Advertisement
Advertisement

Challenger-Almaden School

Private | K-8

Student diversity

Looks like we have no information about the race or ethnicity of the student body.

 
 

Living in San Jose

Situated in a suburban neighborhood. The median home value is $823,500. The average monthly rent for a 2 bedroom apartment is $1,630.

Source: Sperling's Best Places
Last modified
Community Rating

4 stars

Community Rating by Year
2014:
Based on 1 rating
2013:
Based on 1 rating
2012:
Based on 1 rating
2011:
Based on 6 ratings

Sweep tile
No Purchase Necessary. Void where prohibited. Sweepstakes begins at 12:00:00 AM Pacific Time (PT) on April 1, 2014 and ends at 11:59:59 on April 30, 2014 (the “Promotion Period”). Open to legal residents of the U.S. and D.C., 13 years and older. Each school that receives a new, published review will get one (1) entry into the sweepstakes, up to ten (10) entries throughout the Promotion Period. See the Official Rules for details. Sponsor: GreatSchools, 1999 Harrison St., Suite 1100, Oakland, CA 94612.

Rate this school

Click on stars to rate
Please select a star rating for this school.
    Helpful reviews answer questions:
  • What do you think others should know?
  • What do you like?
  • How could your school improve?
    Review Guidelines
    GreatSchools won’t post reviews that contain:
  • Inappropriate language
  • Allegations of criminal conduct
  • Names of students, teachers or staff
1200 characters remaining
Please read and accept our Terms of Use to join GreatSchools.
Please indicate your relationship to the school.
Registration is required to post your anonymous review
We will not display your name, photo or email address with your review.
OR
Your email address will never be published or shared.
Indicates a required field

32 reviews of this school


Sort by:
Show reviews by:
Posted January 23, 2014

The Alamden Mckean campus is very nice. The teachers are excellent but the supporting staff is rude. I have heard of instances where kids have been yelled at by the staff and administration does nothing. This mostly includes the staff that watches the kids at lunch and also in extended care. This staff also teases the kids. Nothing is done by administration and no monitoring of this staff at all. My child goes to this campus.
—Submitted by a parent


Posted June 15, 2013

I have a middle schooler at this school and I am extremely satisfied. Small classes, very rigorous academic curriculum, Students that have good morals and standards of behavior. The teachers care, assignments are hard, but that is what you would expect from a good private school. It is out of the way, but it is one of the best middle schools in the Bay Area.
—Submitted by a parent


Posted August 21, 2012

I have spent the first 2.5 years of my child's life searching for a place to put her during the day but, was not satisfied with the level of service until I came across Challenger. I waited till she was 3 and placed her in the preschool program at this location. When she turned 4, first day of school there was a complete change in the administrative staff to where I knew no one, the teacher in the classroom also changed. No forewarning, no announcement. The 'deal with it' attitude has been progressively present with the new headmaster. There is no transparency. When my daughter started Kindergarten, again there was a change in staff. so you will always be disappointed from the excitement that a teacher you know your child will love and look forward to having will not be there. Isn't that what makes the successful child, a great teacher? I have not gotten that since she was 3. Academically, you can go to any campus and they have the exact same cirriculum across the board. When there is nepotism, and unfairness it is something that parents should not tolerate. I have moved my child to Harwood campus eventually moving her out of the Challenger system all together.
—Submitted by a parent


Posted November 16, 2011

We moved our child out from a highly regarded public school (Williams) to Challenger. What a huge difference! Challenger provides a much better teacher-to-student ratio, teachers who provide positive encouragement to the students and supportive administration. My child is making leaps and bounds in studies at Challenger. Finally, we are saving our sanity because we can finally get rid of the constant bombardment of volunteer and funding requests from the public school.
—Submitted by a parent


Posted August 13, 2011

We've had a tremendously positive experience with Challenger Almaden. The class sizes, family feel, teachers, administration and extended care staff couldn't be better. Initially I was concerned that this school would be purely academic. I was wrong - my 1st grader couldn't be happier with the music, speech and art program. I recommend this school to anyone that will listen. No, parents don't have daily in class involvement. But, I feel that parental involvement inside the class room can just as well be a hinderance rather than a help. I know that the teacher, principal and staff are very open to communication and will let me know if anything is amiss with either of my girls.
—Submitted by a parent


Posted July 16, 2011

We recently put our children in Challenger and so far the dedication by the staff and headmistress has been outstanding. They have helped acclimate our children to the Challenger curriculum with extra support. Our children have made significant progress academically with the Challenger curriculum and I feel confident they will continue to progress. We were previously at a very highly regarded public school and another private school and were very concerned about their core reading and basic math skills. But now we feel confident that they are on track to perform well.
—Submitted by a parent


Posted June 27, 2011

We have been at this school for the last 8 years. Last year has seen a significant change for the better. The new middle school teachers are exceptional. They were willing to mentor the kids even if this was outside of the normal school time. The educational standard is fantastic. Kids from last year were addmitted to all prestigious schools in bay area: Harker, bellarmine, mitty, Saint francis, presentation, Valley and not only that but they got into Algebra 2, Honors for English and History... One of the strong points of this school is to teach the children to be independent. and this means educating the kid to take his homework home, to speak for himself at school, to not be afraid to speak in front of others.Our kids have achieved that. Do not be discouraged by the smaller class sizes. It is a benefit that there is more time for the teachers to pay attention to your kid. We considered leaving the school last year but since the new principal and group of teachers joined the school we are very happy with the direction this school is going. I wish the school would spend more effort publicizing the great academic results they are getting. Btw 5th grade teacher is fantastic!
—Submitted by a parent


Posted March 30, 2011

I have had a son and daughter at this school, we have been there for about the last 7 years. Over that time the school has really gone down hill. Too much corporate interference has changed a fun exciting school into the sad place it is today. Many parents obviously feel the same way as the number of children at this school has plummeted. For us the final straw came when all the middle school teachers left last year and I was one of 9 parents to withdraw my child. My child was in a class of 11, there are now 2 children in 7 th grade at this Challenger. We moved to Stratford, San Jose Middle School and WOW! what an improvement, I cannot praise Stratford enough - I wish we had moved sooner. I have one child left at Challenger, in 5th grade, the teacher is not great and I was very concerned. Unfortunately I was right to worry and now I just can't wait until we can leave. There are some great teachers at Challenger ( 3rd & 4th) and some very poor ones, as there is only one class per year it makes a huge difference. The new principle is doing her best, but the damage has already been done and it will take a while before things improve.
—Submitted by a parent


Posted March 10, 2011

My kid has been here for 7 years. If you read past reviews across campuses, Challenger went through some changes in the past few years, driven by Corporate and not well received (or even well communicated). We stuck it out (after checking out public school and other privates) because we believe the curriculum is excellent, and at our campus, our child has had excellent teachers. This year, we have a new principal (aka headmaster) who is NOT new to Challenger. She is well organized and works hard to ensure that parents and the children are happy and that kids are successful. She is responsive to all my questions. She doesn't come across as warm and fuzzy, but she can manage the school well. Administratively, changes have been positive and rules made by Corporate in previous years seemed to have lightened up. Challenger provides a solid academic education. Each campus has a different feel...this one is small and has more of a family feel to it with all the kids and teachers knowing each other. I gave "parent involvement" 1 star only because there isn't really volunteer opportunity - but as a working parent, that works for me.
—Submitted by a parent


Posted June 23, 2009

The school administration does not care about parents' ideas or concerns. This past school year, the two second grade classes were merged into one (about 27 students). Also, the two third grade classes were merged into one (about 29 students). The merging of classes was done without informing parents of the change. This is only a small example of the many changes that the school administration implements without informing parents. This school truly has a take-it or leave-it mentality.
—Submitted by a parent


Posted May 12, 2009

The school is pretty good and all, it has good academics and great P.E. and art programs, but the music programs don't allow children to show their acting ability, just singing. Also, many awards (especially Scholarships) are given out based on favoritism, which is how the school is based. But, this school has good teachers and a great academic program!
—Submitted by a student


Posted February 22, 2009

Teachers either didn't teach or just gave the students recess. Come test day, all the students failed and the teachers would yell at us as to how we could have failed when the teacher 'spent so much time teaching' us. The management was quite rood, and students whose parents complained were treated harshly (grades lowered for no reason, etc.). Bias is very blatant, and socially the students are horrible. Students put down each other based on 'popularity' and even the teachers seem to play along. Overall it is a total waste of money. I came into high school completely unprepared.
—Submitted by a student


Posted September 16, 2008

My sons have been going here for several years. i believe that they have both benefitted tremendously from their exprience at Challenger. Sure, the school has high expectations, but why waste time at a school that does not? I wanted my children to be prepared for the world out there, and the school has definitely met that expectation. The children are confident and enjoy their work, their teachers are great, and they have had fun while learning.
—Submitted by a parent


Posted May 4, 2008

This school is fantastic. I have four children here, and they all have great teachers, and they are all very highly motivated by the approach.
—Submitted by a parent


Posted April 28, 2008

I love this school, specially their preschool program. All three of my kids went there, I wouldn't sent them any place else to get a real education. Challenger takes students, education and fun seriously.
—Submitted by a parent


Posted August 2, 2007

I know Challenger may not have the best teachers, (public schools have credentials for their teachers to meet) and that has been a huge problem. Once the new campuses like Harwood and Shawnee get settled, they'll start coming up with new teachers. Our beloved Mrs. Hamstra left us. I know Challenger is probably the safest school around. In my opinion, it's just a matter of how hard they push and not the teachers. Although Challenger pushes a little too much, it makes it a hell of a lot easier in high school. I think it's worth keeping your child in for the rest of middle school.
—Submitted by a parent


Posted February 15, 2007

Our daughter is in Pre-K at Almaden and will be starting K in fall 07. We could not be more pleased. We compared Williams and Graystone (via class visits, tours, research, etc) before making this decision. We are pleased that the majority of students are of color and that the level of graduate education amongst parents is very high. These were two key variables that factored into our decision. If your child is focused, likes structure and you expect them to excel academically, then this school is for you.
—Submitted by a parent


Posted June 11, 2006

the academics are good,with a well rounded art,music and sports program available year round.parent involvement depends on the individual teachers.
—Submitted by a parent


Posted June 4, 2006

This is definitely a great school! They really take care of the academics and in my opinion that's most critical part for any child during this development stage. I will sincerely recommend this school.
—Submitted by a parent


Posted April 28, 2006

Both of my children have been going to Challenger since they were 3 years old. They love it. They are in first grade now and the academic load is really noticable for my child that works slowly. However, for my faster worker, the homework is no problem. I really love that they focus on academics and don't waste time with any political or social programs. They do, however, instill a sense of patriotism and kindness to others through songs and reading material. They also study art, computers, music and afterschool programs. The atmosphere at school is friendly, but strict. Every day when I drop them off, they are greeted by name with a hug from a teacher. They are not allowed to talk while eating lunch. Lots of drills with fun music. They always come home happy--but exhausted.
—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.

Oops! We currently do not have any student information for this school. We rely on the state Department of Education, the National Center for Education Statistics (NCES), and in some cases school administrators such as registrars and principals for this data.

Oops! We currently do not have any teacher information for this school. We rely on the state Department of Education, the National Center for Education Statistics (NCES), and in some cases school administrators such as registrars and principals for this data.

What makes a great teacher? Study after study shows the single most important factor determining the quality of the education a child receives is the quality of his teacher. Here are some characteristics to look for »

Upcoming Events

No upcoming events found for this school
Searching for school events...
Date
Title
  • {{date}}
    {{title}}
Export calendar
Outlook.com
Microsoft Outlook
iCal Format
Google Calendar
Print Calendar
Uploading, please wait...
POWERED BY
Tandem
Notice an inaccuracy? Let us know!

19950 McKean Road
San Jose, CA 95120
Website: Click here
Phone: (408) 927-5771

ADVERTISEMENT
ADVERTISEMENT

Compare this school
to nearby schools

Compare schools »

Compare

Add this school to compare

Nearby schools







ADVERTISEMENT
ADVERTISEMENT