This is a safe place to share your honest opinions of a school, whether good or bad.
Posted January 24, 2015
- a parent
We have an amazing teacher for our child. However, other issues with the school far outweigh the teaching. There are glaring issues that need to be addressed with the school. There is a total lack of written, structured system of rules, policies and procedures. I asked for a parent handbook, nada. Despite the fact that our child has been tested and is highly gifted, we found that they do not require testing of any sort as part of the application process. The schools seems to bank on the attraction of gifted to a gifted school, and a half day to full day visit to a classroom as their identification process. The teachers all state that they have experience with gifted, but its really hard to confirm, as well as confirm accreditation. There are serious inconsistencies in dealing with asynchronous learners, especially with children several deviations away from the norm. The leadership seems to be even less capable of dealing with highly gifted issues. In our experience the school seems to cater to the money and aim to meet the needs of kids just above the norm. Not worth the money for the highly gifted.
Someone who has the inability to realize that s/he keeps writing 5-star reviews with a discernible pattern keeps coming to try and counter negative reviews from real parents. 11/20/14 "patient, insightful, enthusiastic, adept and supportive" and "happy, engaged, knowledgeable and empowered" 11/14/14 "gracious, thoughtful, fair, and future minded" and "leadership, new enrollments, new marketing strategies, and new teachers" 3/7/14 "embrace learning, innovating, critical thinking, and most importantly, each other" 7/24/13 "more tenured leaders, a collaborative, experienced and supportive team of teachers, what appears to be positive cohesion and commitment" It's hard sometimes to notice your own writing patterns. But when you read the other ones? You can hear the variety of voices writing them. Just as easily as you can tell that someone with a penchant for 'a, b, c, and d' adjective lists has written all of the glowing reviews. Not terribly surprising from a school that hired a marketing Director to combat the increasingly negative word-of-mouth. Read skeptically, the way you hope your gifted child will.
After 3 years and 2 kids in the Primary Years at Mack Littleton we couldn't be happier with the professionalism, support, accommodation and community. Our kids are challenged and held accountable with kindness and compassion. Thriving academically, emotionally and socially they are coached in every aspect of their learning to take risks, inquire, communicate, contribute, make connections with the material and peers, and live respectfully. The focus on the whole child with their strengths AND quirks was a game changer for us. The staff is patient, insightful, enthusiastic, adept and supportive with this community of unique learners. The IB Programme fits well with our kids' creative learning styles, the differentiation is meeting our needs, and the social emotional focus has been transformative for our daughter. Past leaders/changes and facilities/resources were/are not always what we wish for, but things improve each year with the very committed, established and experienced Littleton staff. My kids come home happy, engaged, knowledgeable and empowered. It won't be a good fit for every child/family but it was life-changing for ours. Vet what's important to you and you'll know.
This is a typical small private school. The teachers let the bullys run the place, not enough math levels, nepotism, not enough during and after-school opportunities, and some yelling teachers. Save your money the neighborhood schools are better.
I have a 2e middle schooler and transferred here from the Public school-- it is the best thing I could have done! I wonder if the poor reviews are from parents who have not compared it to other schools, especially other public schools, and have unrealistic expectations. Mackintosh is caring and passionate about learning.
This school does not help highly gifted children, just wealthy people with bright children. Most of the teachers left have no idea how to really challenge gifted children. The ideals if this school are great. What they say they will do is great, but it doesn't happen. They are so desperate for teachers that they hire anyone. The school simply doesn't live up to what it promises which is so sad because gifted children really do need a place like this. Luckily there are other options I suggest looking into them.
We loved some of the teachers and students at the Boulder campus, but as far as the administration goes, whoever was in charge of holding the vision and accountability is gone from the building and they left the prisoners with the keys. Crazy town. If your child doesn't need accommodation you will do better here. We have a 2e guy and felt like we were in some sort of dysfunctional family fun bus. No thanks. We Can get that for free in the public school system. Not worth the $$.
I have just experienced my first year as a parent at Macintosh Academy, Littleton Campus and look very forward to my child attending many more years at this school. Our family has found the community of children/parents to be very welcoming and helpful; the administrative staff to be gracious, thoughtful, fair, and future minded; the teaching staff to be seasoned, caring, and lovingly creative when behavioral remedies have been necessary in the classroom with any child; and the IB curriculum to be well-suited for our gifted daughter. As with any educational facility, business, organization, corporation, partnership, family, couple or individual even - change is guaranteed. I suspect new leadership, new enrollments, new marketing strategies, and new teachers will bring about new thinking. It often does. Thus we are optimistic with the upcoming changes and will miss terribly the individuals that are departing. We highly recommend Mackintosh Academy, Littleton to anyone with gifted children who finds value in open-minded education enveloped in a challenging environment of care and understanding.
There is such a thing as "too much change" - and while there was a big turnover 2 years ago, there have been some big turnovers this year, too. The head of the Boulder campus leaving, the head of the Littleton campus leaving, and the head of the board left and has been replaced. Will replacing 3 of the 4 heads at the top fix the issues? Doubtful. Some of the teachers are still amazing. If Mack survives this transition period, it will be due solely to them. But dig a bit and ask to see numbers (no transparency on their financials) & then ask to see what their 5 yr plan is & what facilities/resources (science lab, robust IT/computers plan, library, dining hall, extracurriculars) are MISSING and ask if they ever plan to bring them in & who will pay for it. The school talks all about 'gifted' &'twice-exceptional' kids, but when it comes to curriculum, the IB programme has won out and there's no room for gifted learners. No one wants to address this issue though. So IEPs get ignored in favor of class unity. Just don't have a problem here - there's no executive accountability and things will not be resolved. You will be lied to nicely & politely, but lied to, nonetheless.
I have had both of my children at Mackintosh Littleton since 2002. My oldest daughter is in her 8th grade year. I can't be more happy with both of their educations. My older daughter is more than ready for high school and will be entering into honors and pre-IB classes, skipping Freshmen classes in Spanish, math, and science. Her poise and confidence foundation was because of her years at Mackintosh. My younger daughter delights in going to school every day and is challenged in her areas of strength of math and science. Both are receiving a consistent, quality education worth every penny. They are happy and joyful and get the opportunity to work with a highly qualified, dedicated, and happy staff. We have seen very little turn-over and 80% of the staff have been at the school 10+ years. Many families here have been here for years with all of their children attending. We are a tight community of positive learners who embrace learning, innovating, critical thinking, and most importantly, each other.