On this page:
- List of schools
- Private Catholic and Christian schools and the Polish education system
- Benefits of Catholic and Christian schools in Poland
These schools receive support from the Catholic church and from other churches. In some ways, though, Christian schools are run similar to other secular schools in Poland. They normally have similar curricula, subjects, and activities as secular schools. Most also admit non-practising Christians and even non-believers. The difference is that, unlike secular schools, they teach Christian and Catholic values.
Private Catholic and Christian schools and the Polish education system
The Polish educational authorities don’t keep track of the number of Catholic or Christian schools (or schools of other denominations). It’s thus difficult to know how many of these schools there are in Poland.
Some educational organizations and the statistics bureau have, though, collected some data. This data shows the huge growth in Poland of religious-affiliated schools, including Catholic and Christian schools, over the last 28 years.
According to the latest Central Statistical Office of Poland data, in the 2016-2017 school year, religious organizations ran 105 primary schools, 147 junior high schools, 89 secondary schools, 10 special education schools, and 24 technical and vocational schools. For comparison, for the 2010-2011 year, the numbers were 78, 125, 93, 6 and 25, respectively.
In just a six-year period (from 2010-2011 to 2016-2017), then, the number of faith-based schools, including primary, lower secondary, general secondary, vocational and technical schools, has increased by about 50. In short, private faith-based schools in Poland, including Catholic and Christian schools, are growing in numbers. For instance, in Warsaw alone, the number of Catholic and religious schools, including preschools, is up to 50. These schools are clearly becoming more popular among Polish families.
Benefits of Catholic and Christian schools in Poland
The increasing number of private Catholic (and religious schools) in Poland, and their growing popularity, isn’t due to an increase in the number of Catholics in Poland. Rather, the appeal of these schools seems to stem from their approach to education and their high level of teaching.
Students of these schools tend to do well in standardized exams. In fact, these schools often rank at or near the top of the chart in their test scores at all the levels of education.
This is confirmed by the results of the latest grade 6 exams, in 2016, as well as those for middle and high school. These high test scores distinguish private Catholic schools as among the best in Poland. They also allow graduates of these schools to get into other prestigious private and non-public schools in Poland.
There are plenty of other benefits of private Catholic and Christian schools in Poland. Below, we describe some of the main ones. To learn about the benefits of Poland private schools in general, read our guide.
- High level of education: Private Catholic and Christian schools in Poland provide high-quality instruction from preschool to high school. This allows your child to receive a high level of education through all the years of compulsory and non-compulsory schooling.
- Location: There are many Catholic and Christian schools throughout Poland. You’re thus likely to find one of these schools near you. This is very convenient.
- Individualized teaching: Many private Catholic schools offer a personalized education program, both for secular and religious subjects. This is supported by small classes and a warm and nurturing environment. Although teachers are demanding, they’re also very supportive. They try to reduce competition among students, and build a cohesive and tight-knit community.
- Value system: Catholic schools offer a traditional value system, based on the religion of Christianity. This is very important to many Christian families in Poland. It may also interest those who want their children’s education and upbringing to be based on a clear value system which prioritizes family, home, and faith. In this way, a Christian education can be attractive even to non-practising Christians and non-believers.
- Deepening of faith: For many, the chance to participate in a Christian life and experience its rituals and celebrations is a major perk. In fact, this can be just as important as the acquisition of knowledge and reaching the highest levels of education. Many Catholic schools in Poland provide this, and also allow students to visit religious sites and learn about their historical importance.
- Availability: Despite what you might think, most Polish Catholic and Christian schools don’t close their doors to non-practising Christians and non-believers. These schools do, though, require students and their families to follow and respect their rules and the system of values they teach. Many Catholic schools, for example, have compulsory religious classes.
- Single-gender options: Some Catholic and Christian schools have separate classes or even schools for girls and boys, called “female” and “male” schools. However, even in these schools, students are also taught in some coed classes, like most public and private (and non-public) schools in Poland. In some Polish Catholic schools, though, there aren’t separate classes for boys and girls.
- Safety: For parents. safety is crucial. In Catholic schools, this is promoted in two ways. First, schools must meet all safety requirements stipulated by the Polish Ministry of Education. Second, they educate children in the spirit of mutual understanding and cooperation. This means there’s no room for unhealthy competition or rivalries.
- International programs and exchanges: Some private Catholic and Christian schools are international schools. These are usually secondary schools that offer the IB diploma program. Many of these schools also have affiliations with Catholic schools around the world, especially in Europe. This allows for exchange programs, where students can go to a Catholic school in another country, and live with the family of a classmate.
- Small classes: Many Catholic schools, like other private and non-public schools in Poland, offer small classes and low teacher-to-student ratios. This can raise a student’s comfort level. It can also allow teachers to offer individualized instruction. In fact, many Catholic schools and preschools use a Montessori teaching approach (or at least elements of this approach), which emphasizes student-directed learning.
- Rich offerings: Private Catholic schools offer a wide ranging curriculum. In addition to covering standard subjects, like math, science, and history, they also offer many less mainstream courses. For instance, many have courses in architecture, journalism, philosophy, film, medicine, and technology. Some also offer plenty of extracurricular activities, such as sports, arts, music (including choir in pilgrimages), and after-school clubs and programs.
- Low tuition fees: A big perk of Catholic schools is their reasonable tuition fees. Monthly tuition varies from $174 (500 PLN) to $560 (1600 PLN), not including the cost of room and board. These schools are supported by various foundations, associations, and organizations, including parishes. This means they tend to be quite affordable, and are on the lower side of private school tuition in Poland.
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