Posted October 24, 2011
Parents, we welcome your comments and feedback.
Akiba was denied academic accreditation twice. There are some good teachers but the general atmosphere is one lacking in professionalism. The older grades have very small class sizes due to lack of students and there is a large percentage of students who are children of faculty... unfortunately, this only furthers the lack of professionalism and results in questionable standards. I would strongly urge anyone considering this school to be wary of the glowing reviews - Akiba serves primarily as a school for a few gifted children and many others with behavioral and intellectual challenges. The board of the school has been led by parents with questionable motives.
While Akiba seems to do a decent job for elementary students, the middle school is seriously lacking. The teachers are of uneven quality and there appears to be little coordination between faculty leaving the middle schoolers foundering under mounds of homework. Year after year, incidents of bullying arise and yet no serviceable anti-bullying curriculum is implemented. Every year, it is as if the administration is dealing with these issues for the first time. Sadly, the weak administration is too shortsighted to see these failings as systematic. It is no wonder that there is a yearly attrition of secular students (who may have more choices among alternative schools) leaving a very small 8th grade class.
Wow- I'm very surprised that anyone would think that Akiba is not geared towards working with gifted students and helping them reach their full potential. The thing I most love about Akiba is that my gifted child is celebrated and encouraged to excel, both in Secular and Judaic studies. I love that the teachers work with the whole child and celebrate them as individuals. My child never feels out of place for being gifted as I was made to feel. I only wish that I could have attended Akiba as a child.
Akiba-Schechter is an amazing school! My children are alumni and the excellent foundation they received at the school prepared them to excel in high school and ultimately to go to fine universities. More importantly, they have retained their love of learning into adulthood.
Akiba-Schechter is a warm, nurturing environment that allows students to really soar into who they are meant to be--and this is determined by the student. I really value teaching here because the teachers and students actually enjoy each other. Learning is fun and painless--as it's meant to be.
I don't know what the May 31st poster is talking about. My daughter is gifted and working 2, 3 or 4 years above grade level in every subject. Because the school emphasizes an individualized curriculum, students get to work at their own levels. She is thriving. Furthermore, this year the school had students at the National Spelling Bee, the National Geography, the State Science Fair, and the National Bible Competition. Students from Akiba uniformly get into every good high school in the area and thrive. We are fortunate that our daughter has such a wonderful learning environment.
Grades 1 through 8 are not academically accredited. This should serve as sufficient tip off to anyone considering the school for extremely bright and motivated students. The school best serves students with intellectual and behavioral disorders. There are some stars in the teaching staff but otherwise, extremely low standards in both academics and social interactions between students and teachers. Limited leadership.
Great administration that allows the excellent teachers the freedom to teach.
My son's teachers have instilled a interest in learning in him that is a pleasure to watch..
Mountesouri-like approach to education, very strong curriculum and excellent teachers, Hebrew language and jewish culture and tradition, family-like atmosphere.
My three children have all attended Akiba-Schechter since they were one-year-olds and we went to the fun parent/tot program together. My oldest about to graduate from 8th grade. Akiba-Schechter manages to create a environment where kids are happy to go to school and are instilled with a love of learning. Bible study is actually fun. Akiba manages to run a dual curriculum that sends kids to compete at the state science fair as well as make them well-versed in Jewish studies. It's like a little Jewish prep school, this year students have made it to the national level of the Bible Contest, as well as the National Spelling Bee, and the State Geographic Bee. Teachers and staff are always accessible and work hard on innovative programming and addressing any concerns parents might have. My children are treated as individuals and supported in such a way that builds on their strengths and helps them manage and improve their weaknesses.
Our children love school! I have 2 older children who attended other school and I never ever heard them say that. The two children currently in Akiba are learning more then I could ever imagine. I am thrilled with the curriculum and the teachers. The school is run by caring teachers and its very obvious they love their jobs.
Our family loves Akiba-Schechter. Our kids have been a part of Akiba from preschool through elementary and are about to enter middle school. The preschool is warm, creative and a lot of fun. There is almost no turnover in the preschool faculty, who (quickly) become extended family to your children and you. The elementary/middle faculty are likewise excellent. We chose Akiba because we wanted a secular education that would prepare our kids for any high school, immerse them in a second language from 1st grade (Hebrew), and provide a thorough education in Judaic studies. No easy task, but Akiba excels on all fronts. Kids learn in small, multi-aged groups, and learning is infused with Jewish values. And our modern lunar-themed playground gives students the well-deserved chance to let loose.
Akiba-Schechter is quite simply a phenomenal institution. Our 4 children have experienced both the preschool as well as the elementary school. They couldn't be happier at school and we couldn't be happier with their progress. Whether its Science, Math, English, the Arts or Hebrew language, we are amazed by the scope of our children's education. Most importantly, they are taught in a wonderfully supportive and creative manner.
Akiba-Schechter has an excellent preschool and elementary program. The top-notch faculty is committed, caring, and nurturing. Our kids felt at home at Akiba right on the first day. The results of the development focused curriculum are evident year after year.
I give the preschool, kindergarten and grades 1-8 my highest rating. My wife and I have put 7 kids through school and we've found the emphasis on a nurturing environment, academic excellence focusing on the individual needs or each student, to be factors which set the school heads-and-shoulders above the rest. It is the 'best of the best'
Akiba-Schechter is one of the best schools I have ever encountered. Akiba has all the benefits of a small school (i.e. low teacher-student ratios), without sacrificing the benefits of some larger schools (breadth of offerings, sophistication of curriculum, state of the art facilities). Even more significantly, however, the school educates the 'whole child', challenging children to do and be their best both academically and as committed, thoughtful members of society.
Here is the best praise I can offer - my daughter loves Akiba and looks forward to going to school every day! The quality of the secular and Judaic studies are top-notch. The dedicated and caring faculty help all students not only suceed, but thrive! Akiba compares favorably not only against other Jewish day schools, but against the very best private schools in Chicago.
The quality of the academic programs at Akiba is spectacular. The same can be said of their Judaic and Hebrew curriculum. Their Hebrew education, from first grade up, is amazing. Now with a brand new school building and the addition of after school Circusteem, sports, and chess programs, the school has come a long way from the old, cramped, dreary school-in-a-house. Moreover, when you talk to the older kids, you find yourself thinking 'Hey. I'd like my kid to be like this someday.'
Overall a decent education but is severely lacking in resources for students that may be out of the mainstream. Pedagogically, the education may be superior but the attitude towards parents and it's leadership needs improvement.
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