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1 Hiller Drive
Oakland, CA 94618

School website
(510) 843-2512
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Map of Bentley address.

May 12, 2014
Bentley School's greatest strength is the parent community. I have found the parents to be hardworking toward the schools goals, kind and inclusive. My daughter has attended the school since kindergarten. However, the school has an accelerated curriculum and therefore produces gaps your child's learning. Your child's math and spelling book is 1 year ahead and they skip all around according the teacher's scope and sequence. To date, the school has not produced a curriculum map so you can have a sense of what your child needs to know. If your child needs any assistance the school has a list of outside educational providers that parents choose from ($70-$110 per hour/ testing $800). This is different from other independent schools so do your research and ensure that your child can perform well in the accelerated environment.

- submitted by a parent

February 07, 2014
I have a 4th grader and a kindergartener at Bentley. As a family, we are thrilled with the school. My 4th grader's teacher is amazing. Her energy and enthusiasm are contagious and her academic expectations high. But what's more is that she gets my child and understands her strengths and needs in a way that tells me she's really paying attention. My son's K teacher is equally terrific. She really knows her stuff and connects to her students in a way they love. My son adores her and has learned so much. I appreciate the attention and care both my kids receive and I feel as though I have true partners in their education. The teachers and administrators are very responsive over e-mail. The parent community is great -- friendly and pretty easy to get to know, though you do need to put yourself out there and get involved to meet people. The school's drop off/pick up valet line makes it difficult to socialize at those common gathering points, so you need to find other ways to meet people. All in all, if you are looking for a warm, nurturing environment with challenging academics and top teaching, Bentley is a fantastic choice.

- submitted by a parent

October 26, 2013
My son goes to Happy Valley and we've been very pleased with the quality of education he has received, the teachers commitment to excellence, parents involvement as volunteers and their support of the school.

- submitted by a parent

May 02, 2013
Bentley is an amazing school with the most talented teachers in the Bay Area. Our kinder-gardener thrives at Bentley. The best part for busy parents are the four to six page report cards at the end of each trimester with details from each teacher on your child's performance. Bentley also offers additional after school classes. I would highly recommend for perspective parents to consider this school.

- submitted by a parent

April 26, 2013
This school is not what it once was. This review is primarily about the middle school. Years ago this school was once a place of high achievement and excellence; today it is a school of rich kids who can pay and below average academics. There is a huge drop off in teacher and student quality from the lower school to the middle school. Currently the Middle School Head has hired very young, inexperienced (and presumably cheap), mostly non-credentialed teachers who have little classroom management skills and no control over the students. This year the new math teacher and the existing humanities teacher are not returning. In addition, during the past two years the school has lost math, science, humanities, trivium, music, and PE teachers. This year the school is also losing French and Chinese teachers. The Head of School keeps appointing people to leadership positions but yet there is no parent or teacher involvement. The school does not utilize a parent survey to gather information, nor does it seek involvement in anything but fundraising. On the positive side the K, 2, 3, and 5th grade teachers are awesome. They are seasoned veterans who are outstanding.

- submitted by a parent

April 07, 2013
I was a student at Bentley from kindergarten to eight grade. I thought the academics were great, but I didn't like how closed-minded the teachers were, and how little the classes and grades were. There wasn't any sense of independence or freedom AT ALL.

- submitted by a community member

June 28, 2012
We have two kids at Bentley (2nd and 5th) and we couldn't be happier that we made this school selection for our children. We've been wowed by the professionalism of the staff, the amazing teachers, the challenging curriculum and the academic and personal resources available for Bentley kids and their families. The school doesn't play lip service to having a no-bullying policy- it practices what it preaches and the school fosters a community-wide, supportive environment for student, faculty, families and visitors. Our kids have been challenged out of their comfort zones and have stretched themselves academically beyond what they thought possible. If you're looking for a stellar, highly-trained and educated staff; challenging curriculum and small school environment, Bentley might be a good choice for your family.

- submitted by a parent

March 27, 2010
Our family is new to the school and we love it. The setting is great for learning and the academics are first rate. They know our child so well. I also like their placement record to great high schools and colleges. I do wish the tuition at these schools was not so high, though.

- submitted by a parent

April 27, 2009
I have had two children at Bentley. I have mixed feelings. My first child struggled with the lack of diversity for most of her 9 years there. The prior post that mentions the administration's lack of action towards ill-behaved children is spot on! THE EDUCATION IS FANTASTIC! If you are a parent that is active and not easily intimidated, it could be a great fit.

- submitted by a parent

January 15, 2009
My husband I have a 8th grader who has been at the school since 1st grade. We are planning to put our youngest into the kindergarten program this fall. We travel from the Tri Valley are into Oaklnd. Our public school district is one of the best in the state. Our neighborhood schools are given the highest awards. We choose to be a part of the community because of the academic rigor, the smaller class sizes all the way through high school, the attention to global diversity - not just the limited definition of black and white or rich and poor. Our family has experience tremendous returns on the investment we made in our child. She is a confident, independent thinker who can hold her own in any subject. She is more than prepared for her next journey -high school.

- submitted by a parent

December 16, 2008
We have been thrilled with our daughter's experience at Bentley. She is thriving academically and socially. Bentley is an academic school and the children are challenged, but they offer a well rounded curriculum. My daughter is exposed to drama, art, foreign languages, PE, computers, library. She looks forward to going to school every day and even asks to stay at the after care (which is free and offers her a variety of arts and crafts activities). We couldn't be happier! I do have to say I'm surprised by a couple of the posts, because in our experience the school is very open and accepting and seems to celebrate the diversity in the student body.

- submitted by a parent

November 21, 2008
We have two children at the lower school and the kids have loved their time at school. My daughter went from a very shy incoming k student to a confident student who is proud of her accomplishments in all subjects, esp. math, writing and art. Its really an amazing school with amazing teachers. When we looked at schools, we were looking for a school that provided a well-balanced education with strong but not overly rigorous academics, great art, languages and a place that values a community. Also, the lower and middle school heads are both very focussed on the children's well being overall, and not just academics. We live in Oakland and wanted to make sure the school reflected the diversity in our neighborhood. We have been happy with the school's ability to address diversity in a meaningful way.

- submitted by a parent

November 20, 2008
My husband and I have two children enrolled at Bentley School, 2nd and 5th graders, a girl and a boy, respectively. Both of my children are thriving and have been since their kindergarten enrollments. Bentley's academic programs are its strength, closely followed by its cultural enrichment programs, warm and nurturing faculty, and somewhat idyllic setting. Both of my children very much look forward to going to school each day--even with the full knowledge that they will be challenged academically. Sometimes, my husband and I are taken aback at the the content and depth of knowledge that, unprompted, erupts from the mouths of our babes...often in the midst of casual conversations my husband and I are having. ;-) We would encourage anyone looking for a well-rounded and sound educational foundation and environment for their child to take a 1st & 2nd look at Bentley School.

- submitted by a parent

July 24, 2008
I'm surprised by the recent posts (from 2008) - this seems inaccurate! Especially the comments about this being a 'rich' school. I think that the emphasis here is simply on a great education - consistently applied in all grades and with all students. In our experience (11 years) academic excellence plus (arts and sports) has been the primary focus. Both our children have been through the middle school and even though they are very different learners, each had an extraordinary 3 years in the middle school. The teachers are the highest caliber - consistently intelligent, creative and fun! The middle school teachers are especially skilled, the math program and teachers are the best. Mr Gerry and Mr Grener are just brilliant and beloved by the students. I'm certain many have turned on to math because of their influence. We're thrilled to be at Bentley!

- submitted by a parent

July 20, 2008
My child attended Bentley from 1st through middle school. The elementary school was very good academically but I really wish we had not sent our child to the middle school. There has been alot of turn over and the new teachers are inexperienced and the teachers who have been there along time need to retire. I also agree there was favoritism towards children whose parents gave alot of money to the school versus parents who did not. I would think that several of the local public schools and several of the private schools would be much better. Not worth the money.

- submitted by a parent

March 11, 2008
This school is first a business and second a school that cares about its students. For the extremely high tuition the education and curriculum is just average. Families/students appear to be accepted here based on their financial contribution not on the basis of their child(ren's) merits or postive contributions to the classroom. That said there are significant behavior problems with students that go largely unaddressed. Families and their children are rewarded based on how much they give to the school both in time and money with very little thanks. Problematic kids will stay and parents are left little recourse. The administration is also problematic with high turnover in faculty such as the headmaster, admissions directors and more. Save your money and attend any of the FREE public schools around the corner which are great schools for the price and will genuinely put the care of your child(ren) first not your pocketbook.

- submitted by a parent

December 01, 2007
My child has thrived in Bentley's sound academic environment. The teachers are enthusiastic and very nurturing. The depth of the subject matter always captivates my child's interest and that feed her love of learning. We are so happy we chose Bentley. Frankly, I can't think of a better place for them.

- submitted by a parent
no rating
December 01, 2007
My child has thrived in Bentley's sound academic environment. The teachers are enthusiastic and very nurturing. The depth of the subject matter always captivates my child's interest and that feed her love of learning. We are so happy we chose Bentley. Frankly, I can't think of a better place for them.

- submitted by a parent

November 01, 2007
We have been extremely pleased with our experience at Bentley. The teachers are fantastic, very caring, competent, and attentive to the needs of the students. The arts, music, PE, computer, and language classes (French, Spanish, and Chinese) round out the academic program. The teachers truly want each child to succeed in the school and work with them individually to make sure that all students do so.

- submitted by a parent

November 07, 2006
Bentley has been a fantastic experience for my kids. One has finished K-8 and the other is still enrolled in the lower school. The teachers are excellent, and the school is well run. I can't think of a more rigorous, academic education offered in this area, and we're fortunate that the school also highly values the arts - music and visual arts are offered in all grades. The school also offers three languages in these grades - French, and Spanish starting in K, and Latin 6-8.

- submitted by a parent

March 09, 2006
Our daughter has done very well at Bentley from K through 2nd grade. The teachers, supported by the small class sizes, consistently seem to understand the individual needs and characters of the children. The art teacher is extraordinary, he has really encouraged her talents. The campus is cozy is a good way, not instituitional-feeling at all. The after school care providers always have my daughter engaged in a craft project so she usually doesn't want to leave when I arrive to pick her up!

- submitted by a parent

September 09, 2005
Bentley School is a good school academically, but I strongly suggest you speak to members of the Diversitiy Committee before enrolling your African male children.

- submitted by a parent
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Our K-12 community inspires a love of learning, embraces academic inquiry, and provides a sense of growth and belonging for all students.

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1 Hiller Drive, Oakland, CA  94618
(510) 843-2512
Last modified Bentley is a Private school that serves grades K-8
Bentley Rating: 4 out of 5 based on 23 reviews. Top