Nazareth Primary and High School in Warsaw was founded by the Sisters of the Holy Family of Nazareth in 1919. It is accredited by the Polish Ministry of Education and the International Baccalaureate Organization.
The school offers three types of programs:
- primary school program (for students aged 7 – 15) with classes for bilingual students (Polish/English)
- high school program (for students aged 15 – 19)
- IB Diploma Program (for students aged 15 – 19 with a good command of English)
At present about 350 students attend our school. All of them receive personal attention. Carefully selected faculty and staff are committed to understanding and meeting the needs of each student. Teachers and sisters have the opportunity to get to know each student and help her acquire the knowledge and skills necessary for individual achievement.
Additionally, Nazareth High School offers boarding opportunities. Our dormitory holds 90 – pupils who come from all over Poland and from abroad. They live in cosy and nicely decorated rooms.
Our Primary School offers bilingual English-Polish education from the 1st grade, which is an educational innovation. At the beginning students have an extended number of English lessons, but in higher grades elements of English are introduced in selected content subjects, such as mathematics or geography. Typically, bilingual education is introduced in the 7th grade of primary school.
In Nazareth Primary School children are taught by highly professional and dedicated teachers in small class groups. The primary school is co-educational, but there are separate class groups for boys and girls.
The purposes of our high school is to prepare students for university and college studies. By providing a caring and academic environment we ensure that each student is intellectually stimulated, grows in confidence and responsibility and develops respect for themselves and others. The high school is a girls-only school.
A Student’s Account
Catholic girls schools are usually associated with boot camps for troublemakers. Due to this, they have acquired a rather pejorative meaning. Nazareth High School in Warsaw is the absolute opposite of a reformatory and cannot be classified as a school for social misfits.
When I first came here, I was used to being in a mixed class and being taught by male and female teachers. Suddenly I found myself in the deep end of the pool with a brand new uniform, a class full of girls and nuns teaching me. All these changes made me feel like Robinson Crusoe on a desolate island. Thank goodness, my first impression was false and the feeling of isolation and bewilderment was only temporary.
To my surprise, my class welcomed me warmly and made every effort to make me feel at home. Each student is a valued individual with unique gifts and passions. Students with exceptional and unique gifts are provided with challenges and resources to enhance these talents. My form tutor, Sister Józefina helped me with everything and made sure I knew where to go and she told me how the school functions. Normally, I’d probably be pushed aside and forgotten.
At first it was hard to get used to all the quirky oddities of a Catholic school. Morning prayers and Holy Mass on the first Friday of the month are some of the traditions of Nazareth High School. With time, these small traditions have become a comfort to me.
The school has a high standard of teaching and teaches discipline, responsibility and systematic work. The facilities here are wonderful and it’s a privilege to have such well equipped classrooms. A safe and aesthetically pleasing environment promotes the learning process. The library and computer labs provide many resources and we can use them after school if we like. This school is all about learning!
My teachers are very pleasant but they also demand punctuality and diligence. Challenging expectations inspire the individual student to achieve high personal and academic goals. Even though this may sound rather strict, the lessons here are lively and sometimes even funny. If we don’t understand something we can always come back after the lesson and ask the teacher for help. My classmates are always willing to help too. We learn more effectively when all the members of the school community cooperate to provide appropriate support, challenge and motivation. We have learnt that with God and perseverance we can overcome all obstacles.
When you enter Nazareth High School you experience a calming effect. The whole atmosphere is peaceful, friendly and really puts your brain in learning mode. In the many schools I have been to in Poland and abroad only this one has a unique sense of tranquility and fraternity.
Uniforms. When you don’t have one you think it’s the end of the world if you need to wear one. Once you have one, you completely forget about it and it becomes something like brushing your teeth in the morning. Plus, you don’t have to worry about what to wear. It’s just another thing that makes you focus on more important things than nail polish and skirts.
The school also organises various trips to museums, theatres or cinemas. I went to Rome in April with a group from school to pay our last respects to Pope John Paul II. As our school is in Poland, the late Pope’s homeland, we have come closer together than ever before. He will always have a place in our hearts.
I experience a great feeling of pride and happiness when we all gather at school assemblies and Masses, wearing our special uniforms. I think about the past generations of girls that did the same things we do today. We are part of something special, the traditions bonding the generation of our grandmothers with ours is immense.
I believe that our self-esteem is enhanced when mutual respect, trust and support exist within the school community. Teaching and learning take place in an environment rich in Gospel values. The school community works together to create an environment that reflects Christian values.
But the fruit of the Spirit are love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness and self control. Against such there is no law.