- KINDERGARTEN INFO
St. Ignatius School is a culturally diverse K-8 Catholic school in the heart of southeast Portland. With a long history in the Holy Names Sisters tradition and in the spirit of rigorous Jesuit education, we hold dear the value of shaping all sides of a child’s character: spiritual, intellectual, social, cultural, physical. Each day we immerse our students in academic excellence, love of art, concern for neighbor, and respect for difference in order to conscientiously open their eyes to the world beyond their own doorstep.
The Heart of St. Ignatius School
The very heart of our school is our Catholic Faith. We were founded in 1908 to bring to our students what God wants for all children:
A deep sense of how loved and uniquely gifted they are
A culture of physical and emotional safety that underpins a sense of self-worth and promotes focus.
Encouragement that brightens their spirits and piques interest
Challenge that stretches comprehension, sharpens skills, and fuels the drive to learn
Rooted in God’s love, our students develop the abilities, habits, and perspective to thrive no matter what life brings their way.
St. Ignatius School offers a stellar academic program
that is accredited by the Western Catholic Education Association at its highest level. This distinction gives you assurance from independent reviewers that your children are indeed receiving a top-notch education.
Our parents are an essential ingredient to who we are. They are Catholic and non-Catholic, native born and immigrant, wealthy and working class. Our parents reach across boundaries to build a lively, strong community that enjoys the spice of all God’s people. In fact, many of them chose our school precisely because of this open culture. The parents who choose and are most satisfied with St. Ignatius School are:
Parents who want more for their children and work hard to provide it.
Parents who want their children not just well educated, but able to think for themselves and respect themselves (and others) as holy and of God.
Parents who want their children to gain a global appreciation for life, to experience the diversity of the world’s people both in and out of the classroom, and to feel comfortable with people from all walks of life.
Parents who want their kids to be successful but also to understand they have a responsibility to serve others and improve the world for all people.
FIND OUT MORE
St. Ignatius School truly welcomes everyone. If we sound like a match for your family, we invite you to set up a school tour!
St. Ignatius Schools offers a dynamic, well-rounded education that includes:
- Challenging Academics
- Core Values
- Small Class Sizes
- Cultural Diversity
- Arts & Physical Education
- Hands-On Service Learning
- Family Groups
St. Ignatius School offers a rigorous academic program in the tradition of the Holy Names Sisters and in the spirit of Jesuit education. We teach our students not only the value of facts and figures but how to think critically. In fact, at St. Ignatius it’s “cool” to be smart! We set high expectations, and as our children build skills and confidence, they strive for excellence both in and out of the classroom. For students who might otherwise be overwhelmed by our curriculum, we provide small class sizes, Title I services, and other academic support. For our gifted students, we provide the challenge of advanced math courses, competitive science fairs, speech and math competitions at local high schools, and an innovative engineering curriculum through the Society of Automotive Engineers. Most St. Ignatius students advance to rigorous college-prep high schools in Portland, including Jesuit, St. Mary’s, LaSalle, and Central Catholic. We hear consistently from parents and faculty that our students are “more than prepared” to study at even the top private high schools.
We instill in our students’ hearts the core values they need to live a fruitful and peaceful life. Our children learn to embrace generosity and service of others by freely sharing their talents and gifts with the people around them. They practice forgiveness, coming to understand that people are never perfect but always worthy of another chance. They grow to respect others and honor difference as representative of God’s abundant creativity. And above all, they learn how to love. Over time, our children grow to do what is right and good – for them, for others, for God.
Small Class Sizes
We are a small school of about 200 students with an average of 25 students in each class. With small classes, we are able to give our students far more specialized individual attention: we learn well what makes each child tick, and tailor our instruction to best suit their distinct learning styles and needs. Our students grasp material more quickly and gain confidence in their ability to succeed. Small class sizes also allow us to cover more academic ground, so students gain more depth and breadth of knowledge.
There is a persistent misconception that Catholic school is not affordable, yet if you are accustomed to providing full-time preschool or daycare for your child, you’ll notice that a St. Ignatius education costs less than what you currently pay. In addition, St. Ignatius School is steadfast in remaining accessible to families of all income levels. Not only is this fair and just, it promotes the richness and diversity we value so highly in our school. Each year we distribute nearly $90,000 in tuition assistance to our families. Before you decide we are out of reach, we encourage you to have a conversation with us about what’s possible.
A full one-third of the St. Ignatius student body comes from a diverse cultural background. Immigrant, native born, refugee, and first generation, a large percentage of our families speak a second language in their home. Within our appreciative environment, this influx of cultures wholly enriches our students’ day-to-day experience. St. Ignatius students learn to value different ways of living, and grow to be at home with people from all walks of life. In the classroom and on the playground, our children start to gain a global appreciation for life by tasting the richness of our world.
The Arts & Physical Education
In the tradition of the Holy Names Sisters, we prize student creativity and health as essential to a child’s growth. In addition to teaching diligence and abstract reasoning skills, our Music and Art programs spark our students’ spirits by expanding their horizons, daring them to be true individuals, and stirring a boundless wonder for life. Our physical education program consistently exercises our kids while teaching them how to respect and care for the glorious miracle that is their body. These programs help our students discover who they really are as unique, creative, and able individuals.
Hands-on Service Learning
St. Ignatius School offers a service learning program that, like academics, increases in depth and intensity each year. Our students are involved in hands-on service work that gets them out of the school building and engaged in the lives of others in the greater Portland community. Serving the elderly, physically challenged children, and people without homes, our children feel what it’s like to make a sincere difference in a person’s life. Over time our students grasp the God-given dignity of all people, and begin to see the world through God’s eyes. Service finally transforms from an obligation to an opportunity to practice compassion, justice, and love.
Family Groups intentionally promote friendship, leadership and mentoring across grade levels. We place one student from each grade into a Family Group, and that group works collaboratively throughout the year on activities that nurture kinship. Connected in this way, our students gain a sense of belonging beyond their grade and in the school community as a whole. The older children happily look out for their younger buddies as they relish being the leaders of the student body. The younger kids look up to their student mentors and enjoy their heartfelt encouragement. Family Groups create a special bond of unity that fosters a culture of safety and feeds our vibrant school spirit.
If St. Ignatius School teaches the qualities you desire for your child, we invite you to set up a school tour!
St. Ignatius School offers our students a rigorous and diverse curriculum that includes:
- Language Arts
- Social Studies
- Computer Science
- Physical Education & Health
- Departmentalized junior high with specialist teachers (all of whom hold Master's degrees) in science, math, reading/writing and social studies
- Library program with grade level book clubs
- Art Literacy program and annual Artist-in-Residence for all grades
- Music program with performance arts opportunities
- M.U.S.E Band program (grades 4-8)
- Two-year high school-level Algebra I program
- Student Leadership program
- K-8 Service Learning Program
- M.E.S.D. Outdoor School (grade 6)
- Overnight OMSI Science Camp (grades 4 and 5)
- After-school enrichment opportunities that include Mad Science, creative writing, study hall, chess club and Young Rembrandts art classes
To learn how our curriculum shapes your child to engage with the world, please read Why St. Ignatius or call us today!
Service Learning: At-a-Glance
St. Ignatius School offers a program of hands-on service that, like our academic curriculum, increases in depth and intensity each year. Students participate in these projects at least once a month:
Kindergarten: Collect food for the hungry and deliver it to St. Vincent de Paul
1st Grade: Pick up litter on school grounds
2nd Grade: Write letters to the homebound elders of our parish community
3rd Grade: Deliver meals to homebound elders with Meals-on-Wheels, and write letters to the residents of Transition Men’s Shelter
4th Grade: Deliver meals to homebound elders with Meals-on-Wheels, and make arts & crafts with the elders at Reedwood Senior Center
6th Grade: Visit St. Paul Preschool to read with the preschoolers and teach their PE class
8th Grade: Serve lunch to 250 - 300 people without homes at the Blanchet House, and help with food prep and serve dinner at Transition Supper
School-wide Service Learning
Our students also serve together as a community on several school-wide service learning projects:
Raise funds to purchase food for Transition Suppers
Our comprehensive service learning program empowers our students to make a sincere difference in the lives of others. As they mature, our students gain the facility to connect and be comfortable with people of all walks of life, and by the conclusion of the program they have fully grasped the God-given dignity of all people. With a genuine sense of gratitude, our students no longer see service as an obligation but as an opportunity to form personal relationships based upon compassion, justice, and love.
If you are interested in cultivating a sense of gratitude in your child’s heart, call us today!
READ MORE HERE
To learn how our service learning program shapes your child, please read the detailed description below.
Service Learning: In-depth
Kindergarten: Food for the Hungry with St. Vincent de Paul
Kindergartners collect food for the hungry and deliver it in person to the St. Vincent de Paul (SVDP) pantry in the St. Ignatius Parish Center. The kids have the opportunity to meet the SVDP Coordinator, learn about their services, and see the pantry for themselves. Right from the start, our students learn a responsibility to feed the poor.
1st Grade: Caring for the School Grounds
The 1st graders pick up litter on the school grounds while they discuss the importance of caring for the earth. Our students learn to treasure the school grounds, and to do their part to help beautify the environment.
2nd Grade: Writing the Homebound Elders of the Parish
The 2nd graders reach out through writing to the homebound elders of St. Ignatius Parish who often feel isolated. The bright letters from the children lift the elders’ spirits, help them feel valued, and keep them connected to the parish community they deeply miss. The students come to realize the difference a loving gesture can make to those weighed down by loneliness.
3rd Grade: Meals-on-Wheels and Pen Pals with Transition Men’s Shelter
The 3rd graders, along with the 4th and 5th graders, work with Meals-on-Wheels to deliver lunches to homebound elders around Portland. Our students bring bright smiles and laughter to those who often have very little interaction with the outside world. Our 3rd graders also become pen pals with the residents of the Transition Men’s Shelter. Their letters send a tender sign of encouragement to the men at a time when they may feel forgotten by the greater community. Our students earn a wider view of how others struggle in the world, and how to respond to those struggles with compassion.
4th Grade: Meals-on-Wheels and Arts & Crafts at Reedwood Senior Center
The 4th graders, along with the 3rd and 5th graders, work with Meals-on-Wheels to deliver lunches to homebound elders around Portland. Our 4th graders also visit Reedwood Senior Center to lead arts & crafts activities with the elders. The students bring delight to the elders, and the elders enjoy sharing their lifetime of wisdom with their new fun-loving companions. Our students learn how to participate and trust themselves in a sustained hands-on activity with those they are serving. And, the rich diversity of the Reedwood residents gives many of our students a chance to communicate with the elders in their native languages.
5th Grade: Meals-on-Wheels and Sponsoring Children in Africa
The 5th graders, along with the 3rd and 4th graders, work with Meals-on-Wheels to deliver lunches to homebound elders around Portland. Our 5th graders also collect cans and bottles to raise funds to sponsor children in South America through CFCA. This project opens our students’ eyes to the unjust poverty that exists around the world, yet also teaches them they can make a difference, even all the way from Portland. Our students begin to gain an understanding of the hardship people in other countries face, and the insight that Americans have a responsibility to serve the world.
6th Grade: St. Paul Preschool
The 6th graders visit nearby St. Paul Preschool to read with the preschoolers and teach their PE class. The preschoolers are thrilled to make new friends and learn from the “cool” big kids in the neighborhood. Our students learn how to embrace looking out for those who are more vulnerable than they, and they learn how to instruct those who may know less. Above all, our 6th graders learn to treat being in a position of power with the utmost respect.
7th Grade: Providence Child Center
The 7th graders go to Providence Center for Medically Fragile Children to visit with severely disabled children. This can be a very enlightening experience, and also tremendously challenging. Our students come to see that children with disabilities are no different than they are -- that these children deserve the same respect and kindness due their friends. The children at Providence enjoy this genuine kindness and companionship with their peers, and they greatly inspire our students by who they are in their struggles. Our 7th graders can’t help but humbly recognize their own blessings, and deepen the sense of a gratitude that walks hand-in-hand with the desire to serve.
8th Grade: Blanchet House and Transition Supper
The 8th graders work with the Blanchet House to serve lunch to 250 - 300 people without homes. After they serve, the children eat with the Blanchet staff, all men in recovery who are transitioning to a better life. The 8th graders also do food prep each month for the Transition Supper, while every other month students volunteer to serve the meal to the men in the shelter. The clients at both Blanchet and Transition Projects are honored to show the children the ropes, and enjoy the fresh air that their youthful spirits bring. Our students see that giving back does matter -- that there are solutions that work, and that with the help and understanding of others, people in need can indeed overcome their struggles to create better lives for themselves.
School-wide Service Learning: In-depth
Transition Supper Funding
Similar to Operation Rice Bowl, our students collect their own spare change throughout the weeks of Lent (the holy season of preparation for Easter) for Transition Projects. At all ages, our students develop discipline in being consistently mindful of those who are less fortunate.
In the late spring, our students raise funds for St. Ignatius Parish through the cleverly named Ignatian Exercises (the most noteworthy contribution of St. Ignatius of Loyola is his Spiritual Exercises). Students raise donations and then participate in this one-hour Olympic-style sporting event. We undertake this service project as a way to personally thank the parish community that supports us so generously. Our children build a stronger bond with the parish, and have a blast at the same time. In the process, they learn that sometimes it is appropriate to thank people with actions rather than just words.
Christmas Boxes for Transitional School
In December our families provide Christmas boxes to children without homes through the Transitional School. Families volunteer to provide Christmas gifts for an individual child, then shop for that child over the holiday season. On Christmas morning, the child receives this very special, personalized package of gifts, and our students and their families are blessed with the joy of giving as they practice the true spirit of Christmas.
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SMARTBoard Technology in all classrooms: Subject material leaps alive, capturing the attention, fueling the motivation, and inspiring new skills in learners of every age.
Computer lab with 30 workstations: Students become energized by technology, and learn how to use it effectively, creatively and appropriately.
Hot lunch served every day: You can choose when your child brings a lunch or enjoys one prepared on-site with love by our kitchen staff. Meals are fresh, nutritious and tasty.
New, professional-grade gymnasium floor: Shiny and new, our gym floor makes exercise even more exciting for our students, and is the pride of our Gators sports teams!
Before & After School Care: Offered from 7:00 am through 6:00 pm on school days and on many no-school days, your child is in safe, experienced, loving hands.
CYO Athletics Program provides recreational sports opportunities in volleyball, football, swimming, basketball, and track. CYO is a unique sporting league because it isn’t entirely focused on winning -- instead, the league blends the values of traditional competitive spirit with openness to all skill levels. Here are some of the benefits of CYO:
1. CYO welcomes all children within the parish or school. That’s right, no one is cut! If your child joins, they will make the team.
2. All athletes get the chance to play. If your child joins, they are guaranteed playing time throughout the season.
3. Kids play with athletes of all skill levels. Players learn to compete but they also learn the importance of giving those less skilled a chance, as well as how to come together as a team to work toward success.
CYO gives all the children the chance to discover their talents and gifts in a safe, enthusiastic, inspiring environment.
Boy Scouts & Girls Scouts
St. Ignatius sponsors after school Boys and Girls Scouting opportunities that teach children the value of their own worth through teamwork, adventure, and exploration. Scouting nurturers our children’s courage and self-reliance, encourages them to develop leadership and community building skills, and helps them discover how to express their feelings in healthy ways.
To inquire about a school tour or learn more about us and our enrichment opportunities please call today!
Our full-day program
St. Ignatius School offers a fun and stimulating Kindergarten program that champions reading and writing. With a full-day schedule, our students spend more time learning so they are able to make greater strides in literacy, math, general learning, and social skills. With a full day, our teachers have the time to get to know their children, and to tailor their instruction to each student’s learning style and needs. Our teachers encourage advanced students with more challenging work, while giving those who are still developing their skills the leg up that they need. All of our students come out of Kindergarten with a solid foundation for success in 1st grade and beyond.
The Importance of Family Groups
Our family groups are especially important for our Kindergarteners. We place one student from each grade into a Family Group, and that group works collaboratively throughout the year on activities that nurture kinship. Right away, the Kindergartners enjoy the heartfelt encouragement of the 7th and 8th graders, and quickly learn that they can trust the older students in the school. This creates a touching mentorship that inspires the Kindergarteners to look up to the older kids. Our Kindergarteners feel safe, welcome and included, not just in their class but in the school community as a whole.
Our Teaching Team
Our Kindergarten teaching team consists of lead teacher Christy Everett, and assistant teacher Kathy Rogers. Ms. Everett is a gifted teacher who recently graduated from the University of Portland, then worked under the tutelage of veteran teacher Phyllis Collins who educated generations of St. Ignatius kindergarteners before retiring earlier this year. This mix of new ideas and long-time educational traditions truely enlivens Ms. Everett's classroom! Mrs. Rogers has been our Kindergarten assistant for seven years and her gentle, nurturing spirit enlivens our Kindergarten classroom. Together, these two teachers create a classroom environment that is caring, creative, challenging, and fun.
Our Parent Community
Our parents are warm, welcoming, and down-to-earth. Catholic and non-Catholic, native born and immigrant, wealthy and working class, our parents are every shape and color and yet they all genuinely share the same set of values. They want their children to be well educated, safe, and tenderly loved. They want every child at the school to thrive, not just their own. But above all, what sets our parent community apart is their gratitude: they are sincerely grateful their children are here at St. Ignatius, receiving the quality of education and care that we offer. This gratitude continues to inspire our teachers and staff, who return that gratitude in kind.
FIND OUT MORE
If St. Ignatius School sounds like a match for your family, we invite you to set up a school tour!
We’d love to share our school with you! St. Ignatius School offers school tours throughout the year.
Follow these steps to enroll at St. Ignatius School:
- Tour the school and visit with our principal, John Matcovich. Give him a call at 503-774-5533 or email him at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Complete the application packet in full. There is no application fee: simple and easy, it’s free to apply to St. Ignatius School.
- Participate in a two-day school visit where your child gets to know our school and meet their potential new teacher and classmates. During the visit your child will take an assessment test so we can determine their needs.
Please note: During the summer months, because school is not in session, prospective students will meet with their prospective teacher and complete a short skills assessment (approx. 45 min.).
At this point, if it looks like a match for the child, parents, and school, you will complete a registration packet to enroll your child at St. Ignatius School. Your child will be able to begin classes right away. .
Below is a list of our 2013-2014 tuition rates:
In-parish tuition rates are granted to members of St. Ignatius or other Catholic parishes where a portion of the educational costs is being subsidized by the parish.
If you are thinking we are out of reach, we encourage you to have a conversation with us about what’s possible before you make a decision. St. Ignatius School is steadfast in remaining accessible to families of all income levels. Not only is this fair and just, it promotes the richness and diversity we value so highly in our school. Each year we distribute over $100,000 in tuition assistance to our families.
Here is our official admittance policy: “St. Ignatius School admits students of any race, sex, color, national and ethnic origin, to all rights, privileges, programs and activities generally accorded or made available to all schools. It does not discriminate on the basis of race, color, national and ethnic origin, in administration of its educational policies, athletic, and other school administered programs.” In other words, we genuinely and truly welcome everyone, in everything we do.
We invite you to set up a tour of our school with our principal, John Matcovich today. We also encourage you to read Who We Are and Why St. Ignatius.
Frequently Asked Questions
Do you have a full-day Kindergarten?
What is the average class size?
What curriculum do you offer besides academics?
Do you offer after-school care?
How do I know whether I qualify for tuition assistance?
- Do I have to be Catholic?
1. Do you have a full-day Kindergarten?
Yes. Our full-day schedule focuses primarily on literacy, math, and general learning skills. In addition, our Kindergarteners participate in Family Groups, a school-wide program that fosters a culture of emotional and physical safety in our school. Please read more about our Kindergarten programming, family groups, and teaching team here.
2. What is the average class size?
We are a small school of about 200 students with an average of 25 students in each class. Small class sizes enable our teachers to spend the time it takes to truly get to know each child’s learning style and needs. You can read about the benefits of small class sizes here.
3. What curriculum do you offer besides academics?
In addition to academics, St. Ignatius School offers Art, Music, PE, Health, Computer Science, Library Program, and Service Learning. We also offer a variety of enrichment programs, including Band, Art Literacy, Science Camp, and Advanced Math. All of our coursework is taught within a nurturing environment that is intentionally focused on cultivating respect for difference, love of neighbor, and passion for service. Our education weaves together these threads into instruction that sharpens our students’ intellect, inspires enthusiasm, and deepens their appreciation for the gift of life. Read the full description of our curriculum and enrichment programs and our additional school offerings, such as Scouts and CYO sports.
4. Do you offer after-school care?
Yes. We offer both before and after-school care through Vermont Hills Family Life Center. Available from 7:00 am through 6:00 pm on school days and on many no-school days, your child is in safe, experienced, loving hands.
5. How do I know whether I qualify for tuition assistance?
The only way to discover whether you qualify for tuition assistance is to complete a FACTS Grant & Aid Assessment application. FACTS is our Archdiocese approved assessment tool. Once you complete your application, we plug all your relevant information into the tool, and it calculates a recommended award amount. You can also apply online at www.factstuitionaid.com. However, we do require that you go through our admissions process before you apply to FACTS so that you, your child, and the school can determine if we’re a match.
6. Do I have to be Catholic?
No. The primary purpose of our school is not to evangelize but to give our students a stellar education that teaches them to think for themselves. However, we are a Catholic school and so, as a student, your child will learn about the Catholic Faith and Catholic Social Teaching, and attend Mass once a month with the entire student body. Our curriculum also includes Religion class, in which Catholicism and various world religions are openly explored. None of these are optional, so as a parent at St. Ignatius School you’d need to be comfortable with your child participating in these aspects of our education.
If you think St. Ignatius School might be a match for you, call us today to set up a school tour.