JCHS has plusses and minuses. Plusses: GREAT teachers and one of the absolute best theater departments in the country; also a wonderful sports program. It's a small community, which can be positive or negative depending on your child's needs. The academic program is rigorous and interesting for most kids. The school definitely helps the children become strong creative and critical thinkers, and the college guidance is awesome. Minuses: If you're not very religious it can be a problem. There are a few ultra religious pockets of the school that are not as welcoming to less religious Jews as they should be. Also, being forced to take several years of Hebrew (without an option for, say, Spanish) is problematic for many families.
My son is now in his senior year at JCHS. He has been very happy, and received a fine education in both secular and Jewish studies. We have minor complaints (who doesn't). Some of JCHS's pluses: this school serves the community - there is a solid middle class that is lacking at many independent schools; many wonderful devoted teachers who go way beyond what they need to do; a great theatre program, and a pretty reasonable sports program given the school size; the small size works great for some kids, less for other kids but it allows for an amazing intimate education with lots of perks from small class sizes, school journeys. I would recommend this school to anyone who is interested in a great school but you must accept that it is a Jewish school with a dual curriculum, so not for everyone - but even if you don't think you want that, it's worth a look.
We find it difficult to believe that a parent had a negative experience with JCHS and especially Marsha Levin. She and JCHS have been amazingly accomodating, receptive and informative towards out family. We are extremely happy with the school.
Phenomenal school in almost any aspect. If one thing is certain, it is that EVERYONE that comes back to visit says that they were completely prepared for college and everything it threw at them. This, mixed with the genuinely amazing we students have every day, makes JCHS a great place for any student in the Jewish Community.
My child applied for JCHS. All other independent private schools we applied to waived our application fee based on our family income; JCHS did not waive the $75 fee. Marcia Levin, Admissions, gave us the results of our admission in a rude and demoralizing voice message on our home phone!!! Wrote to the Head Rabbi to complain about the way we were treated, and received no response. Just can't get past the way that JCHS treated us. They might PRETEND to care about community, but it seems that they only care about their OWN community. No respect for others who don't fit into their little buddble. No Tikkun Olam here.
The best school environment one could hope for. Fabulous, caring teachers, beautiful school building, everything well-planned and well-done. I am delighted with the education my daughter is receiving at JCHS.
What JCHS does best, is combine the incredible education with its amazing sense of community and awareness. It teaches its students (for which I am forever greatful) how to take advantage of all opportunities presented to them. The teachers always have their doors open and are ready to meet with students as soon as the students ask. They deeply care about each and every teenager at the school and will do everything in their capabilities to help them succeed. The school also promotes community service and leadership in a way that will prepare the students for the outside world. There are many leadership opportunities stemming from the many clubs and vaads (clubs with a community service theme) that JCHS offers. It is a fun way for students to learn and develop the leadership skills they will need for the future. JCHS really is setting every student up for future successes.
Wow. What a school. I would dare to say my daughter is getting the best education available in the SF Bay Area. I couldn't be more impressed at the quality of the instruction and the supportive environment. Amazing school.
JCHS is an amazing school for a student to develop confidence, a sense of connectedness, and a sense of accomplishment from working hard in a demanding academic program. Standards are very high and by and large students rise to the challenge. The small school environment means students have ready access to many excellent teachers. All teachers make themselves available to spend extra time with students if needed, including traveling around the bay area to hold study sessions on Sundays with kids before exams! This school is truly a blessing.
There is a kid at JCHS who got a perfect score in math in the private high school entrance exam and he could have got into any school. He chose JCHS because the warm environment is encouraging, the teachers are excellent, and the students feel a real sense of community. Also the sports teams are doing really well!