Academics

Academics

St. Paul the Apostle School is a Catholic elementary and middle school focused on Catholic values.  These values, in addition to academic excellence, are at the center of our entire curriculum, helping to develop faith-filled students who are prepared to excel in college-preparatory high schools and beyond.  The outward expression of this faith formation is seen in our students’ commitment to social justice and community service through student-generated outreach projects and participation in projects already underway in the parish and local communities.

 

St. Paul’s is a Kindergarten through 8th grade school committed to a 180-day academic calendar.  Our school day is from 7:45 a.m. to 3:00 p.m. Monday through Thursday, and 7:45 a.m. to 12:30 p.m. on Fridays. As the spiritual formation of the entire school community is an essential dimension of our mission, each day begins and ends with prayer.  Every day after dismissal, we have an extended After School Care Program that runs until 6:00 p.m.  There are two classrooms per grade, providing students with a varied student body.

 

We are committed to an integrated curriculum rooted in gospel values and Catholic teachings.  The curriculum includes reading and language arts, math, social studies, science, religion, and physical education, and it aligns with the Archdiocesan and California State Standards and our student achievement is consistently strong.  In addition to core curriculum classes, students in all grade levels participate in music classes, an Art Literacy Program, and Spanish language classes each week. The school is departmentalized from first through eighth grade.

 

We are dedicated to the education of the “whole child” and that dedication leads us to constantly look for ways to improve our curriculum. Such efforts lead to the recent integration of the Loyola Marymount University, School of Education’s MAST Program.  This research-based teaching methodology is designed to increase engagement and achievement in math. Additionally, our 6th through 8th grade students are active Spanish language-learners using the Berlitz method of “target language only” instruction. Our students also are able to participate in afterschool enrichment courses such as instruction in musical instruments, chess, musical theater, theater workshop, drama, debate, and GLEE club, to name a few.

 

Recess and lunch breaks are staggered so that there are no more than three grades on the playground at a time, and we regularly use a field adjacent to the campus for lunch breaks, physical education classes and after school team practices.

 

St. Paul’s has a strong technology program and is committed to preparing our students to be successful 21st century learners.  Through teacher conferences, workshops and training, the use of laptops, iPads, MimioTeach interactive whiteboards, digital cameras, scanners and educational software that we have integrated into our curriculum, our students develop a global perspective and understanding of 21st century learning tools.

 

All of our full-time teachers have Bachelors Degrees and teaching credentials and many have Masters Degrees or Doctorates.  The average teacher has 13 years of teaching experience.  For grades Kindergarten through 7th, each classroom has a part-time teaching assistant and there are two assistants who work in Math classes for grades 6, 7, and 8. We have a full-time school nurse, psychologist, and learning specialist on staff to address the academic, behavioral, emotional, and health needs of the students.  And one of our greatest gifts is that our students have time each week with our Paulist Fathers as grade chaplains.

 

It is our belief that the Catholic school is an integral part of the church’s mission to proclaim the Gospel, build faith communities, celebrate through worship and serve others.  As a part of this, our School Learning Expectations (SLEs) are an integral part of the school environment and permeate all aspects of the curriculum. Over the years at St. Paul’s, students gain a clear understanding of the personal attributes such as being a faith-filled and self-directed person and a contributing member of society.  The SLEs also include the characteristics of critical thinkers, effective communicators, and aesthetic awareness and health conscious individuals.  The students make progress in these values as they reflect on their own growth and development throughout the year. St. Paul’s creates a supportive and challenging climate, which affirms the dignity of all persons within the school community and as is reflected in our SLEs.

 

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