No rating

GreatSchools Rating

Challenger - Berryessa

Private | K-8 | 764 students

Student diversity

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


Living in San Jose

Situated in an inner city neighborhood. The median home value is $320,000. The average monthly rent for a 2 bedroom apartment is $1,460.

Source: Sperling's Best Places
Last modified
Community Rating

3 stars

Community Rating by Year
Based on 4 ratings
Based on 2 ratings
Based on 1 rating
Based on 2 ratings

Teacher quality

Principal leadership

Parent involvement

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.
Your email address will never be published or shared.
Indicates a required field

29 reviews of this school

Sort by:
Show reviews by:
Posted June 12, 2014

I switched my daughters from a public school to Challenger Berryessa in their seventh grade. Thanks to the wonderful support of the Principal and the teachers, their transition was very smooth. My kids made new friends in no time, and settled in very quickly. Challenger prepared them well academically. My older one is now placed in a very good college preparatory high school.
—Submitted by a parent

Posted June 5, 2014

Challenger is the best school I have been to.Challenger helps you be independent and honest. I am in elementary school and none of the teachers treated my friends or me badly. Parents,if you want to enroll your children in Challenger, go for it.

Posted February 9, 2014

If I could put zero stars as a rating, I would. My son used to go here when he was little but then I pulled him out because they were giving the kids MASSIVE amounts of homework. I have a friend that also has a son that used to go here but pulled him out last year because her son had a horrible experience. The people that run this school are tyrannical monsters who want to ruin children's lives. All Challenger schools should be shut down by the government.
—Submitted by a parent

Posted January 16, 2014

I have my kids at different levels at Challenger - one in middle school and another in elementary school. You will be getting your FULL money's worth of academic education at CBS - no doubt about that. For that focus, while they will get PE, they are not going to get team sports like at other middle schools. Actually CBS makes the GATE program at public school look weak. I have known some school systems mix their GATE and regular students due to budget. I'm not sure which kids get the better end of that combination. The drop off and pick up looks intense at first, but it is quite organized and it moves hundreds of cars each morning and afternoon - it works and it works relatively well. I don't understand the other bad reviews about this method. Put away your PTA hat - I have not seen much say from PTA or since it's private, they don't do any solicitation for donations. I see Apple equipment and modern desks, so much it's like a 1st world class rooms (vs public schools). There are tests in each subject WEEKLY so the kids know where they stand weekly (and not wait 4 weeks or 6 weeks ). If you are a mindful parent who believes in excellence, the CBS is the place.
—Submitted by a parent

Posted May 22, 2013

It has been a worst experience for my Kindergartner ever since we switched from Stratford because this was closer to base. The teachers have been bullying my kid. She loves going to school and after challenger berryessa, she dreads going to school. The teachers actually criticized her using personal remarks and tried bullying her again after we spoke to them and tried brainwashing her to take back what she said. I would never recommend Challenger to any parent or child. You can always pitch in and make sure your kid grows academically but never compromise in the way they are treated especially when you're paying top dollar for that. I would give no stars for the teachers.
—Submitted by a parent

Posted March 30, 2013

I have attended Challenger Berryessa since Kindergarten, and it has been going downhill each year. The academics are great, but the students aren't encouraged to participate in contests outside of school like Math Counts, Quiz Bowl, etc. In fact, the teachers are prohibited from organizing any teams for these contests. Students will still go out and compete in these events. Unfortunately, the school decides to take credit for the glory. Once they hear about a win, they write an article about the win and give themselves credit for helping the children. It's hypocritical. Also, the heads of Challenger have recently decided to take control of the 8th grade math tests. Our math teacher is a great teacher, but the tests the Corporate throws at us are ridiculous. It takes over an hour to finish each test. The last test we had took 2 hours, and with that amount of time, some students didn't even finish. The departure system is also ridiculous. It wastes a lot of the parents', students', and teachers' time. Although CBA has many bad points, it has a few good ones as well. The students and most of the teachers here are very nice people.

Posted October 19, 2012

If you think the GATE program is the tops at public school, you have not seen anything yet. Your child will get a new level of REAL learning at Challenger. I have kids in both sections - elementary and middle school. They are primarily academic focus - teaching my kids not just facts, but how to think and take personal responsibility for themselves. If you want music, sports etc, then they leave you to find your own afterschool activities. I do not mind this, as we can find Olympic-quality programs in swimming, soccer, TT and other sports in the Bay Area. Campus continues to grow each year with new facilities - parents you can be proud of this. The pickup and dropoff is a synchronized exercise in organization. Overall, you definitely get your money's worth here.
—Submitted by a parent

Posted June 25, 2011

As a Challenger Berryessa graduate who has attended the school since Preschool, I believe that the whole Challenger system has a bad reputation for being an unbearable and strict school. Parents constantly criticize Challenger for pushing their children too hard with absolutely no time for fun. Although Challenger does indeed have a very accelerated curriculum, it (at least the Berryessa campus) is definitely not a "jail" that some describe it as. Although it is much less lenient than other public schools, or even some private schools, we students developed strong friendships with one another and were not socially awkward at all. And all those essays and book reports have, at the end, made us competitive in the eyes of private high schools in the area, which is why nearly all of us are attending top high schools after we finish Challenger. Sure, Challenger could improve on some things, such as reintroducing intramural sports days between campuses and being a little looser in its regulations, but all in all, I believe that the pros still outweigh the cons, and Berryessa is still a pretty awesome campus.

Posted February 7, 2011

As a parent of a lifer Challenger student that just graduated college, what the students learn at Challenger will help them through all aspects of life. My child is a confident, logical thinker and I thank Challenger in helping her to develop to her fullest potential. Yes, they have very high standards but there were no struggles with high school or college curriculum. She was offered four different position upon graduating college. I can't thank the Challenger program enough for all they provided for my child!
—Submitted by a parent

Posted August 17, 2010

This is great school. I have not had any negative experiences so far. My 4 year old son has learnt how to read upto 5 letter words and is writing well. The school has very high standards which is very good in my opinion. The only very minor issue I have is that they donot offer half day classes. The teachers have been awesome. They are fun and energetic.
—Submitted by a parent

Posted February 25, 2010

This school may be challenging, but the teachers in our middle school are really fun and the company you get is fantastic. Having a challenge is what life is; challenger prepares you for other difficulties you can come up with in the future. I have been a lifer in BA challenger and I may have disliked this school because of its hardships but then I realized that it is really going to be much harder in college and as an adult so I should be happy that I get an advanced education that would make my future much easier.
—Submitted by a student

Posted December 30, 2009

I am an employee of Challenger School. So my comments of course will be biased. I have found with Challenger a group of people, (teachers, parents, and students), who have come to an agreement: children can learn at high levels if given the opportunity. Many comments written negatively about Challenger are actually strengths. Mom and Dad can take a child to the zoo. Students play city basketball, they swim, they participate in ballet, etc. all as family led outside activities. They are not provided by the school (except on a limited basis), but academics are. Parents take their child to dance, we teach them to read. That relationship works for our parents. We are not perfect, but we are successful. Please visit a campus; watch a teaching session. Come see us in action! I think you might just like what you see.

Posted August 6, 2009

In the beginning, the teachers were Good-Ok. As the years progressed on, the teachers got worse and worse. School was no fun. Parties and field trips were canceled and there were no more free dress days until the end of school. Not to mention the price is high.
—Submitted by a student

Posted June 11, 2009

Better than average public schools, but could be better. Challenger seems to rely on a corporate ciriculum taught by teachers with less experience. My advice, move to a good public school district and use the money you save from Challenger tuition to pay the higher mortgage.
—Submitted by a parent

Posted June 10, 2009

This school is no fun. Their expectations are too high and there are no field trips. I have to wear a school uniform that's ugly. The assemblies are boring
—Submitted by a student

Posted February 3, 2009

It used to be great school. It is still good for preschool and kindergarten programs. I do not recommend any grade higher. Teachers have no experience when school hired them. Kids do not understand lecture to do well on their test.
—Submitted by a parent

Posted November 1, 2008

very good school! great school spirit, everything about this school is awesome! academically challenging.
—Submitted by a student

Posted May 11, 2008

As an 8th grader at the Challenger Berryessa campus, I can truly say that because of Challenger, I am have grown both academically and mentally over the years. The middle school teachers are second to none, and they personally see to it that every one their students succeed. the CBA community is very close, and I would like to thiank Challenger for teaching me qualities that I will use throughout my life.
—Submitted by a student

Posted March 10, 2008

CBA has been my home for a great deal of years now, and I find it to be a great Challenger campus. The teachers are so personable and always make time to give help to their students. All the middle school teachers give special care to each and every student and actually care about how that student does, not about their paychecks. True, sometimes the teachers are tired and get cranky, but isn't that true of any school? Even though there aren't many extracurricular activities or sports teams, students become so close knit and turn into a family that cares for every member. As someone who will graduate in June, my experience has been a great one with ups and downs just like any other student, but I wouldn't trade it for anything in the world.
—Submitted by a student

Posted January 7, 2008

Where to start? Pluses; New building, courteous non-taching staff, better than San Jose Public Schools. Minuses; Not accredited by WASC, tired-overwhelmed teachers, no extra-curricular activities, teachers are hard to get & communicate.
—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 »
Notice an inaccuracy? Let us know!

711 East Gish Road
San Jose, CA 95112
Website: Click here
Phone: (408) 998-2860


Compare this school
to nearby schools

Compare schools »


Add this school to compare

Nearby schools