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9606 East Kalil Drive
Scottsdale, AZ 85260

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(480) 451-3130
(480) 451-8197
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Map of Camelback Desert School address.

May 10, 2015
Not the best year at Camelback Desert School! I have loved the teachers at this school but the First grade teacher was not great:( It is always sad to see when children are not validated because they are judged on past experiences. To be a great teacher you must judge each individual incident as it occurs. What makes a great school beside the teachers and community is the head of the school! "People do not remember what you do, they only remember how you made them feel"

- submitted by a parent

March 15, 2015
We have two boys in 2nd and 4 th grade and are enrolling again next year. This school helps develop confident, academically strong thinkers with an emphasis on character and team work. All the staff are loving and purpose-driven and know us and our children. There is a strong sense of community and all interactions with staff and parents have been kind. We would keep our boys here forever if we could as they are truly developing into well-rounded, happy little men. Communication with the principal and teachers is exceptional. My son was able to take a field trip to Washington DC in 4 th grade and had an amazing experience. Organic food with a gluten free option is definitely a plus! Highly recommend this treasure of a school - we looked everywhere in the valley when we moved here 2 years ago and were lucky to discover Camelback Desert.

- submitted by a parent

October 20, 2014
My daughter is currently enrolled in Camelback Desert School's Pre-K 2 class. She missed the kindergarten cut off and my husband and I felt daunted as to where to enroll her for fear of boredom or regression. At CDS we have seen anything but. She is engaged and thriving. Her teachers have a wonderful rapport with her and she is more excited about learning than I have ever seen. The focusing on reading and phonics is apparent. My daughter is well on her way to reading in just two months of school. We feel so blessed to have found CDS. The school offers multiple opportunities to be involved in your child's education. They provide families with the opportunity to connect with each other through events held on campus. The staff takes an active and genuine interest in all the children. I feel welcome each and every time I step on campus. There wasn't a better choice for our daughter or our family as a whole.

- submitted by a parent

October 20, 2014
What a fabulously nurturing community! The teachers actually care about each child's progress and draws them out of their shells to let them be full participants in their learning. With collaborative experiences through grades, a Cultural Fair, specials like PE, music, technology, Spanish, and art each day of the week, and meticulously coordinated concerts, our daughter is receiving a top notch, well-rounded education at CDS. Couldn't be happier.

- submitted by a parent

October 20, 2014
So far we are in the beginning stages of pre-k 2 education with only a few months under our belt and so far this school has exceeded ALL our initial expectations. The staff is friendly, competent, helpful and engaging with students and families. Our teacher, Mrs. Whitney, and her teacher assistants, are very caring and nurturing. From what I've seen up to this point, I would highly recommend this school to other family friends.

- submitted by a parent

October 16, 2014
This is quality, great education and on a personal one-on-one level. The teachers and principal will always listen and help make this a personalized education for your child! One of the best art and music programs around! I could not be happier!!

- submitted by a parent

October 16, 2014
There is something magical about this school. The academics are top notch, taught in a way that is fun for the students and promotes a love of learning. The principal and teachers genuinely care about all of our children and I can't imagine sending my child anywhere else. This is truly a supportive and nurturing community.

- submitted by a parent

October 16, 2014
My daughter has attended CDS going on two years now. She absolutely loves going to school every day! The staff is very nurturing and loving. I am always amazed at the things my daughter comes home telling me about what she learned. They don't even realize that they're learning because they are having so much fun. It is truly a one of a kind school that you won't find anywhere else in the valley! There is no better feeling than dropping your kids off at school, knowing they are safe, loved, and getting the best education, all at the same time.

- submitted by a parent

October 16, 2014
We could not be happier with the students, teachers, administration and with the curriculum. It is a very small school which at first glance seems too small, but you know that your children are getting a lot of individual attention and all of the students receive a personalized learning plan. It is the perfect combination of fun and learning all geared to the children's unique and individualized learning style. I hear two critiques of the school that it is too small....well do we all not want our children to be protected, nutured and valued? There is plenty of time in life to navigate the crummy aspects of this world. I believe children should be allowed to be naive children and not pushed into adulthood. I also hear complaints the tuition is expensive..well it is because all of the teachers have masters degrees, have a small student/teacher ratio, full day Kindergarten, PE, Technology, Spanish, Music and Art three days a week. My neighbors elect to send their children to the public school where they are getting the above specials every 10 days. No comparison to public school and worth every penny. We should all send our children to the best school we can afford, CDS is it.

- submitted by a parent

October 16, 2014
Camelback Desert School is a gem in the desert. The moment you walk on the campus, there is a good feeling. The curriculum emphasizes experiential learning and critical thinking, and the art/music/technology classes are terrific. It's a small school, so it's easy for students and parents to immediately feel a part of a community. There is a good sense of aesthetics - the students eat outside at pleasant picnic tables that are shaded (misters in the hot months), there are two attractive playgrounds and a field so the students aren't stuffed inside all day. The classrooms all have windows - and windows that open - unlike many AZ schools where the students don't see natural light al day. The caliber of the teachers is excellent. There are 2 swimming pools so the students can swim during PE in the hotter months.

- submitted by a parent

October 16, 2014
I LOVE this school. Nowhere else in Arizona do you get the proper balance of love and academics. We have been with CDS 3 years now and feel blessed to have found it and to be a part of something so wonderful. The kids are great, the parents are awesome, and each member of the staff has love for each child and a passion for what they do. It's such a happy school:-).

- submitted by a parent

October 16, 2014
My school is a wonderful environment for children to learn. CDS has very strong academics in a very nurturing environment. The specials from music, art, technology, language and PE are amazing. Its everything you could ever want for your child and more.

- submitted by a parent

July 28, 2014
I have really valued having my son in preschool at Camelback Desert School! The program has him more than ready to continue on to the Kindergarten program on so many levels. The staff are all so kind and nurturing, not just his classroom teachers. They address many different areas of his development; academics, social and emotional. He is happy to come to school everyday!

- submitted by a parent

July 22, 2014
Great summer camp experience for my twin 7th graders! Lots of fun activities, swimming, and field trips!

- submitted by a parent

July 13, 2013
CDS has been such a blessing to our family, but more importantly our Son. He was attending another school that was not meeting our sons needs. CDS teachers and staff has gone above and beyond meeting our sons needs and our expectations for education. He is attending summer camp and has already jumped leaps and bounds on so many levels. I appreciate that the principal is visible and you can reach out to her as well.

- submitted by a parent

June 17, 2013
My eight year-old son is attending the Camelback Desert School summer camp for the second year in a row and absolutely loves his camp! In the summer of 2012, I signed him up for three weeks. We realized within the first week that this is a great "fit" for him so we made sure we scheduled him there for the whole summer of 2013. The staff is caring and (properly) attentive. Everyone calls him by name when I drop him off and pick him up. The program is stimulating and enriching. He is getting a fun summer education in model building, cooking, dance, computers and other activities. Heck, he even loves the food! He'll be back for 2014!

- submitted by a parent

May 01, 2013
Camelback Desert is by far the best elementary school I have ever encountered. I have two college age children also and have experienced every grade and every kind of school. With a current Camelback Desert 2nd grader, I can say with confidence that this is a school that every other school, private or public should eminate. After a challenging year in public 1st grade, my daughter was bored, unchallenged, and generally unexcited about school. Camelback Desert has erased all of that and provided an environment that makes my daughter enjoy school again. She is happy, wants to go to school (even when she is sick), loves her teacher and classmates, is challenged, and most of all has fun learning. The individualized approach and small class sizes, along with the superior administration really makes this school one of a kind. The art and music classes are superb, along with all of the after school classes. If you are weighing the cost of private school versus public, this school is well worth every penny and more. Your children will not get a better, balanced and fun education anywhere else. The principal is more involved then I have seen anywhere and he is great at it!

- submitted by a parent

February 11, 2013
We just enrolled our son for his 8th year at this school. This is the kind of school environment that I wish every child could have. He and his classmates have excelled academically while being able to be kids. The school fosters well rounded growth through fantastic enrichment teachers, cross cultural activities, students from other countries, service opportunities, art shows, musical performances, sports, etc. His classmates are a diverse group yet have developed deep friendships. The overall atmosphere is positive and supportive.

- submitted by a parent

January 31, 2013
We wanted an environment that would allow our children to be challenged emotionally, intellectually and socially. CDS has the special ability to recognize the students as individuals and adjust the learning process to maximize the potential of the individual student. This is done in a warm and caring environment with a staff that is creative and innovative. This type of atmosphere has helped instill confidence in our children and has allowed them to flourish. As parents we cannot thank CDS staff enough for keeping our children safe and giving them the confidence to expand their comfort zone and challenge themselves to become better. We have enjoyed becoming part of the CDS family and interacting with the other families through different school events. We take great comfort dropping our children off at CDS knowing they are in an environment where they are nurtured and valued.

- submitted by a parent

January 26, 2013
I have two children currently attending CDS and I couldn't be happier. After touring many public and private schools in the area, the support and education provided is unparalleled. My oldest son has Autism and the staff at Camelback have been like a second family to us, adjusting to our needs and creating a safe yet still challenging environment. The small class sizes are wonderful. My daughter will be starting in the two-year-old Beginners class next year and it's comforting that the entire school already knows her name. The special classes are remarkable, especially the art program. I know my kids are receiving the very best curriculum and teachers in the valley.

- submitted by a parent

January 25, 2013
I cannot say enough good things about CDS. From the minute my twins started pre-K with Susie Morton through summer camp and into kindergarten with Vici Bernstein, I have been delighted with the commitment the faculty and administrators have to helping each child grow and develop academically and socially. My children learn in very different ways, and they both have flourished in the school. They know things I am pretty sure I didn't learn until later in elementary school. The teachers and administrators are wonderful about communicating with parents one on one to make sure we are all on the same page about progress, individual goals, and school events. As an admittedly somewhat picky parent, I am thrilled with the school.

- submitted by a parent

August 07, 2012
We love CDS! It is always amazing to me to see how different people can see the same people different ways. . We are so pleased with Mark, Katie and Jean, the administrative staff. They have been so kind to our whole family this last year and we are excited to have a wonderful new year starting in a few weeks! The school keeps getting better.... This can only happen with an attentive, approachable and hard working administrative team. We are more than pleased with the teachers and specialty teachers alike. We are so happy here.

- submitted by a parent

August 03, 2012
My sons went to the summer camp this year and it was absolutely wonderful. The staff is fantastic. The curriculum is full of great programs. I especially like that they do so much swimming but all of the other activities are great. My sons are sad to see summer camp end and so are we. We will definitely be back next year.

- submitted by a parent

July 16, 2012
Good morning Jean, First let me say a very large thank you to you and all that made our time at CDS so magnificent! Gianna excelled at a rate we would not find anywhere else! Ms. Morton as her last teacher for 4's pre-k is the most nurturing and inspiring teacher I have seen especially for this age. I could not be more grateful. Thank you and very best wishes to all of you! You make a beautiful difference in this world!

- submitted by a parent

July 16, 2012
Such a great camp experience! Our kids (two are attending) have had so much fun at CDS Camp this summer. Our kids are excited to go every day and the staff is exceptionally nice! We loved the format of the children being able to choose classes this year and try out so many different things like field trips, karate, video production, chess, yoga...and the list goes on. It has been great to have them 'test out' the many different classes to see where their interests are. Now I know what my children are really interested in and can put them in more full time classes this fall. I'm not sure what the negative response below is for about Summer Camp, our experience has been 100% positive I'm sure any front desk person can appear crabby when 100's of requests are thrown at her at once. We have had nothing but good experiences with her and all the front office staff. I wish we could afford this school year round. We will be back next summer!

- submitted by a parent

July 06, 2012
Summer Camp. Horrible. Operates like a cheap day care. Terribley disorganized. Crabby front office lady. They need to focus on making their classes more charactor based. Everyday, I would enter to pick child up - kids were all scattered about, doing seperate stuff. This is how a preschool class should run: This is about teaching kids to connect with each other. Whole group does projects together. Greet other children when they arrive, say goodbye when each other leaves. They were all so disconnected - it was scarey! I should have known this would be bad - the first day, I was expecting to drop him off in a classroom to meet our new friends and was told to drop them off at the playground. There was no teacher to meet. After 2 weeks and a request "not to go back there", because, "the kids just played by themselves and were mean" - we pulled him out! And this is NOT our first school, we had been happy at other places,this was just a new place to try. When I discussed this with their director, my concerns were completely dismissed, I was told my child seemed fine. I said I don't know you from Adam, but your program needs to be improved. Take from it what you will.

- submitted by a parent

January 26, 2012
Our entire experience with Camelback Desert School has been positive and professional. The staff is friendly and supportive. The parent teacher organization is welcoming, and actively involved in providing fun learning and social experiences for the entire school. CDS also provides increased arts and extra-curricular classes that are comprehensive, and taught by organized and experienced teachers (Public Schools are more limited). We believe CDS offers high quality teachers, with exceptional academic opportunities, and we are pleased with our choice to join the CDS family.

- submitted by a parent

January 23, 2012
Camelback Desert School is the kind of school everyone dreams they went to as a kid. It has a Montessori feel in terms of focusing on individual learning, character development and the overall home-like feel to the campus itself, yet ensures all students are meeting or exceeding National standards. All students have the same basic requirements at each grade level, but teachers inspire and encourage their students to find and use their own interests to further expand their knowledge. The special area teachers are phenomenal and clearly love their fields of interest, which shows in their teaching. The principal has a personal relationship with each student and works very hard to make sure everyone feels comfortable and happy in every aspect of their education. He has an open door policy to both students and parents and has a very welcoming personality. All staff members at Camelback Desert school make it a mission to get to know all students throughout the school and are clearly invested in them. It's clear that the staff want their students to live up to their true potential both academically and socially. I would highly recommend this school! ~parent of a 6th grader

- submitted by a parent

October 09, 2011
Love this school! Very non snobby atmosphere with incredible integrated learning. The staff is genuinely motivated to make the students feel like it's home. The small class sizes allow for top notch student/teacher interaction. Camelback Desert is very progressive, accepting and diverse in comparison; We looked at all the private schools in the Phoenix are and this one is a jewel; just really refreshing and one of a kind!

- submitted by a parent

August 11, 2011
Love this school! We have been a part of Camelback Desert School for years. In fact many family members attended when I was a child. That says a lot for a school to stick around for such a long time.I'm very involved and have watched the school suffer in the last few years. They let go in May of the last principal as she was just not able to be what the school needed to excel. She was unprofessional and not a good leader. The assistant principal has done a wonderful job as interim principal. I've been impressed with her dedication. Gratefully, we have a NEW PRINCIPAL!! From my interactions with him so far, I'm totally impressed. He is warm, sincere, caring and listened to everything I shared with the true intent of hearing my thoughts. His resume and background is impressive, a true refreshment to the school. I know this school will continue in the course of amazing growth, excelling academics and what its known for, its close knit family environment where the administration and teachers care about my children with intention of knowing them as if they were their own. Feels like the school is getting back to its roots. I'm more than thrilled!!

- submitted by a parent

August 03, 2011
The members of the Camelback Desert family look forward to a rejuvenating and constructive academic year. Positive decisions have already taken place under the new direction and new leadership. Leadership skills and consistency that the previous principal lacked are already present in the new administration. Enrollment has increased since her absence. Families and highly qualified staff members have remained faithful to this school for years. The few parents who have left must be unaware of just how unprofessional and ineffective the previous principal was. The atmosphere on campus is now vibrant and professional. What a relief...

- submitted by a parent

March 14, 2011
The teachers and staff have been very easy to work with Ms. Morton in the 4 year old class is just fantastic. The kids love PE and swimming, art, and science programs!

- submitted by a parent

July 28, 2010
I have two children at CDS and have found the overall experience to be a very positive one. The teachers are engaged and interested in each one of their students. There is a very active parent teacher association at the school. This is an informed and educated community of parents, teachers and administrators who go above and beyond to provide the best to all students. The Stanford test scores across all grade levels rank very high. Our sons artistic abilities have flourished at CDS and our daughter just loves her small class. I absolutely recommend giving your child the opportunity of a lifetime by attending CDS!!!!

- submitted by a parent

July 18, 2010
My son and daughter both go to CDS and absolutely love it. My son has been there for 4 years now and the school has gone through some changes but they are now performing at a top-notch level. The teachers are fabulous, the class size is small so they get really wonderful one-on-one attention and they provide an array of specials with amazing instructors from art, music, spanish, PE, computers, etc. It is a nurturing yet challenging environment without the pressure. My kids both love going to school every day and their growth has been amazing.

- submitted by a parent

June 01, 2010
My children have had several wonderful growing and learning years at CDS - in an family like environment that would be difficult the replicate. They have been performing well above grade level, constantly being academically challenged, yet never stressed or unnessasaraly pressured. They are growing into thinkers capable of expressing themselves verbally, artistically and mathematically. Challenges that were experienced during the change of ownership had indeed been frustrating but they are more than offset by the commitment of our principal and the devotion of our truly inspiring teachers. CDS tests scores speak for themselves, but it is the wide eyed smiling children filled with a sense of curiosity and discovery that tell the full story.

- submitted by a parent

May 10, 2010
The numbers continue to drop and the lack of organization is scary. I woul not advise any parent to bting there child here.

- submitted by a parent

May 01, 2010
Don't waste your time and money if you're planning to send your child for upper school. Preschool program is good, but the upper school is a disaster. The numbers speak for themselves.

- submitted by a parent

April 27, 2010
My child is in kindergarten at CDS. I am so happy I chose this school. The teachers are incredible, caring, thoughtful and love what they do. It shows in their clasrooms and it shows in my child's work. He comes home happy and excited every day. This is a small school, with a family feel. Communication from administration to parents is spot-on, the entire office staff is incredible and the children are happy, thriving and learning new concepts every single day. Do not let the small campus concern you...it's about the teachers, the curriculum and allowing the children to learn in creative, challenging ways that are important. As a parent of two young children, I urge you to tour this campus and witness what I see every day.

- submitted by a parent

April 06, 2010
I have enjoyed the thorough communication and the dedication to creative, unique thinking that CDS has provided my children. As a preschool program, you will be hard-pressed to find a more expansive and encompassing environment- with music, art, P.E., Spanish and Technology for little ones and small classroom sizes for elementary-aged children, my children have always had the attention and education I have hoped for them. As they continue to enrich their extra-curricular programs, I have all the faith that my children are in caring, nurturing and experienced hands.

- submitted by a parent

March 16, 2010
I moved my son from Scottsdale School District and couldn't be happier! Camelback Desert works with each child as an independent person. All of the teachers and staff appear to know the names of every child. They truly takes it upon themselves to work with each child and family to ensure the child is learning. My son is happy and challenged. What more could I ask for. I will absolutely recommend this great school to anyone that asks.

- submitted by a parent
no rating
March 08, 2010
I would not choose this school. It was a very bad experience in every way. One or two teachers saved the day but the administration knows next to nothing about children yet will stop you to give you parenting advice. You can find much better options.

- submitted by a parent

November 28, 2009
My daughter is in her 2nd year here, and we love it. My husband and I enjoy that this incredible school allows the children to create and grow on their own without telling them how each task is to be completed. The teachers are absolutely focused on and dedicated to the children. Each week she attends Spanish, music, tech and an art class, all at the age of five. As an added bonus it appears the preschool principal knows all of the children by name. The campus is welcoming. I would highly recommend it!

- submitted by a parent
no rating
May 14, 2009
I had to take this opportunity to express how incredible the teachers at CDS are and how fortunate my children have been to attend this school. My oldest is in first grade this year and has had the incredible opportunity to be in Ms. Khalil's class. She not only has differentiated her teaching so that his math and reading skills are a full grade higher, but she has instilled in him a passion for the arts and has even taught him arabic! Her passion for teaching is apparent and she is a true treasure for this school!

- submitted by a parent

May 13, 2009
Keeping my response to 150 words will be difficult. We will be entering our 6th year at CDS, with two children at the school. The size of the school, and its intimate, family type environment has been a treat for both of our children. The curriculum in the primary school has been broad based, international in flair, and well taught due to the lovely smaller class sizes. Teachers and students alike are all aquainted with one another. Both of my children excell academically and they love their school. The Nobel learning company who recently purchased the school has announced classes at our campus will now go into the 8th grade. We could not be happier as my eldest was not eager to leave after the third grade. Fabulous news for a very happy CDS family.

- submitted by a parent
no rating
May 06, 2009
we love our school! excellent teachers, great teacher/ student ratio. We are getting more than we pay for!!

- submitted by a parent

March 13, 2009
We have temporarily moved to Scottsdale from the Netherlands. Finding a school at that distance was a challenge, but after visiting the school in person, my husband felt at home right away. The environment is so caring and loving. The principal knows every child by name and the teachers are all very nice and open. My kids didn't speak any English when they got here 5 months ago. They have gotten all the attention they needed and it felt like a warm blanket to come to CDS. Now my kids speak English very well and have made friends with almost every child in school. We couldn't have been more happy with a school and their teachers, kids and parents. CDS has made our stay so special and we will be sad to leave. CDS 2 thumbs up!!

- submitted by a parent

December 07, 2008
My 3 year old daughter absolutely loves this school. Everyone has known her name from the first day that she began preschool. It is a safe, secure environment, with tons of great aspects, such as Spanish, art, p.e., computers, and music. The students in the classroom all get along together well and the teacher is really caring and has great control of the classroom. Parental involvement is encouraged, which is great. I give it one less star than excellent, simply because there are so many additional 'optional' things that can cost money (Popsicle cards, holiday activities, other activities, donations, school pictures etc), but cannot be declined if your child does not want to feel left out.

- submitted by a parent

December 02, 2008
My daughter has been going to CDS for 2 years and she loves it and we love it. We decided on CDS after my husband and I did our research on preschools. And CDS was our choice because of its environment and philosophy. It is so amazing and provides children with the growth to survive and be successful. Now the time has come for my daughter to enter elementary school. So to ensure that CDS is still the right school for my daughter, and competitive, I have started my research. So far I have been disapointed in public schools and private schools. And I think the reason is because CDS is so wonderful and provide a worldly education, that the other schools do not. I highly recomend this school.

- submitted by a parent

November 17, 2008
I had a child that attended this school in the 3's and 4's program fall 2005 - spring 2007. The teachers and curriculum were outstanding! Spanish, Art, Music and PE programs are hard to find in local preschools. The executive director was new in 2005 and he was terrible. Condescending and unprofessional - he alienated most parents and I believe the school has really suffered as a result. Because of my experiences with this administration, I never even considered enrolling my child in kindergarten at this school.

- submitted by a parent
no rating
October 21, 2008
My son attended CDS for 3 years and when the new administration came in and changed programs and poor attitudes my son quickly fell behind in all academic areas. I had to hire a tutor for the entire summer and he still has to tutor. Furthermore, the new administration took away standardized testing for the lower grades so we had no idea how far behind the kids were doing. I would highly recommend finding another private school and not wasting your money.

- submitted by a parent

May 30, 2008
As am parent i am very confused by the recently posted comments. The standardized test scores of cds students has risen a minimum of 12% and maximum of 24% for every single class and every grade level. This growth was accomplished in only one year. Academic rigor and vigor is at an extremely high level at Camelback desert schools. I have two children attending Camelback desert schools and i would not ever choose another school to meet the academic, social and emotional intelligences of my child. It saddens me to read such uninformed, mean spirited reviews.

- submitted by a parent

May 12, 2008
Sadly we are leaving CDS after many wonderful years. Unfortunately, CDS no longer provides the academic rigor that set it apart from other schools in the area. Curriculum is no longer standardized and 'new' teaching methods are ineffective. We will miss the kind and dedicated teachers but we must move to an environment that prepares our children for future academic success. Sadly, I DO NOT recommend that you send your child to CDS if academics are a priority for you.

- submitted by a parent

May 11, 2008
I have been a parent at CDS for 2 years and I have been very disappointed for 2 years. We will be leaving next year and I cannot wait to get out!!! The academic curriculum is completely lacking. While I really like the Spanish, computers, art and music programs, I am not willing to sacrifice my child's core academic needs (such as learning how to read and write) for the extras. The teachers are also a mixed bag. In some grades, the teaching is excellent. In others, the teachers are brand new with no experience. Since there is not a core basic curriculum (there might be next year with the new owners, but there is not now), if your child gets a bad teacher, the year is a waste. If you care at all about academics, steer clear of this school!

- submitted by a parent
no rating
April 20, 2008
CDS has a great curriculum, hands on activities, professional staff, and small class sizes. It is a very small and loving environment for my children.

- submitted by a parent
no rating
April 17, 2008
We have decided not to return to this school after 4 wonderful years due to an amazing deterioration of classroom and administration. We are unfortunately not allowed by this site to list the true details, but my husband & I are both professionals who believe in the importance of education. We would NOT recommend this school.

- submitted by a parent

March 27, 2008
Poor curriculum, no benchmark testing, deteriorating classroom spirit. We are very unhappy. this will be our last year, as we must do what is best to prepare our child.

- submitted by a parent
no rating
February 07, 2008
My child loves CDS. He has spanish and computer classes daily. You can't get that at a public school or other private schools. The teacher child ratio allows for individual attention. Children are happy at this school. This school is about the children not the parents which I find refreshing.

- submitted by a parent

February 03, 2008
This will be our last year at CDS. The academics are now behind the scottsdale public school system. They used to be almost 1 year ahead. The state of the school is vulnerable...there will soon be new owners. I'm surprised at the recent submission of good reviews, but then notice they are submitted by teachers, not parents!

- submitted by a parent

January 30, 2008
We care deeply about our students as individuals and we work hard to instill in every student the confidence to become a leader and to fulfill his or her potential.

- submitted by a teacher

January 30, 2008
I am actually a former student at CDS and have returned after graduating college to teach where I once was taught. It has been a great experience so far. The students are kind members of the community. My fellow teachers here are friendly and warm. I look forward every morning to the multitudes of bright and happy faces that greet me when I pull into the campus. So many improvements occured since I was a student here, yet so much of the integrity has withstood the test of time. It is a great honor to be able to teach in a free-thinking private school and to be a part of so many bright futures.

- submitted by a student

January 30, 2008
I get up every day excited to go to school. I thoroughly enjoy watching the children's ezxcitement about learning and sharing their knowledge and skills. I appreciate their diverse opinions and the way CDS encourages and supports each and every one of them. I thoroughly support the curriculum and the way it is dispersed throughout the grades. We, the teachers, facilitate the learning, the children take the lead in their quests for knowledge. They are willing to try many different approaches to learning and thrive in this atmosphere to exploration and diversity. The textbooks and support materials are geared to the children---they offer connections to the classroom and the outside world. We believe in what we do here! We believe we have an answer to 'Why Children Learn'.

- submitted by a teacher

January 30, 2008
My child attended CDS for 7 years. It was the best experience of her life! The family/community feeling, the personalized attention associated with small classroom sizes, and the quality of education, prepared her for a confident, highly educated, and well rounded future. The staff is caring, warm, and obviously love what they do. I would recommend this school to anyone!

- submitted by a parent

January 30, 2008
I have been a teacherin Scottsdale, Arizona for over twelve years and have worked in several private schools. My experience as a teacher at Camelback Desert Schools has been very rewarding. The campus provides a caring, comfortable, and safe place for children to become productive leaders.

- submitted by a teacher

January 30, 2008
CDS students are fun, energetic, critical thinkers with a passion for deep relationships with peers and teachers. The hands on activities help children learn through doing and remain eager to find out what will be studied next. Each day is an adventure as we dive into the study of different cultures, experiences and curriculum. The teachers at this school are passionate about their work and enjoy coming to school each day.

- submitted by a teacher

January 30, 2008
At the beginning of the 2007/08 school year, CDS at the Paradise Valley campus implemented many new changes. At first, I was somewhat hesitant. There were a lot of changes! And, change can be hard! Yet, as the school year has progressed, I have grown to love the education process at CDS. Everything from the daily morning meeting, which promotes an awesome close-knit community campus wide, to a stronger shift in development of student critical thinking skills, have formulated a motivated, caring, and innovative student body, staff, and leadership facilitator. Go CDS!

- submitted by a teacher

January 30, 2008
My chidren are in 6th and 8th grade at CDS (Paradise Valley Campus). My children love to go to school. They are eager to start their day and they look forward to all the excitment and challenges each day brings. The Middle School Faculty is superb! They offer a challenging cirriculum and the teachers have encouraged them to be independent thinkers. They also have helped them to take risks within the classroom setting. The campus is safe and nurturing. I highly recommend this school. My children have also attended the summer camp and they absolutely love it! This is the best kept secret in the Valley.

- submitted by a parent

January 26, 2008
I have been very pleased with my child's education at CDS. I am specifically excited about the extras that CDS provides like Spanish classes. This school is a jewel in the rough.

- submitted by a parent

January 25, 2008
CDS is my son's 3rd preschool (due in part to our recent move to AZ). He's eager each a.m. & sated each p.m. We experience this for the first time (and recognize that age may factor). What more can a parent ask of a school? Our son is nurtured by not only Mrs. Allday, Miss Becca, Mr. Jack, & Miss Ricca, but also by other teachers who kindly hold a hand or simply a backpack. Miss Lisa runs the office proficiently & professionaly. Principal Estes & Director Art Scott create an open & positive atmosphere; although we haven't a 'relationship' w/ either, our accolades I've expressed above attest their character, thus the school's. I choose to remain naive of any negative attention re. changes. (I fortunately am able b/c of late enrollment.) My son is happy -- a good example of the end justifying the means. Rhonda Plunkett

- submitted by a parent

January 10, 2008
My son has been been at CDS for the past three years now. We have watch the changes first hand and our experience as well as many of our friends with children at CDS has been wonderful and a blessing . The excitement and energy the new principal brings to the table every day is contagious. The children are excited and full of energy and life every day..that is very apparent. They are just an extention of the leadership and all the new changes occuring at CSD this year. How lucky we are that we stayed. My son is flourshing and thriving at CDS and we would not consider going to any other school in the Valley..Way to go CDS I applaud you, changes are hard but always for the better when given time.

- submitted by a parent

January 03, 2008
I have one child at Camelback Desert and two that have graduated. I see nothing but positives in the direction that the school has taken. My child is happy and getting a superior education. The older two are wishing that all of the new programs had been available when they were students here. The organic lunch program is outstanding as well.

- submitted by a parent

January 03, 2008
There have been some positive changes. My husband and I are excited with the accelerated pace of learning, children who love to go to school and administration and teachers who are bringing in the best practices of east coast schools to our area. All I know is that my children are eager to learn and go to school every day.

- submitted by a parent

December 17, 2007
I would never send a child to this school.Despite what you are told academics lag far behind its peer group.You can do better for free .ie public school.Also most of the established private schools feel it provides an inferior education. run dont walk from camelback desert.

- submitted by a parent

November 18, 2007
CDS has gone through some changes this year. Our family is still pleased with the school. My children are thriving and love to go there. Due to uncertainty regarding the changes, lots of families have paniced and left thschool.

- submitted by a parent

October 05, 2007
The new school administration is a mess to say the least. My son was at CDS for a couple of years and was way behind in math and the new math program is causing him to regress not progress.

- submitted by a parent

August 29, 2007
CDS is a hidden treasure! CDS went through a lot of administrative transition this past year (new principal, director, etc.). However, the dust has settled and CDS continues to offer one of the best learning opportunities available for children here in the Valley. The school has small classes which provide lots of personal attention to each student and allow the teachers to tailor the education to each student's individual needs/skills. CDS (especially with its new Humanities curriculum) is teaching these children critical thinking skills that will last them a lifetime through a renewed focus on classic education and team building. I feel very fortunate that my children have been educated in this incredibly nurturing environment. My oldest graduated last year and the entire graduating class was accepted at all of the top private Phoenix High Schools (eg, Brophy, Notre Dame, Xavier,etc.) The education at CDS has only gotten better this year!

- submitted by a parent
no rating
June 28, 2007
Camelback Desert Schools has served my child extremely well. What I am most impressed with is the school's comittment to always trying to get better and to figuring out ways to insure that my child has a great experience every day. These teachers care deeply and connect with kids in important ways.

- submitted by a parent

June 08, 2006
This is one of the top private schools in Scottsdale. Sending my daughter here was the best choice. The teachers and staff are wonderful. Field trips, 2 pools, petting zoo, spanish instruction & computers starting in preschool. I highly recommend this school.

- submitted by a parent

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Camelback Desert School
9606 East Kalil Drive, Scottsdale, AZ  85260
(480) 451-3130
Last modified Camelback Desert School is a Private school that serves grades PK-6
Camelback Desert School Rating: 4 out of 5 based on 80 reviews. Top