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St. Mary's Episcopal School

Private | PK-4 | 60 students

St. Mary's is the BEST Little School in Town!
 
 

 

Living in Lakewood

Situated in an urban neighborhood. The median home value is $180,000. The average monthly rent for a 2 bedroom apartment is $930.

Source: Sperling's Best Places
 
Last modified
Community Rating

5 stars

Community Rating by Year
2014:
Based on 3 ratings
2013:
No new ratings
2012:
Based on 7 ratings
2011:
No new ratings

Teacher quality

Principal leadership

Parent involvement

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18 reviews of this school


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Posted 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


Posted 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


Posted February 3, 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


Posted November 16, 2012

My 3 children are enrolled at St. Mary's, and we love it! We've been here for a couple of years now. All three teachers (and the paraprofessionals, as well!) that my children have go above and beyond what is expected to love, nurture, and help our little ones learn. The children are accepted for who they are, loved, and I trust the staff very much with these kiddos. The principal is very kind, and she also helps out in the classrooms. She always has something positive and encouraging to report about my children. She has also been very receptive to my comments and input. The music program is also phenomenal--the children sound absolutely enchanting for their recitals, and they learn music theory as well as meaningful hymns about God's love. There is a good physical ed program where they get to learn team skills and different games. My kids come home telling me what they have learned every day, and the teachers do a very good job of communicating what is going on in the classroom. St. Mary's feels like an extended family.
—Submitted by a parent


Posted 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


Posted 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


Posted 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


Posted 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


Posted 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


Posted 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


Posted 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


Posted 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


Posted 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


Posted June 8, 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


Posted May 9, 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


Posted 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


Posted 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


Posted 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


Community ratings and reviews do not represent the views of GreatSchools nor does GreatSchools check their accuracy or verify the reviewers' identities. Use your discretion when evaluating these reviews.

About these ratings

The Community Rating is the school’s average rating from its community members (e.g., parents, students, and school staff). The highest possible rating is five stars; the lowest is one star.

We currently do not have any test score information for this school. Unlike public schools, private schools are not always required to report data about their schools or not required to take the same tests as public schools. Many private schools take different standardized tests; however, that information is often made available only to families of enrolled students. We strive to acquire additional private school data whenever available.

Student ethnicity

Ethnicity This school State average
White 70% 60%
Black 13% 5%
Hispanic 13% 20%
Asian or Asian/Pacific Islander 5% 7%
American Indian/Alaska Native 0% 2%
Hawaiian Native/Pacific Islander 0% 1%
Two or more races 0% 6%
Source: NCES, 2011-2012

Teacher resources

Special staff resources available to students Art teacher(s)
Computer specialist(s)
Instructional aide(s)/coach(es)
Music teacher(s)
PE instructor(s)
Priest, pastor, or other religious personnel
Reading specialist(s)
Speech and language therapist(s)
Teacher aid/assistant teacher
Tutor(s)
Foreign languages spoken by school staff German
Spanish
Read more about programs at this school
Source: Provided by a school official.

Special education / special needs

Level of special education programming offered
  • None - the school offers no services
Staff resources available to students
  • Speech and language therapist(s)

Science, Technology, Engineering, & Math (STEM)

Staff resources available to students
  • Computer specialist(s)
Clubs
  • Science club

Arts & music

Staff resources available to students
  • Art teacher(s)
  • Music teacher(s)
School facilities
  • Music room
Visual arts
  • Drawing / sketching
  • Painting
Music
  • Choir / Chorus
  • Instrumental music lessons
  • Vocal lessons / coaching
Performing and written arts
  • Drama
  • Improv
Media arts
  • Graphics

Language learning

Foreign languages taught
  • Spanish
Staff resources available to students
  • Speech and language therapist(s)
Foreign languages spoken by staff
  • German
  • Spanish

Health & athletics

Staff resources available to students
  • Instructional aide(s)/coach(es)
  • PE instructor(s)
School facilities
  • Multi-purpose room ("cafegymatorium")
School leaders can update this information here.

School basics

School start time
  • 8:15 am
School end time
  • 2:30 pm
Before school or after school care / program onsite
  • Before school: starts at 7:00 a.m.
  • After school: ends at 5:30 p.m.
School Leader's name
  • Phyllis Gamas
Best ways for parents to contact the school
  • Email
  • Phone
Age at which early childhood or Pre-K program begins
  • 2 years old
Gender
  • Coed
Boarding options
  • Day school
Is there an application process?
  • Yes
Affiliation
  • Episcopal
Associations
  • ACSI
  • CSI
  • NAES
Fax number
  • (253) 588-6693

Programs

Instructional and/or curriculum models used

Don't understand these terms?
  • Core knowledge
  • Direct instruction
  • Individually guided instruction
  • Multi-aged
  • STEM
  • Standards-based
Specific academic themes or areas of focus

Don't understand these terms?
  • Religious
Bi-lingual or language immersion programs offered

Don't understand these terms?
  • No
Level of special education programming offered
  • None - the school offers no services
Foreign languages taught
  • Spanish
Level of ESL/ELL programming offered
  • None

Resources

Staff resources available to students
  • Art teacher(s)
  • Computer specialist(s)
  • Instructional aide(s)/coach(es)
  • Music teacher(s)
  • PE instructor(s)
  • Priest, pastor, or other religious personnel
  • Reading specialist(s)
  • Speech and language therapist(s)
  • Teacher aid/assistant teacher
  • Tutor(s)
Foreign languages spoken by staff
  • German
  • Spanish
Extra learning resources offered
  • Tutoring
Transportation options
  • None
School facilities
  • Audiovisual aids
  • Chapel/spiritual reflection center
  • Internet access
  • Multi-purpose room ("cafegymatorium")
  • Music room
  • Playground
Partnerships with local resources and organizations
School leaders can update this information here.

Sports

Boys sports
  • PE
Girls sports
  • PE

Arts & music

Visual arts
  • Drawing / sketching
  • Painting
Music
  • Choir / Chorus
  • Instrumental music lessons
  • Vocal lessons / coaching
Performing arts
  • Drama
  • Improv
Media arts
  • Graphics

Student clubs

Clubs (distinct from courses)
  • Chess club
  • Science club
School leaders can update this information here.

Upcoming Events

No upcoming events found for this school
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School culture

Dress Code
  • Dress code
Bullying policy
  • This school has a bullying and/or cyber bullying policy in place.
Parent involvement
  • Attend parent nights
  • Chaperone school trips
  • Coach sports teams or extracurricular activities
  • Join PTO/PTA
  • Monitor the playground
  • Organize cultural events
  • Organize fundraising events (school auction, bake sales, etc.)
  • Present special topics during curricular units
  • Serve on school improvement team or governance council
  • Tutor
  • Volunteer in the classroom
  • Volunteer time after school
More from 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.
School leaders can update this information here.

Apply

 

This school accepts applications on a

rolling basis

 
Apply now
 

What are your chances?


10 out of 10students were accepted for the 2013-2014 school year.


Students accepted for the 2013-2014 school year
26
Applications received for the 2013-2014 school year
26

What does it cost?

Tuition range for the 2013-2014 school year
$4000 - $6000
Vouchers accepted
No
Financial aid offered
Yes.
School-based aid

Planning ahead

Students typically attend these schools after graduating
Charles Wright Academy
St. Charles School
St. Francis Cabrini
Notice an inaccuracy? Let us know!

10630 Gravelly Lake Dr SW
Lakewood, WA 98499
Website: Click here
Phone: (253) 588-6621

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