It has now been one year since we moved our kids to Carden. Our experience and our children's experience has been great, many times more than we hoped for or expected. Not only do our children learn the basic reading writing math skills we were thrilled to see our second grader participate in football, track and basketball programs. Sports are offered from 1st grade on for both boys and girls. There is also a music program and they have three formal concerts a year. It is wonderful to be at a place where your children can have a well rounded full educational experience. I cannot say enough about the efforts of the staff, the place feels like a extended family everyone cares.
My daughter was there for a couple of years. She came from a charter school in the area, and transferring to Carden was more difficult than we thought. She did well at her previous school, but Carden was more convenient to our jobs so we made the move... But it turned out to be a struggle. By the end, my daughter was afraid of making mistakes because of the way her teacher would react. They have an old idea of teaching, they teach the same way they taught me 30 years ago. Time to adapt to the changes in eduction. Books are outdated and now that I've moved to the Elk Grove school district, I feel like I wasted money at this school. My mistake, I was a Carden faithful because of my experience there as a child, error on my part.
Additionionally, we struggled so much with her last teacher, she begged me to take her out. From the teacher punishing her for "eating lunch to slow," to my daughter coming home crying because her teacher didn't like her and was a bully. That broke my heart and I knew I had to make a choice, the safety and sanity of my child was at stake. As an educator, I would assume your job is to build a child up, not break them down. Middle of the school year my daughter struggled with seeing the board, she did not mention it to me, but did to her teacher. Instead of clarifying with the student about her trouble seeing the board, my daughter was reprimanded. When I took my daughter in for her next eye appointment she was given a prescription for glasses, she smiled and said "see, I told my teacher I couldn't see." I then asked what she was talking about and heard from her how she was told she was a liar and disruptive and just couldn't pay attention...
It seems that this school is more of a safe haven now for children that may not have done well at other schools. The "bad kids" seem to be held on an easier standard, the "good kids" were sent to the office just as much as the tougher kids on campus. The declining enrollment speaks directly to the leadership of the school, kids don't stay here to long, there also seems to be a high turnover of teachers, at least the good ones... I can now say I see why.
Some children needed more discipline. Smaller class sizes is good of course, but it also makes for an elite feeling with kids that feel like they have gotten over on their teachers. My daughter, in all honesty is a good kid, I wish she would get in a little trouble as a life lesson sometimes, but I don't think students here are held accountable for their behavior when it is bad and really needing accountability. The good kids are in trouble just as much as the bad kids, I feel like it is because enrollment a low and Mr. Cone is afraid to punish them for fear their parents will take them and their $$ from the school.
My daughter was here for a few years, and our experience was anything but pleasant. Over this time, she struggled both in class and with her self-esteem. We originally were at a charter school in the area, she consistently made the honor roll and was "a pleasure to have in class" on all of her reports. At Carden, she struggled academically, she was still the same sweet girl, and it wasn't that Carden was overly challenging. Realistically, I feel Carden is academically stunted. I went there 25+ years ago, they are still using the same methods of teaching... It's the "Carden way." They have outdated text books some of their teachers, the better ones, actually go online to print out worksheets to help the students adjust to the times of today.
My daughter specifically struggled with her most recent teacher the most. It was a challenging year for us, my daughter would come home crying, felt her teacher disliked her and that she was basically a bully. As an educator, I feel it is important to build up a students self esteem and character, not break them down. She was verbally aggressive, even punished for "eating to slow" at one point. There was a point that my daughter, who sat in the back of the class, complained to her teacher that she couldn't see. She didn't mention it to me until I took her to her annual appointment where she was prescribed glasses, she smiled at me and said "see, I told my teacher I couldn't see!" I asked her what she meant and she described how her teacher basically called her a liar, reprimanded her for being distracting by telling her she couldn't see the board. When I asked her what she said to the teacher, she said basically, "can I move to the front of the class, I can't see the homework." And the teacher reprimanded her, I asked if it was rude, in the middle of the teaching, she told me no, she was polite and raised her hand... And I believe her. I didn't pull her out in the middle of the school year because I felt she needed to go through this tough part with this teacher, build some character, kids can't just have easy teachers. This teacher was more than tough. Now that we are in the Elk Grove school district, my daughter loves going to school, she loves her new teacher and carries herself with more confidence then before. The enrollment of the school is down, kids don't stay long, now I know why.
I will say that
Carden School of Sacramento is a hidden gem!! I really wish more people knew of this school because they're missing out on putting their kids in an amazing environment! My daughter just finished her first year at this school and I couldn't be more pleased with how well she's done.
This is my daughter's third year at Carden. Confidence, ownership, respect and unity are instilled from day one. The older children genuinely want to mentor the younger and the younger thrive on it. Each teacher knows each child and starts developing a relationship with them long before the classroom. The after school team goes so far beyond "babysitting" and the cost is included in the tuition. My daughter asks me not to pick her up until 6:00pm a lot of nights. Miss Roberts and Mr. Cone are extraordinary. They care about your children and take a special interest in their development. I am a single parent. My daughter has an absent father, therefore I firmly believe it takes a village. Carden is our little village. I don't feel alone raising my child with the wonderful staff and parents I have experienced here. One month here and you won't want to leave...ever. Did I mention I am a Carden School graduate? I understand what Carden has to offer as a student and now as a parent. I couldn't wait to get Sophia enrolled. My 8th grade teacher still teaches at Carden!!! Hope this review was helpful. Give your child one month at Carden and just watch...
Carden School of Sacramento is great!!!! The small school size and individualized attention is great. The teachers are very caring and concerned and they know the Carden method. My son actually enjoys going to school everyday. The students get music, French, and computer classes in addition to the regular curriculum. They have a nice sports program. In 7th and 8th grade, the students take trips to Washington, DC and Francophile Canadian cities. The students put on special performances two or three times a year. The graduation ceremony each year is worth the price of tuition by itself. This is truly an excellent school.
We love Carden and couldn't be happier. The class sizes are small, 20 maximum. Compare that to most public schools in Sacramento currently with 30-35 kids per class. The Carden method of teaching is wonderful. The teachers are amazing! Both my children have continuously achieved above average on their SAT tests. Structure and moral values are also taught on campus. Most often when Carden students are on field trips or attending a class birthday party, the children are praised for their respect for others and good behavior .