I transferred from Drew Charter School to Renfroe though I had been in CSD for my whole life. I want to say that Renfroe is a fantastic school, with caring teachers and nice people. The only problem is that it is VERY crowded. Fantastic school.
My son is an eighth grader at Renfroe and he feels that most of his teachers offer a challenging environment that is interesting and engaging. Mr. Thomas puts the students first and creates fun events for the students. The teachers are accessible and give quick feedback about my son's progress. Renfroe is a safe and secure environment to learn where students can flourish. I feel as though he has had a private education throughout his academics since pre-K at City Schools of Decatur.
I have had two children attend Renfroe. This school has had challenges in the past with administration. (see the older dated reviews). However, this school is currently doing many things right. I observe a principal who engages students, demonstrates good values, is a visionary and a good role model (and he happens to be black). I observe staff and teachers that know kids by name, actively encourage (and admonish), challenge and believe in their students. One teacher in particular impressed me, Mr. Robinson. My daughter started the year in fear of him, but loved, respected and even made him a gift by the end of the year. She had learned a great deal from him about history, human dignity and hard work. At graduation, several students gave testimonies to his challenging them, taking time to support them outside of class and believing in them. This school is not perfect, but it is a special place. If i had another child, I would sent them here.
I've substituted for teachers in the City Schools of Decatur system for three years. Regular teaching jobs at all CSD schools are highly competitive because (1) teachers certified at the "highly qualified" level teachers WANT to come to Decatur (2) parents accept no less. Renfroe recently won a School of Excellence (Statewide) award and its parents, students, and teachers are committed to teamwork. As somewhat of an outsider, I get the impression that shifts in administration; pressure from federal and state mandates; and the relatively high level of parent body education can sometimes squeeze teachers to the point that they're sweating bullets and, sadly, their creativity, flexibility, and teaching style are compromised. Still, I wouldn't hesitate to send my son to Renfroe or to teach here full-time.
I have a 6th grader at RMS. It is a small IB public charter school, an is small by comparison to nearby public middle schools. The administrators, teachers and staff are top-notch. Parents are highly involved. The curriculum is challenging and engaging. Our child is happy and healthy here.