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GreatSchools Rating

Desert Star Community School

Charter | K-8 | 150 students

Empowering students to reach their full academic & creative potential

 

Living in Cornville

Situated in a small town neighborhood. The median home value is $160,000. The average monthly rent for a 2 bedroom apartment is $800.

Source: Sperling's Best Places
 
Last modified
Community Rating

4 stars

Community Rating by Year
2014:
Based on 1 rating
2013:
Based on 1 rating
2012:
No new ratings
2011:
Based on 1 rating

Teacher quality

Principal leadership

Parent involvement

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25 reviews of this school


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Posted October 4, 2014

For months, I have respectfully tried to communicate with school staff and administrators about my daughter who lives with her mother. Repeatedly, my calls have gone unanswered or have been received in an unprofessional manner. And now, my daughter has left your school and is 'missing.' I have little to no idea where she or her mother are. I am greatly disappointed that the office staff (Sue) and administrators (Cheryl LeBlanc, Yvan Rich and Craig Imler) have done nothing to professionally support a child's relationship with both parents and have perpetuated the unwarranted estrangement of a child and her father. A Community school should support a child's entire community, not half of it. For the entire story: gofundme.com/findmydaugh
—Submitted by a parent


Posted April 27, 2013

My son has attended this school for 3 years and we both couldn't be happier. Whoever commented that this school doesn't use textbooks or adhere to state/federal curriculum was either mistaken or uninformed. There are textbooks, AIMS review workbooks, spelling words, multiplication quizzes, etc. Some things do "look" different at this school as opposed to public schools, such as students work in Main Lesson books rather than worksheets that are sent home every day. So while all the extras offered (like hiking, woodworking, violin, Spanish, and handwork) are nice, it isn't done to take away from the academics of the student, its to ENHANCE the experience. If there were any downside (for some parents) its that its hard to be a sideline parent with no involvement in the school. If a parent is only wanting to drop off their child and let the school be solely responsible for the child's education then this likely isn't the school for you. The only complaint is that things can be disorganized at times although the school has made a concerted effort to help keep parents abreast of news with weekly emails and an updated website. Children are respected AND educated, what more could you want?
—Submitted by a parent


Posted May 18, 2011

Desert Star has many pros and cons. If your main interest is knowing that school will be fun place for your kids. This is a good school. There does seem to be a lot of emphasis on extracurricular activities such as knitting, gardening, field trips, painting and drawing, mixed with a bit of music. However, it is lacking in the basic curriculum in regards to reading, writing, and math. There are no text books for each child and most of the work that is handed out is hand-printed. In two years, my child has not had one spelling test nor has spelling been taught as a class in and of itself. There also seems to be a lack of clear organization and direction. I would have to honestly say that if one's priority is in learning the basic educational curriculum, then this will not be the school for you. However, if one's priority is that your child thinks that school is fun and that people are nice and, if that is good enough for you, you will more than likely like this school very much.
—Submitted by a parent


Posted April 26, 2010

This wonderful school utilizes experiental learning to inspire a great love of education in it's students.
—Submitted by a parent


Posted September 22, 2009

Desert Star School has a community of people like no where else that I know of. We are a village, a family, a tribe that supports each other and our children in every way. D.S. teaches environmentalism & stewardship of the Earth, multiculturalism, non-violent communication, emotional intelligence, encompassing the needs of the whole child through creativity, music and academics. I am so proud of our little school. We've worked very hard to create something special that is unique and caters to the needs of children today. The faculty are people I completely trust and believe in. They come from their hearts, sincerely there for the children and the parents. I have made my best friends at Desert Star and so has my daughter. She loves going to school and learning....that is the joy of Desert Star!
—Submitted by a parent


Posted September 22, 2009

We love Desert Star for it's dedication to 'whole child' learning.
—Submitted by a parent


Posted September 21, 2009

The best teachers, administratrs, parents, kids and cirruculium in Cottonwood!!!
—Submitted by a parent


Posted September 20, 2009

We are a dedicated and close staff who believe in each other and in Waldorf education. Our parent body is very involved and committed to each child and the school. And we have the most awesome view of the Sedona mountains
—Submitted by a parent


Posted September 19, 2009

Waldorf education, small class size. Teachers who care about students and students who care about each other. Great arts focus! My sons love to go to school each day
—Submitted by a parent


Posted September 19, 2009

Our sons love to go to school every day and are happy, what more could a Dad wish for? Their love of art and music helps balance them as human beings and the focus on caring for self, others and the environment is great!
—Submitted by a parent


Posted September 19, 2009

Such a terrific Waldorf charter school!! I teach art classes to each grade, 2-5 weekly at this treasure of a school and I look forward to each day spent with this fine group of children and staff. These children love art, music, gardening, knitting and still have time and love for academics presented in a thoughtful and age-appropriate manner. I have taught at private Waldorf and some of the top private schools and this little school nestled in rural Cornville deserves some Kudos!!
—Submitted by a teacher


Posted September 19, 2009

It has the best focus on teaching children to become stewards of the environment and to be kind to each other. They also get to do music and art and take nature hikes which is so missing in the 'regular' schools!
—Submitted by a parent


Posted September 19, 2009

Great perspective on the balance of academic and emotional intelligence.
—Submitted by a parent


Posted September 19, 2009

It is wonderful to see how children are treated very nice and honored who they are.
—Submitted by a parent


Posted September 18, 2009

The teaching methods are par excellence and my child loves!!!!!!! school. She never wants to miss a day.
—Submitted by a parent


Posted September 18, 2009

The staff honors the children as individuals, and we strive to educate the whole child through an artistic and academic program.
—Submitted by a parent


Posted September 18, 2009

Desert Star School has a beautiful rural setting for its campus and the staff and teachers really care about the whole student and creating a learning culture of trust, inspiration, and respect.
—Submitted by a parent


Posted September 18, 2009

Love the Rudolph Steiner style of teaching. My daughter has a great teacher in Peter Wollheim.
—Submitted by a parent


Posted September 18, 2009

The phylosophies for educating the children go beyond academics, the whole child is the focus. The school invites with open arms for the parents to be involved with their childs education. All of the children are reached by the use of the multiple inteligences in the classroom.
—Submitted by a parent


Posted September 17, 2009

Born of the notion that parents, teachers, and especially children can shine to their individual full potentials and can help each other achieve that shining, Desert Star has passionately pursued that goal through the many trials of its beginning years. Now flourishing like the young gardens it planted in the desert, Desert Star continues to inspire the love of beauty within and without its participants --- the kind of beauty that creates confidence and a drive towards life-long enthusiastic learning.


Community ratings and reviews do not represent the views of GreatSchools nor does GreatSchools check their accuracy or verify the reviewers' identities. Use your discretion when evaluating these reviews.

About these ratings

The Community Rating is the school’s average rating from its community members (e.g., parents, students, and school staff). The highest possible rating is five stars; the lowest is one star.

The test results by subgroup show how the designated group of students is performing in comparison to the general population.
Math

The state average for Math was 69% in 2013.

19 students were tested at this school in 2013.

2013

 
 
79%

2012

 
 
50%

2011

 
 
68%

2010

 
 
35%
Reading

The state average for Reading was 75% in 2013.

19 students were tested at this school in 2013.

2013

 
 
69%

2012

 
 
67%

2011

 
 
64%

2010

 
 
47%
Scale: % meets or exceeds

About the tests


In 2012-2013 Arizona used the Arizona Instrument to Measure Standards (AIMS) to test students in reading and mathematics in grades 3 through 8 and 10, writing in grades 5, 6, 7, and 10, and in science in grades 4, 8 and 10. GreatSchools' profiles currently show AIMS mathematics, reading and writing results. 2013 AIMS grade 10 results represent on-track 10th graders for the 2013 test year. AIMS is a standards-based test, which means that it measures how well students have mastered Arizona learning standards. Students must pass the grade 10 AIMS in order to graduate. The goal is for all students to meet or exceed state standards on the test.

Source: Arizona Department of Education

Math

The state average for Math was 65% in 2013.

14 students were tested at this school in 2013.

2013

 
 
28%

2012

 
 
41%

2011

 
 
55%

2010

 
 
50%
Reading

The state average for Reading was 77% in 2013.

14 students were tested at this school in 2013.

2013

 
 
64%

2012

 
 
91%

2011

 
 
64%

2010

 
 
71%
Scale: % meets or exceeds

About the tests


In 2012-2013 Arizona used the Arizona Instrument to Measure Standards (AIMS) to test students in reading and mathematics in grades 3 through 8 and 10, writing in grades 5, 6, 7, and 10, and in science in grades 4, 8 and 10. GreatSchools' profiles currently show AIMS mathematics, reading and writing results. 2013 AIMS grade 10 results represent on-track 10th graders for the 2013 test year. AIMS is a standards-based test, which means that it measures how well students have mastered Arizona learning standards. Students must pass the grade 10 AIMS in order to graduate. The goal is for all students to meet or exceed state standards on the test.

Source: Arizona Department of Education

Math

The state average for Math was 63% in 2013.

24 students were tested at this school in 2013.

2013

 
 
67%

2012

 
 
44%

2011

 
 
57%

2010

 
 
59%
Reading

The state average for Reading was 79% in 2013.

24 students were tested at this school in 2013.

2013

 
 
88%

2012

 
 
78%

2011

 
 
86%

2010

 
 
94%
Writing

The state average for Writing was 56% in 2013.

24 students were tested at this school in 2013.

2013

 
 
58%

2012

 
 
56%

2011

 
 
71%

2010

 
 
100%
Scale: % meets or exceeds

About the tests


In 2012-2013 Arizona used the Arizona Instrument to Measure Standards (AIMS) to test students in reading and mathematics in grades 3 through 8 and 10, writing in grades 5, 6, 7, and 10, and in science in grades 4, 8 and 10. GreatSchools' profiles currently show AIMS mathematics, reading and writing results. 2013 AIMS grade 10 results represent on-track 10th graders for the 2013 test year. AIMS is a standards-based test, which means that it measures how well students have mastered Arizona learning standards. Students must pass the grade 10 AIMS in order to graduate. The goal is for all students to meet or exceed state standards on the test.

Source: Arizona Department of Education

Math

The state average for Math was 63% in 2013.

2013

 
 
n/a

2012

 
 
47%

2011

 
 
73%

2010

 
 
n/a
Reading

The state average for Reading was 79% in 2013.

2013

 
 
n/a

2012

 
 
87%

2011

 
 
100%

2010

 
 
n/a
Writing

The state average for Writing was 53% in 2013.

2013

 
 
n/a

2012

 
 
73%

2011

 
 
82%

2010

 
 
n/a
Scale: % meets or exceeds

About the tests


In 2012-2013 Arizona used the Arizona Instrument to Measure Standards (AIMS) to test students in reading and mathematics in grades 3 through 8 and 10, writing in grades 5, 6, 7, and 10, and in science in grades 4, 8 and 10. GreatSchools' profiles currently show AIMS mathematics, reading and writing results. 2013 AIMS grade 10 results represent on-track 10th graders for the 2013 test year. AIMS is a standards-based test, which means that it measures how well students have mastered Arizona learning standards. Students must pass the grade 10 AIMS in order to graduate. The goal is for all students to meet or exceed state standards on the test.

Source: Arizona Department of Education

Math

The state average for Math was 65% in 2013.

15 students were tested at this school in 2013.

2013

 
 
73%

2012

 
 
n/a

2011

 
 
n/a

2010

 
 
n/a
Reading

The state average for Reading was 85% in 2013.

15 students were tested at this school in 2013.

2013

 
 
80%

2012

 
 
n/a

2011

 
 
n/a

2010

 
 
n/a
Writing

The state average for Writing was 52% in 2013.

15 students were tested at this school in 2013.

2013

 
 
60%

2012

 
 
n/a

2011

 
 
n/a

2010

 
 
n/a
Scale: % meets or exceeds

About the tests


In 2012-2013 Arizona used the Arizona Instrument to Measure Standards (AIMS) to test students in reading and mathematics in grades 3 through 8 and 10, writing in grades 5, 6, 7, and 10, and in science in grades 4, 8 and 10. GreatSchools' profiles currently show AIMS mathematics, reading and writing results. 2013 AIMS grade 10 results represent on-track 10th graders for the 2013 test year. AIMS is a standards-based test, which means that it measures how well students have mastered Arizona learning standards. Students must pass the grade 10 AIMS in order to graduate. The goal is for all students to meet or exceed state standards on the test.

Source: Arizona Department of Education

Math

The state average for Math was 58% in 2013.

2013

 
 
n/a

2012

 
 
n/a

2011

 
 
n/a

2010

 
 
n/a
Reading

The state average for Reading was 72% in 2013.

2013

 
 
n/a

2012

 
 
n/a

2011

 
 
n/a

2010

 
 
n/a
Scale: % meets or exceeds

About the tests


In 2012-2013 Arizona used the Arizona Instrument to Measure Standards (AIMS) to test students in reading and mathematics in grades 3 through 8 and 10, writing in grades 5, 6, 7, and 10, and in science in grades 4, 8 and 10. GreatSchools' profiles currently show AIMS mathematics, reading and writing results. 2013 AIMS grade 10 results represent on-track 10th graders for the 2013 test year. AIMS is a standards-based test, which means that it measures how well students have mastered Arizona learning standards. Students must pass the grade 10 AIMS in order to graduate. The goal is for all students to meet or exceed state standards on the test.

Source: Arizona Department of Education

  • In 2010-2011, this school was designated "Highly Performing".
  • In 2009-2010, this school was designated "Performing Plus".
  • In 2008-2009, this school was designated "Highly Performing".

About the tests


Arizona uses AZ LEARNS Achievement Profiles to indicate schools' overall performance each year. For elementary and middle schools, the profiles are based on current and historical aggregated AIMS results, MAP results and whether or not the school made Adequate Yearly Progress (AYP). For high schools, AIMS results, AYP status and graduation/dropout rates are used. Schools are identified as Excelling, Highly Performing, Performing Plus, Performing, Underperforming, Failing to Meet Academic Standards or Pending.

Source: Arizona Department of Education

Breaking down the GreatSchools Rating

GreatSchools Ratings for this school are based on 2012-2013 test results. Use the breakdown ratings below to compare types of students at this school. Learn more »


Student ethnicity

Ethnicity This school State average
White 84% 42%
Hispanic 8% 43%
Two or more races 5% 2%
Asian or Asian/Pacific Islander 2% 3%
Black 2% 5%
American Indian/Alaska Native 0% 5%
Hawaiian Native/Pacific Islander 0% 0%
Source: NCES, 2011-2012

Student subgroups

  This school District averageState average
Students eligible for free or reduced-price lunch program 60%N/A47%
Female 59%N/A49%
Male 41%N/A51%
Source: NCES, 2011-2012

Teacher resources

Special staff resources available to students ELL/ESL Coordinator
Reading specialist(s)
Foreign languages spoken by school staff None
Read more about programs at this school
Source: Provided by a school official.

Special education / special needs

Level of special education programming offered
  • Basic - the school offers or partners to provide services based on the needs of individual students

Science, Technology, Engineering, & Math (STEM)

Specific academic themes or areas of focus
  • Mathematics
  • Science
School facilities
  • Access to farm or natural area

Arts & music

Specific academic themes or areas of focus
  • Arts (all)
  • Music
  • Performing arts
Visual arts
  • Drawing / sketching
  • Painting
Music
  • Instrumental music lessons
Performing and written arts
  • Creative writing
  • Drama
  • Poetry

Language learning

Specific academic themes or areas of focus
  • Foreign languages
Foreign languages taught
  • Spanish
Level of ESL/ELL programming offered
  • Basic - the school offers or partners to provide services based on the needs of individual students
Staff resources available to students
  • ELL/ESL Coordinator

Health & athletics

School facilities
  • Access to farm or natural area
School leaders can update this information here.

School basics

School start time
  • 8:20 am
School end time
  • 3:00 am
School Leader's name
  • Cheryl LeBlanc
Best ways for parents to contact the school
  • Phone
Gender
  • Coed
Is there an application process?
  • Yes
Fax number
  • (928) 284-9565

Programs

Instructional and/or curriculum models used

Don't understand these terms?
  • Waldorf
Specific academic themes or areas of focus

Don't understand these terms?
  • Arts (all)
  • Foreign languages
  • Humanities
  • Mathematics
  • Music
  • Performing arts
  • Science
  • Writing
Bi-lingual or language immersion programs offered

Don't understand these terms?
  • No
Level of special education programming offered
  • Basic - the school offers or partners to provide services based on the needs of individual students
Foreign languages taught
  • Spanish
Level of ESL/ELL programming offered
  • Basic - the school offers or partners to provide services based on the needs of individual students

Resources

Staff resources available to students
  • ELL/ESL Coordinator
  • Reading specialist(s)
Foreign languages spoken by staff
  • None
Extra learning resources offered
  • Title I Targeted Assistance program (TAS)
  • Tutoring
Transportation options
  • Buses/vans for students only
School facilities
  • Access to farm or natural area
  • Library
  • Playground
School leaders can update this information here.

Sports

Boys sports
  • None
Girls sports
  • None

Arts & music

Visual arts
  • Drawing / sketching
  • Painting
Music
  • Instrumental music lessons
Performing arts
  • Creative writing
  • Drama
  • Poetry
Media arts
  • None
School leaders can update this information here.

Upcoming Events

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School culture

Dress Code
  • Neither uniforms nor dress code
Bullying policy
  • This school has a bullying and/or cyber bullying policy in place.
Parent involvement
  • Join PTO/PTA
  • Organize fundraising events (school auction, bake sales, etc.)
  • Volunteer in the classroom
  • Volunteer time after school
School leaders can update this information here.

Apply

 

This school accepts applications on a

rolling basis

 
Apply now
 

What are your chances?


10 out of 10students were accepted for the 2012-2013 school year.


Students accepted for the 2012-2013 school year
40
Applications received for the 2012-2013 school year
25
Notice an inaccuracy? Let us know!

1240 S. Recycler Rd.
Cornville, AZ 86325
Website: Click here
Phone: (928) 282-0171

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