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.
I am a student of Graland it is a great school with Lisa Ross ,Purdy Davis , Jessica Ross ,Julie Stretz and tom hughs are all exceptional teachers. If you are thinking of letting your child go to Graland I highly reccomend it.
My children have had the privilege of attending Graland for their elementary and middle school years. Not only have they received an excellent education, but they have learned compassion, commitment, humility, and selflessness. This first-rate faculty knows their students well and is devoted to improving their craft every year. From the mix of traditional & progressive teaching methods to the off campus trips to the broad range of community service opportunities, my children have been given an amazing gift. I am confident they are well-prepared to make a difference and to pursue their passions, equipped with the solid foundation of a Graland education.
For my three very different children, Graland has been a superior learning environment for each of them. Not only have they developed their own set of skills and strengths, but they have become connected to the community through meaningful service learning opportunities. These programs are part of Graland's commitment to 21st Century learning and technology. We could not be more satisfied that our children are gaining a competitive advantage not only for their own futures but to better the world as well.
Many say its prestige is worth it, which tells you a lot. There is not a high level of parental involvement, the academics isn't as good as I would have hoped and my child is definately learning little about diversity, humility, thriftiness and just plain kindness as there is so much judmentalism and many kids who think they are socially elite and don't have to follow discipline from the teachers. This school is perfect for the mom/dad who finds joy in telling people their child is from Graland, simply because of its pricetag which they perceive will earn them a great deal of prestige as well. So sad for the children who will grow up to focus on such hopeless ideals and the emptiness materialism brings.
The impressive campus is a disguise for what lies beneath! The core curriculum is very 'progressive' and leaves a lot be desired and there is a definite one-size-fits-all philosophy at present. Control over disruptive kids in the some classrooms is highly questionable as is the 'zero tolerance' policy on bullying. A lot of socially elite families: there is not much of an atmosphere of parent community and a good percentage do not seem to be aware of very much that goes on in the classroom or the school in general. Happily, the remainder are starting to ask a lot of questions and so, hopefully, it's time for the leadership and administration to wake up, deliver and save the good name of the School.
Within the social landscape of Denver, Graland is definitely one of the best-perceived schools. We feel genuinely lucky to go there. The school is beautiful, has great student-faculty ratios, and offers a safe community of students. Graland's unofficial mission is to make all students comfortable with who they are--and it does this very well. On the negative side, Graland continues to do poorly with diversity in administration, teachers, and the student body. Also, we've noticed a somewhat elitist culture among parents (although this seems totally absent among the kids). Graland rightly perceives itself as a great school, but sometimes that institutional pride seems to get in the way of institutional advancement. A little more flexibility and humility would go a long way in making Graland an even better school.
This is a tremendous school in every way. Teachers take the time to know your child, identify his or her learning needs and go way beyond the call of duty to accommodate those needs. All of the Faculty, from the Heads of departments to the support teachers are always available, approachable and genuinely interested in the children in their charge. There are lots of quality extra-curricular sports and various other activities for those who wish to participate and the parental involvement is very strong. Bullying is dealt with immediately, with sensitivity and taken very seriously by the school. We could not have chosen a better seat of learning for our child.
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