Greathouse is a great school! My fear after my daughter was accepted into Kindergarten was that it wasn't going to be fun, but it is! Yes, it is pencil to paper, but it is also hands-on and creative and interactive. It is a traditional school, so there are definitely rules. Not every child will thrive at the school, but you will know it after orientation. Parents must be involved to make it a successful journey for your child(ren). The staff and teachers that we've encountered are wonderful and supportive. I am so happy to basically be saving thousands and thousands of dollars that would have otherwise gone to a local private school - for the same education and atmosphere!
Greathouse is great...simply the best! Runs like a well oiled machine. The teachers have high expectations and they expect parents to do their part at home. We were told up front at orientation what exactly to expect.
Greathouse is a dream school! Our daughter is in the first grade and thriving! She comes home with so much to tell me each day. Although it is strict, that doesn't mean they don't have any fun. She has had many "hands on" activities to learn. The staff is wonderful--I appreciate that so many of them know my daughter by name. They also have a very involved PTA, after school activities, and several evening Family activities each year. My daughter tells me all the time that we better not ever move because she wants to go to Greathouse clear through 5th grade and wants her younger brothers to go there, too. We are waiting to hear if our son will be selected to be a Kindergartener next year and are praying he gets in! We love Greathouse and couldn't ask for anything better!
I have two kids and Greathouse both polar opposite. For those that have knocked the school and taken their kids out...good riddance. It is challenging and offers great structure and a learning environment. It does not offer "AP" classes but the gifted are grouped and taught at their level. I'll take the free public education Greathouse offers over any paid private school or anything else Jefferson County has to offer.
My third child is still at this school-both older ones already went through. We did not have any issues whatsoever with this school. We got what we told we were going to get (the principal told everyone at orientation and she doesn't mix words or play around) We got a free public education that could give any of the private or parochial schools in this area a run for their money. My kids were extremely well prepared. I do not understand why some people let little things build up rather than addressing the issue. If you don't get something from PTA that you paid for then for heavens sake have the good sense to speak up and ask where it is! We have found over the years, and we've been here for a decade now, that those who don't "fit" are the ones who don't have the commitment to making academics the #1 priority in their home. Yes, you have to work and study to meet the high expectations in this school but the end result is worth it.
This school gets great test scores because they only want a certain type of student - those who do not fit their mold are forced out. My child had great academics but a big personality and was marked down on behavior so much that he was labeled a behavior problem. He was even called out for asking questions appropriately! Other teachers started calling him a "bad kid". There are plenty of other schools that have great teachers, good scores and encourage well rounded personalities while respecting differences in learning! Also had massive problems with the cliquish PTA!! Gotta love when the PTA steals money from you and never delivers t-shirts and sweatshirts! Glad we are out of there!!!
Your child will be forced to learn at this school and their statistics are great, however keep in mind that they get the test scores they get, not through a nurturing supportive system but one of fear of being "exited" from their program. Incidents of violence or bullying are not reported and handled poorly internally. Several children in my child's class were attacked physically and verbally and then were only "talked to" by the guidance counselor, who will tell you there are no problems with these things at Greathouse. Middle of the road kids who do not mind hours of unnecessary homework will do great in the environment here, but if your child is gifted or struggles this is not the school for them. I personally loved the structure of the rules, however they are inconsistently and prejudicially enforced.