This is a one-of-a-kind treasure for anyone who's kids are interested in learning and knowledge. Slaves to fashion and dedicated athletes may find it less hospitable, though many of the latter do find a very comfortable place at the school also. What you will not find at Basis is Social Promotion (moving someone up with their age group in spite of inadequate achievement) molly coddling, or a great deal of belly aching. You will also likely notice the fact that it is a small school with both the positive and negative attributes this implies; the environment is collegial and supportive, but not everything is clockwork all the time. Do I wish there was a little more stability in staffing? Sure. Could school administration be better at communicating with and supporting parents? Very likely. However, my kids have found nothing even close to the excellence they find here.
The turnover rate at this school is shocking, not only for teachers, but for students as well. Weaker students are weeded out before exam time so their lower scores won't appear in the school's rankings (the only thing administration cares about). Teachers who question their policies are subsequently eliminated. This place is an unethical business, not a school. Stay away!
My son attended a Montessori education through 4th grade and joined BASIS in 5th for what they call "boot camp". The transition from a free-flow environment to a quite rigorous one was challenging for the first few months. I am a single parent and don't get home until dinner time. My son always has all of his homework completed by the time we are ready to sit down for dinner.... which enables us to have a normal, evening. Many students struggle to complete their course work in less than a few hours nightly. It's TOUGH work.... it depends on your student and how you've raised them to work independently and efficiently. My son is in 9th grade this year and will graduate with honors from BASIS with the tools to be an amazing college student. KUDOS BASIS!!!!!!!!
Here is what you need to know about BASIS. The school is not for everyone. It is a VERY challenging school and the children are inundated with academic rigger. Don t get me wrong. Any child can succeed at BASIS. The key is hard work, discipline and scheduling. Beginning in 6th Grade, students study three independent science subjects: Biology, Chemistry, and Physics. Concurrently, your child will take math with an expectation of Pre-Algebra by 6th Grade, Algebra I in 7th Grade and Algebra II in 8th Grade. Your child s curriculum will also include classic literature, writing, Social Studies and Language. There is a Fine Arts requirement to include PE, Music or some other elective. My son is in the 8th grade and is doing well. He works hard and puts in a lot of hours studying and preparing for classes. I hope this helps in your decision on choosing BASIS.
We moved here from California two years ago so that our children could attend BASIS. It was the best decision that we have ever made.
My daughters teacher is leaving school next year for good but all he does is showing videos to students.He has no interest left in teaching and that is very unprofessional. Seems like no body cares.I am disappointed.School overall is good.
My kids love BASIS because course work is challenging and teachers are inspiring. With discussions, videos and demos, teachers show a connection between classwork and the real world. They have high credentials and are enthusiastic about the subject that they teach, which rubs off on the kids. My son is very much into sports and was hesitant to move here because of the lack of a gym. But, to his pleasant surprise, he found that the school addressed that issue by linking up with local organizations. They have Basketball, Football, Rugby, Volleyball, Tennis teams as well as Fencing and Running Clubs. The award-winning Music program and art are also favorites with my kids. With a curriculum that is the best in the country and an extra-curricular program that is on par with a private school's (without the private school price-tag), my kids are receiving an excellent, well-rounded education at BASIS!
My daughter is 3 months into the 5th grade at Basis. With my other kids this is the 8th American school with which I have experience as a parent. There is no comparison between Basis and any other public school, charter or otherwise. The education she is receiving is nothing short of phenomenal. I would not have thought it possible, or even reasonable for a 10 year old to learn the stuff she is learning. She already knows FAR more than 99.9% of all Americans about geography, required at Basis but not taught in the majority of elementary schools. The math she is learning approaches 9th grade in most high schools. Latin, classis, english, science, & social studies round things out. Kids who are organized, motivated, pay attention, and have support at home will do well. The opposite is also true; this school is not for everyone.
My son learned more in the past 3 months at BASIS than in the last 3 years! And finally, he's not bored at school. The kids are expected to master material, which makes for a difficult transition for any child who was trained in Scottsdale public schools (where vague recollections will earn you A's). The rule for 5th graders is no more than 1-2 tests a day, so the teachers coordinate the ensure the kids aren't overwhelmed. Kids have ample notice of tests; only super-disoranized kids get slammed. Note that even gifted kids will have to work hard, and learn to be organized, which takes time and can be stressful. But for families who believe a solid education is critical to success, BASIS is the place to be!
Clearly this school is not for all students. This is my daughters 3rd year. I took her out of the pathetic middle school she was attending so she could get the eduacation, exposure, and challeng she desired for better learning. I am mosted impressed with the teachers ....and the administration as they encourage everyone to think outside the box!
I've seen just the opposite. My child entered BASIS in 7th Grade. At the beginning she struggled mightily to catch up in the maths and sciences. In each instance, the teachers contacted me, set up times to meet and discuss strategies to help her succeed, and talked about their perceptions of her strengths and weaknesses. There have been a couple of teachers who have not met this high level, but the transition out pretty quickly. It is my belief that over 90% of the teachers sincerely want their students to learn and succeed.
When we moved to Arizona, our priority was education for our two kids. After doing extensive research, we decided BASIS was far superior than anything we have encountered before. Sure, the work is hard and alot is expected from the students...welcome to the real world. This school is focused on success in college life and the real world afterwards. There is no teacher in college that cares if a parent isn't happy with a certain teaching style and certainly isn't going to cutail his/her lessons to coddle a particular student. The teachers at BASIS are engaging, dynamic and encourage a student to take the lead role in their own lives. It is a students job to be organized, involved and take an active role in their education. We as parents back their efforts and work with our students to help them succeed. We also act as a liason with the teachers.
I do not like this school. Some of the teachers think that every one should understand everything 2 min. after they teach. it is certainly a chalenge and i would not reccomend anyone go there.
As a parent at Basis I was lured in with the promise of an excellent education, but my experience has been that teachers are not held accountable for what they teach or how they teach. Some teachers are excellent, but unfortunately they are overshadowed by the very bad ones. Consistency is lacking in the level and quality of teaching - for example, in middle school sciences the material ranges all the way up to high school and college level and the subjects are often poorly taught by teachers that appear to have no guidance or supervision. This led to massive overwhelm and confusion for my child and I saw many stressed teachers. Since attending Basis, my child changed from being positive and taking pride in school work to being depressed, irritable and having no motivation left, despite getting good grades.
This school is amazing.....IF you have the right kid for it. Make no mistake: the education is the best you can find in AZ, possibly the country! Do not expect to be a 'stage-parent' Your student is totally responsible for his/her own success. Personally, we like it. My husband and I are both full-time working parents and do not have time to be part-time teachers. Our son is doing great and learning things not available in public schools. Our kid has a well-balanced social-life, but knows that 'learning' is his #1 priority. Basis has been enforcing our philosophy!! Kudos!
Parents considering Basis for their children's education clearly care about their children's education. This school has many good things going for it, which others have described in detail. But be warned, for your child to be happy and successful in this environment, he/she must have an excellent memory and a competitive attitude. Without the memory, you and your child will spent countless hours drilling facts and studying for exams. Without the competitive attitude, your child will not be happy and will very likely flunk out. And even those with a competitive attitude are often upset by the poor grades. Tears and stomach upset are common at this school. Parents are not communicated with and unless the student talks freely at home, will not have any idea of academic problems until report cards come out and it is too late to do anything. The dropout rate is very high here.
From the other reviews you can tell people either love or hate this school. I haven't met any parents that give anywhere near the glowing reviews of the 5 star people on this page. Make no mistake, BASIS offers a 1st class education if your child is bright and can do 3 to 5 hours of homework a night. This is a tough school - for both students and parents. My child is finishing up 6th grade and is learning 9th grade material in math and science. While this may seem wonderful, I question whether the emotional toll and family stress is worth it. If you don't start your child in 5th (pre 6) grade, it is very difficult to catch up. The school also weeds out students with comprehensive exams that must be passed to move on to the next grade. AIMS is nothing compared to these.
Yes the school is academically challenging and culturally diverse. The teachers are great for the most part, but why do they have such a hard time getting good teachers to stay. The turn-over rate is quite high from what I have seen over the past few years. We will probably move on.
I have a child at BASIS Scottsdale and it is a VERY frustrating experience! If you expect the teachers to communicate with you...forget it! We get the feeling that they allow kids to fail, if they are even close it, instead of trying help at all. If your child needs any type of help or encouragement with schooling...do not expect it from BASIS. We are definitely considering leaving.
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