DSST does not prepare kids for college. The kids are hand-held through assignments and very few know how to read and teach themselves from a textbook, a skill needed for college! Furthermore, they group all students on the same level for most subjects, preventing the advanced from being challenged and the strugglers from getting the help they need. They are also too obsessed with test scores and ratings and have teachers and students who are constantly stressed out.
I'm a student at DSST here in Stapleton and I can tell you that this is a hard school, backed by supportive caring teachers and a real want for you to succeed in life. The one thing that I don't understand is why we don't have more honors or AP classes. I am only able to take 1 AP class this year, and I know my friends at other schools (East) can take 4 AP classes, and honors for every normal class. DSST fails in this department, and I am challenged in few classes.
Clealry the reason DSST rates highly is they drive students out who do not fit their hard-driving mold. They are rigid and do not care about their student's emotional needs. If you have an extremely studious child who does not like to do anything outside of school, this is the perfect school for you. If you do not, avoid it at all costs.
Where do I start. This school is absolutely terrible. They give you way more work than necessary and all it does is bogs down your GPA. If I had the option to go to a different school I would go to a different school because it would be so much easier. They boast about how they "prepare you for college" but, honestly, how will you get into college if the school lowers your GPA with such a difficult curriculum? And even with that, you're still going to struggle in college. It's not like they're going to make college easy. So, essentially, there's no point. Only a few kids would be fit for this school as long as they start off with all A's and don't have any social interactions for the rest of the 4 years. 1/10
As a parent, I love this school. I love the way my child is so ecstatic about going to DSST. My kid is a 15 year old in 9th grade and he is always telling me something new everyday. I could say that his grades have improved so much from the past. The teachers are great, understanding, and compassionate. This school does have very high expectations and I can assure you that it will make your child a better person in the future. I can see my boy improving, everyday. Becoming more mature, smarter, and making great decision and he is only 15. I would recommend this school a lot. People make it seem very strict but, it isn't as strict as you think. Yes, there are high expectations such as being respectful, not having your phones out during class, being a responsible student, staying focused, doing homework, etc. but these are all the expectations a GOOD school should have. Many schools advertise that they have those expectations but you cannot see them impacting the child, and at DSST they do. You will not regret going to this school..it's great for the student and parents. Your child will be happy. The learning environment is amazing, everyone is like a family.
While DSST features a great math and science program, 100% graduation rate, etc., it isn't the school for everyone. I transferred out of the high school. The administrative team in the Stapleton high school has a very negative and nasty attitude, and does their best to scare students rather that helping them. There is very little choice and selection in terms of classes, which is great if you are planning to be a doctor or engineer, but not great if you plan on going down a different career path. There's little to no grade inflation as well, even if freshman/sophomores are in higher math and science classes. I'm not a student who received terrible grades-- I had almost all A's, so the rigor wasn't an issue for me, it was the stressful and negative energy that circulated its environment. The school is completely obsessed with control of their students and it forgets to recognize the in order for teenagers to thrive, you can't hold their hands and make them do community service for chewing gum or wearing the wrong dress shoes. It's not a terrible school, just wasn't the right environment for me or my family.
My grandchild attends this school. I have heard that this is a great academic school, however the great emphasive on 'physical education classes' in this school are frowned upon by many of the students. Is it necessary to have this in the curriculum? An emphasis on 'Music and Arts and Sciences' might be a better choice than 'physical education.' The students can join recreation groups of their choice in the community they live in. How do other parents/grandparents feel about this ?
This fall, I sent my daughter to sixth grade at DSST Stapleton full of apprehension. DSST had a reputation for being rigorous and structured and I was worried that it would school the fun right out of learning. Here is what I have discovered: Yes, it is rigorous. The amount of time spent in the core subjects at DSST is greater than that of other middle schools in my area and yes, my child does have homework. I also discovered that she is learning, thriving, and enjoying her school experience more than ever. I am so impressed with the teachers. They use all the current best practices in education. They develop creative, engaging lessons (like building rockets in science class and paddling down the Nile River in social studies), use data to drive their instruction, differentiate instruction within the classroom, and most importantly, genuinely care about the success of their students. Yes, it is structured. My sixth grader has to be silent in the hallways, be accountable for her homework on a daily basis, and follow the school s rules and core values, but she is LOVING this respectful learning environment where she is valued and challenged.
My son is attending DDST: College View for his 6th grade year this year. My son has previously attended a Core Curriculum charter as well as a Montessori and came to DSST straight from the Montessori. Starting with summer school (that all incoming 6th graders must attend) I saw a different child emerging that loved the environment as well as the staff. The curriculum is challenging but the support is also very high for every child. We couldn't be more pleased to be at DSST: College View. Go Wolves!!
Our child is entering the 7th grade at DSST -Stapleton and we could not be more pleased with her development and growth. The rigorous academic program and social expectations were just what she needs. I can see that DSST would not fit every personality, however, I think it would be the rare circumstance where a child would not benefit from this approach. My daughter has thrived and says that she enjoys middle school much more than her elementary school. The teachers have been responsive to us and the administration is dedicated.
Denver School of Science and Technology: Stapleton High School is a Charter school that serves grades 9-12. It has received a GreatSchools rating of 10 out of 10 based on academic quality.