My son started at BASIS this fall with the new 5th grade class. So far, it has met and exceeded every expectation for a rigorous, interesting, thoughtful educational experience. In 5th grade there is PE and music every day, plus Humanities, Geography, Language Arts, Math, and Science. There are rules and they are followed. No more unruly children taking all the teacher's time! Multiple sports are offered after school (soccer, track, basketball, volleyball), plus Science Bowl club, Chess club, and Drama club. The 5th grade chess club has won the last two K-6 meets in Tucson. Kids come from all over Tucson and are motivated to learn. It isn't for everyone: kids do need to be bright and motivated. But for those who haven't been challenged previously in elementary school--this is the school for them. I highly recommend it.
BASIS School's purpose is to maximize the potential of every child, and to graduate the most educated students possible. This school makes no bones about it: they are here to educate and inspire, they are looking for motivated, hard working response from the students and grades reward the child accordingly. BASIS is not afraid to reward hard work with good grades; it is also not afraid to fail those who are not performing. By the time BASIS grads get to college, they will be the best prepared of anyone. The curriculum is excellent and intense, the teachers are highly qualified, the social structure among the students is based upon admiration for excellence and there is no bullying that we have seen. We are thankful for BASIS as a haven of intensive education and pure retention of the performance-reward system.
While the curriculum looks good on paper, the method of teaching is is not condusive to deep learning. Many subjects are covered, at an accelerated pace, but there is no time to investigate or 'dig deeper'. Just memorize it for the quiz.
I love basis. Great education. Great activities for kids. Great teachers. Cant say enough about it.
This school is probably a good alternative for Tucson parents stuck in poor TUSD schools. The academic level is high but very old-fashioned. Students memorize a lot of facts and the math is a very rote-learning style program. Discipline is good and there is a sense of involvement and commitment, esp for a set of students from all income levels. Diversity of the student body is high for a school that is so high-achieving academically. There is a lot of emphasis on tests and achievement. Some of the teachers are terrible, and they are under rather tight guidlines from the director--who is very strong minded. I don't know whether to consider her a genius or a tyrant--she is something between--but certainly she deserves some credit for giving mid-level Tucson kids the chance to excel academically. Creativity and opportunities for gifted kids are limited, but it's great for mid-level kids.
My son attended this school for 4 years after a miserable experience in the local public school. His intellectual curiosity was nurtured, his mind stimulated, and his knowlege base at the end 9th grade was superior to that of most college freshmen. The curriculum reflects international standards of excellence. Even more importantly, the school encourages decency, respect, and tolerance. The standards for behavior are strict but fair.
Dissapointed in the opportunity for all kids to get in to this school. They pick and choose by test scores, not by where you are on the waiting list.
Great school for my two kids. They're taking classes and learning things in middle school that I got in college. Although the school is small, there are many opportunities to join school sports teams, band, and other activitites. The instructors are seem to like the kids and enjoy the subjects they teach - based on the standardized test scores (AIMS, Stanford 9), I think the kids at this school enjoy the subjects they are taught. Parents are very involved - it's that type of school.
BASIS is one of the best schools in Tucson. The teachers are top knotch and the leadership within the school is tremendous. They really care about whether the children are successful.
School has a well-rounded curriculum. My child works hard and strives for her best while enjoying her learning environment. I am very proud of her accomplishments and the school. The work-load is very manageable and she seems to be happy with the education she is receiving there. Thank you!
My daughter just completed her first year at BASIS, the 6th grade. It was tough for her academically. I chalked this up to a combination of the schools reportedly high standards and rigor, to it being her first year in a middle school setting, and to the lack of a well rounded curriculum at the school she previuosly attended for 3-5th grades. The teachers and administration, and other school staff were great. The teachers responded to my email inquiries about assignments, her progress,her class behavior, etc. The Director met with me mid year when I was feeling very concerned about a couple of subject grades in particular, and about the behavior of a teacher that my daughter had reported to me. She followed up with the teacher and the situation was righted. My daughter had a great experience socially, there were no reports or indication of peer problems.
My son completed 6th grade at BASIS and he loved it! The curriculum was challenging enough to keep him on his toes but not so much that he would get discouraged.
This is the best school I ever attended. While strenuous (Economics in the 8th grade!), it makes it easy to get ahead in the game of life. The teachers have time to answer questions personally, and they make sure that no one who makes the effort falls behind. I highly recommend it for students with the desire to learn.
Our 16 year old son has been at The Basis School from it beginning year in 1998. His elementary years were at a challenging private school. We explored private middle schools and found them to be beyond our reach financially. We attended a meeting introducing Basis. It was just the answer we needed. Safe, challenging and free. And although no school is perfect, we have found Basis to be equal or superior to the private middle and high schools. Advanced Placement classes are standard and my son and his friends are well able to meet the challenges. In fact, he just received a mailing from Washington University inviting him to explore the possibility of attending there. The opening paragraph in the letter says 'While others were taking easy classes, you've been working harder and smarter by taking the most advanced courses possible. This scholastic edge will serve you well.' This sort of education happens at Basis with the commitment and support of Basis administration, staff, faculty, students and parents. The very small class size in the high school is a plus for my son. Teacher/student ratios give students the opportunity for substantial interaction daily instead of occasionally. One of the Advanced Placement English teachers that has taught on the university level told me that when he taught at the university he would see minds light up on occasion and that here he sees minds light up daily. Our children can excel and will excel given the environment in which to do so -- and Basis does that for my child and for many others. We are proving that large budgets are not the answer for an excellent education, although, additional funding would be a plus! I truly believe that we have found one of the answers in the quest for an opportunity for an excellent education in The Basis School.
I'm very dissapointed with the school. The staff is horrible with the students, some of the teachers seem lifeless, the lunch break is 25 minutes, a passing period (bathroom break, drinks, etc.) of 5 minutes, and the halls are so narrow that you will easily get trapped with 225 students all going to their next class. The teachers don't seem to notice people talking and always leave the classrooms. After every year, the next year is always with new teachers and don't know a thing about the school. Sometimes, they sound like they were hired 5 days before the year started and treat the students like they knew absolutly nothing. I'm considering moving to a different school.
We are so grateful to have discovered Basis school 3 years ago. Class sizes are small, academics are challenging while attainable with a good work ethic, individual child responsibility is highly encouraged and expected, classroom discussions are lively and thought-provoking. The Director is an amazing visionary! It's a great community of parents, teachers, and staff working together for the good of the children.
Involved and caring teachers, high academic standards, traditional teaching and methods and curriculum, perhaps too much emphasis on grades, but lots of support and very friendly helpful staff. Great kids.
An incredible school! Wonderful atmosphere for learning and sharing. A very caring staff and faculty. Level of instruction far exceeds that offered in the public school arena. Student dramatic productions are equivalent to college level performances. Teachers ask for and get 100 percent. Discipline problems are quickly addressed so that the students can learn in a respectful environment. A true community of parents, teachers and children who all give their best and graciously accept the best back. Fine leadership abilities exhibited by the director.
We have been very satisfied with the school. The curriculum is both challenging and meaningful. Most of the teachers seem to love what they do and pass their enthusiasm to the students. A few teachers, however, do not seem qualified to handle discipline issues effectively. One teacher in particular is rather volatile and can, at times, verbally abuse the children. Unfortunately, the administration is either not aware of this issue or condones it. This is the only serious flaw we have found with the school.
I was very disapointed with the school. The staff is not very sure of itself or what it's doing.And offers no communication or help! It seems to be run by trial and error. Several students had background troubles that should have kept them out of school! It's a sink or swim philosophy and unless your child has little intrest in anything else but school work they will be alienated. High test scores but look at the end product coming out the door.
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