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Sierra Canyon School

Private | PK-12 | 980 students

Ours school boasts academic excellence, athletic prowess, and progressive arts.
 
 

 
 

Living in Chatsworth

Situated in a suburban neighborhood. The median home value is $340,000. The average monthly rent for a 2 bedroom apartment is $1,630.

Source: Sperling's Best Places
 
Last modified
Community Rating

4 stars

Community Rating by Year
2014:
Based on 12 ratings
2013:
Based on 5 ratings
2012:
Based on 5 ratings
2011:
Based on 3 ratings

Teacher quality

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Parent involvement

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47 reviews of this school


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Posted May 27, 2014

I am in process of looking for my two kids for the 2015 school year and was told about Sierra Canyon by a friend. I can't believe how right she was to send me here. I toured both the elementary and high school and found the facilities to be beautiful and inviting. I guess the thing that impressed me most was that every child or student that we came in contact with seemed really happy and was so polite and welcoming. This is definately a school at the top of my list.


Posted May 21, 2014

Sierra Canyon affords students the opportunity to pursue their passions. Students can start clubs, voice their opinions in student government, and teachers always have open doors and are excited to engage in conversation and debate. Although the academics are challenging, the school environment is not too competitive. I love being part of such an accepting community.


Posted May 20, 2014

As a student at Sierra Canyon, I know I always feel comfortable to be myself. It is a place of community where the students are so welcoming, which creates a comfortable environment for both new and returning students. Teachers are flexible and willing to work with you whether you have a question, an issue, or if you just want to talk- they're always there for you. The small class sizes allow for students and teachers to have a close relationship and a connection that's unlike most other schools. Also, the food is so good and the snack and lunch times are perfect lengths!


Posted May 15, 2014

This school is great I'm a student here. All the bad comments about the school are not true! Those are the idiotic kids who didn't take school serous. This school offers some of the best education in California , it's $30 thousand for a reason.


Posted May 9, 2014

This school sucks, i go here currently and its absolutely terrible. The education is alright but some of the teachers are very rude and disrespectful. There is a teacher who actually insults their students and calls them idiots. Mostly, lots of the kids are very very rude. There are some nice people who are really sweet but mainly is guys who make fun of you and make disgusting sexual comments. Then there's the girls who whisper about you and the school is so cliquey. do not go here, please. i'm switching to public school next year and i hope you dont go to this school because you'll be miserable


Posted April 29, 2014

The math program was substandard- No progressive program--My child was not prepared for college math--lots of puffery coming from the administration-
—Submitted by a parent


Posted April 29, 2014

I disagree. As an alumni parent of a student who just graduated from college, I can attest to the fact that our daughter was more than adequately prepared for her university experience. In fact, she did well in both business and science classes at university. Both math and science are prized at Sierra Canyon. Last year, one of their students was named an Intel Scholar, sometimes referred to as the student Nobel Prize. For students at Sierra who, like our daughter, struggle with math, the teachers were great about making themselves available for additional, personalized instruction. Bottom line is that there is excellent teaching going on there, and the kids are well prepared.


Posted April 15, 2014

Fantastic! I really love this place! The arts curriculum, the community feel and the overall facilities make this a special place. They are currently building more for their baseball program and constantly looking to improve. The teachers are very approachable and parents are welcome at this school, which I cannot say was the case at my previous school. My child feels at home and has grown so much and matured that I am amazed. As a current parent, I recommend that you all take a tour and figure out whether or not this school is what you are looking for. For us, it has been everything and more.
—Submitted by a parent


Posted April 9, 2014

Terrible school! Not much more than a public school on a beautiful campus. The school has steadily declined over the years. This school used to be elite and a privilege to attend. There used to be an admission process that the school would strictly adhere to. Not anymore. The class sizes have increased. SC claims to have a 9:1 student teacher ratio. This is not true. Most classes are way over this limit. Not only has the class size increased, the staff have been decreased. A school that once had incredible supervision, has a poor excuse for supervision. There no longer is a science specialist and many other things that once made this school a wonderful place. The education is mediocre at best. The students above grade level get a decent education while the kids at or below grade level are given good marks while they are not mastering the curriculum. Most students have outside tutors so they can actually learn something. The curriculum is just recycled year after year. The administration panders to the wealthy and the rules are not enforced for children of the rich and famous. Some of the worst behaved kids attend this school. SC only cares about sports and money.
—Submitted by a parent


Posted March 18, 2014

Absolutely AMAZING! This school have everything you need and more! Such a breathe of fresh air in the world of education. This school's culture is centered around the family environment. It's hard to say what Sierra is "known for" because all the elements are there. They send their students to the best colleges in the nation, have fantastic state-of-the-art sport facilities, incredible art programs and much more. I'm so incredibly grateful I found this school for my family. Thank you Sierra Canyon for putting my faith back into school systems. You do it right!
—Submitted by a parent


Posted March 3, 2014

When I brought my first child to Sierra Canyon, I was amazed at the amount of space; the environment was expansive, with a great del of grass and blue sky. Then upon hearing the "pillars of character", I was thinking; 'okay their heart is in the right place', but it was upon seeing the smiles on the children's faces and hearing the little gap-toothed recitations as un-coached answers to the admissions director's random questions that I was sold. I was not wrong. My daughter has recently graduated as an academic all-american and is attending a premiere research facility in the UC system. I have a second child who's matriculated to the upper campus where my first child actually started the new swim team. She asked, and Sierra delivered: if you need it, they will do it. That's a can-do attitude. In regards to the 11th grade literature list that someone mentioned below; that person is patently wrong. I know the list, and can attest that the Springsteen poetry was presented in contrast and addition to Leaves of Grass, Death of a Salesman, Two Trains Running, Gatsby, Scarlet Letter, Dickenson's poems and two others. The Faulkner was part of the TENTH grade list. Take a tour! It's great.
—Submitted by a parent


Posted February 6, 2014

The teachers are great and most of them really care about their students. However when problems arise the administration's handling of problems is marginal at best with respect to the lower school. They are very quick to blame the child and parent and even in the face of evidence to the contrary still blamed the child. This was psychologically abusive to our child!! They tried to say our child was the problem and that our child had all these problems as diagnosed by their "specialists." When we had our child tested outside their "specialists" turned out our child is actually very, very smart. Some families are afforded accomodations and are able to make their own plans that work best for their children while other's are not and that depends on whether you work there or not or how much money you have. As far as bullying that other's describe that is the absolute truth!!! Administration does look the other way depending on whether your family has money to give to the school or if the child's parent work's there. Way too much bully behavior goes unchecked there be sure your child can hold their own before considering Sierra.
—Submitted by a parent


Posted December 14, 2013

Was a former student here. A number of teachers were given positions due to nepotism and long-time relationships with the owners, with the result being that academic quality and teaching techniques are mediocre (public school level, really). The school spends a lot of money to make the buildings and grounds look impressive, but neglect what should really count. Just as an FYI a lot of people I graduated with have gone on the Pierce College and Cal State Northridge, with less numbers going to UC schools and a few to USC. (I can count may one person who went to an Ivy League school, and it was on an athletic scholarship.)


Posted November 13, 2013

I am a parent to a child in the Lower School, and we have been very pleased with the campus, teachers, administration, and academics. My child transferred from a different Independent school and it was amazing to see how much more he learned and progressed at Sierra Canyon. The learning environment is divided into "like learner" groups, which is fantastic as the children are placed into a level that is appropriate for their development. The students take very interesting field trips, including overnight ones, which really allow the classes to bond. My child's teachers have all been incredibly caring, qualified, and devoted to bringing the best in the students; we are delighted with our choice to attend Sierra.
—Submitted by a parent


Posted November 3, 2013

My daughter says she loves Sierra Canyon despite sharing a few negative incidents. I thought I could trust this school but will reconsider if the "Character Counts" program isn't respected. I've told her to focus only on learning, ignore bullies but stick up for anyone who is picked on so that they have a witness on their side. We'll look out for the problem families. Thank you for the valuable information. I'm sorry to hear what you went through. Bullies are a dime a dozen. Creative bright polite happy kids are so rare.
—Submitted by a parent


Posted October 24, 2013

In response to the parent who posted on October 20, if you're unaware of the bullying problem at the school, I suspect your child is not sharing with you, which is not surprising - my child was expressly told by an administrator to NOT share with me bullying incidents that occur at school. The kids are well aware of the pervasive nature of bullying at Sierra Canyon. A while back, my child received a phone call from a former classmate apologizing for the bullying my child endured. Just recently I was chaperoning a party and a little girl came up to me - she knew who I was - she told me she was aware that my child was bullied, and she was very sorry. She proceeded to share with me that she, too, was forced to leave Sierra Canyon because she was being bullied and administration would not deal with it. Further, a teacher at Sierra Canyon shared with me that she had to withdraw her child, also because because of bullying. The only reason bullying is such a problem at Sierra Canyon is because administration looks the other way. If the bullies were seriously reprimanded, they would stop. Instead, the victims are forced to withdraw in the interest of their physical and emotional safety.
—Submitted by a parent


Posted August 2, 2013

Sierra is just awesome.... Just awesome... I love it.... It is like a family... Our headmaster is just the greatest.
—Submitted by a teacher


Posted October 22, 2012

CAUTION PARENTS i am a former student from sierra, (K-7) and it does not prepare you for real life!!! The math program is messed up. Even if you get a C you can pass the class. At public schools, you have to get a 85% that shows that you actually know the material!!! ONCE AGAIN do not go to this school. It is is WAY too overpriced.


Posted September 27, 2012

As a parent whose child went through entire program, I will address the comment @ "Their math skills are streets ahead of their public school friends and neighbor kids", If only that was true. I would not feel as though I wasted thousands of Dollars. It is Absolutely False. My Student feels the school did not prepare for college Math. @ Comment regarding Chemistry teacher---This is correct. The teacher was Lost; the entire class was spending hundreds of dollars on tutors. @The red flag to your comments are "tutoring kids." Perhaps the kids you tutor are the problem------- The Majority of my Students friends at Sierra opted for tutors.
—Submitted by a parent


Posted September 17, 2012

The mediocre teacher tells. The good teacher explains. The superior teacher demonstrates. The great teacher inspires. ~William Arthur Ward Beautiful 37 acre campus. Outstanding faculty, councillors, and coaches with depth, teaching savvy,, and hearts in the right place. Sierra Canyon recruits the cream of the teaching and coaching world. Incredible staff. Credentials and advanced credentials from Harvard, Yale, Tolstoy, Colgate, Stanford, and many other great Universities. Teachers that would be successful at anything they did. No attitudes here,, the focus is on education and building character with bearing in a magnificent, friendly and helpful learning environment. Outstanding academics, athletics, theatre arts, dance, sciences, social energy, field trips,, it's all here, and it's all superb. Our 7th grader excels in Sierra Canyons learning atmosphere and loves it here. No issue getting up and rolling to class in the morning. May be tough to get enrolled. Worth the effort if your child is a good student and of good character. Not for children with learning disabilities. Sierra Canyon School cues up your childs best years in front of them.
—Submitted by a parent


Community ratings and reviews do not represent the views of GreatSchools nor does GreatSchools check their accuracy or verify the reviewers' identities. Use your discretion when evaluating these reviews.

About these ratings

The Community Rating is the school’s average rating from its community members (e.g., parents, students, and school staff). The highest possible rating is five stars; the lowest is one star.

We currently do not have any test score information for this school. Unlike public schools, private schools are not always required to report data about their schools or not required to take the same tests as public schools. Many private schools take different standardized tests; however, that information is often made available only to families of enrolled students. We strive to acquire additional private school data whenever available.

Student ethnicity

Ethnicity This school State average
White 65% 26%
Two or more races 12% 3%
Black 11% 6%
Asian or Asian/Pacific Islander 7% 11%
Hispanic 5% 52%
American Indian/Alaska Native 0% 1%
Hawaiian Native/Pacific Islander 0% 1%
Source: NCES, 2011-2012

College readiness and student pathways

Percentage of students going to 2-year college 2% (2013)
Percentage of students going to 4-year college 98% (2013)
Percentage of students going to the military 0% (2013)
Percentage of students going to vocational programs 0% (2013)
Percentage of students going directly into the workforce 0% (2013)
Colleges most students attend after graduation USC
UC Berkeley
NYU
Read more about resources at this school
Source: Manually entered by a school official.

Teacher resources

Special staff resources available to students Art teacher(s)
College counselor(s)
Computer specialist(s)
Dance teacher(s)
Librarian/media specialist(s)
Math specialist(s)
Music teacher(s)
PE instructor(s)
Nurse(s)
Poetry/Creative writing teacher(s)
Reading specialist(s)
Security personnel
Teacher aid/assistant teacher
Tutor(s)
Foreign languages spoken by school staff None
Read more about programs at this school
Source: Provided by a school official.

Special education / special needs

Level of special education programming offered
  • Basic - the school offers or partners to provide services based on the needs of individual students
Extra learning resources offered
  • Differentiated learning programs

Science, Technology, Engineering, & Math (STEM)

Specific academic themes or areas of focus
  • Engineering
  • Mathematics
  • Science
  • Technology
Staff resources available to students
  • Computer specialist(s)
  • Math specialist(s)
School facilities
  • Computer lab
  • Garden/Greenhouse
  • Science lab
Visual arts
  • Architecture
Clubs
  • Math club
  • Recycling club

Arts & music

Specific academic themes or areas of focus
  • Arts (all)
  • Music
  • Performing arts
  • Visual arts
Staff resources available to students
  • Art teacher(s)
  • Dance teacher(s)
  • Music teacher(s)
  • Poetry/Creative writing teacher(s)
School facilities
  • Art room
  • Music room
Visual arts
  • Architecture
  • Ceramics
  • Drawing / sketching
  • Painting
  • Photography
  • Sculpture
Music
  • Chamber music
  • Instrumental music lessons
  • Orchestra
  • Rock band
  • Vocal lessons / coaching
Performing and written arts
  • Dance
  • Drama
Media arts
  • Video / Film production
Clubs
  • Student newspaper
  • Television/Radio News
  • Yearbook

Language learning

Specific academic themes or areas of focus
  • Foreign languages
Foreign languages taught
  • Chinese (Mandarin)
  • French
  • Latin
  • Spanish
Clubs
  • Foreign language club: Spanish, French, South Asian

Health & athletics

Staff resources available to students
  • Dance teacher(s)
  • Nurse(s)
  • PE instructor(s)
School facilities
  • Access to sports fields
  • Garden/Greenhouse
  • Gym
  • Multi-purpose room ("cafegymatorium")
  • Swimming pool

Gifted & talented

Instructional and/or curriculum models used
  • Advanced placement courses
  • Gifted / high performing
  • Honors track
College preparation / awareness resources offered
  • College prep programs/courses during the year
  • College presentations or information sessions
  • SAT/ACT prep classes
  • School-sponsored trips to college campuses
  • Visiting teachers or lecturers from colleges
Clubs
  • Debate
  • National Honor Society
School leaders can update this information here.

School basics

School start time
  • 8:00 am
School end time
  • 3:00 pm
Before school or after school care / program onsite
  • Before school: starts at 7:00 a.m.
  • After school: ends at 6:00 p.m.
School Leader's name
  • Jim Skrumbis, Head of School
Best ways for parents to contact the school
  • Phone
Age at which early childhood or Pre-K program begins
  • 4 years old
Gender
  • Coed
Boarding options
  • Day school
Is there an application process?
  • Yes
Affiliation
  • Nonsectarian
Associations
  • NIPSA
Fax number
  • (818) 882-8218

Programs

Instructional and/or curriculum models used

Don't understand these terms?
  • Advanced placement courses
  • College prep
  • Gifted / high performing
  • Honors track
  • Independent Study
Specific academic themes or areas of focus

Don't understand these terms?
  • Arts (all)
  • Engineering
  • Environmental
  • Foreign languages
  • Humanities
  • Mathematics
  • Music
  • Performing arts
  • Science
  • Service learning
  • Technology
  • Visual arts
  • Writing
Bi-lingual or language immersion programs offered

Don't understand these terms?
  • No
Level of special education programming offered
  • Basic - the school offers or partners to provide services based on the needs of individual students
Foreign languages taught
  • Chinese (Mandarin)
  • French
  • Latin
  • Spanish
Level of ESL/ELL programming offered
  • None
Vocational or skills-based training offered
  • None

Resources

Staff resources available to students
  • Art teacher(s)
  • College counselor(s)
  • Computer specialist(s)
  • Dance teacher(s)
  • Librarian/media specialist(s)
  • Math specialist(s)
  • Music teacher(s)
  • Nurse(s)
  • PE instructor(s)
  • Poetry/Creative writing teacher(s)
  • Reading specialist(s)
  • Security personnel
  • Teacher aid/assistant teacher
  • Tutor(s)
Foreign languages spoken by staff
  • None
Extra learning resources offered
  • Career/college counseling
  • Differentiated learning programs
  • Tutoring
College preparation / awareness resources offered
  • College prep programs/courses during the year
  • College presentations or information sessions
  • SAT/ACT prep classes
  • School-sponsored trips to college campuses
  • Visiting teachers or lecturers from colleges
Transportation options
  • Buses/vans for students only
School facilities
  • Access to sports fields
  • Art room
  • College/career center
  • Computer lab
  • Garden/Greenhouse
  • Gym
  • Internet access
  • Library
  • Multi-purpose room ("cafegymatorium")
  • Music room
  • Playground
  • Science lab
  • Swimming pool
School leaders can update this information here.

Sports

Boys sports
  • Baseball
  • Basketball
  • Cross country
  • Football
  • Golf
  • Lacrosse
  • Soccer
  • Swimming
  • Tennis
  • Track
  • Wrestling
Girls sports
  • Basketball
  • Cheerleading
  • Cross country
  • Equestrian
  • Soccer
  • Softball
  • Swimming
  • Tennis
  • Track
  • Volleyball

Arts & music

Visual arts
  • Architecture
  • Ceramics
  • Drawing / sketching
  • Painting
  • Photography
  • Sculpture
Music
  • Chamber music
  • Instrumental music lessons
  • Orchestra
  • Rock band
  • Vocal lessons / coaching
Performing arts
  • Dance
  • Drama
Media arts
  • Video / Film production

Student clubs

Clubs (distinct from courses)
  • Black Strudent Union
  • Chess club
  • Community service
  • Debate
  • Foreign language club: Spanish, French, South Asian
  • Girl scouts
  • Lesbian, gay, transgender club
  • Math club
  • Mock trial competition club
  • National Honor Society
  • Rambler
  • Recycling club
  • SC Film Festival
  • Student council/government
  • Student newspaper
  • Television/Radio News
  • Yearbook
School leaders can update this information here.

Photos

School culture

Dress Code
  • Dress code
Bullying policy
  • This school has a bullying and/or cyber bullying policy in place.
Parent involvement
  • Attend parent nights
  • Chaperone school trips
  • Join PTO/PTA
  • Organize fundraising events (school auction, bake sales, etc.)
  • Volunteer in the classroom
School leaders can update this information here.

Apply

 

This school accepts applications on a

rolling basis

 
Apply now
 

What does it cost?

Tuition range for the 2014-2015 school year
$13000 - $30000
Vouchers accepted
No
Financial aid offered
Yes.
Need-based aid

Planning ahead

Students typically attend these schools after graduating
USC
UC Berkeley
NYU
College preparation / awareness offered
College prep programs/courses during the year
College presentations or information sessions
SAT/ACT prep classes
School-sponsored trips to college campuses
Visiting teachers or lecturers from colleges
Students' post-graduation plans in 2013
2 year college - 2%
4 year college - 98%
Military - 0%
Vocational - 0%
Workforce - 0%
Notice an inaccuracy? Let us know!

11052 Independence Avenue
Chatsworth, CA 91311
Website: Click here
Phone: (818) 882-8121

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