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Science & Arts Academy

Private | PK-8 | 269 students

SAA serves the needs of gifted learners.

 
 

Living in Des Plaines

Situated in an urban neighborhood. The median home value is $122,000. The average monthly rent for a 2 bedroom apartment is $1,000.

Source: Sperling's Best Places
 
Last modified
Community Rating

5 stars

Community Rating by Year
2014:
Based on 1 rating
2013:
Based on 2 ratings
2012:
Based on 3 ratings
2011:
No new ratings

Teacher quality

Principal leadership

Parent involvement

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62 reviews of this school


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Posted January 3, 2014

This is our first year at SAA, and so far it has been amazing! Our daughter went to a few other schools before this, and would be upset when I dropped her off and picked her up. But at SAA, she is very excited to go to school, and is very happy when we pick her up. Her class is very small, and she receives a lot of individualized attention from her teachers. She was extremely shy, but has opened up since attending SAA. Her teachers were able to see through her shyness and assess her appropriately (previous teachers didn't think she knew anything since she wouldn't speak up). The new Headmaster, Mr. Costello is AMAZING and a true visionary. I can see that he really cares for the students, and takes the time to know each student and parent on a personal level.
—Submitted by a parent


Posted August 27, 2013

This school has really changed my life. I love it so much, and it has prepared me well for high school, and the staff and administration reply do get to know each student personally. Kids learn about diversity and accepting one another, and people are caring and friendly. Send your child here if you want them to prosper in not only Sciences, and the Arts, but in all subjects. The courses are certainly far from easy, but teachers strive to assist young learners as they face challenges, or have difficulty understanding a concept. many outstanding extra-curriculars help develope team-building skills, and a healthy like for competition.SAA has definitely changed my life, and helped me build the confidence and passion for learning that I have today. Thank you SAA, for helping me earn long lasting friendships, character, and a love for school and learning. :)


Posted April 19, 2013

Science and Arts Academy is a treasure, and has made our child's life and ours so much better. I only regret that I didn't make the move from our well-regarded suburban district much sooner. Teacher quality is very high with few exceptions, and the exceptions don't seem to last long. Their promises of individualized education are true, my child's assignments are frequently targeted and classes like math that benefit from different levels and different instruction within level really happen that way. A new headmaster is coming in for 2013-2014 and faculty and staff seem very excited. The degree of parental engagement is like nothing I've seen before; these parents care about education and their kids and put their time and money on this priority. This is a functioning school with minor glitches, but superior in both theory and practice to the many alternatives we've explored or experienced for the gifted child. It is also a surprisingly fun place for kids, not something I had expected.
—Submitted by a parent


Posted September 14, 2012

We switched our son from public school to SAA in 3rd grade, almost 10 years ago, upon realizing the class room teacher had no idea what to do with a kid that "got it" the first time, then zoned out until something more interesting came along. After 3 heartsick months being berating for inattentiveness and symptoms of depression ( mommy, I have that sad feeling again ) we had to do something. An evaluation determined he was not inattentive, he was at the 12th grade level at age 8. We left and never looked back. My son excelled at SAA, and is now in one of the most competitive private high schools in the country. He is a national award winner in both French and Spanish (thank you Ms. Salzano!); is in a linear algebra class specifically created for him because he ran the school out of math beyond calculus; has won awards for his Science Fair research from NOAA, the US Fish and Wildlife Service among others. He is being recruited by top colleges all over the country, including the Ivys. ALL OF THIS IS BECAUSE OF SAA! I am convinced that if we had not made this move, we would have a child with emotional problems because he didn t fit the No Child Left Behind mold. Thank you SAA!
—Submitted by a parent


Posted September 14, 2012

We switched our son from public school to SAA in 3rd grade, almost 10 years ago, upon realizing the class room teacher had no idea what to do with a kid that "got it" the first time, then zoned out until something more interesting came along. After 3 heartsick months being berating for inattentiveness and symptoms of depression ( mommy, I have that sad feeling again ) we had to do something. An evaluation determined he was not inattentive, he was at the 12th grade level at age 8. We left and never looked back. My son excelled at SAA, and is now in one of the most competitive private high schools in the country. He is a national award winner in both French and Spanish (thank you Ms. Salzano!); is in a linear algebra class specifically created for him because he ran the school out of math beyond calculus; has won awards for his Science Fair research from NOAA, the US Fish and Wildlife Service among others. He is being recruited by top colleges all over the country, including the Ivys. ALL OF THIS IS BECAUSE OF SAA! I am convinced that if we had not made this move, we would have a child with emotional problems because he didn t fit the No Child Left Behind mold. Thank you SAA!
—Submitted by a parent


Posted April 6, 2012

My child was recently enrolled in SAA and I was very excited with the school. The educators are dedicated and talented. But eventually I questioned SAA s value. There was no intent to teach a sense of humanity or global perspective. The gifted students at SAA have the potential to lead society to positive change but that concept is lost on the administrators and many parents at SAA as they seem satisfied with only creating the future upper-middle-class laborer. There are other schools in the area that provide similar educations and but instill into their students a sense of purpose and a feeling of engagement with their community. The Waldorf School in Chicago and Plato Academy in Des Plaines are two that come to mind. I ve enrolled my younger child into one of these schools and it delights me to see that many of her projects take her out of the building and into the real-world. Although it brands itself a school for gifted children, SAA is really an exclusive school for parents of gifted children. Those parents that believed their child is gifted finally have the papers to prove it. This seems the driver for most with students enrolled there self-affirmation.
—Submitted by a parent


Posted May 29, 2010

My daughter just transferred here from a "great" school district and LOVES this school so much more! We are leaving No Child Left Behind...behind and not looking back. The class sizes are small, the students are motivated learners, and the teachers KNOW what to do with gifted kids and can appropriately challenge each one individually. They're doing it right and we're so happy to be s part of this community. French AND Spanish immersion at a young age, drama, specialized science and Latin teachers and chorus are either not offered or getting cut at our district school too. SAA saved my daughter and for that we are so grateful!
—Submitted by a parent


Posted May 6, 2010

This is an amazing place, unique with really committed and caring teachers.
—Submitted by a parent


Posted May 4, 2010

Science & Arts Academy is an amazing school. The teachers and staff are completely dedicated to their mission of teaching gifted children. I consider this the best grammar school in the country for gifted children. My son adores SAA and it is amazing watching him grow as a person and a student.
—Submitted by a parent


Posted May 4, 2010

Because of the quality level of education offered and the dedication of the personnel.


Posted May 4, 2010

This school has been such a gift to us. They truly believe in and follow their mission in how they educate gifted children. The faculty and staff do a wonderful job of accepting each child where they are and nurturing them (and their family) as they grow.
—Submitted by a parent


Posted May 3, 2010

I love SAA because true education is valued, the children love to learn, and it is a place in which the child's humanity, artistry and intelligence are equally valued.
—Submitted by a teacher


Posted May 3, 2010

The teachers really care about each individual student and strive to create an educational experience to meet each student's needs.
—Submitted by a parent


Posted May 3, 2010

This school meets the need of gifted youngsters like no other! There's an emphasis on the total child, the students are allowed to investigate and learn in a deep and multi-layered manner, and the kids tackle whatever they are ready for. The faculty is adaptive, the curriculum is flexible, and the atmosphere is conducive for intellectual risks. You can't get better than that!
—Submitted by a teacher


Posted May 3, 2010

If you are looking for a school that truly meets the needs of your gifted child, SAA is the best option in the area. Unlike other schools that simply accelerate the curriculum, SAA has proven to take the learning to a depth that meets the needs of inquisitive, deep-thinking students. A dedicated staff and a clear mission are what drive this school and I am a proud member of the SAA community!
—Submitted by a parent


Posted May 3, 2010

Small class size, very personable teachers. SAA is the school for your child.
—Submitted by a parent


Posted May 3, 2010

Great teachers and talanted Principal, challenging programs and a lot of art and science events for all children
—Submitted by a parent


Posted May 3, 2010

This school identifies the needs of our children and nutures the scholastic and creativeness of each individual child.
—Submitted by a parent


Posted May 3, 2010

It is the only school that I know that targets a student's individual needs.
—Submitted by a parent


Posted May 3, 2010

SAA gave my son a love of learning. The teachers are dedicated, passionate professionals who know how to bring out the best in the students.
—Submitted by a parent


Community ratings and reviews do not represent the views of GreatSchools nor does GreatSchools check their accuracy or verify the reviewers' identities. Use your discretion when evaluating these reviews.

About these ratings

The Community Rating is the school’s average rating from its community members (e.g., parents, students, and school staff). The highest possible rating is five stars; the lowest is one star.

We currently do not have any test score information for this school. Unlike public schools, private schools are not always required to report data about their schools or not required to take the same tests as public schools. Many private schools take different standardized tests; however, that information is often made available only to families of enrolled students. We strive to acquire additional private school data whenever available.

What is the GreatSchools Rating?

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Breaking down the GreatSchools Rating

Unfortunately, this school doesn't have sufficient data to generate an academic rating.

Student ethnicity

Ethnicity This school State average
White 73% 51%
Asian or Asian/Pacific Islander 25% 4%
Hispanic 2% 24%
American Indian/Alaska Native 0% 0%
Black 0% 18%
Hawaiian Native/Pacific Islander 0% 0%
Two or more races 0% 3%
Source: NCES, 2011-2012

Teacher resources

Special staff resources available to students Art teacher(s)
Computer specialist(s)
Gifted specialist(s)
Librarian/media specialist(s)
Math specialist(s)
Music teacher(s)
PE instructor(s)
Poetry/Creative writing teacher(s)
Reading specialist(s)
Robotics/Technology specialist(s)
School social worker/counselors(s)
Foreign languages spoken by school staff French
Spanish
Read more about programs at this school
Source: Provided by a school official.

Special education / special needs

Level of special education programming offered
  • Basic - the school offers or partners to provide services based on the needs of individual students
Extra learning resources offered
  • Differentiated learning programs

Science, Technology, Engineering, & Math (STEM)

Specific academic themes or areas of focus
  • Mathematics
  • Science
  • Technology
Staff resources available to students
  • Computer specialist(s)
  • Math specialist(s)
  • Robotics/Technology specialist(s)
School facilities
  • Computer lab
  • Science lab
Clubs
  • Math club
  • Science club

Arts & music

Specific academic themes or areas of focus
  • Arts (all)
  • Music
  • Performing arts
  • Visual arts
Staff resources available to students
  • Art teacher(s)
  • Music teacher(s)
  • Poetry/Creative writing teacher(s)
School facilities
  • Art room
  • Music room
  • Performance stage
Visual arts
  • Ceramics
  • Design
  • Drawing / sketching
  • Painting
  • Printmaking
  • Sculpture
Music
  • Band
  • Choir / Chorus
  • Instrumental music lessons
  • Orchestra
  • Vocal lessons / coaching
Performing and written arts
  • Creative writing
  • Drama
  • Improv
  • Poetry
Clubs
  • Art club
  • Drama club
  • Literary magazine
  • Student newspaper
  • Yearbook

Language learning

Specific academic themes or areas of focus
  • Foreign languages
Foreign languages taught
  • French
  • Latin
  • Spanish
Foreign languages spoken by staff
  • French
  • Spanish

Health & athletics

Staff resources available to students
  • PE instructor(s)
School facilities
  • Access to sports fields
  • Gym

Gifted & talented

Instructional and/or curriculum models used
  • Gifted / high performing
Extra learning resources offered
  • Acceleration
Staff resources available to students
  • Gifted specialist(s)
Clubs
  • National Honor Society
School leaders can update this information here.

School basics

School start time
  • 8:30 am
School end time
  • 3:30 pm
Before school or after school care / program onsite
  • Before school: starts at 7:30 a.m.
  • After school: ends at 6:00 p.m.
School Leader's name
  • Tim Costello
Best ways for parents to contact the school
  • Email
Age at which early childhood or Pre-K program begins
  • 3 years old
Gender
  • Coed
Special schedule
  • Block scheduling
Boarding options
  • Day school
Is there an application process?
  • Yes
Fax number
  • (847) 827-7716

Programs

Instructional and/or curriculum models used

Don't understand these terms?
  • Gifted / high performing
Specific academic themes or areas of focus

Don't understand these terms?
  • Arts (all)
  • Foreign languages
  • Mathematics
  • Music
  • Performing arts
  • Science
  • Technology
  • Visual arts
  • Writing
Bi-lingual or language immersion programs offered

Don't understand these terms?
  • No
Level of special education programming offered
  • Basic - the school offers or partners to provide services based on the needs of individual students
Foreign languages taught
  • French
  • Latin
  • Spanish
Level of ESL/ELL programming offered
  • None

Resources

Staff resources available to students
  • Art teacher(s)
  • Computer specialist(s)
  • Gifted specialist(s)
  • Librarian/media specialist(s)
  • Math specialist(s)
  • Music teacher(s)
  • PE instructor(s)
  • Poetry/Creative writing teacher(s)
  • Reading specialist(s)
  • Robotics/Technology specialist(s)
  • School social worker/counselors(s)
Foreign languages spoken by staff
  • French
  • Spanish
Extra learning resources offered
  • Acceleration
  • Counseling
  • Differentiated learning programs
Transportation options
  • None
School facilities
  • Access to sports fields
  • Art room
  • Audiovisual aids
  • Cafeteria
  • Computer lab
  • Gym
  • Internet access
  • Library
  • Music room
  • Parent center
  • Performance stage
  • Playground
  • Science lab
School leaders can update this information here.

Sports

Boys sports
  • Basketball
  • Soccer
Girls sports
  • Soccer

Arts & music

Visual arts
  • Ceramics
  • Design
  • Drawing / sketching
  • Painting
  • Printmaking
  • Sculpture
Music
  • Band
  • Choir / Chorus
  • Instrumental music lessons
  • Orchestra
  • Vocal lessons / coaching
Performing arts
  • Creative writing
  • Drama
  • Improv
  • Poetry
Media arts
  • None

Student clubs

Clubs (distinct from courses)
  • Art club
  • Chess club
  • Drama club
  • Literary magazine
  • Math club
  • National Honor Society
  • Science club
  • Student council/government
  • Student newspaper
  • Yearbook
School leaders can update this information here.

School culture

Dress Code
  • Dress code
Bullying policy
  • This school has a bullying and/or cyber bullying policy in place.
Parent involvement
  • Attend parent nights
  • Chaperone school trips
  • Coach sports teams or extracurricular activities
  • Join PTO/PTA
  • Organize cultural events
  • Organize fundraising events (school auction, bake sales, etc.)
  • Present special topics during curricular units
  • Serve on school improvement team or governance council
  • Volunteer in the classroom
  • Volunteer time after school
School leaders can update this information here.

Apply

 

This school accepts applications on a

rolling basis

 
Apply now
 

What does it cost?

Tuition range for the 2013-2014 school year
$18000 - $19000
Vouchers accepted
No
Financial aid offered
Yes.
School-based aid

Planning ahead

Students typically attend these schools after graduating
Northside College Prep
Illinois Math & Science Academy
Local Public District
Notice an inaccuracy? Let us know!

1825 Miner St
Des Plaines, IL 60016
Website: Click here
Phone: (847) 827-7880

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