Graland has exceeded all of our expectations! The teachers are dynamic in every way and truly foster a love for learning in the students. The curriculum is vigorous while at the same time careful to make sure mastery of key foundations are fully comprehended. Our middle schooler has thrived from the passion teachers have brought to the classroom and our child in lower school loves each and everyday at school. Graland has been a gift to our family, preparing our children in so many different ways from academics, leadership, athletics and caring citizens. Go Graland!
We love Graland! We have a child with an extremely high IQ who is a highly visual spatial learner. (His preschool teachers had us get him extensively tested.) Although he is extremely smart, we want him to be socially adept, so we stayed away from schools for highly gifted children. We chose Graland, because we felt they would academically challenge him, embrace his tremendous personality (his keen, purposeful sense of humor) and teach to his learning style. On my son's first day of Kindergarten, Ronni McCaffrey told my husband and me that we had made the right choice for our son - that Graland is a family and they would take care of him. They have! Here we are 6 years later, and our son is thriving in every way! We could not be happier! Graland is a K-8 school, teaching our children at the most important time of their lives - their formative years, when they are becoming who they will always be, developing time management skills, social skills, etc. If your child goes to Graland, he/she should succeed at any high school or college, public or private, as he/she will be applying what they learned at Graland. Now is the time that matters!
Graland has exceeded our expectations in every way. My daughter's strengths and challenges have been accurately identified and celebrated year after year. Graland has installed confidence, charisma and awareness in her. The head of school is doing a phenomenal job at creating an educational context in which students become global thinkers. I have found the students, parents, teachers and administration to be respectful and invested in making Graland a diverse, inclusive and energetic community.
I absolutely love Graland and so does my oldest son who goes there. My son is excited to go to school every single day which as we all know is half the battle when talking about school. The community of teachers and parents have been so welcoming that I feel like I have a big extended family. It does take a village to raise a well rounded little human and this village is incredible. I couldn't ask for a better situation for my son or our family as a whole.
Our kids have LOVED being at Graland! We have attended for the past four years and are extremely happy with the teachers and curriculum, administrators and community. The curriculum is challenging and integrated throughout all the subjects/specials. My children can't wait to go back to school in the Fall! The teachers provide excellent support for and communication to their students and parents. The small class sizes and amazingly low student to teacher ratio is unbeatable! Our Head of School, Ms. Ronni McCaffrey, knows every child and parent and is very accessible. In Addition, Ronni engages parents throughout the year with her Book Club and lecture series. We cannot think of a better place for our children or family!
Graland was a mixed experience for our family. One of our children received a less than stellar academic offering with teachers year after year who couldn't fully deliver top notch education. We recognized gender bias in verbal communications by certain teachers (ex: boys are better at math, girls are better at writing and art). Bullying issues were not handled well and to adequate conclusion. The music program lacked depth and vocal performances could have been much better considering the talented student body. The school is also very expensive with annual tuition increases every year we attended. On the positive side, the facilities are beautiful and the food service was quite good. The families who are at Graland are well - connected and it seems to enable networking opportunities for parents. Overall, we departed the school because the negatives outweighed the positives.
I have been a parent of children at Graland Country Day School and have been completely disgusted by the leadership within this school. As a parent who has been a part of this community for a long time, I can confidently say Graland is not what it once was, as it is being destroyed by the ignorant, dishonest, money hungry leadership within the school. The new head of school has implemented textbook programs while ripping the creativity out of the curriculum. People choose private schools because we do not want the teachers teaching out of a box. Teachers are the heart and soul of a school and the current leadership is turning them into or replacing them with robotic, Stepford-like educators. If we wanted our children to learn from a textbook, we would go buy these books and teach them at home. Graland used to burst with creative, happy, strong academic energy. This happiness as been replaced with bland, negative energy and a culture of fear. Clearly, my children do not attend the school anymore, thank goodness. Graland has become a dictatorship with a leader and her "minions" who are focused on money rather than creative, differentiated, brilliant instruction for kids.
We have two children that attend Graland and a third child that we are hoping can enter the pre-k program. My husband and I are very grateful to know that our children are in such a positive environment. My children are very different, but both enjoy going to school every day (my son was at another school and had many days that he didn't want to attend). I am a working mother in the technology industry and I believe that the education my children are receiving will prepare them for whatever they choose to pursue. The breadth of education is terrific and every day, they proactively share with me what they've learned; whether its about culture, language, music or math. I think that the difference at Graland is that the experience is joyful. Graland believes in the importance of teaching a life long love of learning and curiosity.
Graland has not executed the Math in Focus or Journeys curriculum well despite administration and teacher claims. Teachers do not fully teach material so that students master reading, writing, and arithmetic. In class, there is "free time" each day although material to be covered far exceeds time in school. Students do not complete the curriculum as evidenced by seeing empty student workbooks at year-end. This is especially true in reviewing the Math in Focus workbooks. The result of this poorly executed program is a student body lacking foundational skills in core subjects. Remediation and tutoring in reading, writing and math are commonplace. Other reviews have commented to this result, but such reviews have been removed by Great Schools. Graland cares very much about reputation, perhaps more so than executing on the school's educational program. Test scores are never released from the school to prove the school's excellence in academics.
Graland has been, and continues to be, the greatest investment we have made in our children's lives. It is cutting edge, hands on, flexible with learning differences, inclusive, an amazing community and so much more. I will say that the technology in 5th grade with the kids doing reports, assignments, homework and presentations using iPads is something else. AND the technology is everywhere, including the kindergarten classrooms! I have been equally impressed with the arts and physical education programs. Both incredibly important to our youngsters. Also to see the numerous ways that the Graland community gives back teaches our kids the importance of looking outside ourselves and caring for others. Graland doesn't just talk the talk, they walk the walk. They are teaching our kids to be well rounded, fully developed human beings.
In recent years Graland has taken a critical look at our math curriculum that resulted in adoption of a new math program. We believe this change is building a strong foundation that leads to exploration and mastery of math concepts. Our teachers and administrators are always open for feedback to improve our students' experiences; we expect students to communicate with teachers for the individual attention and care that we pride ourselves on here at Graland. Anyone who is interested in learning more about how we improve our curriculum is welcome to read "Pursuing Excellence in Education" at https://www.graland.org/ftpimages/115/download/GT_Dec2012-Jan2013.pdf.
As a parent who works my butt off to send my kids to Graland, this is what I know. The school is incredibly generous when it comes to financial aid. While people can complain about an alleged lack of racial diversity, I am unwilling to accept this until you show me a single disadvantaged kid denied admission or financial aid after he or she has applied. As Denver's most elite prep school, and as the first choice of Denver's most established families, this is not a school for others unwilling to put aside their own insecurities for the sake of one's children. Beyond the incredibly rigorous curriculum, the academic facilities are unparalleled, the cafeteria food is truly fantastic (choices of kosher, vegan, gluten-free, etc. if you care about that. It's not a huge priority for me) and the fact that every single kid is known by first name by all administrators:all impressive. Is $20k a year worth it for 1st grade? You have to decide. As far as I am concerned I would eat out of a dumpster to send my kids to Graland. They are thriving and are leagues beyond their peers at other schools!
Graland just keeps getting better and better. The school has focused a lot of energy in the past few years on making sure that academic rigor is a hallmark of a Graland education. In the past several years the school has adopted a really great math curriculum, and this year adopted a new history curriculum that is thoughtful and challenging. My two children have benefitted from the dedicated faculty, especially in the middle school (5th -8th grade). Every student has PE or interscholastic sports every day, art/music/drama once per cycle, and the opportunity to participate in the unique Gates Invention Competition from 5th to 8th grades. Graland is serious about service to the community and every student, from kindergarten through 8th grade, participates in a significant, grade-wide service learning project each year. Ask anyone and they'll tell you that Graland students are poised, articulate, compassionate and respectful. Many adult Graland graduates describe their years at Graland as the most formative in their academic careers. Students graduate knowing how to study, research, synthesize information and apply themselves. I can't imagine a better gift to give to a child
My kids have been at Graland since kindergarden. I think the school is great for my kids. They have thrived in the community and have great friendships. I do think there is a country club culture being cultivated there. Lots of adults behaving like children, this can be isolating to those of us who aren't in the clique. I also think diversity and inclusivity is important. The administration is not diverse at all and the teacher body is void of diversity as well. I do know that the administration is working on, but you have to work on mindsets as well. I also think some of the teachers are not highly qualified. I think more teacher quality protocols need to be in place.
Graland has been an incredible part of our lives! The teachers are caring, devoted, and highly skilled in their profession. My children have thrived in the environment that Graland provides. We feel that the faculty and administration put great effort into creating an inclusive environment that nurtures each child and recognizes family's needs. The balance of progressive and traditional curriculum is built on best practices. Teachers have the training and resources to meet each learner's needs. W couldn't be happier that our children are pening their formative years at Graland!
Can't say enough about our kids' experience at this school! We have three (soon-to-be four) kids at Graland and seriously can't think of one negative thing to say about our seven years (so far) there. Our kids are encouraged and challenged on a daily basis, but in a manner that makes them excited and intrigued. We've never seen them experience "school dread" -- they're always looking forward to going to school each day and come home with enthusiastic stories about what they're working on, what their teachers did in the classroom, upcoming projects/field trips, etc. Anybody who is considering this school for their child should definitely take the time to visit their web site and sign up for a school tour and/or open house to learn more.
This is an amazing school that is teaching my child everything she needs to know to succeed in life. Already she knows much more than I did at her age. The parent involvement is great as well. Everyone's main focus is on the students and the new head of school has really implemented some amazing changes. We are by no means well off and paying the tuition can be hard, but we have found it to be completely worth it.
AMAZING!!! I'm a student that currently attends Graland and I must say this is proabably one or if not the best experiences of my life. The academics are amazing at this school and the teachers are highly flexible with the students and their learning style. In addition to a great education, Graland has amzing visual and performing arts classes, the teachers are energetic and are highly supportive of there students. One of my favorite aspects of Graland is there Physical Education/Sports program, Graland has many outstanding coaches that help make learning new sports easy and entertaining. Graland's P.E also helps us students bond with peers outside of the classroom. Overall Graland is the most amazing school and I wish it was K-12 so that my experience could last longer!!!
I've had two children at Graland for the last three years, and I can't overstate how much we love it. It's only the second week of summer vacation and my kids are already asking when they "get" to go back! Thank you Mrs. Schreiner, Mrs. Newman, Mrs. Wagner, Ms. Cooper and all of the wonderful support teachers!
A networking forum for Denver's social elite masquerading as a school: more focus is put on events for parents than on trying to improve education for children. Academics average; teacher quality far below value of such a high tuition. Lot of energy spent on indoctrination of issues like diversity and character, but little attempt to go beyond parroting buzzwords. Leadership too arrogant and inexperienced to recognize the school's problems, let alone fix them. Good place for busy parents to babysit children who have a lifelong trust to take care of them and who want to meet their own kind - questionable how well it prepares a child for life outside the country club.
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