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John F Kennedy Catholic High School

Private | 9-12 | 860 students


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Living in Seattle

Situated in an urban neighborhood. The median home value is $155,600. The average monthly rent for a 2 bedroom apartment is $950.

Source: Sperling's Best Places
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3 stars

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36 reviews of this school

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Posted Wednesday, November 19, 2014

There is a rampant drug and alcohol culture that is being ignored. Some of the activity occurring on campus, some off. This is in addition to the cheating via test & homework exchanges nightly, and students lacking a moral compass, as proven with certain behavioral patterns. Brought the concerns to the administration and no action has been taken. Save your money and/or look elsewhere.
—Submitted by a parent

Posted May 9, 2014

My daughter goes to thsi school and it has been the best experience ever. I work in a high school and I am glad that she is in a very safe environment. The teachers care. The office staff are amazing and caring,, and like I said, if there is someone walking the halls that is not known they are addressed. I would recommend this school to everyone!!!! It is more than worth the cost.
—Submitted by a parent

Posted October 18, 2013

Ask all these previous parent reviews what they think of this new block schedule! They can't tell you because their kids are long gone out of the school already. That's a shame because their kids didn't have to go through the pure misery of an utterly messed up disorderly block schedule. I'm am not bitter either , but when you've got a 4.0 well rounded student coming home in tears there is something definitely wrong,not a freshman either.
—Submitted by a parent

Posted October 3, 2013

It is probably a bad sign when you hear teachers say they do not feel they are treated equitably by other teachers. It is probably a red flag when you have heard teachers claim that senior administration commited assaults against teachers. So, I can commiserate with those who speak about faulty management. While inappropriate to convey the students, they are extremely knowledgeable, caring, and make learning a joy.

Posted September 5, 2013

This High School is not just about a great is also about family and close relationships and the true meaning of learning character tools that prepare the students to meet every challenge in life.
—Submitted by a parent

Posted February 21, 2013

First off, I want to encourage you to take the one star, bitter-sounding reviews with a grain of salt. I attended Kennedy Catholic and now both of my daughters also attend. I actually hate to imagine where my life would have ended up if I had not gone to Kennedy. It took me a year to "catch up" with alot of teacher support since I was "educated" in the Highline School district until 9th grade. Attending college and becoming a professional was due to my high school education as a foundation. This school has been great for our family with it's strong music program, academics with free tutoring, over 50 student clubs and sports available, and genuinely caring teachers and student body.
—Submitted by a parent

Posted February 10, 2013

My son attended a couple of years ago. He was not a superstar student, but he is smart, worked hard and applied himself. Kennedy high school was well respected by the nationally ranked universities around the country. He had no problem being accepted at top75 universities, and ended up accepting at a very respected university in the University of California system in the top 50. Now that he is in college and competing with California kids who are all in the top 10% of their classes, we find that he was well prepared and holding his own. I really don't know where some of these other reviews are coming from. Sour grapes, perhaps? From our experience, if your child is smart and works hard, even if they are not one of the academic superstars, they will have a bright future in the top ranked universities in the country. What more do you want from a Catholic high school? Go through the list of top 75 nationally ranked universities in US News. You will recognize all of the names. That is the opportunity that Kennedy high school gave our son.
—Submitted by a parent

Posted November 3, 2012

I attended John F. Kennedy Catholic High School in Burien, WA, back in the eighties. It's been years for me since I was a student there, but time has seemingly remained still at this school. I thought it was just me, but there are others who are very dissatisfied with the poor academics. JFK always had a reputation for being "easy" and " a party school." I remembered how much I begged my parents to send me to a good private girls school like Holy Names Academy for more serious students. I found Kennedy to be very big on school spirit, with almost no concern for studying. There were many days off due to the Catholic holidays and the classes were quite easy. The rival public high school, Highline High School, actually offered AP courses in math, science, etc. Another very important point: Kennedy does not have a school uniform to this day! You can only imagine the jealousy among the girls in their daily fashion show! Later, I took remedial courses at community college to prepare me for university. Today, I no longer live in Seattle, WA (a new state) and I did earn a BA degree. I am a career woman and a homeowner. Please do not send your child to this school!

Posted July 16, 2012

My son was a transfer student from another private school. He was concerned about the quality of the education he was getting at his previous school. Overall, we were very happy with Kennedy. They do take a mix of kids, but overall I would describe them as good kids. There were absolutely no problems with the students. Academically the school is very good. There was one bad teacher, but that can happen anywhere. I do know this, for the SAT, my son scored higher on the more difficult math he learned at Kennedy and lower on the easier math he learned at his previous private school. Kennedy is like any school in that it all depends upon what you want to put into it. My son ended up being accepted to 12 nationally ranked Universities and he wasn't turned down at a single one, although he was wait listed at a couple. As far as an outcome, we couldn't be happier. Kennedy was everything we expected from a Catholic High School. Is Kennedy perfect? No. Would I recommend it to any family who wants a safe, academically challenging environment that will result in a bright future? Absolutely. Just remember, your child will only get out of it what they put into it.
—Submitted by a parent

Posted March 13, 2012

Save your money. This school is such a disappointment. It is one of the biggest party school in the area. The leadership group only cares about their reputation not about the kids. The communication, when there is a problem, is nonexistant. The majority of teachers are alums who have been there for decades - meaning outmoded methods. There is no additional help for students who are struggling.
—Submitted by a parent

Posted January 11, 2011

This school may look nice from the outside. But you have heard the saying "never judge a book by it's cover"? Well, you need to open up this school to see the truth. This school lacks sportsmanship in every sport. The athletes themselves are very unkind, and shouldn't even be allowed to be involved in the sport. The coaches should be ashamed of their athletes and themselves also. I would be very ashamed to teach at this school, but also send my child here or even BE a student here.

Posted September 24, 2010

Excellent school! Teachers and all staff are extremely dedicated to making sure all students succeed, even when it means working after school or coming in early. I am sad that the international student felt this way because the staff work extra hard to help them succeed. Perhaps that student should have stayed in their home country. There is something for every student at this school and even when I was new everyone was nice. No clicks, everyone gets along very well
—Submitted by a student

Posted July 11, 2010

Principal leadership was poor and condescending at the time my daughter was enrolled. I went through a a very contentious divorce and the school refused to let me have my daughters grades even though I was the parent paying the tuition and having joint custody. Left a very bitter taste, would never recommend this school for their poor leadership.
—Submitted by a parent

Posted August 12, 2009

This highschool is great for any student wishing to recive a high education. kennedy is best known for preparing their students for a sucsessful life after highschool. Kennedy does this by having each student find their place in the lancer family enviroment and by attending to every students every need.
—Submitted by a student

Posted May 27, 2009

I attended Kennedy as an international student for one year. The academic standards at this school are extremely low. I had a GPA of 4.0 and I barely studied at all since it was obviously completely unnecessary. There's hardly any homework to do, and even if there is, it does not nearly take enough time, as it is way too simple and not challenging at all. Sports, religion, and any kind of extracurricular activity seems to be much more important and crucial to a student's reputation than academic success. Even though the teachers are very devoted to their classes, there weren't any challenges for me and I feel like I've lost a year of high school. I would be all but well prepared for college if I had continued to attend Kennedy.
—Submitted by a student

Posted February 20, 2008

My family has been a part of Kennedy for the past four years, and we all love it. It offers tremendous accademic, spiritual, and extracurricular participation and passion. What people have been saying about Kennedy is simply not true, everytime you walk into the school or a school-activity you feel like you are in your own home. The staff is great, and are always looking for the best of the students. They are respectful and helpful in every circumstance. I am sorry others feel discontented about their experiences, but I don't agree with your false accusations. Kennedy is well-worth the money. It has excellent parent-participation, and events hosted by parents such as the Mother-Daughter Mass and Breakfast, which is always a delight. Kennedy is a great school.

Posted February 9, 2008

I'm a freshman at Kennedy and I love it. The challenging honors classes actually motivated me to get the 4.0 I'm holding, the band is one of the best in the state, and we have great extracurricular options. The fact that we have great athletic team participation rates (myself included) just goes to show what a well-rounded student body we are. The people who shoot it down sound like they were the ones with some real underlining issues.
—Submitted by a student

Posted January 8, 2008

We have been a part of Kennedy for seven years now--both with Mr. Schuster and Mr. Prato at the helm. Our oldest received an excellent education at Kennedy under both Principals and went on to excel in college, both academcially and carrying on with Kennedy's tradition of community service and social justice. Our other three daugher's (one is an International student) are getting the same, if not better education, because of the standards that have been raised under Mr. Prato--both academically and spiritually. Remember, no system is perfect. You need to research every school you are considering with realistic expectations. Each Principal brings their own special gifts to the table. Overall, the academics, the parent participation (especially in our Band program) is exceptional and the quality of people that are educating our students are outstanding. The teachers really care about each student and we will forever be grateful to them.
—Submitted by a parent

Posted November 19, 2007

Our daughter graduated from Kennedy and got a great education there. She was well prepared for college. We especially appreciated the many wonderful teachers she had who not only helped her academically, but also genuinely cared about her as a person.
—Submitted by a parent

Posted November 13, 2007

The school was a happier, calmer place under the old principal. This new one is a disaster for the 'Kennedy family' & all it represented. The idea of the 'Kennedy family' was the single thing that made being part of JFK so precious. It's so sad that formerly wonderful Kennedy family no longer exists for them to appreciate as we did.
—Submitted by a teacher

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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 54% 60%
Asian or Asian/Pacific Islander 19% 7%
Hawaiian Native/Pacific Islander 8% 1%
Black 7% 5%
Two or more races 6% 6%
Hispanic 5% 20%
American Indian/Alaska Native 0% 2%
Source: NCES, 2011-2012

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School facilities
  • Computer lab
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School basics

School Leader's name
  • Michael Prato
  • Coed
  • Roman catholic
  • NCEA


Specific academic themes or areas of focus

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  • Religious


School facilities
  • Computer lab
  • Library
Partnerships with local resources and organizations
  • Archdiocese of Seattle
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140 South 140th Street
Seattle, WA 98168
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Phone: (206) 246-0500


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