom both academicly and spiritually is a joy. He looks forward to school and loves to share all that he is learning with us each night. Just the other day he was "playing school" with our neighbor and I overheard them practicing the Pledge of Allegience pretending a helium balloon was the flag--it was so sweet! Our two-year-old has recently begun attending St. Mary's and his teacher is literally an angel walking on earth. She is loving and patient with my son and is even helping us potty-train our littlest! We also absolutely adore the new Head of School! She is an amazing and dynamic leader with so much valuable knowledge and experience. We are so blessed she has joined St. Mary's. St. Mary's has so much to offer and I couldn't recommend it more highly!!

- submitted by a parent

October 17, 2012
We're a school whose sole reason for being is to educate children in a loving and academically challenging environment so that they can help to make a better world. This regardless of where they might be in their life-journey. Teachers reflect the unconditional love of Christ in our relationship with our students, their families, and each other. This is the example we set for your children. If a child walks out our door at the end of their time at St. M knowing only one thing it is that they are loved and accepted just as they are. I see colleagues I know could be earning much more money in larger private or public schools (this is NOT a complaint) who stay at St. M because they believe in the work we do. Right up to our Headmistress who is a grand addition. She is opening up whole new worlds for us to consider. As a specialist, I believe that each child has an innate ability in the subject I teach. It is up to me to bring it out of them in a fun, yet challenging way. I see this in the teaching of my colleagues. Through our teaching we work to instill a life-long love of knowledge and a belief in our students that they can achieve anything they choose.

- submitted by a teacher

October 10, 2012
Two years ago, we were seeking an innocent, nurturing, caring, safe and high quality learning environment for our preschool daughter....similar to the village schools we had in England for our older kids. It was also important to us that the school give her a good Christian belief/morality foundation. Lastly, because she is a born leader/manipulator it was important for her to have some caring discipline and firm (and smart!) teachers that were well backed by a strong principal. I am pleased to report that we found all of this at St. Mary's. Without a doubt I would recommend it to any family seeking similar values in a school. Our daughter grew there, and she was nurtured and cared for, and encouraged to love learning and music and school. She loved her teachers and her friends at St. Mary's and she was happy to go to school each day, even though she never quite liked the uniform. Even though she is the youngest in her class, and is in a bigger class now, she is doing very well. She is a strong, vibrant learner, earning her place in first grade now...within a top tier, large public school in Fairfax, Virginia. Hats off to all the folks at St Mary's!

- submitted by a parent

October 10, 2012
Amazing school for your children! As a mother of three, looking for the right school when moving into this area.... sometimes it is difficult to find a good fit for all of them. However, St. Mary's is it! The environment is a loving, nurturing and communal one with wonderful parent involvement. The staff know each child on a first name bases, and are always available and helpful to the families. My children are in their third year of school at St. Mary's, and the growth in every aspect of their life has been tremendous.... academically, socially, and spiritiually! They love going to school, they love their teachers, and they love knowing that each day they spend at school will be one full of possitive challenges and caring support! I would absolutely recommend St. Mary's to any parent looking for a school where their child can be challenged academically, mentored socially and nurtured spiritually! It will be hard to top the experience we have had at St. Mary's when we move next summer!

- submitted by a parent

September 27, 2012
We love St. Mary's! Wonderful, caring, nurturing, happy place to go to school! Our new principal, Phyllis Gamas, has completely changed the school since we arrived 3 years ago -- it's exactly what we were looking for when we PCSed to Ft. Lewis for our children. Mrs. Gamas sets high standards for the staff and the students; all are thriving under her leadership. Parents are asked for input, and changes are immediately made to better the school. Classes are small, and children are challenged daily. Chilren are held accountable for their behavior, and I have observed only positive growth for our 2 and 4 year olds. I love the integration of Chapel and music classes during the week. There is a great blend of military and local families, and military families are supported by the school community. Our children go to school with smiles on their faces and come home with bigger smiles. If you are looking for a faith-based private school within a short commute to Post, look no further than St. Mary's Episcopal School!

- submitted by a parent

March 11, 2010
After a stressful few months at another private school, we transferred my son to St. Mary's. He loves it. He cannot wait to so to school each morning. The small class size and caring staff are worth the 1.5 hour drive each day.

- submitted by a parent

December 17, 2008
After an okay year in the Clover Park School District, we made the switch to St. Mary's. It was the best move we have made since PCSing to this area! Our children love this school and their teachers! St Mary's fosters independence and leadership in the kids while still maintaining behavioral standards that we have found to be lacking in several schools our children have attended. Children are expected to excel and do so with loving and supportive guidance from all teachers and staff. This school is truly family based and you are welcomed at the door each morning by the principal and a teacher. Every child is recognized and made to feel special, regardless of where they stand academically. St. Mary's is the total package! Well worth our tuition money!

- submitted by a parent

September 15, 2007
Walking into St. Mary's is like coming home. New families are welcomed with open arms by parents and staff. The teachers have a love for and commitment to their children that is channeled through an extraordinary curriculum. Faith and moral development are emphasized and children develop empathy and kindness rare in today's schools. The founding principle recently retired and the new principle has hit the ground running bringing experience and enthusiasm to the school. The student population ranges in age from 2 to 10. Both military and local families attend. I have looked at every educational opportunity in the area and have found the school to be the best.

- submitted by a parent

June 08, 2006
St. Mary's provides a quality education in a Christian environment. Extracurricular activites are available (language, music, cooking). Also available is a 10% Military discount on tution. Very close to McChord AFB/ Ft. Lewis.

- submitted by a parent

May 09, 2006
The teachers are true educators. They truly love the children in their classes. The curriculum allows them to address each child at his or her level, and the teachers take full advantage of that to make sure our daughter is growing constantly. They teach both the basics and big concepts via creative methods that really stick with the kids. The music instructor, Rachel Root, is extremely creative. She has instilled an enjoyment of singing and sound in the children. Our daughter now spontaneously sings to us, to herself, and to others the songs she learns at school. Ms. Tracy, the PE instructor is full of life and enjoyment. Her enthusiasm has the kids laughing and wanting to join in the exercise activities. The chapel class is loving and educational, not preachy or dogmatic. The children feel welcome and loved at St. Mary's. We are very lucky to have found it.

- submitted by a parent

April 30, 2006
We have two children at St. Mary's. We enjoy the family-like atmosphere and are glad for the opportunity to meet the other parents during pick-up and drop-off time each day. Both children are doing work beyond their grade level. Our pre-schooler has started reading and our first-grader has been moved up to the second-grade. We love the after school activities offered: Spanish class, cooking class, sports camp, and a doll-making class. Our new music teacher is a gem and our children are always singing new songs they have learned in school. St. Mary's is a wonderful small school that gives children a happy, safe and Christian learning environment.

- submitted by a parent

April 26, 2006
Bringing my son to St. Mary's School was the best move we could have made. The small class size, and academic curriculum, coupled with personal accountability mirrored those traits we emphasized at home. Though he is now a teenager he still reminds me of his time at St. Mary's and how much he enjoyed it. St. Mary's is unique in that students are encouraged to pursue a subject beyond 'traditional' grade boundaries. They call it 'taking the lid off the box.' It's not Montessori, but it's not the assembly line thinking that characterizes traditional American education either. Rather, it encourages and excites students to explore. Usually, St. Mary's students end up ahead of their public school counterparts. Not a bad thing! As a parent, I appreciated the support I received from the staff. Teachers were available, willing to conference, communication with administration encouraged, and my child's welfare was always the central issue.

- submitted by a parent

April 24, 2006
Small class sizes, cusom tailored education, faith based environment, phenomenal teachers, brand new classrooms all create a truly excellent learning environment for children from pre-school through 3rd grade. My daughter has been here for six years and it has been a sheer delight to watch her growth, both educationally and spiritually. The small class size affords a rare opportunity to really focus on your childs strengths as well as develop and strengthen any weaknesses. As the Chairman of the School Advisory Committee (SAC) along with our parent class representatives and the principal, we continually review the curriculum to insure that it meets our strong committment to our childrens educational development. Our faith based curriculum is extremely well written and developed for each age/grade. Your child will truly blossom in this enviroment and it is a wonderful thing to see. St Mary's School Board Member

- submitted by a parent
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About this school

We are a small school with low student/staff ratio. Teachers undergo continuous training on best practices in Instruction and Management. Our curriculum is aligned with Washington State Standards (Common Core). We are known for our loving, caring school environment.

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St. Mary's Episcopal School
10630 Gravelly Lake Dr SW, Lakewood, WA  98499
(253) 588-6621
Last modified St. Mary's Episcopal School is a Private school that serves grades PK-4
St. Mary's Episcopal School Rating: 5 out of 5 based on 18 reviews. Top