1. What is a Classical Education? How does it differ from other systems of education?
    • The term “classical education” is commonly used in several distinct senses. We use the term to indicate a curriculum rooted in Western history and culture—especially that of Greece, Rome, and Western Europe. Classical education forms the whole person. It is useful, but, as it values knowledge for its own sake, it is not utilitarian. It recognizes that value-free education is neither desirable nor possible, and it presupposes a wholesome vision of a good society. It imparts knowledge, inculcates sound thinking, forms intellectual virtue, sharpens discernment, and helps one grapple with the meaning of the good life. It upholds truth and beauty, helping students distinguish between good and bad, better and worse. It does not shrink from enforcing respect and discipline, as these are necessary not only for the establishment of a studious school culture but for the growth and lifelong thriving of students. It transmits culture from generation to generation by implementing a content-rich curriculum whereby it helps students attain a common cultural literacy, and it recognizes that such a task is possible only by emphasizing the best works of our literary canon and culture.
  2. How many students will you be taking in 2016?
    • We began educating pre-K and K in 2015-2016. We are opening a combined K and 1st  grades (with separate instruction for mathematics and reading/language arts) in Fall 2016.
  3. How many students per class do you need in order not to have a combined classroom?
    • We need at least 8 students in each class in order not to have a combined classroom.
  4. Are you still willing to open any grades beyond grade 2?
    • We are accepting applications for grades K – 1st.  We intend to open additional grades, hopefully up to grade 8 in 2017.
  5. How much will it cost for my son or daughter to attend Neumann Classical School?
    • Tuition will be $6490 for the full day program, plus approximately $500 in materials fees and the cost of uniforms.
  6. What is Neumann’s Curriculum like?
    • Our curriculum provides an academically demanding liberal arts education with the best of traditional and more contemporary teaching methods. For younger students, emphasis will be placed on hands on, experiential learning, especially in the sciences. The subjects taught at Neumann Classical School include:
      1. Latin (Little Oaks: Song School Latin; Lower School: Latin for Children);
      2. Catholic catechesis (Catechesis of the Good Shepherd; Ignatius Press Faith and Life Series);
      3. Mathematics (Horizon math series for K-3);
      4. Literature (focusing on the great works of the Western canon);
      5. Grammar, penmanship, phonics and composition (First Start Reading: Phonics, Reading, & Printing (Memoria Press); Primary Phonics Readers, Sets 1, 2, & 3 (Educators Publishing Service); Faith and Freedom Basic Readers, Pre-primer, Primer & First Reader (Ginn and Company, reprinted by Seton Press); Copy books and New American Cursive (Memoria Press).
      6. History (Little Oaks: study of timelines to understand the ordering of basic historical events; exposure to the major ancient civilizations; work with maps and globes to learn geography);
      7. Science and geography (Little Oaks: Charlotte Mason method);
      8. French language (3 days per week with a fluent French instructor);
      9. Classical music theory (the Ward Method of Instruction);
      10. Classical art;
      11. Recitation (Kindergarten and up); and
      12. Physical Education
    • A more detailed description of our curriculum offerings is available on request.
  7. Will Neumann Classical School adopt Common Core?
    • No. The substantive content of the Common Core State Standards Initiative is antithetical to our mission as a classical Catholic school.
  8. Are you concerned about the results of standardized tests if Neumann does not adopt Common Core?
    • First, we expect our students to out perform other students in standardized testing. Research has consistently shown that classically educated students who study Latin typically test a grade or two higher than their peers, especially in the older grades. Second, we will test less often than most other schools. We do not ‘teach to the test’.
  9. Where is Neumann Classical School located?
    • We operated for 2016 in the former rectory of Assumption Parish in Tuckahoe, NY. Our location for 2017 will be St. Catherine’s in Pelham, NY.
  10. What safety guidelines has the Neumann School enacted?
    • Safety is one of our highest priorities. Our school building has been inspected by the city and the state to ensure that it complies with all child-safety regulations. All our teachers go through a detailed screening during the hiring process, which includes a background check. We are consulting with specialists regarding disaster planning, and will have scheduled evacuation practices to ensure that we are prepared in the occasion of an emergency.
  11. What kind of educational backgrounds/certifications do you require of your teachers?
    • We place a strong preference on hiring teachers with a master’s degree in Education, the Classics, or a Liberal Arts discipline.
    • See our Faculty page for a description of the backgrounds of our current teaching staff.
  12. Where does the name Neumann Classical School come from?
    • Neumann Classical School is named after Saint John Neumann. Saint John Neumann was born in Bohemia in 1811. He immigrated to the United States and was ordained at Saint Patrick’s Old Cathedral in New York City in 1836. He served many Catholic immigrant families in upstate New York prior to entering the Redemptorist order and moving to Pittsburgh. In February 1852, St. John Neumann was appointed Bishop of Philadelphia, where he founded the first Catholic diocesan school system in the United States. We chose St. John Neumann as our patron for his tireless commitment to educating young Catholics both spiritually and intellectually. In particular, St. John Neumann published three texts used for catechesis: the Smaller Catechism, the Larger Catechism, and Bible History. Some of his writings are still used to this day.
  13. What is your relationship to the Catholic Diocese of New York?
    • Neumann Classical School is an independent private Catholic school faithful to the Magisterium of the Catholic Church. Our religion curriculum is designed in conformity with archdiocesan standards for religion education. Our families are members at many parishes throughout the Archdiocese of New York.
  14. What are your class sizes?
    • Our Little-Oaks classes will be no larger than twelve students per class. Lower and Middle School classes will be kept to a maximum of sixteen to twenty students.
  15. Are students required to wear uniforms?
    • All Neumann students are required to be in uniform every day. Uniforms must be clean, pressed, mended, and properly worn. School uniforms have two functions: (1) to promote discipline and neatness (including modesty), thereby honoring the dignity of the student and the student’s academic purpose; (2) to promote uniformity in dress, which helps students to avoid unnecessary distractions, competition, and exclusiveness, and which minimizes the expression of wealth or poverty through clothing.
  16. Do you teach foreign languages?
    • All students study Latin and French. Our early Latin curriculum consists primarily of exposure to Latin hymns, prayers, and phrases. More formal Latin instruction begins in 2nd grade.
    • Students study French language 3 days per week with a fluent French instructor, with the goal of them reaching conversational and reading proficiency while in the lower school.
  17. Can my child take the bus to Neumann Classical School?
    • Students must be dropped at the school and collected by a parent or recognized guardian whose name has been registered with the school administration.
  18. How long is the school day?
    • The school day begins at 8:30 a.m. and ends at 2:30 p.m.
  19. Does Neumann Classical School offer sports teams? What other enrichment activities will Neumann Classical School offer?
    • Neumann is not planning to have sports teams created for the 2016 school year. Neumann’s future development plan, however, does include organized competitive sports.
  20. Can my child attend Neumann Classical School even if he or his family is not Catholic?
    • Our admissions policy does not discriminate on the basis of race, sex, disability, or religion. All prospective students and their parents should understand that Catholic beliefs and doctrines, as well as Catholic prayer and worship, comprise the cornerstone of Neumann Classical School’s mission and identity. Religion is taught as a required subject in all grades. Attendance at school Masses is required for all students. All of these issues are discussed with prospective students and their parents during the course of our ordinary admissions process.
  21. What role does religion play at Neumann Classical School?
    • At Neumann, we are deeply committed to providing a fully Catholic learning environment. The school day begins and ends with prayer, and we say the Angelus at Midday. Mass will be celebrated at least monthly (and hopefully weekly) on campus. We will arrange to have the Sacrament of Reconciliation readily available for students, faculty, and parents who wish to receive it. Religion is a core subject in our curriculum, and we prepare our students to make their first Reconciliation, receive their first Holy Communion, and be Confirmed.
  22. What opportunities are there for parents to be involved at the school?
    • We believe parents are the primary educators of their children. Parental involvement is crucial to the identity and mission of Neumann Classical School. Parents of our students coordinate an array of programs for the school.