This is a safe place to share your honest opinions of a school, whether good or bad.
Posted January 15, 2015
- a community member
I'm a former student. I agree with the previous reviewer. Academically I've found some of the Pasadena area private schools to be superior to Clairbourn. I assume the expensive tuition is for the beauty of the campus. They won't question you if your child is absent a lot. As long as you pay your tuition, and your child has passing grades, they give you a lot of leeway. I also agree about the lack of diversity at the school. I was there for many years, but had only white teachers (this includes the principals and vice principals). The same 2 or 3 family names are always being touted, and having awards named after them, by the school. It seems like all of the descendants of these 3 families are employed by the school. Everyone who works here must be Christian Science. Their new image is to downplay the Christian Science aspect of the school. But as a student I heard about the religion , and witnessed aspects of it, every day. It is not a mainstream religion, despite the name. I witnessed, and heard, some strange things while a student at Clairbourn. Before considering the school, parents would do well to do some online research of Christian Science.
Academically, it is not going to offer anything better than the area public schools, San Marino for instance. So, at the end of the day, you're left wondering what all your tuition dollars are paying for exactly. All faculty come from the same Christian Science pool and the student body is severely lacking in diversity (think SGV). If you want a school that is full of social and fun things for the moms to do during the day, like literally hang out on campus all day, then this is the place for you. If you want to pay this kind of tuition and expect a substantial education for your child in return, then look elsewhere.
Probably the most beautiful lower school in all of San Gabriel valley. The staff is loving, caring, and pays attention to every child. From K to about 2nd grade, parents frequently wonder if their kids are learning because kids are not subjected to tons of homework; but I can assure everyone that kids in K-2 are learning through play (which is the best way to learn). Third grade is when academics pick up (but still manageable). In summary, if you measure academic success by the amount of homework your child receives, there are plenty of schools in the area that will bury kids in homework. If you want to join a community where parents get to know one another and kids learn through life experiences, then Clairbourn might be the place for you and your family. One other point to clarify - Christian Science is NOT Scientology. Everything they teach at school is about citizenship, how to be a great person, etc.
Clairbourn School has been excellent since the first time I have went there, In first grade. All the teachers are encouraging, and teach us a lot. Clairbourn is not too strict, but they teach the students not just by reading and extremely hard work, but also through more relaxing and energetic ways. I have seen people leave this school, and they ask me if I will leave, but I just say that I love Clairbourn so much! It is a great school and your children would love it.
Great school with a nurturing environment. My son has been there for 8 years and totally loving it. He is excited about going to school every day and that itself is rewarding for the parents. He is doing well in school and the students there are very well-behaved.
I have two young Cougars of my own there, and they love it. Emphasis on ethics, academics, art, technology, parent involvement and nurturing a student's individuality. Differentiated teaching for various learning styles present in many classrooms. Beautiful campus, energetic families association, abroad programs and week-long, team-building field trips for middle school. Service learning programs in place. Public speaking skills developed at daily chapel. Phenomenal library for a small school, great computer science lab, technology, including Smart Boards, in every classroom.
Childhood should be a time of fun and learning. My three kids have been at Clairbourn for several years and they truly learn a ton without having to do a marathon of homework. If you want your kids to be submerged in books for years, then Poly is probably the better chose (just look at the huge backpacks carried by the students there). If you want a relaxed environment where your kids learn through play, then this is it. If you think books is the only way to greatness in life, then I'd completely disagree (are all MBA grads from Harvard or Stanford millionaires? Answer is no. Success comes through intelligence, motivation, self interest, confidence - all of which Clairbourn develops for your kids)