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St. Johns Parish Day School - Ellicott_City, MD

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School NameAddressPhoneGradesCountyTypeDistrict Name
St. Johns Parish Day School9130 Frederick Road
Ellicott City, MD 21042
(410) 465-7644PK-5Howardprivate 

DateWhoComments
10/5/2012parentThis is my child's 3rd year at SJPDS, and the school continues to provide an environment that is academically challenging, socially/emotionally nurturing, and produces students that are respectful and considerate. Our interactions with teachers and administrative staff have been positive and productive. The school is enhanced by a highly engaged parents who partner well with the school and each other. My 4 out of 5 star rating is high praise that acknowledges room for improvement. We are very happy at SJPDS and plan to stay there through the end of 5th grade (the last grade of their program).
8/23/2012parentWe did not have a great experience with SJPDS, although the school was highly recommended and was said to have excellent teachers. After attending for a few months, I learned that my child's preschool teacher had a reputation and was not considered a great teacher. My child was a slow learner but I didn't see anyone going the extra distance to provide assistance. This school may be ok if the child is an average learner but it is not suitable for children that need extra help or are gifted and talented. Art program is top notch and superb.
8/3/2012parentTo clarify on the review dated 19/7/2012. My son was taught by the incoming grade five teacher as a four year old and she is more than qualified having taught in middle school for several years before she had children. It was only after her children were older that she moved to preschool (per her back to school night introduction). The preschool was fantastic. My husband and I were very pleased with the education our son received and feel that he was well prepared for moving on to Kindergarten. The staff is warm and friendly and aim to foster a love of learning in the young children. Unfortunately I cannot speak for the lower school as we moved at the end of his four year old year.
7/19/2012parentProspective families should be aware, this school no longer lives up to its reputation. Over the past few years it has been a revolving door of families, headmasters, faculty and support. Quality teachers are leaving non stop, they have little or no support from admin. The principal is overwhelmed and not qualified for the position. One teacher left even before having a job anywhere else, that really says a lot! Families are leaving and the school never called them to ask why they are leaving or if there is anything they could do to make them stay. They are so eager for new families and enrollment instead of focusing on their current issues and trying to keep their quality families. Apparently families receiving financial aid were given significantly less this year even though there was no change to income. This was a shock and burden to many families. The kindergarten teacher was fired mid year, the replacement is mediocre, the wonderful first grade teacher left, this years fourth and fifth grades are going to be overpopulated, the fifth grade teacher left and was replaced by a preschool teacher?! The school is in a tough transition and needs to reevaluate itself
6/13/2012parentOur daughter has attended the school since pre-school and will graduate soon. Had I written this review 3-4 years ago, I would have given the schools 5 stars across the board. However, instability in administration and within the ranks of the faculty has raised serious concerns over the last few years. Of particular concern is the inability to hold onto several superb teachers who have left the school recently, and the school attempting to fill the gaps with teachers unqualified for the grades they are called upon to teach (such as an inexperienced teacher better qualified for pre-K/K classes teaching 4th graders). The instability has even reached the board of trustees and resulted in resignations. While the teachers are wonderful (when teaching at the proper grade level) and my daughter is happy and engaged; we have lost confidence in future of the school.
3/20/2012parentwe love St Johns! The teachers are so wonderful, caring, and willing to go the extra mile for their students. We LOVE the early childhood program, (the best I have ever seen, combines playing with education), and the lower school is worth every penny. My son has soared under the gentle guidance of his teachers. You cannot find a better school for this price. The curriculum is phenomenal! If you tour it and talk to the staff you will understand why! St Johns is the best!
3/20/2012parentSt Johns is a wonderful school!!! We have been welcomed by teachers who are kind, caring and supportive of our children and their ideas. I Have asked my child if he is happy with SJPDS, his repsponse was "It is the best place on earth". What more could I ask for from a school. In addition the curriculum is top notch. It is supportive of children from all school sets and works with an individual so that he/she may perform at their best. I give this school an "A plus". I look forward to watching all of my children graduate from SJPDS with pride.
3/14/2012parentAll parents - negotiate the terms of your contract carefully! We are truly saddened by our experience at St John's. To date, several parents have withdrawn their children from our child's class. The reason for this is academic atrophy, instability (firing and hiring new teachers), and arrogance from the leadership. Our family was actually given a refund because the quality of services was recognized as being suboptimal. However, when conditions worsened and we withdrew our child (along with others) the administration would not release financial obligations despite their own recognition of their poor management. It seems fundraising, glossy marketing materials and new logos has distracted the leadership from their true goals and objectives. Advice - carefully look elsewhere. We have already seen an exodus from sjpds this year with many more not returning next year.
2/29/2012parentSt Johns Parish Day School is utterly fantastic!! I have two children enrolled in the Lower School, in 2nd and 3rd grade; both began attending SJPDS when they were in kindergarten. The environment is caring, supportive, and challenging. The staff and teachers are extraordinary. The curriculum is innovative yet traditional. My kids LOVE it and look forward to going to school every day. I can drop them off and drive away knowing they are being nurtured and developed intellectually, emotionally and physically. The racial mix is diverse (my kids are Asian). There's no bullying! I can't imagine sending them anywhere else - and only regret that we'll have to look for another school after they complete fifth grade. Wish I could give this school more than 5 stars!!
2/3/2012parentThe worst early childhood program ever! Never ever send kids to this school. The director yelled over the phone all the time. They required 3 yr to sit still when pick up. If they happened to stand up, the teacher pushed the kid back to the seat and use the chair and the table to "squeeze" him. My son had two accidents at school, but no report provided. The teacher even didn't mention a single word until I walked back to ask about it. They are not trust-able or professional at all. The worst part is they NEVER refund your tuition, no matter what.
12/2/2011parentSt. John's no longer has a strong reputation for strong challenging curriculum's, strong teaching of social skills, and strong leadership. SJPDS main focus is MONEY. How much can we get and how many seats can we fill is the current philosophy in my opinion. The smoke is finally clearing and we are able to finally see St. John's true colors. The kindergarten program no longer has the reputation of a strong, age-appropriate, challenging curriculum and you can no longer depend on your children gaining strong social skills. In grades 1 and 3 when your assigned to a teacher, it's like grasping at straws because you don't want to end up with the short straw. Grade 4 is out of control socially and when you finally get to 5th grade your just happy it's your last year. I am truly happy this is my daughters last year. I would not recommend St. John's to any family. If you like just throwing away your money or being at a school that more about the parents then the children, then its the right place for you. If you care more about the education and social/emotional growth of your child it is definitely not the place for you.
9/27/2011parentWe have been at St. John's for 7 years. One graduate, one child still attending. When transitioning to public middle school this year we have noticed that the 6th grade work is what we did in fourth grade at St. John's. Our children always felt cared for and secure at St. John's. They learned things in chapel that will carry them through life. We wanted a warm, nurturing enviornment that allows the children to be children and to learn without addititional distractions. We found that at St. John's.
9/27/2011parentSJPDS is fantastic. My child has also experienced a top-notch public school and St. John's has proven to be the best well-rounded route to take. On the academic front - St. John's has a more robust program. In addition, the teachers work together to bring the interrelationship of the different disciplines together. As a school, as teams and as individuals, the teachers and the staff take that extra step (which requires effort and time on their own time) to enrich the child's education as well as their spiritual and personal development. St. John s provides an intellectually challenging environment that also fosters individualand spiritual growth as well as a sense of community. The new headmaster has been making positive improvements in the school. The staff is attentive and they show a genuine concern toward all concerns and have acted on them in an expedited manner. I have never experienced my concerns not being addressed. This school far exceeds my expectations.
9/26/2011parentWe have enjoyed being a part of the SJPDS community for the last 3 years. The small class size provides the opportunity for my children to focus on their learning and has allowed the teachers the opportunity to see my child in the crowd and address their particular needs. An earlier reviewer was frustrated with an 'unseen' headmaster. I would venture a guess that the reviewer did not raise his/her concerns with the headmaster but suffered in silence. My experience has been quite the opposite. The headmaster is fully involved in the administration of the school, which includes running both an Early Education program and a Lower School program, and answering to a Board of Trustees along with the many parent constituents. When concerns are raised, they have been addressed in my experience. Our overall experience has been very positive and our family enjoys being a part of the whole St. John's community.
9/26/2011parentSt. John's is not the school it once was, unfortunately. My child has been attending there for several years, and the school has declined during that time. The headmaster is ineffective and unseen. The Lower School Director projects an air of cheeful incompetence. Concerns/complaints are not taken seriously. Bullying goes unpunished. Cliques are allowed to form and exclude other children. All of this, I realize, happens at public school, but I expect better, especially when I am paying $11K a year. Curriculm-wise the school is lacking, particularly in the areas of math, grammar and spelling. For instance, spelling is taught using Spellwell. At the beginning of the week, the teacher administers a pre-test. The spelling rule is never taught! Again, for the money, I expect better. We will not be returning next year.
9/26/2011parentWe have been so pleased with the quality of education our children have received at SJPDS over the last 5 years. The teaching staff is amazing and the small class sizes are wonderful. It has been a joy to see our children flourish in such a caring, compassionate, and academically-challenging environment. St. John's is truly a special place where each child is seen as a unique individual and encouraged to reach their full potential. I can't say enough good things about this school!! The Headmaster is wonderful - truly responsive, creative, and provides tremendous leadership to the school. Whether your child is gifted or has some learning differences, or mayb even both - this is the school for you! The parent community is superb, I will miss it so very much when my children graduate!! Bet of all, my kids love their school and have learned values and morals that shine through in their character and will serve them for a lifetime. Anyone looking for a exceptional educational experience for their children should visit St. John's Parish Day School and experience the truly unique and special things that are happening there!! We love St. John's!!!
9/14/2011parentWhile we have only just begun at this school, it really seems to be all that is said. The big focus is on self control and self management in children. All positive corrections and positive feedback. It just may be the single best parenting help I'll ever have. It is successfully doing what I try to do with varying success at home-and now my kids see that it is the norm (there) and are buying in more at home.
8/9/2011parentMy children are receiving a great education at this school. I feel that my child's education has been customized to her needs. My oldest child is working way above grade-level in language arts. Her teacher took the time to find a workbook that was suitable for her, even though she is the ONLY student using it; this required the teacher to take ADDITIONAL time to assess my daughter's abilities. The claims by one poster that turn-over is hight is balony! They lose 1 to 2 teachers per year, and ususally because of retirement. There are teachers that have been there for more than 20 years. We are lucky to have found this school.
6/24/2011otherThis year, our granddaughter was fortunate enough to be assigned to Mrs. Wagner and Mrs. Mockapetris. We are primary caregivers to her while her parents work and were able to witness firsthand a quality of care we have never before experienced. From the first day last September, our granddaughter seemed to find her niche with Mrs. Wagner and Mrs. Mockapetris. Taking her to school most days and picking her up nearly every day, we were able to get a true feel of what it meant to entrust a dear child to St. John s. Honestly, we cannot think of a bad day throughout the entire year. Not only did she learn amazing things for a four year old, but she found a comfort zone at school, a place where she was welcomed, accepted, and praised, all the while guided along her way. Her classroom friends truly did become her friends, and their Moms, Dads, and Grandparents were an extended family to us as we met daily in the hallways and socialized outside the classroom. St. John's is a blessing to our entire family, and we are thrilled she is enrolled for kindergarten there in the fall.
6/20/2011teacherSt. John's Parish Day School is the perfect place for a child to have their first experience(s) with school. They truly work on laying the foundation for learning that will take children all through their future academic endeavors and their lives. I am a parent of a St. John's grad as well as a current student - both of my children have had invaluable experiences at St. John's - academically, socially, spiritually.
6/9/2011parentThis school is every parent and child's dream. My daughter has developed a genuine appreciation for learning at this school. The math and reading instruction are far superior to the supposedly top-rated public schools in the area. The student/ teacher ratio is unbeatable; my daughter has been there 4 years and her average class size has been 16 students. Each class has a teaching assistant thru 2nd grade - that is unheard of in public schools! My only complaint - they need a middle school because we don't want to leave:)
6/2/2011parentLove, love St John's! They honestly teach to each child! I am so thrilled with the teachers, the quality of education, the caring and the nurturing! The projects are exceptional and my children are happy and love to learn! This school is amazing!
6/2/2011parentBest Preschool in Howard County 2011--voted by Maryland Family Magazine. Enough said! Congratulations to Steve Harrison, and all Early Childhood Faculty and Staff!
6/1/2011parentI am a current parent of two students in the Lower School. My older daughter attended SJPDS from preschool through 5th grade, graduated, and now excels within a college-prep independent school for middle-high school. All of my children have been given an incredible academic and spiritual foundation. In class sizes with an ideal student/teacher ratio, children are given individualized instruction, time, and patience--they LOVE to LEARN! I can't say enough positive things about the quality of academics. Math and Science have been particularly strong --with that evidenced through top notch scores on standardized tests (ERB) and independent school entrance exams (ISEE). What a value! Tuition at half-price-- compared to comparable independent schools in the Maryland area!!
3/30/2011parentThe preschool through second grade has an exceptional and dedicated teaching staff. But I found that the school curriculm and teaching in math and grammar lacking after the second grade. The school discipline is inconsistent. The headmaster and lower school director appear unwilling and/or unwilling to correct or review decisions made by teachers. I expected more of a religious education for my children than received.
6/6/2009parentMy 1st grade daughter came home every day energetically enthused about her school, her teacher, and even her homework. As a 6 year old, she is reading at a 4th grade level and proved her writing skill with a 20-page story she authored. She loves math. This is typical of results. SJPDS created such a positive environment for her that we unhesitatingly enrolled our 5 year old in their kindergarten for next year. I have found each and every administrator and teacher to be the archetypes of professionalism and collegiality. If you want to mold your child into a self-motivated, life-long learner, this is the place.
3/10/2009parentSt. John's is such a special place to learn and love! St. John's values the importance of small classes and children are met at their level. They are challenged each day and the teachers give out of the box assignments. Though times are hard, I encourage all who are looking to invest in St. John's for their children. They become confident, well-rounded young men and women!
1/10/2009parentWhat a wonderful school! in a community with so many terrific public schools, St. Johns has shown why it stands above all and is worth the investment. The preschool reputation is tops - there is no other preschool in the Baltimore/Washington area that can top it! Children leave preschool writing, beginning to read, knowing their address, all numbers, letters, blending sounds, etc. I can't say enough good things and the Christmas program will make you never wish your children had to leave! As for the lower school, it is a academically rigorous program with a fun-filled and loving environment. All our 5th graders get accepted into any private school to where they wish to go! The teachers really care and go above and beyond to make each child reach their best!
7/31/2008parentWe have been at this school for 5 years. It is not the same anymore and we are leaving. There is a large turnover in staff and students. Discipline is uneven and serious incidents have been mishandled. There have been numerous thefts. Security is non-existent. Nothing happens to teachers who aren't doing their job. Curriculum needs work (especially math!). New administration has made promises that they haven't kept.
5/21/2008parentWe have been with the school more than 4 years. This is the worst year so far and the school is just not the same anymore. There is a high turnover in both adminsitrative and teaching staff. Security is none and there were even thefts reported during school hours. The preschool tuition has been ridiculously increased by 20% every year.
1/17/2008parentSome teachers are wonderful at this school. Some teachers are not. Teachers don't get fired at this school. We've been there for two years now. We've had one great year and one bad year.
12/3/2007parentThis is our 7th year here including preschool.St. Johns is a very nurturing atmosphere for our daughter. Classes are small with assistance as well. Focus on rigorous academics while remembering morals, relationships and fun are all important. I can't say enough good things
6/5/2006parentMy son has attended St. Johns for 3 years now and absolutely loves it. He comes home from school everyday happy! The quality of education he is receiving is tops. From Head of school down all staff is warm, inviting & friendly. He receives a well rounded education including Art, Music, Science, Spanish and P.E. 150 words are not enough to express how much I love this school. Parents, Grandparents, Aunts, Uncles, friends etc. are all welcomed to be involved. From preschool up children are taught to treat each other with respect. There is a strong empasis on community and that everyone can make a difference. The children are proud to participate in many community service activites throughout the year including can food drives, hurricane relief, and recycling for the environment. It truly is a community of learners!
2/23/2006parentMy son is in Kindergarten, and my younger daughter in Pre-K at St. Johns. They are so happy and excited at St. Johns. The level of caring on the part of the teachers and parents of attending students is inspiring. A more fantastic environment than I could have immagined for my kids. Keep it up St. Johns!
11/19/2005parentMy daughter went to pre-school and kindergarten at St. Johns. What a terrific school for children to be introduced to learning! Wonderful teachers and a very warm, caring environment. HIGHLY recommend!
4/29/2005parentBoth of my children attended SJPDS as 4 year olds. The preschool at St. John's is a magnificent place for children to begin their education. I have also only heard great things about the primary school. The administration, teachers, and staff are first rate!
4/6/2005parentMy daughter has attended the school for 2 years and loves it there. The teachers and adminstrators are caring professionals.
3/1/2005staffIt's an excellent school. Children are taught well, and administrators seem to have an excellent knowledge of teaching.
12/16/2004parentExcellent School - great focus on academics, religion, discipline, leadership -- you name it! Will send all my children here.
11/8/2004parentOur daughter is so happy at St. John's Parish Day School. They really focus on self-esteem as well as academics. I love the student-teacher ratio.


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