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Challenger - Middlefield

Private | K-8 | 328 students


Living in Palo Alto

Situated in an urban neighborhood. The median home value is $355,000. The average monthly rent for a 2 bedroom apartment is $1,405.

Source: Sperling's Best Places
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3 stars

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24 reviews of this school

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Posted August 24, 2010

The preschool director is totally OVERconfident. I sent my son there last year and she didn't want to listen to anything you said and think she knew everything, in fact, she has no idea nor she cares! As long as she has the control to play the game. It seemed she keeps a close relationship with certain teacher but she didn't care the student at all. I sent my son to public school this year so I can stop wasting my money.
—Submitted by a parent

Posted March 23, 2010

I have had my child at the school for 2 years now and could not be happier. They teach self-discipline, outstanding academics, and the after school programs are fun.
—Submitted by a parent

Posted November 7, 2009

My daughter only join this school less than one month and she loves the school and teachers. I really wish I can let her continue Kinder class after preschool, but I really hate the uniform policy. Overall, this is a really good school.
—Submitted by a parent

Posted July 9, 2009

I have sent my daughter here for years! She loves it as well as the new principle! She is now very eager to learn and even doing homework is FUN to her! Plus, the middle school is fantastic!!!
—Submitted by a parent

Posted April 10, 2009

So far I can only comment on the preschool for 3 and 4 year olds. a Day at Challenger is very structured, the kids know what activity comes next and they like it. So much music and art incorporated into learning around themes, but also strong on basics like letters, sounds and numbers.
—Submitted by a parent

Posted January 17, 2009

Okay school. I didn't really like it. I sent my son there because his private school wasn't very good in curriculum so I sent him there because he was failing for lack of homework. First I was happy with the school but then I realized it didn't have many extra-curriculars. This disappointed me and also their standards aren't exactly what I expected. They pile you with 7 hours of homework or so! I recommend public school actually, if your child is smart then they should go to a public school with AP classes for the best of their education. Over an OK school. Staff and faculty are very nice.
—Submitted by a parent

Posted June 11, 2008

Update to my 11/25/05 review. With a few more years under our belts, my opinion of this environment has soured. It is perfect for self-motivated, visual-learning orientated students. However, my younger child is a kinesthetic learner, and the curriculum, teachers, and administrators are either unwilling or unable to reach out and teach these children. If you have a child who learns aurally or kinesthetically, this is not a good environment for them.
—Submitted by a parent

Posted April 4, 2008

I am a parent of a 3-yr preschooler. We are extremely happy with every aspect of our child's educational experience. He is excited every day about his learning experiences. The curriculum is varied and interesting. The school encourages learning at the child's pace. We are especially impressed with the extraordinary quality of the pre-school principal, who has been very responsive with every question we have made. We have heard only strong compliments of the school and teachers from other parents.
—Submitted by a parent

Posted January 11, 2008

My child has attended the Middlefield campus for 6 years. I have been extremely pleased with the quality of the program and its staff, the emphasis on setting high yet reasonable expectations for the students, and the overall organized, safe environment at the school. My child is excited to go to school every day. I would highly recommend this school for children who are excited about learning and highly motivated.
—Submitted by a parent

Posted July 25, 2007

I think school is great but I have very serious concern with the directors there. My son is going there for 8 months, but now I am planning pull out my son. My decision is mainly because of the behavior of the director. The staff there lacks complete professionalism. They think they are doing social Service and we are sending our kids there for free.
—Submitted by a parent

Posted May 29, 2007

My child attends the preschool at palo alto campus. She loves learning and everyday they learn by playing and singing. The school provides a safe environment for my child and I appreciate that. I like both her teachers. They are kind and caring. I would like for the kids to get more play time, they only get 40 min a day. Challenger is a controlled environment and if you like free play and learning from your peers for your child, this is not the school for you.
—Submitted by a parent

Posted May 12, 2007

Horrible school! We took out our kid from the school in a week. The teachers are not at all involved and the school in general is overall geared towards making money and not really caring about children.
—Submitted by a parent

Posted April 23, 2007

Challenger school's curriculum is great, but the quality of teachers at Middlefield campus is very low. They are not consistent with the school rules. Teachers do not appreciate creativity and independent projects. Their focus is always on students who are performing good and other kids started to feel they are not smart. Teachers complain about things which are very common mistakes (in academics) made by kids of that age group.
—Submitted by a parent

Posted January 16, 2007

I found the teacher to be very unprofessional and so is the principal as well. Very bad Elementary campus compared to other challenger campus. Pre-k/pre-school mgmt and teachers are very experienced and has a very good & caring principal.
—Submitted by a parent

Posted December 7, 2006

We were not happy with our local public school, so we decided to send our daughter to Kindergarten at Challenger. Going in, I was worried about others comments that the program is too rigid and acamdemic, but we have been very happy here. I think the school is best suited for highly motivated learners since they cater to the top learners, which is something I like for my child. In addition to the academics, I have found the teachers to be very enthusiastic and energetic. They have singing every day (which my daughter loves) as well as art projects, and if they are in the after school program, a variety of music, art, and sports activites (our daughter is currently doing soccer and piano). I don't thinkt the school is for everyone, because some parents think the workload is too much, but so far, we have not had that problem.
—Submitted by a parent

Posted June 16, 2006

Challenger's preschool program is one of the best. My 4 year old loves going to school. In addition to reading, writing, math, and science, Challenger School teaches and fosters basic good maner. The school uses art to complement science. For example, during the month where the theme is the Solar System, students will learn songs about the Solar System, create drawing of the 9 planets with their unique characteristics, etc. We are extremely satisfied with the program, and very impressed with how much our 4 year-old has learned. He now knows how to read, spell simple words, and adding numbers between 1 and 20. Shcool has a good formula to make learning fun. The only complaint (very minor) is there is not enough time spent in the playground (40 mins a day) Overall, preschool program is terrific, and those who could afford it should really consider Challenger Shcool.
—Submitted by a parent

Posted May 6, 2006

The quality of academic problems are in general good. Be aware of the quality of the teachers.
—Submitted by a parent

Posted March 15, 2006

My daughter has been at this campus for many years and we have had a different prinicple every year. I was happy with the school till this year.. Now I feel that no one is observent or takes the time out with the children
—Submitted by a parent

Posted May 5, 2005

This is a great school undoubtedly! My kid enjoys every moment spent on this school.
—Submitted by a parent

Posted February 20, 2005

Excellent acdemic program. Challenger provides rigourous academics program. Kids start reading simple words by Pre-K and become fluent readers by Kindergarten. The curriculum is intense but the teachers donot have very high level of experience. There are additional 'clubs' that children can join in after school for music art and sports. Very minimal parent involvement.
—Submitted by a parent

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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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Student ethnicity

Ethnicity This school
White 87%
American Indian/Alaska Native 2%
Black 2%
Hispanic 2%
Two or more races 2%
Hawaiian Native/Pacific Islander 0%
Source: NCES, 2009-2010

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3880 Middlefield Road
Palo Alto, CA 94303
Phone: (650) 213-8245


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