I have had 2 children at Village School since K, now in upper grades. A great fit for them. Satisfying because they are completely different. They start each year challenged just enough by the work but not deterred, they finish the year having made huge progress. I attribute this to the great relationships they have with their teachers: they are really comfortable in the classroom and teachers put the effort into finding them the best learning tools. Both thriving socially and any social issues have been resolved either through the kids working it out themselves; in community circles; asking for teacher support or me checking in constructively and calmly with teachers. They have had different teachers from each other almost every year who consistently get the best out of them. Academically my kids are thriving. Dealing with administration on one 'complaint' issue, we had a frank and constructive discussion and we came up with a solution together. My kids are caring, excited to go to school each day and are thriving academically. I will write another review when my kids are in middle school and can speak about that aspect.
My children have attended Village School since 2008, and we have been extremely happy with the school from the start. The warm environment, caring teachers, helpful staff, and fantastic head of school all contribute to a wonderful elementary school experience. We feel very fortunate to have found Village School.
Having recently moved from SW Florida to West LA, we studied each private school thoroughly. My wife and I found Village to be the perfect fit. This is our second year at Village and we have been impressed with the academics as well as the nurturing staff and passionate teachers. Village has the perfect balance of traditional academics and social culture for our son. Teachers are incredibly caring and truly prepare our children in becoming successful, independent, and respectful big thinkers. I consider Village School a Gem in West LA.
I consider us very fortunate to be a Village School family. The school provides a warm and loving environment that walks the line brilliantly between academic/traditional and nurturing/progressive. The teachers are excellent and passionate about their jobs and the kids, and we have found over the years that the staff and administration care deeply about the school and the community. Our eldest child is a graduate of Village and had several top choices for secondary schools, and we did nothing to work the strings politically in the application process. Anyone doubting placement only need look at the last few years-- the kids did extremely well. The parent body on the whole is a much nicer slice of LA than most other private schools in this city! That said, there will always be a griper in the bunch so I urge and welcome prospective parents to come see for yourselves that Village School has earned its reputation as a fantastic and well respected Los Angeles elementary school.
I am a parent of 2 children at Village School and 1 child who has graduated. I came to this site because another parent was shocked at what was written. I would say to anyone who is reading this to PLEASE disregard these bad reviews. They have obviously been written by one or two very unhappy parents. My child graduated got into every school she applied to and is making straight A's at one of these schools. She was COMPLETELY prepared for the challenges of middle school, both academically and socially. My other 2 children love Village, have great teachers, and good friends. I don't know what else can be asked of a school? I don't think any school is perfect for every family or every child. And I don't think the administration will make 100% of the parent body happy 100% of the time. From what I've seen, parents who are chronically unhappy usually have "problem" children, or are generally unhappy people. If you are looking for a school with a family atmosphere, with young, smart, communicative faculty and staff, you should definitely disregard these negative reviews and visit Village School.
I am a 4th year Village School parent of 3 very different kids who all are enjoying Village School. The combination of a terrific class room education, character development, parent education seminars all make Village a special community. We feel grateful to have found the perfect school for us.
There was a time when Village School was considered one of the "better" schools in the area. The current generation of school management has driven the school down to being one of the worse schools on the westside. Don't waste your time or money there are so many other options in the area. Your kids are better off at one of the local public schools.
We switched our child half way through the school and just wish people had been honest about their experiences there before we'd signed on the dotted line. Our experience at Village matched many of the others here - an overrated school, an outdated curriculum, a patchy teaching body at best (although Mr Johnson is fabulous) and, despite saying they exist to help each child reach their true potential, no differentiation in curriculum at either end of the academic spectrum. Our child was bored and unchallenged. They had to be tutored by their next school as they were so far behind. We thought we'd done our due diligence, but were wrong - choose another school that will truly challenge, nuture and care for your child, not Village.
Both my kids went through Village. There is a lot to like: many of the teachers are good. A couple are great (Mr. Johnson is the kind that can inspire a kid for life). The kids are generally nice and the parents are probably more relaxed than at some other westside schools, making for a pleasant daily experience. The biggest issue is that the academic program doesnt keep up with the other schools and it shows in the placement process. Furthermore the 3 ladies that run the school (Nora, Barbara, and Sue) just aren't very interested in improving the reputation/placement process/academics so that while they do place some kids at the top schools they can't deliver the kids to their school of choice. Each year many families leave upset with where their kids are going to school. (Mine dont fall into this camp fyi..but I worked very hard outside of the Village program to get my kids where we thought they belonged.) Also, in out experience any parent that has had a point of difference with the school has been met with a strong defensive reaction from Nora. She is not open to questioning or dissatisfaction.
I'm glad to see I'm not the only parent who made the mistake of buying into the Village School hype. The head of school and most of the teachers are unimpressive and all they care about is money and their public image. Do not put your kids in Village School, it's a joke!
When I enrolled my children at Village School, I did so because it is truly one of the only private schools proximate to homes in Pacific Palisades. In hindsight, my kids would have been better served riding the bus. The school administration is C-Team at best and their success rate for middle school placements is terrible. There are a handful of teachers who are very good, but you need to know who they are in advance and lobby hard for your children to be seated in their classes. In fact, after my children transferred to a different private school, they ended up so far behind that we had to make special arrangements to help get them caught up. This was evidenced by the results from their Village School ERB tests, with some sections of the test neither taught nor addressed in the classroom. If you are terrified by the thought of sending your children to public school and you have no other private school options, you should choose Village School. Otherwise, if you have another private school choice, talk to parents of Village School alumni, and take the time to meet the administrators. You only will have yourself to blame if you don t.
As the years have gone by, unfortunately the administration cares only about where kids are being placed. Thus, the school has moved from progressive to highly traditional and test-oriented. If your child is in the mean, the school is fine, if stodgy and traditional. If your child has any special needs, the administration will give lip service to accommodating your child but will be unhelpful.
My child went to Village School, Harvard-Westlake, and is now at Harvard University. The administration and teachers are excellent.
Village school is hands down an outstanding school. I became a member vs a user of this site just so I could write a response to the last couple of reviews which seem obviously written by 1 person with an axe to grind. How does this person know 5 reviews were removed unless they wrote them all. The head of Village has her masters degree in education. My children have received a great academic education AND a great education in how to be a responsible human being. The kids place at all the top schools and go on to be leaders at those schools in sports, student council, debate and the arts. I have seen it and experienced it. The school is extremely upfront about allowing children to retest depending on the subject if they did poorly. If that's not for you choose one of the super traditional schools.
I notice that GreatSchools continues to remove many of the unfavorable reviews for this school. It is amazing to me that an organization that claims to be unbiased and present accurate parent reviews is really just a place for schools to market themselves. Village School was a terrible experience for our family, from the unqualified teaching staff all the way up to the Head of School who claims to be a "20 year teaching veteran" when in fact public records show otherwise. There have been at least 5 unfavorable reviews for this school that have been removed by GreatSchools. Lets see if this one stays up. Avoid this school at all costs!
Truly one of the worst school experiences ever. Unqualified teachers, uncaring staff. Need I say more?
I've had 2 children go through Village School and truly can't understand the last 2 reviews. My children were very fortunate to attend this outstanding school. I guess my advice to parents is check out each school and make your choices based on what you see and what you hear from parents that actually attend the school. We're very fortunate in LA to have so many amazing choices for schools and I believe this is one of the best
When my husband's job brought us to Pacific Palisades, we thought we did a thorough job reviewing the local private schools. We picked Village because we felt it met all our criteria. Wow, were we wrong. The administration is so far behind current methodology - it's frightening. They spend far more time walking around the town square then they do at school or with the children. I doubt the Head can identify any child by name, unless their parent is a huge financial donor. It was a incredible disservice to our children to place them at Village. Most of the teachers are not qualified to teach and don't seem to understand children. The curriculum is average at best and is taught the same way it was when my parents were in school. Go with your first instinct meeting the administrators. Run, don't walk away from this overrated school.
Village school creates an environment where each child is treated and valued as an individual and is not afraid to be who they are. Village provides a very nurturing and safe environment where children can be themselves and excel socially and academically. I have 2 children at the school and both have had amazing teachers who are highly qualified and have been so supportive in helping my children achieve the goals they have set for themselves. Besides the academics, the art and music programs stimulate and motivate my children tremendously! We are so lucky to be a part of village school
I currently have 2 children enrolled at Village School (lower/upper grades). The school continues to provide a full, engaging curriculum at all levels - embracing a more developmental approach for the lower grades, and moving to a more traditional format for the upper grades. More importantly for these younger years, the school provides a nurturing environment where individuality is championed.
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.
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.
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