I have an 8th grader at Tucson Country Day School. He's been there since preschool and he loves it. The Middle School teachers are interested in him as an individual and they all work hard to make classes interesting and engaging. When he needs extra help, he can get it before or after school and at lunch time. The Middle School recently implemented a House system, similar to the Harry Potter houses. The students were sorted at the last Champion Day and they are now working on their House name and identity. Activities like these and caring, engaged teachers are what make Tucson Country Day School such an amazing school. I wouldn't send my children anywhere else.
This school has an amazing outside reputation but this is entirely not the same on the inside. My student went to this school for almost his entire academic career and he was doing great till middle school. The TCDS math department has had failing AIMS scores for the past 6 years and the school has yet to realize that the teacher isn't teaching her students to the best of her ability. My child was left straggling in the back and when he went for help or asked for a little help on last nights homework it was marked missing and he was sent to intervention, an after school program for students to finish there work. My child was told when asked for help to look in the textbook and this math teacher was not there to be found. I sent my child there to be ready for high school and that is not at all what I got.
What is Tucson Country Day School doing about the Common Core standards? For the 2013-2014 school year, TCDS teachers are fully implementing the Common Core standards at each grade level. This is known as "Level 2" implementation. Level 1 is when teachers become familiar with the standards and with concepts that underlie them such as rigor, depth of knowledge, and close reading. TCDS teachers were immersed in Level 1 preparation through their professional development in previous years. This year they are fully implementing the standards. What does this look like in the classroom? Students are engaging with math and language arts material in much greater depth. They are explaining their thinking, justifying their answers, taking positions, and arguing for them. Each student has a "continual progress report" folder for math which shows their level of mastery of each standard, and this report is updated regularly. Certain grade levels are holding monthly parent sessions to explain the new math standards. And teachers gather weekly to develop classroom curricula to support the new standards. The teachers have really stepped up to this challenging work!
TCDS is so much better then TUSD, The teachers are great my child went there last year for 3rd grade and now in 4th and I can't ask for a better teacher
TCDS is by far a way better school than TUSD. I am so happy with the progress my son has made since he started attending. Not to mention his IEP are a lot different than the ones from TUSD. There is no comparing.
I have 2 children in Tucson Country Day School, K and 1st-grade. Uniforms are strict and color coded for easy recognition of grades. Great idea! Recently my K got in a little trouble with the fire alarm and the consequence, by the principal, was handled in a very appropiate manner. The child was treated respectfully and fairly. I was impressed. The special ed dept. is phenominal. So glad we transferred from TUSD.
I have been very pleased with this school for my Granddaughters. They have smaller class sizes and teachers who seem to want to be there. They also value the Arts which so many other schools have let go which is a huge disservice to the children. The availability of on campus after school care and classes is also a great feature. The campus houses Preschool through Junior High which I think is good for all of the kids. I think they do the best they can to make sure kids know sitting at a desk and reading a book is not the only way to learn. In our teach to the test only educational culture now days this isn't an easy thing to accomplish without being a private school. Is it perfect no nothing is. But is it heads above what is offered in TUSD for the most part yes. Our children will be entering 2nd and 5th grade. They have been there since Preschool.
All three of my children attend TCDS (5th grade, 1st grade and PK) and my oldest has attended since she was in Kinder. This school has many great aspects to it despite the few negative reviews I have read on here. I also work at the school as a substitute teacher and couldnt think of a better place to send your kids or work at. My son has special needs and the resource department is excellent in helping him excel last year in Kinder. My daughter is held accountable for her school work and held at higher standards for her social behavior at the school. My son received discipline that was appropriate for his misbehavior's last year and well within the IEP/504 guidelines. I find that this school has great boundaries for students and a high academic structure regarding the curriculum. They use fun and innovative ways to encourage learning and critical thinking for students; rather than doing a simple book report my daughter did an activity every quarter that required critical thinking outside of the box. The PS/PK program is excellent as well and my youngest daughter is returning this year. I would HIGHLY recommend this school to anyone wanting to find a school for their children!
This school's test scores have declined signifigantly since the arrival of the new Principal. That can be verified on this website. The atmosphere is one of concern. If you "fit in" to the staff culture. You will do well. Children are bullied and become a victem again from the staff! I find it sad, this was a great school.
We moved to TCDS from our local public school that actually is rated higher. TCDS has proven to be a fantastic change for both my kids, both with very different needs. My son is in special ed and the school has done everything to address his needs. I feel so well supported by a great team of teachers and aids. And, even more important, my son likes school for the first time in his life. He's happy there! My daughter has other "special needs"; she has been in the GATE program since she was 5. She was totally bored and uninspired by our previous school. She was starting to dislike school as well. TCDS has also addressed her need for being challenged, and recognized for her gifts. She is in classes at her level that challenge and inspire her, and she is regularly awarded for being a good student and citizen. She is now happy again at school too. When my kids are happy in school; I know they are learning and growing. To me a school that can identify and provide what each child needs makes a "great" school.
POSITIVES: Mr. Wright and nice grounds! NEGATIVES: 1. The secretary doubles as the school nurse. They have never had a nurse. 2. After reading another review about bullies here, I remembered that last year, one of the teacher's children was making other students her "slaves". My daughter had to lead her friends to standing up against this bully after administration didn't do what they should have. We think it was because the teacher is practically an administrator herself. 3. Three of the past four years (my daughter is in the 4th grade), my daughter's teacher has been a first year teacher. 4. Students earn detentions for behavior, tardiness, and missing homework assignments where they have children do labor in the garden. If the child has a sibling, the parent has to pay for that child to go to after care (which is just paying for your child to get dirty). 5. Students are assigned detention for missing homework assignments but they are not allowed to go into the library and work on homework until they're in 5th grade. There isn't a study hall or tutoring after school like other schools have. 6. The school lunches are RARELY nutritious. 7. Teacher:student ratios in small rooms.
Tucson Country Day School is an amazing school. We just started the school year with two days of Champion Days - a time when students across the entire campus - come together to talk about and embrace the school's expectations. It's a great way to build a sense of community and puts everyone on the same page from the very first day of school. No wonder the school has so few discipline problems.
We have been at TCDS for 8 years and although it has had its ups and downs(like any school will) I feel as though there are no more problems here than you would have anywhere, especially in middle school. The administration could handle certain things better but overall it's a nice environment. Perhaps parents should focus on teaching their children to behave and quit blaming teachers for having to take time away from curriculum to do it for them.
I want to HIGHLY recommend TCDS! I have a student who attended 6 - 8th grades at TCDS. My student has absolutely loved being at TCDS. My only regret is that I didn't find TCDS earlier in my student's academic career. I feel that my student is VERY prepared for high school. I want to say thank you to all of the middle school teachers and the school staff!
The reason that some parents think the school is wonderful is that most are not in Middle School. I truly hope things will change but we were so happy with the school until Middle School and my children went to this school for 7 years. I have seen great teachers leave to be replaced with in some cases really good teachers but then there those that should have been let go and have never been done. The policys can only do good if they are actually enforced. Too much has already gone undone. I have also volunteered for years and been part of SPA. It doesn't matter. I think they should really re-think the middle school. We had some great teachers like Ms Courtney and Ms. Weinstein and Ms. Rayan but that is about it anymore the rest can be replaced and that would be great. I know what the person said about sour grapes and bullying being handled at home but when your kid gets tortured and the kids doing it are kids who parents are teachers it is a different story. Or if they have special needs you just have to learn to deal with it. This use to be a great school. I hope one day it will return to just that.
Our daughter began preschool in 2009. She is now in kindergarten. She was reading by the beginning of this school year, and she is by no means the only student in her class who reads. We selected this school because we were impressed by the school's commitment to teach the kids respect, patriotism and core academic subjects. We have not experienced the issues that some of the other parents have, and perhaps this is because we volunteer at the school and we work with our daughter at home. We also make a conscious effort to model good behavior for our daughter, and hopefully for the other kids, too. The Champion Days are great, as they really instill a sense of self-pride in the kids without being overly praising. There is an anti-bullying program in place, but if the root of the bullying begins at home; the bullies' parents should also be held accountable. While I cannot address the validity of the disgruntled reviews on this site, I can say that good ideas are valued if real effort is made to help implement them. Complaining is useful for identifying areas for improvement, but as with anything, does not in itself make any changes or fix the problems.
Our son has attended TCDS for four years. I have been extremely impressed with the education, social skills, after school activities that this school offers. This school is not about dropping off your kid and not being involved. Parent involvement is a key part of the TCDS experience and being a part of giving your child the best education, values and behaviors. I am continually informed on how my child is doing because there is open communication with the teachers and staff. Yes there always is room for improvement and when you have a suggestion they listen. The education level is amazing and also challenging for all students. I know that there was some bullying issues last year. It was not a good situation for some of the students. I agree that it wasn't handled as well as it should have been. After many hours with staff, parents, and students they have adopted a new bullying policy this year. This year they really focused on being a champion and what it means to be a good citizen. They have had champion and community building days and now pride shirts. The staff is working so hard in helping all students! As a parent I am very proud of TCDS!
I just want to bring up one point regarding the bullying policy. Did any of you hear about the incident in 5th grade where one student told another that if he had a bullet he would put it in their head. Yes, it happened and the school did absolutely nothing. The school should of handled this immediatley but instead he spent one day out of school and there were no consequences. He continued to harrass this student and it wasn't until the parent had to get Tucson Police Department that something was done. Even then it wasn't the school that handled it TPD took care of the situation. What is this teaching our children? It's ok to make threats and have absolutely no consequences? And this was after their Anti-Bullying Policy was issued. I guess since it didnt have to do with AIMS scores it wasnt a big enough issue to be taken seriously.
Pulled my kids from this school after the last school year. Its too bad, our kindergardner just loved Mr. Wright. Teachers are leaving, the Principal has no clue what he is doing, the asst principal is a total joke, no people skills whatsoever. My son had 4 different teachers last year for his spanish class, he and the teachers switched direction and were lost most of the class. Do your self a favor, speak to other parents, we are so relieved our kids will not be attending this school again.
This is a great school! My child will be starting their 5th year at TCDS in August. We have great teachers, admin and staff who truly care about our kids and help them achieve their full potential. My child is receiving a top notch education in a safe and supportive environment. Unfortunately at this time there are a few parents who are struggling with the growth of this school and are spending a lot of time bad mouthing it on sites such as this. Visit the school for yourself and you will see why it is the home of the "champions"
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