My daughter attended El Rancho for 8 years from preschool through 5th grade. The small class size allowed for individual attention and the ability for students to be challenged and advance academically when ready. When she moved out of state she was miles ahead of the public school 6th grade students. Her love of reading, strong grasp of mathmatics, and desire to excell academically came from the excellent teaching and support she received in El Rancho's nurturing environment. Some may consider the structure to be "old fashioned", but their methods are tried and true and produce outstanding students and good citizens year after year. We have no doubt that El Rancho receives part of the credit for her high GPA, high AP and ACT scores, her confidence, and her desire to pursuer a degree in engineering. She has many fond memories of her friends, teachers and the administration at El Rancho. They became part of our extended family. We as parents feel that El Rancho was an investment in our child that we would not trade for anything.
El Rancho is family run and although that could be a positive aspect, it is not used appropriately. At El Rancho it is evident which families "fit in", and which don't. Children are NOT treated equally, respectfully, and leave discouraged. Everyone appears kind, warm, and helpful. From the school secretary (which there were 3 differnt ones in 6 months=odd high turnover), the children's educators, and the "administration". The school appears well maintained, and the atmosphere appears positive. The word used repeatedly is appears. My husband was cautious when we first considered this school but agreed to allow it a chance. In his initial interview he immediately saw flaws in the administration and felt there was an odd atmosphere, although he kept those to himself. We spent time there prior to our child beginning and both stayed invovled during the duration of his experience. However, my husband's judgement was accurate. There certainly were warning signs and "red flags" I should have paid attention to. Continued onto next review...
My son recently started at El Rancho and this is his 3rd preschool in a period of 1 year. I must say that I have not seen my son happier at any other place than I have at El Rancho! The staff seems to genuinely care about each childs needs and after my sons bad experience at an in home that put him in danger I have been very picky as to where I would send him to spend the day while I am working. The 2nd school I sent him to told me to "just leave" as my son balled at drop off begging me to stay. At El Rancho the staff welcomed me to stay until he felt comfortable which took all of 10 minutes on his first day! I believe that El Rancho is the best school for my child and for those parents that are looking for a place for their child to feel safe and happy!
I'm shocked and offended by the previous post. My son has been at El Rancho for four years. It is a welcoming, nurturing environment. He has learned so much in that time and is excelling above grade level in every subject. The teachers are kind, helpful and are able to spend time (because of the small class sizes) individualizing lessons to meet the learning needs of each child. If there is a clique I certainly don't know about it! I have spend a lot of time at the school and have never noticed any favoratism. I couldn't disagree more with the previous reviewer and encourage anyone who is considering El Rancho to talk to current parents at the school.
If you think that all girls love dolls and all boys want to play baseball, send your kids here. If you're happy with a staff who "sells" incentives to kids ("Tell your parents to sign you up for school early and we will give you a free plasma car!") and who can't handle any questions or concerns you may have about your child's well-being or happiness, then this is the place for you. They may want to consider removing the words 'nonsectarian', 'diverse', and 'all are welcome' from their website and just cop to being 'christian leaning', 'homogeneous', and 'intolerant' so that people like us don't have to go through the heartache of moving their child to another school on short notice.
We have enjoyed having our son attend El Rancho. I love the smaller class sizes and the ability to have my child learn at his own pace and if my child is struggling on a concept the teachers notice and provide extra assistance. The children in second grade and higher are required to go to study hall after school. I love this concept. Teaching children good study habits. We have our two children at this school and have been in the preschool and elementary programs. The teachers are fabulous. The pros: small class sizes, caring and nurturing environment, dedicated teachers, spanish and music classes, family outings/dinners, swim lessons in the summer. The cons: The school needs to provide better communication on staffing changes.
My two children attended El Rancho. One from pre school to 6th, the other from 3rd to 6th. I must say that El Rancho really prepared them for middle and high school. One graduated with honors at public high school,the other went to private high school and graduated with above 4.0 GPA. The foundation was set in early for both of them at El Rancho School. You can not go wrong by enrolling your child. You will understand when your children have friends from other shcools and you see first hand the differences in quality education.
We chose this school for it's emphasis on reading, academics and music. It offers diversity and individual attention you just don't get anymore. This is our daughter's second year and we all love the school. We feel comfortable and safe and we know that our child is receiving attention that other schools just don't offer. Our child is advanced for her age and the school has been on top of keeping her stimulated and interested. The principal and her daughter have the best interests of each child and they deal with each child's needs individually. The holiday program is so sweet and Anne Richie puts her heart and sole into making the most elaborate and darling costumes. The music teacher is extremely talented and he loves to teach the children. El Rancho and the parents are lucky to have such a wonderful influnece in their children's lives. We love this school!!!!!!!!
My Son has been here since preschool.He has loved his teachers. I love the diverse education with spanish,piano,music all part of the core curriculum.We have also opted into the Gymnastics,swimming and golf lessons too. He has blossomed this year thanks to the persistence and patience of his teacher. I also like the charachter development aspects they care about the whole child and reinforce good life skills. I have been thrilled with what my son has gotten out of his time here.
Our experience has been good. There is more focus on reading than math in which I dont agree with. Awesome extracurricular activities such as golf lessons, on premise summer swim lessons, private music lessons and a few others. Spanish is taught in class so my child speaks better spanish than I. The staff can be a little militant and the children cant run except on the small sawdust area due to the campus size. If you can look past that, then its great academically.
I have put three children through this school. I would not have them go anywhere else. If you can afford it, I would send your child there
El Rancho is an excellent pre-school and kindergarten. The lack of facilities such as a multi-purpose/lunch room, very limited physical education program and theatre program limit the school's ability to full-fill requirments for older students. The classes for older students are mixed grades.
I disagree with the the older children comments. My child attended from preschool through 6th grade and is now at a State University. I feel that the foundation was El Rancho and appreciate them for focusing on academics. HMy child is a boy and didn't have any problems with individuality or blowing off steam.
The school is family run. It excells at teaching children until they reach about fourth grade. Older children will not have the physical space they need to play. There is also not much understanding of older children's needs. This is especially true in the holiday and summer camps, and in the language instruction. It is a good school for young children. They learn a lot academically, and they learn manners. The schoolis very strict however, and young boys may not be provided the physical space to 'blow off steam'. Overall a very good school for children under 10.
The school concentrates on acamdemic performance and in the lower grades excels in teaching reading, writing and math, especially in preschool and Kindergarten. El Rancho does offer a good starting point for a child, but the leadership is weak and doesn't place any emphasis on growth and development as an individual. The academic experience didn't outweigh the other concerns, so we had to move on. The school is fine as a starting point for young children but work needs to be done to maintain the same strength in the higher grades.
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