This is a safe place to share your honest opinions of a school, whether good or bad.
University School of Nova South5
Posted November 21, 2014
- a parent
I have two children at University School, one in middle school (currently in 6th grade - started in K) and one in the lower school (currently in 3rd grade started in PK). I have been extremely pleased with the caliber of the academic curriculum combined with the opportunities offered in both arts and athletics. They are constantly updating and renovating the facilities to improve students experience on campus. They focus on educating children to become caring, creative individuals who will find the best in themselves.
Our 7th grade daughter is a "lifer" at University School, having been in attendance since Pre-K. We could not be more happy with the academic excellence that exists at the school as well as the amazing added benefits of being affiliated with top-notch Nova Southeastern University. Nowhere else can you find the college campus feel that applies to education at this college preparatory PK-12 institution. Unique, added benefits include access to NSU's wonderful facilities, staff and faculty relationships. The phenomenal University School Arts and Athletics programs are the "icing on the cake." Excellence above and beyond in a college preparatory setting - that is University School of Nova Southeastern University.
Administration is this school, needs to change. They are so set in their ways. The turn over with teachers is high. I could not handle the clicks with teachers. You cannot strive in a positive direction when the Adm has no respect .
The Upper School? WHAT A MESS! Run the other direction with your child.My husband and I have seen first hand, both as parents and as teachers within this school, the reality behind the facade.The admin. arrives late and leaves early.The evaluation process is biased and inconsistent.The teacher turn over is 20-25 teachers per year.Even the students say their teachers are hazed in their first year.We have a child in basic and one in honors.A previous review was spot on.The admin. ties the teachers hands.There is no set curriculum for any course.New teachers are scrutinized and asked to create curriculum while veteran teachers show films and rarely challenge students to think.We have seen amazing teachers be forced out and total slugs praised for their contributions.One of our colleagues, who is creative, caring and rigorous, shared his evaluation.Anecdotal review was spot on glowing but his scores were mostly 2 out of a 0-4 scale.Needless to say he found a better place to work-a private school in Plantation. We will most likely lose our jobs for this posting because no one on top likes to hear the truth. We need to get our kids and ourselves out of this toxic environment.
Unless your child has gone here since K, you are very wealthy, and attend the same Jewish temple as the other families this is an awful place. Honestly, make the sacrifice to move to an area with great public schools or have your child go to charter. Good public/charters out preform this school.
My boy was at Uschool from preK to second grade. He was labeled as a "behavior problem" for displaying normal boy behaviors. We changed his school after second grade and he is excelling at his new school. If your son doesn't sit still at his desk or if he plays with his pencil, then this might not be a good fit for him. Girls tend to fit better here, since they teach in a method geared more toward the girls (emphasis on verbal and writing skills). Uschool claimed to teach the "individual", but it seems like if your child doesn't fit into their mold, then he is a problem for them. The school will make it a problem for you. They also like to recommend therapy or tutoring for almost all the kids (for an additional cost, of course). For such an expensive school, you would think they would provide the resource that each kids need. Just be careful. What they advertise is not what you get. The preK teachers are amazing, but it goes downhill from there.
They denied my daughter for PRE-K because she is shy. They said she has low social skills and her language skills weren't age appropriate. (they based these results after 30 mins of sitting with her in a new environment with people she doesn't know. She's shy and it takes her time to warm up. We always teach our children not to talk to strangers but they are expected to be chatter boxes during evaluation?) Although i know their evaluation was inaccurate i took her to a speech therapist to make sure shes at level and she tested average for her age.U-School says they accept children from average to gifted! I provided them with the results and they still didn't accept her. They didn't even give me a reason. They told me to try again when shes in the first grade because that's when their intervention program starts....I was thinking intervention program for what? How can you speak to a parent like this especially when your child is performing age appropriate. And please remember this is for PRE-K! In my opinion it looks like they need to go to the intervention program!
Well, we have had our child in University School since Pre-K. I have to unfortunately confirm that the school seems to foster the clique-ish attitude many are describing. There are quite a few families who know each other through various temples, as well as several of the administrators. The same clique seems to be kept together from class to class, after school activity to activity. The kids from the "top clique" seem to always be picked for the various awards and recognition, whether they are deserving or not, and whether some other kid is equally or even more deserving. We feel that the teachers have their hands tied and cannot truly teach the child. While the level of teaching is quite high, it is very standard across the board. Bright students are not really challenged, even if they have clearly shown they are ready for a more intensive curriculum. Furthermore, because of the clique situation described above, some students that should be in different classes because they need more help are instead kept with their friends, bringing the overall level of the class down. All because of politics. While it is a wonderful school on paper, in practice it seems to be lacking.
My child has consistently performed in the highest academic classes since Kindergarten and is currently finishing their 3rd year. My child is extremely gifted and talented. I cannot say enough great things about this school. In fact, even through it is a struggle yearly to pay the tuition with our small income and high household expenses; we continue to do so because it is that important to us. I cannot fathom the thought of being financially responsible and putting my gifted child into the public school system. Love this school.
My child has attended University School from K to 4th grade ... each year since 2nd grade - beggging me to switch schools. I agree with the last comment made - about the cliques which include students, parents, and upper school staff. She has been an A - B student each year - in the "high classes". She is just unhappy not to be included with other students due to the parents tend to have their kids socialize with their own friends' kids. The teachers appear to be under pressure to get so much done - and often neglect the student who needs a little more help - or just something explained to them. The Director prejudges parents and students - absolutely giving special treatment to families who can donate above and beyond the expensive school tuition. Our family has had only a few happy, memorable experiences. Sorry U School !