I couldn't think of a more supportive, engaging or perfect school for our kids. We have 3 very different kids, and all 3 are thriving at Odyssey. The staff and community on general is so wonderful. The quality of their work is amazing, and they are totally invested in what they are studying. They also have a growth mindset, are setting personal and academic goals, and loving every day of school. We couldn't be happier...well..except we travel a ways to get to school...but, worth every extra effort!
I graduated from Odyssey as a part of the class of 2012. The passages system is actually not a waste of time, it is a way to prepare kids for job interviews in the future. The Director of this school is great, and without the support of an awesome middle school staff, I would not be the high school Freshman I am. This school encouraged me to expand my horizons and think outside of the box. I really like the curriculum that they have set up and I am sure that if you asked any of my peers, I am sure they would agree. The crew building that some people say is a waste of time is actually the kids learning how to work in a group, like they would later in life. The field trips seemed to be a big discussion, so let me say that we learned a ton on a lot of the field trips we went on. Whether it was visiting the platte river to collect macro invertebrates, or to dinosaur ridge to look at different bones and foot prints, they were vital to the thing that we were researching. The name is also very important, as you embarking on a journey or odyssey into your life.
All three of my children have attended Odyssey for various numbers of years and have done so well in academic growth, character development and personal confidence building. The community of students, teachers, faculty and parents is one not found in many other schools (two of my children have since moved on to other schools and have sorely missed that level of community). Although all three of my children are very different individuals with distinct learning styles, they've all excelled in many ways at Odyssey and I would highly recommend this school.
We are looking forward to returning to Odyssey for our second year at the school. The first year, in kindergarten, was an enriching experience, with our child gaining great confidence in all academic areas and growing both academically and socially. The collaborative approach used in the classroom, and the child-directed presentation style of parent teacher conferences are added bonuses as they help develop skills that will be needed in future workplaces. After our first year, we have only good things to say about the acadmics, atmosphere and support of the school.
I attended a Site Seminar at Odyssey last year. I was amazed at the amount of student engagement. The students, staff and faculty were all so respectful to each other and really believe strongly in what their school is doing. Odyssey is an excellent example of how Project Based Learning increases student learning.
We are new to Odyssey this year, and couldn't be more pleased and impressed! My child has progressed rapidly in reading and writing, and I have not seen a lack of focus on basics at all, quite the contrary. The children are encouraged to be "the change they want to see in the world," and this behavior is modeled by the entire staff who clearly all love what they do! The field trips the students go on give them opportunities to learn teamwork, strengthen relationships, and most of all see the lessons they are learning in the classroom applied to the real world. Communication from both our teacher and the director are frequent and detailed. Great environment, great staff, great education, we are looking forward to many happy years at Odyssey!
This type of school works really well for some students. For those it doesn't work well for though, there are very few resources available in the school. Schools such as this love to do things for parents so that they think their kids are learning extraordinary things, but they don't teach stduents the basic building blocks necessary to continue learning. I have been very disaapointed in the Odyssey School and their idea of the "primacy of self discovery" touted in the hall. How about the primacy of teaching students what they need to know? I'd rather my child knew how to read and spell than get a superficial knowledge of physics in the 4th and 4th grades. The pressure behidn the "passages" system is also crazy. These kids aren't getting a gradauet degree, so why do they need to present in front of a panel of parents and teachers?
I don't know if that first poster is a bitter parent or if the posting is out of date or exaggerated. My daughter has attended Odyssey for 3 years and that has not been our experience. Every crew is different but there isn't a class that takes a field trip every week, maybe one or two per month and one or two camping trips per year depending on age; but the field trips always reflect what they're learning. During the nature walks, the children take their journals and write about their thoughts or an assignment given by the teacher. We love the school and the hard working, involved staff. My daughter is years ahead of other peers her same age group from different schools in all aspects of development and education from reading, writing and math to creative arts and even her relationships. It is a wonderful school!
We love having our daughter (4th grader) at The Odyssey School and feel that she is receiving an excellent and well-rounded education. The teachers are all extremely dedicated and knowledgeable, and Director Marcia Fulton is wonderful. She interacts with children and parents on a daily basis. The Expeditionary Learning model has worked very well for our daughter and we feel fortunate to have our son starting kindergarten at Odyssey next year as well. It is a community our family is proud to be a part of!