Do you have to be an Orthodox Christian?
No. In the past up to 20% of our school body has been non-Orthodox. Some of our best students and most supportive parents have been non-Orthodox. We do ask that you make sure you can accept our vision and goals and are comfortable with our Orthodox milieu. Please read our handbook as well to be sure you are comfortable with all our policies. Also click here to read about Orthodoxy.
What is your curriculum like?
We tend to follow a traditional approach in that we emphasize good reading, writing, and math skills. We teach grammar and encourage formal presentation skills. Our curriculum generally follows the CA standards, though we have modified these to fit our own needs. The curriculum is constantly reviewed on a rotating basis.
Is the religion stuff a big part of it?
This question is asked quite often, and in those exact words! Each class might spend an hour a week on formal catechism, but our Orthodox worldview is what is important. We have daily prayers in the church (12 minutes) and attend a full church service about 10 times a year. Each class starts and ends the day with prayer. Equally important, our worldview affects our thinking and our actions. It is the prism through which we view our relationships with our peers and our teachers. It affects the way we think about history, art, etc. These effects may be subtle sometimes, but they are real.
Do you a have a music program?
Yes! We are fortunate to have a volunteer music teacher on staff. Each class studies music (ukulele, singing, recorder, boomwhackers, music theory, etc.). We also have a youth choir, and we put on a Christmas production and a spring musical each year.
What facilities do you have?
We have four classrooms, an office, a beautiful, large multipurpose room, a play-yard with play structures, and two large asphalt playgrounds. We are able to use the public library for skills training and research and have an excellent working relationship with the librarians.
What about gifted students?
We have no separate program for gifted students. We do have opportunities for accelerated math, and we are open, after careful deliberation and within reason, to accelerating students in some, or even all, subjects. Our regular program is sufficient to challenge many such students.
Do you have an art program?
We do not have a formal art curriculum, but all classes do art regularly. Sometimes this is taught by the teacher and sometimes by a gifted volunteer.
What do you do for P.E.?
We play games every day—soccer, whiffle ball, etc.
How do your students do in high school and college?
Extremely well! They find it easy after attending our school. Students who have gone to Pacific Collegiate, an extremely highly rated college prep charter school, have made a comfortable transition. Our alumni include electrical engineers, R.N.’s, speech therapists and pre-med students.
Doesn’t combining grades in one classroom make it difficult for students to work at the appropriate level?
Not really. In fact, it opens up opportunities for students to be part of math or reading classes most suited to their level.