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GreatSchools Rating

Desert Marigold School

Charter | K-12 | 302 students

We are best known for Waldorf Inspirted Curriculum.

 
 

Living in Phoenix

Situated in an urban neighborhood. The median home value is $92,900. The average monthly rent for a 2 bedroom apartment is $830.

Source: Sperling's Best Places
 
Last modified
Community Rating

4 stars

Community Rating by Year
2014:
Based on 5 ratings
2013:
Based on 8 ratings
2012:
Based on 3 ratings
2011:
No new ratings

Teacher quality

Principal leadership

Parent involvement

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64 reviews of this school


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Posted July 16, 2007

My child and I were greatly disappointed with this school.It seems to pay more attention to Mythical objects and Faerie Tales even up into the higher grades. My child said that she felt like she wasn't learning anything.
—Submitted by a parent


Posted May 31, 2007

I have had my child at DMS since 3rd grade. The academics scores have plummeted since entering middle school. The administrator is rarely in the classroom and does not do much to help the children who are failing. I feel since my child has entered 6th grade she has been let down and is now far behind state standards. My child will be attending DMS next year do to the lack of academics needs.
—Submitted by a parent


Posted May 19, 2007

This school lacks academics. It's arts are fairly good but the academics are very poor. Such basics such as math,reading,and writing are taught terribly or bearly taught . Especially the middle school lacks academics. I am glad to say I am taking my child out. If you seek academic success this school is not for you.
—Submitted by a parent


Posted May 7, 2007

The Waldorf Education system is wonderful, but administration at this school lacks the business know how to execute it fully. The school has great potential, the campus and teachers are very special, but the quality of education for each child is hit and miss. This is due to administrative issues - specifically, their lack of support for teachers, parents, and supplies/tools needed in classrooms. More organization within administration would help bridge this gap, plus if administrative staff had more business experience in running the school, the program would improve. Finally, the director needs to be more connected and active within this school - specifically by making making rounds and seeing firsthand how each class is doing and taking active steps to improve existing problems. Overall the school has some great qualities, but if you are seeking a consistent education for your child, research this school carefully before enrolling.
—Submitted by a parent


Posted April 23, 2007

I love the lack of concrete, the trees, the garden and wide open spaces. I love the idea of this school. However, there is a definite lack of discipline in the upper elementary grades. The good things about the school are about breaking even now with the negatives. I don't know if I'll put my child in for next year. But it has so much potential it is heartbreaking.
—Submitted by a parent


Posted April 23, 2007

The strengths of the school are a Waldorf inspired philosophy and curriculum, and the high level of parent involvement. A nice plus is the farm setting. Overall, the children are allowed to be kids, and are treated as divine souls worthy of the utmost respect. However, the school lacks leadership, a more reliable discipline structure, and a more consistent and experienced staff. It is great for the little ones; I have some concern for the older grades. If you want your middle schooler to be prepared for an Ivy League, keep looking.
—Submitted by a parent


Posted April 13, 2007

We've been with DMS since my child was 18 mos, for playgroup and preschool. The arts, spiritual, & physical aspects of the child are nurtured well, and there is a lot of love. But the school is run by the teachers, an eclectic group who all have strengths but some severe shortcomings which strongly sway campus life. The campus is beautiful; the community of parents, the lack of commercialism, the organic environment, and the nurturing of the child as a strong and free being are why we came. The abstract, overly right brained processes are why we are leaving. I feel our daughter has done well, but is not challenged. She comes home and wants to do traditional schoolwork. As a preschooler it helped her grow into her body comfortably, but her mind is left wandering. Lack of social structure and discipline has often upset her. We'll miss the parents.
—Submitted by a parent


Posted October 30, 2006

My son has ben attending Desert Marigold for almost 3 years. It is a joy to see him happy to attend class.Staff and Parents are open minded and are willing to work and discuss any issue that may arise. Of course they is always room to improve. But what makes this school rise above the rest, is that they will rise to all challenges.
—Submitted by a parent


Posted March 2, 2006

My oldest son is finishing up his first year of preschool hear, and is enrolled for kindergarten for the fall. I really love the level of parental involvement at this school, as well as the well-rounded approach to the curriculum.
—Submitted by a parent


Posted February 8, 2006

The pedagogy at Desert Marigold School is more holistic and child-centered than at more traditional, larger schools. Because the arts are fully integrated, children are more engaged in their learning. Because of the school's small size, there is more intimacy and less rigidity, while maintaining a 'rhythm' that is necessary for structure. There is heavy parent involvement and a sense of 'family'. Behavioral issues are dealt with by an experienced nd nurturing special needs staff. This is a great school for families looking for a more relaxed school setting than one often finds nowdays.
—Submitted by a parent


Posted February 6, 2006

there is a good amount of parent involvement in this school. Children get a well-rounded education and a holistic perspective on the learning process
—Submitted by a parent


Posted October 28, 2005

I bring my daughter to the Playgroup at Desert Marigold. We are so happy with the staff, the philosophy, even the school grounds are amazing! I love the nurturing atmosphere that will surley keep us in attendance for many years to come.
—Submitted by a parent


Posted September 8, 2005

This is a very unique school! The children are exposed to real life skills such as animal care (the school has some farm animals) and organic gardening (DMS ownes 11 acres). THe school is growing and getting better! Loads of parent involvement! They aren't there yet - there is lots of work to be done to make this a stellar school, but they have the vision and the community to do it.
—Submitted by a parent


Posted August 29, 2005

We have been at DMS for going on 4 years now and absolutly love it. My childs needs are adressed by the whole school. The focus on the whole child is what keeps me here. Art, music and all around education are all a strong focus of the school. Thankyou DMS
—Submitted by a parent


Posted August 21, 2005

We are so happy at DMS. Our children love school,their teachers and friends. The teachers are so caring and interested in the chlildren. We are also impressed with the amount of art and music the children are exposed to. For the most part, the parents are very involved. Wtih the recent puchase of 5 more acres the opportunity for a high school becomes more of a reality. A fantastic school and community.
—Submitted by a parent


Posted July 15, 2005

I love the philosophy. The school is trying to grow too fast. They need to get a great core staff and then boost enrollment for the lower grades. Then you will have enough money to create a great High School.
—Submitted by a parent


Posted May 11, 2005

This school has a strong emphasis on academics and the teachers have high expectations of the students. Parents are generally very involved and there is not any lack of materials. One negative aspect of the school is that it is very work sheet driven, and there is not enough focus on using diverse teaching methods.
—Submitted by a parent


Posted May 7, 2005

We lov it here. The staff is so helpful and the campus is beautiful.
—Submitted by a parent


Posted April 4, 2005

awesome school. though it all depends on the teacher.
—Submitted by a parent


Posted January 14, 2005

This school is truly amazing. The teachers are extremely dedicated. Students receive a well rounded education of the body, soul and spirit. My childs well being has completely transformed.
—Submitted by a parent


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.

25 students were tested at this school in 2013.

2013

 
 
56%

2012

 
 
71%

2011

 
 
50%

2010

 
 
56%
Reading

The state average for Reading was 75% in 2013.

25 students were tested at this school in 2013.

2013

 
 
72%

2012

 
 
83%

2011

 
 
67%

2010

 
 
64%
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.

22 students were tested at this school in 2013.

2013

 
 
69%

2012

 
 
38%

2011

 
 
54%

2010

 
 
20%
Reading

The state average for Reading was 77% in 2013.

22 students were tested at this school in 2013.

2013

 
 
95%

2012

 
 
73%

2011

 
 
83%

2010

 
 
52%
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.

26 students were tested at this school in 2013.

2013

 
 
57%

2012

 
 
57%

2011

 
 
28%

2010

 
 
43%
Reading

The state average for Reading was 79% in 2013.

26 students were tested at this school in 2013.

2013

 
 
85%

2012

 
 
75%

2011

 
 
74%

2010

 
 
71%
Writing

The state average for Writing was 56% in 2013.

26 students were tested at this school in 2013.

2013

 
 
50%

2012

 
 
54%

2011

 
 
28%

2010

 
 
76%
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.

27 students were tested at this school in 2013.

2013

 
 
59%

2012

 
 
41%

2011

 
 
41%

2010

 
 
47%
Reading

The state average for Reading was 79% in 2013.

27 students were tested at this school in 2013.

2013

 
 
81%

2012

 
 
74%

2011

 
 
91%

2010

 
 
74%
Writing

The state average for Writing was 53% in 2013.

27 students were tested at this school in 2013.

2013

 
 
44%

2012

 
 
37%

2011

 
 
73%

2010

 
 
72%
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.

27 students were tested at this school in 2013.

2013

 
 
74%

2012

 
 
70%

2011

 
 
56%

2010

 
 
60%
Reading

The state average for Reading was 85% in 2013.

27 students were tested at this school in 2013.

2013

 
 
93%

2012

 
 
85%

2011

 
 
89%

2010

 
 
90%
Writing

The state average for Writing was 52% in 2013.

27 students were tested at this school in 2013.

2013

 
 
41%

2012

 
 
78%

2011

 
 
44%

2010

 
 
75%
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.

26 students were tested at this school in 2013.

2013

 
 
62%

2012

 
 
43%

2011

 
 
54%

2010

 
 
39%
Reading

The state average for Reading was 72% in 2013.

26 students were tested at this school in 2013.

2013

 
 
96%

2012

 
 
67%

2011

 
 
75%

2010

 
 
61%
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 62% in 2013.

12 students were tested at this school in 2013.

2013

 
 
59%

2012

 
 
46%

2011

 
 
n/a

2010

 
 
n/a
Reading

The state average for Reading was 83% in 2013.

12 students were tested at this school in 2013.

2013

 
 
83%

2012

 
 
85%

2011

 
 
n/a

2010

 
 
n/a
Writing

The state average for Writing was 70% in 2013.

12 students were tested at this school in 2013.

2013

 
 
50%

2012

 
 
77%

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 "Performing Plus".
  • In 2009-2010, this school was designated "Performing".
  • In 2008-2009, this school was designated "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 76% 42%
Hispanic 12% 43%
Black 5% 5%
Two or more races 4% 2%
American Indian/Alaska Native 3% 5%
Asian or Asian/Pacific Islander 1% 3%
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 22%N/A47%
Female 58%N/A49%
Male 42%N/A51%
Source: NCES, 2011-2012

Teacher resources

Special staff resources available to students Art teacher(s)
Gardening teacher(s)
Instructional aide(s)/coach(es)
Music teacher(s)
PE instructor(s)
Poetry/Creative writing teacher(s)
Reading specialist(s)
Special education coordinator
Foreign languages spoken by school staff American sign language
French
Italian
Spanish
Read more about programs at this school
Source: Provided by school officials and community members.

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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
Staff resources available to students
  • Special education coordinator

Science, Technology, Engineering, & Math (STEM)

Staff resources available to students
  • Gardening teacher(s)
School facilities
  • Access to farm or natural area
  • Garden/Greenhouse
Clubs
  • Gardening

Arts & music

Staff resources available to students
  • Art teacher(s)
  • Music teacher(s)
  • Poetry/Creative writing teacher(s)
School facilities
  • Art room
  • Music room
Visual arts
  • Ceramics
  • Painting
  • Printmaking
  • Sculpture
Music
  • Band
  • Choir / Chorus
  • Instrumental music lessons
  • Jazz band
  • Orchestra
  • Vocal lessons / coaching
Performing and written arts
  • Creative writing
  • Drama
Clubs
  • Yearbook

Language learning

Foreign languages taught
  • Japanese
  • Spanish
Foreign languages spoken by staff
  • American sign language
  • French
  • Italian
  • Spanish

Health & athletics

Staff resources available to students
  • Gardening teacher(s)
  • Instructional aide(s)/coach(es)
  • PE instructor(s)
School facilities
  • Access to farm or natural area
  • Access to sports fields
  • Garden/Greenhouse
  • Kitchen
Clubs
  • Cooking club
  • Gardening
Note: Data provided by school administrators and community.
School leaders, update and verify information here.

Let your school shine!

School leaders: Help your school shine on GreatSchools
by verifying community responses, adding program highlights
and more! Get started »

School basics

School start time
  • 8:30am
School end time
  • 3:15pm
Before school or after school care / program onsite
  • After school
School Leader's name
  • Charles D. Burkam
Best ways for parents to contact the school
  • Email
  • Phone
Age at which early childhood or Pre-K program begins
  • 3 years old
Gender
  • Coed
Is there an application process?
  • Yes
Fax number
  • (602) 243-6933

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?
  • Global
  • Social justice
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
  • Japanese
  • Spanish

Resources

Staff resources available to students
  • Art teacher(s)
  • Gardening teacher(s)
  • Instructional aide(s)/coach(es)
  • Music teacher(s)
  • PE instructor(s)
  • Poetry/Creative writing teacher(s)
  • Reading specialist(s)
  • Special education coordinator
Foreign languages spoken by staff
  • American sign language
  • French
  • Italian
  • Spanish
Transportation options
  • None
School facilities
  • Access to farm or natural area
  • Access to sports fields
  • Art room
  • Garden/Greenhouse
  • Internet access
  • Kitchen
  • Music room
  • Playground
Note: Data provided by school administrators and community.
School leaders, update and verify information here.

Let your school shine!

School leaders: Help your school shine on GreatSchools
by verifying community responses, adding program highlights
and more! Get started »

Sports

Boys sports
  • Circus Arts
  • Crew / Rowing
  • Equestrian
  • Swimming
  • Volleyball
Girls sports
  • Circus Arts
  • Crew / Rowing
  • Equestrian
  • Swimming
  • Volleyball

Arts & music

Visual arts
  • Ceramics
  • Painting
  • Printmaking
  • Sculpture
Music
  • Band
  • Choir / Chorus
  • Instrumental music lessons
  • Jazz band
  • Orchestra
  • Vocal lessons / coaching
Performing arts
  • Creative writing
  • Drama

Student clubs

Clubs (distinct from courses)
  • Cooking club
  • Gardening
  • Yearbook
Note: Data provided by school administrators and community.
School leaders, update and verify information here.

Upcoming Events

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School culture

Dress Code
  • Dress code
Bullying policy
  • This school has a bullying and/or cyber bullying policy in place.
Parent involvement
  • Attend parent nights
  • Join PTO/PTA
  • Organize cultural events
  • Organize fundraising events (school auction, bake sales, etc.)
  • Serve on school improvement team or governance council
  • Volunteer in the classroom
  • Volunteer time after school
Note: Data provided by school administrators and community.
School leaders, update and verify information here.

Apply

 

TIP: Don't forget to ask about documents required for enrollment, such as your child's birth certificate, proof of address, or a record of immunizations.

 
Apply now
Notice an inaccuracy? Let us know!

6210 South 28th Street
Phoenix, AZ 85042
Website: Click here
Phone: (602) 243-6909

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