I have two children (a boy and a girl) who transferred to Shorecrest from another private school in the 9th grade. We were very happy with the high school experience there, and neither of our children had difficulty adjusting or fitting in. To the contrary, we found that, because only a few students transfer to the school at the high school level, our kids were treated like the shiney new toy and got plenty of attention.
For academically gifted students, the academics are truly top-notch. Most of the teachers, with a few exceptions (as in any school), are excellent as evidenced by the extremely high passing rate on AP exams (about 85% across the board). Both my children were able to take nine AP courses, and they are in excellent colleges now and were admitted to almost all of the schools to which they applied, with the exception of a handful of true "reach" schools. They both felt completely prepared for their college courses.
Although my children did not participate in it, the theater and arts program is by far the best in the area. The theatrical productions are amazing. Sports, on the other hand, are spotty, given the small size of the high school (about 350 students). But, on a positive note, students who join the sports teams will get an opportunity to play, and most students do participate in at least one sport.
We think that Shorecrest is truly the best school in the area, rivaled only by Berkeley Prep on the other side of the bay. As some have mentioned, though, you will encounter students there who come from extremely privileged backgrounds--some of the wealthiest in the area. There's a real downside to that, as many students do have a sense of entitlement. The school does have a handful of scholarship students, too. And we found that most students had two working parents there, unlike the other private school that my children attended, where most of the moms stayed at home and hovered around the school a bit too much.
Overall, we had a great experience at Shorecrest and regularly recommend it to parents in both Tampa and St. Petersburg.
I lived in Feather Sound and was referred to Shorecrest by the community as being the best school in town. My children began at 3 and 4 years old. They are now in 10th and 11th grade and beginning to look for colleges. I can truly say that they have prepared my children both academically and social/emotionally to meet the challenges of life and will be well prepared for their futures. The money was a great investment in my children.
Now that we are moving out of Tampa Bay and having had to find a school for the children (ages 5 and 8) in a different part of the state, we can say that Shorecrest Early Childhood and Lower Division did a terrific job preparing both kids academically and socially. Terrific leadership, challenging academic curriculum, and family atmosphere made this place a perfect environment for raising our kids, it truly became a second home to them. Thank you, Shorecrest family, for giving them wings. We are gonna miss you...
Having moved here from another state and attended public school there, we find Shorecrest average at best and certainly not worth the big tuition required. It is extremely hard to mainstream in if your child begins after lower division as kids and parents have been together and formed relationships already, and there is no real effort to get to know new families. Teachers present curriculum rather than teach, and we find a lot of parents need to supplement with outside tutoring at additional costs or teach themselves at home. Many teachers have children who also attend there which makes it an insular community. On the upside, there is a lot of school spirit.
I have been highly disappointed with this school and can now compare what a dedicated and loving environment is about in the current school my children attend. The excellence that they promote is only related to fundraising. The lack of interest on the child as a whole is shocking. The school is all about showing off instead of nurturing the minds and hearts of the children. If you are interested in promoting your business, then this is your school. If you are interested in the education of your child and having them enjoy and grow in a welcoming environment, would look elsewhere.
Shorecrest hires their teachers according to diploma prestige, giving additional priority to teachers who have taught overseas. As a result, very few of their teachers can actually teach to the broad range of learning styles that make up a classroom of students. To fill this gap, Shorecrest offers private tutoring - $80 for 30 minutes. Free help after school does not exist. The school actively promotes an elitist attitude, focusing on building a "state-of-the-art," "look at us," campus, to the detriment of providing an education to all the students which they have contracted to educate. Tuition is upward of $17,000 yearly and everything else is extra. Shorecrest's fund raising efforts are the forefront of their communication with parents. Community service projects rely on parents' purchasing power as opposed to students' hands-on efforts; accordingly, there is no altruistic learning. After 4-years at Shorecrest, we have decided to send our child elsewhere for high school. My husband and I both come from families of educators, although education is not our chosen profession.
II dis agree with the post about colleges not looking at how challenging courses are! Currently in the college search process, that is one thing they absolutely look at!! The weight your GPA based exactly on the difficulty of your course liad giving Shorecrest students a great advantage!!!
I attended this school from K-12 and must say that this is an excellent school compared to others in the area. On several occasions "A" students from other schools transferred and found that it isn't easy to earn an "A" at Shorecrest. I have gone on to get undergrad and graduate school, and hands down, Shorecrest challenged me more. Their are negatives: the ciriculum is very tough so it is hard to earn great grades and colleges don't consider that you went to school that has higher standards. So if a college is looking for someone with a 3.7 gpa you have a much better shot of getting that grade at a public school, NSCS, or Canterbury. There is a sense of elitism at this school. Many kids are spoiled beyond belief. The sense of entitlement can drive a "normal" parent crazy. Most of the kids have never heard the word No with is dishearting. Just go to the 12th grade parking lot....you probably won't find a car that is older than 5 years. Above all, if you instill strong family values at home and want a strong education go with Shorecrest.
I can only give this school and average mark for the following reasons: the teachers are not there because they want to be. They are obviously heavily influenced by the wealthy parents. This is not a school I will allow my student to attend any longer. The richest 1% of the nation truly does dictate public policy. Even down to the grade school level. This is absurd and not something I am willing to allow my child to be subjected to. It is not the real world as we are not wealthy parents. I dare say even if we were we would not instill within our children the elitist mentality so many of the other parents instill upon their spoiled brats.
Not sure where the comment about teachers lacking passion came from in a previous comment. I've been very impressed with the faculty at Shorecrest and consider them the reason to send my kids to school there. While no school is perfect, I know that my two kids are challenged and supported by a caring group of educators. The opportunities outside the classroom are spectacular as well. How many other schools can offer sports teams, middle school plays, clubs, and even weekend activities for pre-schoolers?