Get Schooled: 2010 Private School Guide

BY Lindsay Key Ryan Davis Ashley Newman-Owens

Thinking of enrolling your child in a local private school? The good news is that there are many excellent choices. But thats also what makes it such a hard decision. The opportunities that a private school offers such as faith-based priorities small student-teacher ratios and a specific academic focus must be weighed against the cost of attendance the size of the school transportation and so on. Since many private schools in our area have waitlists its important to do the research early in order to find out when open houses are offered and enrollment opens.

To that end were here to help: Use the following list as a tipping point for your research. For a closer look many of the private schools will be represented at the Second Annual Education Fair held on January 14 at UNCWs Burney Center.

Calvary Christian School

423 N. 23rd Street Wilmington 28405

(910) 343-1565

School Administrator: Nick Smith

Open Houses: March 23 6 p.m. to 7 p.m.

Ages/Grades: K3-8th grade

Student-teacher ratios never exceeding 14:1 provide an excellent environment for spiritual academic and social development. Calvary Christian School is proud of its faculty a teaching staff of individuals who set the best example possible as they help students navigate the pursuit of academic excellence and Christian character development.

Cape Fear Academy

3900 S College Road Wilmington 28412

(910) 791-0287

Headmaster: John B. Meehl

Open Houses: Tuesdays (when school is in session) 9 a.m. and noon or by appointment

Ages/Grades: PreK-12th grade

Tuition: PreK $8 545 Kindergarten $10 075
Grades 1-5 $13 825 Grades 6-8 $14 385
Grades 9-12 $14 560 (academic year 08-09)

Enrollment: 650

One hundred percent of Cape Fear Academys graduates go on to attend four-year colleges and universities. This success is due to the curriculums emphasis on acquiring objective thinking skills by going beyond problems and finding adequate solutions. Cape Fear Academy also offers extensive fine arts and athletic opportunities; nearly 90 percent of the student body between 7th and 12th grade participates in the schools extracurricular activities. Financial aid available.

Child Development School

4102 Peachtree Avenue Wilmington 28403

(910) 392-4637

Director: Sarah Flaherty

Hours: 7 a.m. to 6 p.m. Monday-Friday and
afterschool for school-aged children

Open Houses: By appointment.

Ages/Grades: 6 weeks-12 years old

Tuition: Rates are based on childs age and are re-evaluated each January. 2009 rates were $182 per week for infants $177 for toddlers $173 for 2-year-old students $168 for 3-year-old students $164 for 4-year-old students and full-day school-aged children in summer $92 for only afterschool hours. Students can enroll year-round but parents should contact the school six months in advance of wanting their child to enroll.

Enrollment: 88

Housed in a brightly colored building with light airy classrooms and a playground outside the Child Development School offers low student-teacher ratios and a slew of national activity programs including High Reach learning aids Stretch and Grow physical education classes and Little Peoples dance class. Open since 1982 most rooms are handicapped accessible and Social Security vouchers are accepted. 

The Childrens Schoolhouse Montessori

612 S. College Road Wilmington 28403

(910) 799-1531

Director: Lucy Hieronymus

Open Houses: By appointment

Ages/Grades: Ages 3-6

Enrollment: 55

Celebrating 25 years the Childrens Schoolhouse is Wilmingtons oldest Montessori school and prides itself on a personalized developmental curriculum that instills students with a love of learning and prepares them for their futures. A unique marine science program brings sea life into the school for “show and smell ” to create a safe and interactive learning environment.

Coastal Christian High School

709 George Anderson Drive Wilmington 28412

(910) 395-9995

Administrator: Kirk Nielsen

Hours: 8:30 a.m. to 3:30 p.m. Monday through Friday

Open House: 7 p.m. January 7

Ages/Grades: 9th-12th grade

Tuition: $5 700 + fees (academic year 2009-10). Will be accepting more than 100 students for the 2010-11 school year. Enrollment begins February 1 2010.

In only its fourth year Coastal Christian High School is already noted for its programs in the arts academics and athletics including winning teams in boys and girls varsity soccer an average SAT score of 1570 and an accomplished choir honors ensemble set to perform at Carnegie Hall in April. With the goal of promoting service to God and other people every student is required to complete 100 hours of community service.

Episcopal High School

1200 North Quaker Lane Alexandria VA 22302-3000

(703) 933-3000

Headmaster: F. Robertson Hershey

Grades: Episcopal is 100 percent residential boarding high school for grades 9-12.

Tuition: The comprehensive fee for the 2010-11 school year is determined in January 2010.

There are many reasons why almost 90 percent of independent school students choose to attend co-educational schools like Episcopal. Ultimately schools are charged with preparing students for success in the classroom and life beyond. Working together boys and girls develop natural friendships and interact in class extracurricular activities and free time. At Episcopal boys and girls are passionate about exploring multiple areas of interest. Co-education is the “real world” and is thriving at Episcopal. Come see for yourself.

Friends School of Wilmington

Pine Grove Campus

207 Pine Grove Drive Wilmington 28403

(910) 791-8221

Peiffer Campus

350 Peiffer Avenue Wilmington 28409

(910) 792-1811

Head of School: Ethan D. Williamson

Open Houses: January 21 5-7 p.m. at both campuses and February 18 5-7 p.m. at both campuses

Ages/Grades: Pine Grove Campus: PreK through 2nd grade; Peiffer Campus: Grades 3rd-8th

Tuition: K-8th grade: $9 900

Enrollment: 195-plus

Founded in 1994 Friends School of Wilmington is a unique blend of a Montessori school for preschool students and a Quaker school for students grades 1st-8th. We are a nurturing community dedicated to academic excellence and educating children in the Quaker traditions of simplicity equality service and harmony. An academic community where students love to learn and grow we have two campus locations where students practice skills gain knowledge and build understanding as they apply their learning in real world situations. Our academic approach sets us apart and results in joyful confident successful students. Our rigorous proven approach nurtures individuals while emphasizing a collaborative and supportive learning environment. The Wilmington Scholars program offering tuition grant awards to rising 5th-8th graders who demonstrate academic excellence accepts applications until February 5.

Myrtle Grove Christian School

806 Piner Road Wilmington 28409

(910) 392-2067

Administrator: Stacey Miller

Open Houses: January 27 28 or by appointment on January 30

Ages/Grades: Age 3 through 8th grade

Tuition: Average $5 280 (academic year 08-09)

Enrollment: 440

Established in 1982 Myrtle Grove Christian School is a fully accredited PreK8th grade Christian school serving approximately 440 students. We offer a rigorous academic program and a spiritual climate that is warm vibrant and balanced. Smaller class sizes generally 18-20 students help us maintain high standards and a positive classroom environment. Scholarships available.

New Horizons Elementary School

3705 S College Road Wilmington 28412

(910) 392-5209

Open House: January 19 9 a.m.-noon and 5-7 p.m.

Ages/Grades: K-5th

Tuition: New student enrollment $7 015 returning students $6 315 (academic year 09-10)

Enrollment: 96

New Horizons Elementary Schools mission statement “Developing Leaders One Child at A Time ” speaks to the individual attention given to each child. An administrator doesnt exist; rather all the staff comes together to efficiently foster the growth of the whole child socially emotionally ethically and academically. NHES prides itself on the learning community it creates with small class size (16-1 student-teacher ratio) experienced staff and high expectations for success. 

Pine Valley UMC Wee Care Preschool & Kindergarten

3788 Shipyard Boulevard Wilmington 28403

(910) 791-9824

Director: Linda Gregson

Open Houses: Drop-in or by appointment

Ages/Grades: Age 1 through K

Enrollment: 136

Pine Valley UMC Wee Care Preschool & Kindergarten is a Christian-based developmental pre-school and community of faith that facilitates the intellectual emotional physical and social growth of its students. Classes consist of between eight and 15 students and are structured around a curriculum that incorporates Handwriting Without Tears Faxon Phonics math and Second Step (a program that teaches children to identify and handle emotions).

St. Andrews-Covenant Presbyterian Church Preschool

1416 Market Street Wilmington 28401

(910) 762-9693 ext. 231

Director: Allie Leatherwood

Hours: 9 a.m. to noon Monday through Friday; extending until 1 p.m. for 3- and 4-year-old students only for lunchtime on Monday Wednesday and Friday. Late August-Memorial Day.

Open Houses: Personal tours available by request. Enrollment for Fall 2010 opened November 2009.

Ages/Grades: 16 months-5 years old. Students are divided into four sections by age: toddlers 2 3 and 4.

Tuition: Starts at $140 for toddler and 2-year-old students $165 for 3-year-old students and $190 for 4-year-old students (academic year 2009-10 and 2010-11).

Enrollment: 55 students and is not limited to families who attend church at St. Andrews-Covenant Presbyterian Church.

St. Andrews-Covenant Presbyterian Church Preschool offers a variety of skill-based activities the Handwriting Without Tears curriculum a Halo Hoop basketball league ballet and tap classes and an introductory Spanish course for 3- and 4-year-old students. In this Christian-based program the older children learn biblical stories and songs with Pastor Steve Hein who Leatherwood says has been called “the rock star of the pre-school.” The 11-teacher staff is passionate about incorporating special needs children into the curriculum.

St. Mark Catholic School

1013 Eastwood Road Wilmington 28403

(910) 452-2800

Principal: Marguerite Miller-DiFulvio

Open Houses: For Kindergarten January 31 11 a.m. and 1 p.m.
K-8th February 2 9:30 a.m. and 1 p.m.
Middle School Night February 2 6:30 p.m.

Ages/Grades: K-8th

Tuition: Tuition structure varies based on number of students attending Parish membership etc. Please contact school for details.

St. Mark Catholic Schools mission is to provide a meaningful affordable faith-based education that promotes academic excellence for grades K-8th (maximum 25 students per class). St. Mark provides a total learning experience with opportunities to explore the arts music foreign language technology and athletics. St. Mark teachers receive the highest forms of training and the school is accredited by SACSCASI and AdvanceED.

St. Mary Catholic School

217 S 4th Street Wilmington 28401

(910) 762-5491 ext. 40

Principal: Joyce Price

Open Houses: Sunday January 31 2010 10 a.m.-2 p.m. and Wednesday February 3 2010 10 a.m.-2 p.m.

Ages/Grades: PreK-8th

Tuition: Participating Catholics $4300/year/student; Other Faiths $5700/year/student (academic year 09-10)

As the oldest Catholic School in North Carolina St. Mary School has provided quality education since 1869 and continues to provide students with a rich core curriculum religious classes and weekly mass celebrations that facilitate Christ-centered classrooms. St. Mary School is fully accredited by The Southern Association of Colleges and Schools and a member of the school system of the Catholic Diocese of Raleigh.

Wesley Memorial Child Education Center

1401 S. College Road Wilmington 28403

(910) 791-4002

Directors: Mae Spencer and Regina Steigerwald

Open Houses: By appointment

Ages/Grades: Age 2 through 6th grade

For more than 50 years Wesley Memorial Child Education Center has sought to provide a safe positive and enriching Christian environment that affords children opportunities both educational and fun. Children ages 2-5 have the option of a half-day or full-day program and children in kindergarten through 6th grade can enroll in an afterschool care program (2:30-6:00 p.m.). Full-day summer care programs are also available.

Wilmington Christian Academy

1401 N. College Road Wilmington 28405

(910) 791-4248

School Administrator: Barren Nobles

Open Houses: February 4 9 a.m. to noon
March 9 9 a.m. to noon

Ages/Grades: K3-12th grade

Tuition: Multi-child discounts for families

Enrollment: 725

Wilmington Christian Academy was founded in 1969 and is today the largest private school in southeastern North Carolina. A fully accredited nondenominational Christian school it offers challenging academics (from phonics to college prep and AP courses) advanced technology training multiple sports teams fine arts instruction and community service opportunities in an environment that encourages spiritual growth. Most WCA graduates 96 percent! pursue post-secondary education.