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The College Preparatory School

Private | 9-12 | 363 students

Our school is best known for its amazing academic program.
 
 

 

Living in Oakland

Situated in an urban neighborhood. The median home value is $725,000. The average monthly rent for a 2 bedroom apartment is $1,690.

Source: Sperling's Best Places
 
Last modified
Community Rating

5 stars

Community Rating by Year
2014:
No new ratings
2013:
Based on 1 rating
2012:
Based on 1 rating
2011:
Based on 1 rating

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25 reviews of this school


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Posted April 20, 2013

College Prep is the strongest prep school in NorCal with regards to education and college placement. I graduated in '12 and landed at my first-choice school. Pros (facts): -Three of my classes senior year had 5 or fewer students. The school is willing to hold classes for the sake of its students, even with limited interest. -~25% of the class is admitted to Ivy League/MIT/Stanford/Caltech every year. College counseling is excellent. -Weakest presence of drugs/alcohol of any school in a 25-mile radius. Cons: -Lack of flexibility in curriculum. Every student, more or less, takes the same track with regards to science and history through his first three years. AP classes outside of language classes are typically not taken until senior year, so scores can't be sent to colleges. -Student body divide: On one side of the spectrum you have rich kids driving BMW and Mercedes to school; on the other side you have poor kids who are experiencing private education for the first time. BUT, the "snobbery/elitism" referred to by other comments is not very prevalent, and is honestly a small price to pay for top-notch education/college placement. There are far worse influences at other schools.
—Submitted by a student


Posted January 20, 2012

This school changed my life. My parents pulled me out of the Oakland Public Schools, where I could sleep through class and get straight-As, and put me in Prep. I'll never forget getting my first English paper back with a C- on it. This school opened my eyes to what academic excellence, hard work and challenging yourself mean. It was not easy, and I was one of the "outsiders" who didn't come from a private school or moneyed background. But I found the school and the students to be welcoming, open-minded, supportive and diverse. I went on to an Ivy League university, but I can honestly say I learned more in my four years at Prep than even at a top college. I can't recommend this school enough for students who are academically-oriented.
—Submitted by a student


Posted May 23, 2011

The jury is still out on this school for me. My student loves it but the lack of diversity in the faculty and staff population, as well as the student body population is a real concern for me, especially when it comes to the male students. Additionally, a lot of the students come from the same private middle schools or have siblings already in attendance. If your student comes from the "outside" it is a little difficult to break into some of the cliques that are already established. Academically, the school is extremely rigorous and time management and organizational skills are a definite "must have" if you plan on sending your student here. However, the courses are challenging and the instructors are great. They encourage the students to request assistance from them and have an open door policy for assisting the students. As far as the school community is concerned, so far the parents that I have met have been nothing but wonderful. There is some snobbery and elitism as described by a previous reviewer, but so far from my experience, it does not represent the school as a whole. My recommendation: CAREFULLY weigh your options before selecting this school...
—Submitted by a parent


Posted June 30, 2010

The snobbery and elitism that my son experienced in his two years at CPS made a huge dent on his ideas of self-worth. I am very glad we got him out of there.
—Submitted by a parent


Posted June 22, 2010

It has been one year since my daughter graduated from College-Prep and has moved on to her first choice college. The school has prepared her well not only academically but was instrumental in helping her "find her voice" through various opportunities and programs the school offers. At College-Prep, your child will be able to gauge him or herself against other high achieving students to discover his/her true strengths and passion. If it hadn't been for College-Prep, I doubt my daughter will be where she is now in terms of her personal development. Although I can't say that the school was a very friendly place for the parents, it created an excellent social environment for the students. If your child gets accepted, don't hesitate to send him/her.
—Submitted by a parent


Posted April 21, 2010

this school is extremely hard to get into. even more so if you don't have a sibling who is / has attended College Prep. they give top priority to siblings and so you really really must be an A+++++ student to have a realistic shot. beware though, some students who were A+ students at their middle school became B students at College Prep. the demanding rigor of the curriculum knows no comparison. also, a downside to the math department is that you won't be able to take AP Calculus in your senior year unless you place into Math 2 or beyond as a freshman, when you take your placement tests. and Math 2 is VERY VERY hard to place into. rarely any freshmen gets in without being required to do summer work. also, as CPS alumni, i feel that CPS did not prepare enough for the 'real' world
—Submitted by a student


Posted September 9, 2009

Our child graduated from College Prep a few years ago and is now in college at a very top Ivy. Her college is renowned for the quality of it's teaching yet it does not compare to the intellectual rigor and inspiration that she found at CPS. Personal tutorials , stimulating classroom debates and demanding standards made a lasting impression on our student. Yet, despite the very high intellectual standards our child really did not feel pressure at all or competition from her fellow students. In fact the defining memory she has taken with her is the very close and supportive relationships she had with her CPS classmates. A real surprise from CPS was the very high quality of the athletic programs. CPS has a VERY undeserved nick name... 'Can't Play Sports'. Coaches were extremely skilled, dedicated and inspirational and many teams had great success.
—Submitted by a parent


Posted February 22, 2009

College Prep has been an overwhelmingly positive influence on my four years of high school there. As a college student now, I find that I am very well prepared in academia, and I use a lot of information that I learned at Prep and apply it to my day to day experiences. However, CPS is not for the faint hearted. You have to come to school every day with an urge to learn and wanting to enjoy a challenge. The teachers are amazing, and everyone is very understanding and kind. The math and science programmes are extremely well organised and the way the curriculum is structured is very helpful to my current education in the non liberal arts subjects. However, there could be better teachers at the school who should not have been hired because they are not very well qualified for their positions.
—Submitted by a student


Posted March 9, 2008

this is one of the best schools out there. all the teachers are amazing, and the students are driven and great people.
—Submitted by a student


Posted February 3, 2008

This is a great school. My son has found many friends, and is wonderfully challenged by the academic program. Before he attended cps i was a little worried about his social development, but CPS took care of that. Now he invites people over to our house in Oakland all the time. Our au pair is so busy ferrying him and his friends around that she hardily has time to make dinner anymore! I would particularly like to highlight the efforts of Murry Cohen as a leader of this school. His vision has had a dramatic effect for my son.
—Submitted by a parent


Posted December 28, 2007

I rate CPS 'above average' because the academics are clearly outstanding, and if a student is motivated enough, he or she will be successful and be granted admission to a great college. Because each student at CPS is incredibly academically oriented, however, there is an excessive focus on grades and achievement in relation to one's peers. My experience at CPS was not the 'high school experience' I anticipated, and in retrospect I wish I had attended a more conventional high school. Simultaneously, I am better prepared for college courses than I may have been had I attended another school.


Posted August 7, 2007

Our child is a now a senior at CPS. It's been an overwhelmingly positive experience. She will put extra effort into an essay because the teacher has engaged her so much. She was afraid that you would have to be 'crazy smart' to be here - not true - smart will do. She didn't connect well with one teacher; others ranged from very good to absolutely inspiring. It is a more rarefied atmosphere economically than I would like. The students are very supportive of each other - I see much more collaboration and deep friendships than competition. We were amazed at the involvement and quality of extracurriculars. On a given day, there can be 150 kids at various sports. Concerts feature a third of the student body. Dance program was a revelation.
—Submitted by a parent


Posted August 1, 2007

My child just graduated from CPS. Following is my perspective on two aspects of our CPS experience: academics and money. CPS academics are tough and the teachers are demanding. While the kids are incredibly kind to each other, these are high achieving students. CPS students do well on AP exams and are well-prepared for college. A student doesn t have to be a genius to have a successful CPS experience, but he/she should be comfortable running with the big dogs. Like all private schools, CPS runs on money. Tuition does not cover the total cost of CPS exceptional palette of educational resources. Additional fund raising is a fact of life. Many families are well-to-do; almost all the rich folks we met were gracious and generous. CPS is somewhat diverse economically; families receive financial assistance.
—Submitted by a parent


Posted May 18, 2007

My son is in the current (2007) graduating class. He has had an exceptional experience at CPS. From individual tutoring by his teachers, to performing on the music tour, to playing sports, this school has done it all. There are prior comments regarding the academic quality of the school which surprise me. There are endless opportunities for students to expand their learning and to challenge themselves. Parents who expect their children to be spoonfed facts, and 'taught to the test' without learning to think, will be disappointed in CPS. But if you want your child to learn, to think, and to become an independent, well-prepared college student, then CPS is for you.
—Submitted by a parent


Posted March 27, 2007

Our daughter started in Fall 06 as a 9th grader. On the whole, we like the school -- the kids are really nice. But our daughter has discovered the class consciousness of the rich for the first time. We could not afford to send her on the annual snow trip. She is tough and resilient, but this was an unnecessary annoyance. Social sciences and English are great, but math and science are weak. Our girl loves fencing and Japanese, but has grown to hate math and science -- and her parents are engineers! Our two biggest gripes are (1) classes start at 8 a.m. and on random days let out by 2 p.m., apparently to accommodate those who do team sports. (2)junk food in vending machines.Yuck!
—Submitted by a parent


Posted March 7, 2007

The school is a far cry from what they purport it to be. In spite of the claims of an academically rigorous environment, I feel short-changed by the lack of SAT preparation and attention within certain departments to the students. The Math department is weak and only appeals to those with a natural aptitude for the subject. Those who are weak or are intimidated by the subject will find themselves in a deeper hole with a disorganized curriculum and didactic method. I don't feel like I'm getting my money's worth. The administration does not accept constructive criticism and is too focused on making the school more diverse(a good thing mind you) rather than making sure the academics live up to the claims. Overall, I cannot say I'd recommend this school and urge people to check out their options well.
—Submitted by a parent


Posted January 9, 2007

We love this school! The rigorous academics, the high levels of expectation and the truly great kids make it a wonderful -- though challenging -- experience. While some think the academics aren't as rigorous as they expect as freshman, the level of difficulty and expected performance ramps up rapidly, achieving college level by Junior year. The school draws from a wide geographical area and, contrary to another review, is not a school of rich people. Fully 25% of the population receives some sort of financial aid, and kids from all backgrounds attend. The only thing they all have in common is that they are all incredibly smart. Most have to adjust to no longer being the smartest kid in their class. Not a bad adjustment to make if you're going to be in the real world!
—Submitted by a parent


Posted October 3, 2006

I attended this school and enthusiastically recommend it to anyone with a child who is self-motivated and serious about learning. The teachers are generally good and occasionally outstanding.
—Submitted by a former student


Posted March 17, 2006

Our child is a sophomore. The school has a very rigorous academic program and talented instructors. The administrative staff of the school is supportive and very engaged with the kids. There are lots of extracurricular activities, though its hit and miss on some of the sports programs, as its more an academic place than anything else. Parents are quite involved. Overall, a very good community for the right child. The one downside -- its a place of wealthy families largely. There's diversity in a number of ways, but the range of the socio-economics informing the culture is quite limited. Its also seems a bit competitive academically -- your child needs to be a motivated student who wants to learn, or they can get caught up some in the competition in ways that are not always emotionally healthy.
—Submitted by a parent


Posted October 18, 2005

Academic programs are fine, but are not as impressive as they say. Science program is weak, although English is strong. The homework is overwhelming and the teachers are not as warm and fuzzy as the school would lead you to believe.
—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
White 60%
Asian 22%
Two or more races 8%
Black 5%
Hispanic 5%
American Indian/Alaska Native 0%
Hawaiian Native/Pacific Islander 0%
Source: NCES, 2009-2010

College readiness and student pathways

Students typically attend these schools prior to attending this school Dorris Eaton
Prospect Sierra
St. Paul's
Percentage of students going to 4-year college 100% (2013)
Colleges most students attend after graduation Stanford
Wesleyan
Harvard
Read more about resources at this school
Source: Manually entered by a school official.

Teacher resources

Special staff resources available to students Assistant principal(s)
Art teacher(s)
College counselor(s)
Computer specialist(s)
Dance teacher(s)
Librarian/media specialist(s)
PE instructor(s)
Poetry/Creative writing teacher(s)
Security personnel
School social worker/counselors(s)
Tutor(s)
Foreign languages spoken by school staff American sign language
Chinese (Mandarin)
Japanese
Vietnamese
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

Science, Technology, Engineering, & Math (STEM)

Staff resources available to students
  • Computer specialist(s)
School facilities
  • Computer lab

Arts & music

Staff resources available to students
  • Art teacher(s)
  • Dance teacher(s)
  • Poetry/Creative writing teacher(s)
School facilities
  • Art room
Visual arts
  • Drawing / sketching
  • Painting
  • Photography
  • Printmaking
  • Sculpture
Music
  • Chamber music
  • Choir / Chorus
  • Instrumental music lessons
  • Jazz band
  • Orchestra
  • Rock band
  • Theory
Performing and written arts
  • Creative writing
  • Dance
  • Drama
  • Poetry
Media arts
  • Video / Film production
Clubs
  • Drama club

Language learning

Foreign languages taught
  • Chinese (Mandarin)
  • French
  • Japanese
  • Latin
  • Spanish
Foreign languages spoken by staff
  • American sign language
  • Chinese (Mandarin)
  • Japanese
  • Vietnamese

Health & athletics

Staff resources available to students
  • Dance teacher(s)
  • PE instructor(s)
Clubs
  • Cooking club

Gifted & talented

Extra learning resources offered
  • Acceleration
College preparation / awareness resources offered
  • College presentations or information sessions
Clubs
  • Debate
  • Forensics club
School leaders can update this information here.

School basics

School start time
  • 8:05 am
School end time
  • 3:10 pm
School Leader's name
  • Monique DeVane
Best ways for parents to contact the school
  • Phone
Gender
  • Coed
Boarding options
  • Day school
Is there an application process?
  • Yes
Affiliation
  • Nonsectarian
Associations
  • NAIS
Fax number
  • (510) 652-7467

Programs

Instructional and/or curriculum models used

Don't understand these terms?
  • None
Specific academic themes or areas of focus

Don't understand these terms?
  • None
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
  • Japanese
  • 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)
  • Assistant principal(s)
  • College counselor(s)
  • Computer specialist(s)
  • Dance teacher(s)
  • Librarian/media specialist(s)
  • PE instructor(s)
  • Poetry/Creative writing teacher(s)
  • School social worker/counselors(s)
  • Security personnel
  • Tutor(s)
Foreign languages spoken by staff
  • American sign language
  • Chinese (Mandarin)
  • Japanese
  • Vietnamese
Extra learning resources offered
  • Acceleration
  • Career/college counseling
  • Counseling
  • Mentoring
College preparation / awareness resources offered
  • College presentations or information sessions
Transportation options
  • Buses/vans for students only
  • Discounted BART tickets
School facilities
  • Art room
  • Computer lab
  • Library
School leaders can update this information here.

Sports

Boys sports
  • Baseball
  • Basketball
  • Cross country
  • Golf
  • Soccer
  • Swimming
  • Tennis
  • Track
  • Volleyball
Girls sports
  • Basketball
  • Cross country
  • Golf
  • Soccer
  • Softball
  • Swimming
  • Tennis
  • Track
  • Volleyball

Arts & music

Visual arts
  • Drawing / sketching
  • Painting
  • Photography
  • Printmaking
  • Sculpture
Music
  • Chamber music
  • Choir / Chorus
  • Instrumental music lessons
  • Jazz band
  • Orchestra
  • Rock band
  • Theory
Performing arts
  • Creative writing
  • Dance
  • Drama
  • Poetry
Media arts
  • Video / Film production

Student clubs

Clubs (distinct from courses)
  • Chess club
  • Cooking club
  • Debate
  • Drama club
  • Forensics club
School leaders can update this information here.

Photos

School culture

Dress Code
  • Neither uniforms nor dress code
Bullying policy
  • This school has a bullying and/or cyber bullying policy in place.
Parent involvement
  • Attend parent nights
  • Join PTO/PTA
  • Organize cultural events
  • Organize fundraising events (school auction, bake sales, etc.)
  • Serve on school improvement team or governance council
More from this school
  • At College Prep we believe in the foundational importance of scholarship, the value of dialogue, and the need for academically curious young people to belong to a kind, creative, diverse, and joyful community. We challenge our students to engage deeply in learning, appreciate one another, and grow into adults who are intellectually adventurous, ethically sure-footed, and generous of heart and spirit.
School leaders can update this information here.

Apply

 

Submit your application by

January 16, 2014

 
 
Apply now
 

What are your chances?


4 out of 10students were accepted for the 2012-2013 school year.


Students accepted for the 2012-2013 school year
120
Applications received for the 2012-2013 school year
325
Students typically come from these schools
Dorris Eaton
Prospect Sierra
St. Paul's

What does it cost?

Tuition range for the 2013-2014 school year
$35000 - $35000
Vouchers accepted
No
Financial aid offered
Yes.
School-based aid
Outside scholarships

Planning ahead

Students typically attend these schools after graduating
Stanford
Wesleyan
Harvard
College preparation / awareness offered
College presentations or information sessions
Students' post-graduation plans in 2013
4 year college - 100%
Notice an inaccuracy? Let us know!

6100 Broadway
Oakland, CA 94618
Website: Click here
Phone: (510) 652-4364

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