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Presidio Hill School

Private | PK-8 | 200 students

Our school is the oldest continually operating progressive school in California.

 
 

Living in San Francisco

Situated in an inner city neighborhood. The median home value is $885,000. The average monthly rent for a 2 bedroom apartment is $1,670.

Source: Sperling's Best Places
 
Last modified
Community Rating

4 stars

Community Rating by Year
2014:
No new ratings
2013:
Based on 4 ratings
2012:
Based on 2 ratings
2011:
No new ratings

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22 reviews of this school


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Posted July 3, 2013

PHS is an extraordinary school. We've had two kids here for the past 3 years years, and we couldn't be happier with the quality of the education, the warmth and brightness of the children, and the connectedness and intelligence of the parent community. We looked at -- and were lucky to be accepted at -- many schools in San Francisco, and PHS was the clear winner. Scott Duyan, the head of school, is a true leader and his vision is setting the tone for the future. As someone who attended a broad range of private schools as well as great public schools growing up on the East Coast, I felt a certain amount of trepidation as we embarked on the journey of finding the right school for our kids. But PHS quickly put those fears to rest. And so far our children have blossomed here.
—Submitted by a parent


Posted June 9, 2013

Curriculum is uneven. PHS has poor leadership so some teachers do a wonderful job (with little support) and others collapse and allow disorder. The students have told me that their hippy teachers tell them to be free and then lose their tempers when the kids go too far. The kids get rough and there is a lot of bullying..
—Submitted by a parent


Posted March 19, 2013

I am a doctor, and I was looking for a very strong academic program that embraced progressive education, as well as provided a warm, nurturing environment for my two sons. Both of my children have attended this school since they were in the pre-K program. My oldest son graduated in 2005 and is now graduating from college. My younger son will graduate PHS in 2015. I am continually impressed by the caliber of teachers that instruct the students. I have watched the school grow over the years and PHS has managed to maintain its mission statement and provide an exemplary learning experience for its students. Over many years, I have seen the results of a PHS education: the graduates are upstanding, confident, poised, articulate, empathetic individuals with a world view toward other people and a love of learning, and they are fully prepared academically to excel in their high school and then college educations, and from there their choice of career. It is not easy for me financially to send my children to PHS, but I have been so impressed with the students who have attended and graduated from this wonderful school that it is a sacrifice I have been willing to make.
—Submitted by a parent


Posted February 5, 2013

My son started fifth grade this year, and overall he is quite happy. His teacher is excellent. The families are wonderful, and the other kids are all very interesting and diverse. The class seems to get along really well with one another. Homework - which used to be an issue - is now much better. Only nits: The physical size of the school is quite small in relation to the number of kids. It would be great to have PE more than twice a week, and it has to be a nearby playground. Hopefully a planned expansion will help alleviate the space problems.
—Submitted by a parent


Posted December 16, 2012

A school with inadequate supervision, inconsistent discipline and weak defensive leadership. Attracted by the promise of an experiential program and its great reputation, we are very disappointed. The message is strong but our middle school experience is characterized by chaos in the classroom, bullying, vandalism and demoralized teachers. In this liberal, progressive school parents are patronized and marginalized rather than included in the process of education. However, the parent community is wonderful and some of the teaching is superb. There are some dedicated and caring teachers, while other teachers are weak. Areas of excellence are humanities, science and the art program. Bottom line my child was not prepared adequately for High School, especially in Math. My child reported after a summer camp that the kids @ PHS are known to be 'Spoilt & Mean'. A shame that poor leadership allows a few out of control kids to destroy the reputation of a great school.
—Submitted by a parent


Posted November 4, 2012

Last year my child entered Presidio Hill with high hopes borne of a year in SFUSD middle school. For the first month or two he was pleased and relieved to find classes half the size of those in the public middle school, but soon he began telling his mother and me he felt school at PHS was like "being in a madhouse." While discipline in classrooms and the library can be so lax as to allow a chaos that interfers with curriculum, the kids are lectured about community, freedom and responsibility. His experience, and mine, is that the kids are then infantilized when they try to act responsibly independent and want to be treated as if they are in a community instead of in a typical hierarchical structure.
—Submitted by a parent


Posted October 3, 2009

This school teaches progressive education in a beautiful, nurturing, warm environment, by the best teachers in the city.
—Submitted by a parent


Posted September 24, 2009

PHS is the best school ever. I am a struggling parent and PHS has made my son's experience absolutely amazing. My son has demonstrated his understanding and attentiveness through PHS. GREAT SCHOOl!
—Submitted by a parent


Posted January 30, 2009

PHS Rocks! I can't say enough about this school--and I am very picky. My children are in K and 2nd and I would like to have had every teacher in the lower school for a teacher when I was a kid (Don't know Upper School well). The school draws the perfect line between being nurturing and loving, on the one hand, and intellectually challenging on the other. What is my favorite part about the school? I have so many I have to list three: (1) It is a very inclusive, nurturing and generous environment for all members of the community (students, teachers and parents alike); (2) they handle the problems that invariably arise with openness, intelligence and wisdom; (3) everyday it gives me a deep sense of joy to know that my children are going to a school that is just right for them. PHS is a dream come true.
—Submitted by a parent


Posted January 30, 2009

I am lucky enough to have two children at PHS. The class sizes are very small and the kids get a lot of individual attention. Both of my children's current teachers have over 20 years of teaching experience and are true professionals. They have seen a lot of kids and they know what they are doing. That puts us at ease!
—Submitted by a parent


Posted January 29, 2009

My daughter is a seventh grader at Presidio Hill School. We were fortunate enough to have her transfer there for middle school. Her experience there thus far has been exceptional. From the first day she arrived, she has thrived in the PHS community. The faculty, administration, and staff are amazing. They are responsive to the needs of all the children. The faculty is excellent and provides a challenging curriculum, but balances it with nurturing and responsivenes to the individual learning styles of each student. The school community is one of inclusion and acceptance. I believe that my daughter is getting an excellent education without being burned out. She is being taught to think critically, to self-advocate, take personal responsibility and to look beyond herself to serving the greater community. I cannot think of a finer placement for her. She is happy to go to PHS every day.
—Submitted by a parent


Posted January 29, 2009

PHS addresses all aspects of a child's education. The academics are rigorous yet flexible enough to allow each child to learn in the way that works best for them, to really master the information, and the faculty is truly amazing. PHS also has a really effective 'social curriculum,' something a of other schools lack, which helps kids learn how to behave, how to treat each, and how to grow into socially responsible people. The school is full of great kids, and part of the reason they are so great is that they learn how to be that way via the social curriculum. If you haven't seen PHS, you should visit. You'll feel the difference the minute you come in the door.
—Submitted by a parent


Posted January 29, 2009

PHS is a wonderful, small-sized independent school with a very intimate feeling, where children are encouraged to develop a love for learning and truly learn HOW to learn. Contrary to the No Child Left Behind program - which in reality has become the No Child Left Un-Tested approach found in the majority of other schools, the PHS teaching community excels in fostering and nurturing the individual child and prepares students for the realities of the world that surrounds them. At Presidio Hill School, children are encouraged to develop as kind, global citizens and independent thinkers, with a strong sense of confidence and a profound ability to express themselves in public. I couldn t be more satisfied with a K-8 program in the San Francisco area; see it for yourself when you visit the school.
—Submitted by a parent


Posted November 14, 2008

Participation of the parents are really amazing and every students have confidece for themselves for being who you are.This is a very unique,special school to encourage strength of every single student.
—Submitted by a parent


Posted October 28, 2008

I do not recommend this school because the curriculum is not really focused and organized although the school discusses their commitment to interdisciplinary studies, it does not really happen. The homework assigned is not stepped up in Middle School to prepare the students for the challenges of high school. The students are largely an undisciplined group and the teachers do not issue the bright lines of behavior expectations. They advertise themselves as an accepting environment but that only holds true if you are part of 'their' part of the spectrum of cultural beliefs.


Posted July 4, 2007

PHS has what many schools lack: a sense of connection for the kids to 'their' community and relevant learning that is not scripted. Kids are allowed to develop at their own pace, and develop a sense of social responsibility and their love of learning is fostered, not forced and irrelevant - like doing tons of pointless worksheets.
—Submitted by a former student


Posted January 3, 2007

This school is the best you can do and there are really great teachers and staff all very friendly and generous. The math teacher is the best teacher and the humanities teacher rocks my socks and the other classes are great. Also you can talk to anybody you cant to better than presidio hill school
—Submitted by a student


Posted December 28, 2006

My daughter attends and she loves going to school everyday school. Teachers are dedicated and loving. Parents are all very supportive.
—Submitted by a parent


Posted May 21, 2006

Excellent academics in lower grades; Small and loving environment. Very high parent involvement. Middle school in transition.
—Submitted by a parent


Posted September 19, 2005

Strong academic, similar to Montessori, and excellent high school enrollments.
—Submitted by a parent


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.

About these ratings

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.

We currently do not have any test score information for this school. Unlike public schools, private schools are not always required to report data about their schools or not required to take the same tests as public schools. Many private schools take different standardized tests; however, that information is often made available only to families of enrolled students. We strive to acquire additional private school data whenever available.

Student ethnicity

Ethnicity This school
White 56%
Two or more races 21%
Asian 9%
Hispanic 9%
Black 6%
American Indian/Alaska Native 0%
Hawaiian Native/Pacific Islander 0%
Source: NCES, 2009-2010

Teacher resources

Special staff resources available to students Assistant principal(s)
Art teacher(s)
College counselor(s)
Computer specialist(s)
Instructional aide(s)/coach(es)
Librarian/media specialist(s)
Math specialist(s)
Music teacher(s)
PE instructor(s)
Poetry/Creative writing teacher(s)
Reading specialist(s)
Teacher aid/assistant teacher
Foreign languages spoken by school staff Spanish
Read more about programs at this school
Source: Provided by a school official.

Special education / special needs

Level of special education programming offered
  • None - the school offers no services
Extra learning resources offered
  • Differentiated learning programs

Science, Technology, Engineering, & Math (STEM)

Specific academic themes or areas of focus
  • Mathematics
  • Science
  • Technology
Staff resources available to students
  • Computer specialist(s)
  • Math specialist(s)
School facilities
  • Access to farm or natural area
  • Computer lab
Clubs
  • Gardening

Arts & music

Specific academic themes or areas of focus
  • Arts (all)
  • Music
  • Performing arts
  • Visual arts
Staff resources available to students
  • Art teacher(s)
  • Music teacher(s)
  • Poetry/Creative writing teacher(s)
School facilities
  • Art room
Visual arts
  • Ceramics
  • Drawing / sketching
  • Painting
  • Sculpture
Music
  • Choir / Chorus
  • Instrumental music lessons
  • Rock band
  • Theory
  • Vocal lessons / coaching
Performing and written arts
  • Creative writing
  • Drama
  • Poetry
Clubs
  • Yearbook

Language learning

Foreign languages taught
  • Spanish
Foreign languages spoken by staff
  • Spanish

Health & athletics

Staff resources available to students
  • Instructional aide(s)/coach(es)
  • PE instructor(s)
School facilities
  • Access to farm or natural area
  • Kitchen
  • Multi-purpose room ("cafegymatorium")
Clubs
  • Gardening
School leaders can update this information here.

School basics

School start time
  • 8:20 am
School end time
  • 3:30 pm
Before school or after school care / program onsite
  • Before school: starts at 8:00 a.m.
  • After school: ends at 6:00 p.m.
School Leader's name
  • Kelly Dees
Best ways for parents to contact the school
  • Email
Age at which early childhood or Pre-K program begins
  • 4 years old
Gender
  • Coed
Boarding options
  • Day school
Is there an application process?
  • Yes
Affiliation
  • Nonsectarian
Associations
  • NAIS

Programs

Instructional and/or curriculum models used

Don't understand these terms?
  • Project-based
Specific academic themes or areas of focus

Don't understand these terms?
  • Arts (all)
  • Environmental
  • Global
  • Humanities
  • Mathematics
  • Music
  • Performing arts
  • Science
  • Service learning
  • Social justice
  • Technology
  • Visual arts
Bi-lingual or language immersion programs offered

Don't understand these terms?
  • No
Level of special education programming offered
  • None - the school offers no services
Foreign languages taught
  • Spanish
Level of ESL/ELL programming offered
  • None

Resources

Staff resources available to students
  • Art teacher(s)
  • Assistant principal(s)
  • College counselor(s)
  • Computer specialist(s)
  • Instructional aide(s)/coach(es)
  • Librarian/media specialist(s)
  • Math specialist(s)
  • Music teacher(s)
  • PE instructor(s)
  • Poetry/Creative writing teacher(s)
  • Reading specialist(s)
  • Teacher aid/assistant teacher
Foreign languages spoken by staff
  • Spanish
Extra learning resources offered
  • Differentiated learning programs
  • Learning Specialists on staff
  • Mentoring
Transportation options
  • None
School facilities
  • Access to farm or natural area
  • Art room
  • Audiovisual aids
  • Computer lab
  • Internet access
  • Kitchen
  • Library
  • Multi-purpose room ("cafegymatorium")
Partnerships with local resources and organizations

The Neighborhood (after school program)

About the program
  • Our afterschool enrichment program includes, unstructured free time as well as structured activities, arts & crafts, study hall and snack. We have many subcontractors on the premises that offer a range of classes including, music, movie making, martial arts, Mandarin language, cooking, yoga etc.
Types of activities
  • Academic
  • Arts
Operated by
  • Cherie Lockwood
Days offered
  • Thursday
  • Wednesday
  • Tuesday
  • Monday
  • Friday
Start time
  • 3:00 pm
End time
  • 6:00 pm
Is enrollment limited to students who attend the school?
  • Yes
What grades can participate?
  • K-8
Is there a fee for the program?
  • Yes
Is financial aid available?
  • Yes
How can parents find out more about fees?
  • Call
Phone number
  • 415-751-9318
School leaders can update this information here.

Sports

Boys sports
  • Basketball
  • Cross country
  • Soccer
  • Volleyball
Girls sports
  • Basketball
  • Cross country
  • Soccer
  • Volleyball

Arts & music

Visual arts
  • Ceramics
  • Drawing / sketching
  • Painting
  • Sculpture
Music
  • Choir / Chorus
  • Instrumental music lessons
  • Rock band
  • Theory
  • Vocal lessons / coaching
Performing arts
  • Creative writing
  • Drama
  • Poetry
Media arts
  • None

Student clubs

Clubs (distinct from courses)
  • Book/reading club
  • Community service
  • Gardening
  • Interschool Dances
  • Yearbook
School leaders can update this information here.

Upcoming Events

No upcoming events found for this school
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School culture

Dress Code
  • Dress code
Bullying policy
  • This school has a bullying and/or cyber bullying policy in place.
Parent involvement
  • Attend parent nights
  • Chaperone school trips
  • Coach sports teams or extracurricular activities
  • Join PTO/PTA
  • Organize cultural events
  • Organize fundraising events (school auction, bake sales, etc.)
  • Present special topics during curricular units
  • Serve on school improvement team or governance council
  • Volunteer in the classroom
More from this school
  • Presidio Hills prides itself on its inclusive culture and commitment to reflecting the diverse mosaic that is San Francisco.
School leaders can update this information here.

Apply

 

TIP: Don't forget to ask about documents required for enrollment, such as your child's birth certificate, proof of address, or a record of immunizations.

 
Apply now
 

What does it cost?

Tuition range for the 2013-2014 school year
$20000 - $25000
Vouchers accepted
No
Financial aid offered
Yes.
School-based aid
Outside scholarships
Notice an inaccuracy? Let us know!

3839 Washington St
San Francisco, CA 94118
Website: Click here
Phone: (415) 751-9318

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