Saint Andrew's School (Saratoga, California)
|Saint Andrew's Episcopal School|
|13601 Saratoga Avenue
Saratoga, California, Santa Clara County, 95070
|Head of school||Harry V. McKay, Jr.|
|Grades||Pre-Kindergarten through Eighth Grade|
|Hours in school day||8:15 a.m. - 3:00 p.m.|
|Accreditation||California Association of Independent Schools|
Saint Andrew's Episcopal School is an American independent co-educational day school, which teaches pre-kindergarten to grade eight in Saratoga, Santa Clara County, California. The school offers an advanced, comprehensive academic program plus enrichment in the areas of the studio and performing arts, physical education, foreign languages, technology, character development, religion and community service. Although affiliated with the Episcopal Church, Saint Andrews’s welcomes students of all beliefs and includes teaching about all major faiths. It was founded in 1961, as a department of Saint Andrew’s Episcopal Church, in the Episcopal Diocese of El Camino Real. The school is organized into two divisions: the Lower School (pre-kindergarten–5th grade) and the Middle School (grades 6–8). Its website is www.st-andrews.org.
The California Association of Independent Schools accredits the school. Saint Andrew's Episcopal School is also a member of the National Association of Independent Schools (NAIS).
As of 2010[update], 342 students are enrolled, and the average class size is approximately 16. Harry V. McKay, Jr. has been the Head of School since 1998.
Students have the core classes of Math, English, Science, Social Studies, and Spanish, as well as several enrichment classes that include art, music, religion, and technology. A French class was also offered up until the 2012-2013 school year. Starting in middle school, the Math class is offered in varying levels: 3 levels (6A, 6B, or 6C, up to Pre-algebra) for sixth grade, 4 levels (up to Algebra 1) for 7th grade, and 5 levels for 8th grade (culminating in Geometry). For lower school, the classroom teacher teaches math, and since the 2011-2012 school year, some grades have had 2 different levels in mathematics.
Technology is integrated throughout the school curriculum; students grades 5-8 are issued Apple laptops to use as educational aids. The laptop program even allows these laptops to be taken home, and restrictions are not stringent, allowing a variety of other applications to be installed. The school employs a web filter to block inappropriate content, online games, and YouTube. The school employs Apple Remote Desktop, capable of monitoring any student's screen. The computers themselves were 12-inch iBooks before the introduction of the MacBooks, which were used until the discontinuation of the MacBook. The current model is the 11-inch MacBook Air. The laptops are all custom imaged to contain the same software; this is done every year, with the side effect of any user-created data on the computer being removed so the new user can have the same opportunities.
Some examples of commonly used software:
- Adobe Creative Suite (Flash, Dreamweaver, Illustrator, Photoshop)
- Microsoft Office for Mac 2008 (Word, Excel, Powerpoint)
- Inspiration 8 and Kidspiration
- The Print Shop 2
- iWork '09 (Pages, Keynote, Numbers)
- Scratch Programming Language.
Increasingly Google applications are used in the classroom, such as Google Docs for collaborative work and presentations, Calendar for teachers to post schoolwork and exams, and Sites (some projects in the middle school involve building a website). Each student is assigned a unique Gmail address that is part of a closed network.
Recently, the school has shown an interest in using iPads. 7th graders in the 2011-2012 year were issued iPad 2's in addition to the standard laptops. Several iPads can also be seen in classrooms, and the use is spreading.
All the campus has fast wireless internet coverage which is one of the tools used in the Laptop Program. The school also has a computer lab which had thirty desktop computers (eMacs) up until 2011. The computers were replaced that year with MacBooks for portability and ease of use. Students attend technology class in the lab once a week. Each of the Lower School (Pre-Kindergarten through 2nd grade) classrooms have two to three laptops and each classroom, 3rd through 4th grade has a cart of laptops for students to use in the classroom. Students grades 5-8 carry their own laptops. Unlike similar programs in other schools, the laptops used in the 8th grade cannot be bought, and are instead recycled for use in lower grades.
Each classroom is also equipped with an ActivBoard, a digital interactive whiteboard which supports a connection to a computer, be it the teacher's or the students'. The ActivBoard software allows the user to draw on the computer's desktop and interact with it using a special pen. Additionally, classrooms have integrated Apple TV's that allow for wireless streaming from an iPad or a 2011-newer MacBook Pro or Air via AirPlay.
In 2011, a break into the Technology lab was attempted. Several computers were stolen, but SAES soon retrieved the computers. As a result, the doors were re-enforced with locks, and all laptops in the lab are now stowed in a safe when not in use.
The school supports Cross-Country and Track, boys and girls Basketball, boys and girls Volleyball, boys Flag Football and girls Softball. Additionally, the school's Physical Education program exposes children to multiple types of sports. In the PE course, each week students in 6–8 grades participate in the unique Race Across the Country Program. September 14, 2010 announcement about the Race Across the Country, MSN.
The school has a relatively extensive Music program. Two concerts, one in the winter and one in the spring, are given every year, and it is mandatory for all students to play a role. The instruments generally center around the xylophone, but musicians who play other instruments are encouraged to join as well. In addition to the standard enrichment class, optional programs are available. These include the Concert Choir, Jazz Choir, Jazz Band, Concert Band, Beginners' Band, Rock Band, and more, depending on the incoming body of students.
St. Andrew's attends the yearly Heritage Festivals held in Anaheim, CA. The groups that perform are Concert Choir and Jazz/Advanced Choir. In 2012, the Jazz Band was considered to compete in the band category, but this was rendered impossible due to a hand injury suffered by the pianist. St. Andrew's is consistently ranked high in the competition, winning Gold awards every year.
St. Andrew's is, as the full name states, an Episcopal school. Chapel is administered on Tuesday, Wednesday, and Thursday: Tuesday chapel is exclusively for members of the Lower School, Wednesday's service is for Middle School, and Thursday is for the entire school. Eucharist is held at the first chapel of each month. A Religion class is also held; for 6th grade, it centers around the branches of Christianity, for 7th grade, it centers around teachings of different world religions, including lectures from guest speakers and field trips, and for 8th grade, it is an ethics class.
High School Selection and Matriculation
Students begin investigating and shadowing at high schools as early as seventh grade. During eighth grade, students participate in a variety of activities that prepare them for the rigorous high school application process including mock interviews, application essay writing and guides for effective shadow experiences. High schools regularly send representatives to talk to St. Andrew's students about various high schools. These lectures are an optional visit for 7th graders, but mandatory for 8th graders. A day in October is reserved as a "High School Retreat", where 8th graders spend the entire school day writing/editing résumés and application essays, and preparing for interviews.
For more than 30 years Saint Andrew’s Episcopal School has seen 90% or greater of the matriculating 8th grade students accepted to top Catholic and Independent Schools. While most students stay in the area, Saint Andrew's graduates have been accepted to top high schools across the country and internationally as well.
Students from the Class of 2012 will be attending: Archbishop Mitty, Bellarmine College Prep, Los Gatos High School, Notre Dame High School, Presentation High School, Sacred Heart Preparatory, St. Francis High School, Santa Catalina, Saratoga High School, Thacher, Valley Christian High School and Woodside Priory.