High staff and student turnover. The kids are not happy. The teachers complain. Not enough active outside play-time. A common punishment consists of the entire class missing recess. (Counterintuitive..it just makes the kids that much more rambunctious)
While I appreciate the challenging curriculum, the teaching style is geared toward memorization rather than critical thinking. My child will get a perfect score on a spelling test for which we spent a week memorizing the words, later to be reading a story where a spelling word comes up and he has forgotten it. More current teaching styles make lessons relevant, by relating them to real life situations. The students really learn and retain the information better that way.
The curriculum seems geared toward test questions rather than teaching our kids to be smart, thoughtful, creative, well-rounded people. Not money well spent.
My daughter started pre-k in the middle of the school year. She immediately loved this school. Her teachers worked with her and with us to help her catch up. She is now in kinder and continues to say she loves her school. It is academically challenging, but the teachers do their best to instruct in a fun way. Kindergarteners have a weekly spelling exam and two math exams. All the staff greet the children and most know all the kids by name. The principals are wonderfully caring people who work with the children and parents. They do all they can do so that a child enjoys being at school. I am very happy to have my child here. I know she is getting an excellent education, where she can be herself and express her ideas. She has a strong caring relationship with her classmates and with other children in the school. I hope to continue her academics at Stratford even though it is a 30 min commute for us but it is worth the drive to know my child is happy and getting a great education.
I enrolled my son my son in stratford for kindergarden, and it was the most stressful year any parent could imagine. Stratford is not a school for children to teach children it is an evil corporation
that eliminates children for not being perfect. It does not want or care for a complete child it only wants one thing a child it feels can test well and not have opinions or be an individual it wants robot children, who walk and talk in straight line and don't deviate from what they think is the Norm. Which when talking to a learning specialist concerned her.She said Stratford had unrealistic expectations,and flawed opinions of what young children should know. Can you imagine 2months into the school year that a school would say that you may need to find a new school because your child has poor penmanship or is reversing letters. He just started kindergarten, and they were already writing him off. Well by the end of the year my son was writing and kept up with the class he even tested above mid yr first grade on their star testing. Good right not for them his wring is not neat enough and he didn't test in 2nd grade level. If you send your child there be prepared for your child never to build relationships with other children because they have a high turnover rate of people leaving either by them or disappointed parents. they are like a sci movie where people disappear and never come back.Their is no sense of community children don't seem happy. They may have the quiet good students but they will never have leaders or people who create and think out of the box. I decided to send my child some place new that will help him flourish and guide, and support him, not write him off. Stratford does not have support for children at all, most other private schools do have some kind of support for students who may struggle with something. they do not, nor do they want to have one. It is also important to know that teachers do not stay there as well, the credentialed teachers leave because they too are not happy there. As I stated before it's corporate environment of stress and statistics,not of support and a true passion for teaching. Children are (a test score) not human beings. The last day of school 4 teachers/ caregivers asked me if he was returning, I told them he was not. They were genuinely upset and said my son was one of their favorite students and will miss him
I may not like the school administration, but I loved his teachers. They helped him and encouraged him, he learned a lot from them. They told me he was very intelligent, he may struggled with his writing but he was above with his social skills, memory, history. Skills you can't test in standard testing, or Stratford Testing.
My daughter goes to Stratford school for a few year, and both of us couldn't be happier with the school. It gives a log of challenges in academics but all (most) kids don't have any difficulties follow the program. New topics are explained in "kids-friendly" manner so students can get it faster and remember for longer. They are definitely at least 1 year ahead of other students their age in public schools. They promote great discipline, sometimes maybe too much but I see big difference by looking on those kids that were difficult to calm down for even few minutes. Very clean and open classes, kids and their parents are great to deal with. I would HIGHLY recommend this school.
My child was entrolled in Camp Socrates and Kindergarten. The school is lacking strong leadership(horrible principal) and has very poor communication. It appears to be a very immature staff of teachers which maybe ok for preschool but horrible for grade school. The office staff seem very fake and probably talk about you as you walk out of the door. We left the program feeling as if the program let down our child and family. It also has a heafty price tag and no delivery! Not recommended!
My daughter is enrolled in the Kindergarten Camp Socrates. She s thriving academically, but some basics are missing. They do not encourage basic hygiene - I wish they would encourage hand-washing before and after lunch and washing around the mouth after. They also added a new teacher after two-weeks without notifying the parents. The office staff has this sort of fake-pleasant attitude, but you feel like their rolling their eyes at you as soon as you leave as if you are always in their way. I also feel one teacher knows little about young children. She often looks frustrated and as if she can t wait until the end of the day and there seems to be no continuation between what was encouraged in pre-school (hygiene, expectations for lunch and snack). There also seems to be a lack of acknowledgement that some kids are experiencing Kindergarten for the first time, and may not know the expectations of recess and limited time for lunch! I hope the regular Kindergarten experience is better because my daughter really likes going to school and often comes home singing the songs she has learned.
When we first came to Stratford, we had a positive experience. The pre-K program was wonderful for my child. We were not going to even look at the school for elementary school (the feel of the whole place was too 'corporate' for our tastes), but we found that we liked the principal and the teachers, so decided to stick with it. Then there was a quick announcement of a leadership change over the summer, to our surprise. (They didn't even have a vice principal until the school year began.) I would have to say that at this point, the school is lacking good leadership and we ultimately have had a very disappointing experience. We have left the school feeling as if they really failed my child and our family. Some of the teachers are quite good. The program is academically strong, but there are some really odd things going on---can you imagine a group of kindergarten kids eating lunch in silence (while a group of not very nice adults 'police' the room)? There is an outdoor space that isn't very large and no green space at all. Overall, it reminded me of Catholic School without the religion and the community.
My 4 years son loves Stratford very much and looks forward to going to school each morning. He wakes up like an alarm clock, dresses himself, and rushes me out the door because he wants to be the first one to be ins class. He comes home very happy each day. My husband and I couldn't be happier. We love Stratford very much too. The principal, teachers, and staffs are all very involved, caring, and motivating. Stratford is all around an excellent school. If I can give it more than 5 stars I would.