I love that the students are empowered to take on leadership roles in any situation. Whether it’s helping a younger student or a fellow classmate, taking initiative on something like cleaning up, or just being a decent person on a daily basis. APA is not a huge school, but the relationships & bonds between students of all ages is very clear. Segregation is not a word that comes to mind when walking through the halls of APA. *at our previous school, segregation was a form of maintaining order, and it had many negative repurcussions for the students. There are many situations and events where age/classroom are not a factor and students enjoy the opportunity to share in different responsibilities and experiences. This has fostered many wonderful traits in my son that we welcome and encourage at home as well.
If I honestly had to describe this schools students it would be good and good. It feels like a town, mostly with everyone being friends, no bullies, no outsiders, however there is what i would call in-groups. Theres the popular 7/8 boys, then the cool 8-6 girls, then the nerds, then the younger kids. None if them are bullied actually we are all friends, but yes there still is a bit of contests. Of course we aren’t all that we also see how nice a person is how caring and compassionate they are too, but that’s basically our scale.
The culture at APA is one of respect and kindness. Students will say hello to you in the halls and hold the door for you. There is a happy atmosphere that is apparent when I go in the school. I am always struck by how age doesn't seem to matter at the school. Kids from many different grades will hangout together during breaks. There are several different age groups on the sports teams. Every year the school puts on a play that involves every student at the school. They all work hard to put on an excellent production. The school is small. This allows all of the students to get a tremendous amount of attention. My kids have both developed very strong relationships with their teachers.
Aurora Prep is not a big school but this is what we love about it. My son knows almost all the students, whether they are in kindergarten or grade 8. All the students have their recesses together. Young and older students all play together, they do not get segregated which teaches them to be kind, patient, supportive, and empathetic towards each other. My son never interacted with the lower grade students at his previous school at recess, therefore it was not cool to be seen with the little ones. At APA he was shown it is ok and expected to be with everyone through learning and play. The entire school feels like a big family, it is a great community. The atmosphere of the student body is joyful, fearless, humble and honest.
The students were what has made my daughter feel so welcome. Of course the amazing teachers but the fact is that the teachers do a wonderful job with their students to make my daughter feel welcome from the very first day. After the first two days of removing my daughter from the catholic school system and enrolling her in APA she excelled AND her personality and love for academics was flourishing. My daughter has met her lifelong friends because of the dedication of APA and the showing and acknowledging each other’s strengths and special gifts. APA has made it clear that everyone fits in and they all support each other. The dedication to this very important part of a child’s learning is what separates APA miles away from any other school in my opinion.