Posted December 13, 2012
Welcome to Rockbridge Academy! If you are looking for a quality Christ-centered, classical education, you will find Rockbridge to be an exceptional value. As headmaster, permit me to give you a brief overview of the qualifications of the school, our faculty, and the achievements of our students: The school is accredited through the Association of Classical and Christian Schools (ACCS). All of our teachers are required to achieve ACCS certification within two years of hire, and are strongly encouraged to proceed on to Permanent and Master's level certification soon thereafter. Advanced degrees are held by 53% of our teachers. Our entire faculty undergoes a challenging teacher training regimen before entering the classroom, and their continuing professional development is encouraged and opportunities are provided. Our student/teacher ratio in the grammar school (K-6) is approximately 12:1, and in the upper school, that ratio is approximately 8:1. Some of our faculty members have written for educational journals, and several of our faculty and administrators have been repeat guest speakers at the ACCS National Teachers Conference. We are occasionally asked to conduct teacher training and consulting services for schools both nationally and internationally, and our curricular materials are sold to schools around the globe. Our annual teacher training seminar is attended by teachers from classical Christian schools around the world, as Rockbridge Academy is increasingly seen as a leader in the Classical Christian School movement. Our graduates have completed a challenging course of study, including: Four years of English/Literature, History, Math, Science, and Theology courses; three years of Latin (required in grades three through ten); two years of Rhetoric; two years of PE; and a variety of electives in the fields of fine and performing arts, athletics, and academics. The mean SAT summary for the class of 2012 is as follows: Reading, 695; Math, 663; Writing, 648. The class of 2012 (15 students) had one National Merit finalist and one National Achievement finalist. Over 50% of the AP exams taken by our students resulted in college credit, and over 86% of our students pass their AP exams. The class of 2011 was offered more than $1.4 million in academic scholarships (more than $14,000 per year, per student). Our graduates have been accepted into over 80 different colleges and universities, such as: MIT, St. John's College in Annapolis, Georgia Tech, University of Virginia, all three U.S. Military Academies, NYU, George Washington University, Hillsdale College, Messiah College, Washington and Lee University, and many more. Above and beyond that, our students are characterized as thoughtful, hard-working problem-solvers, forthright and winsome communicators, and ethical and moral men and women. These are the ideals which we promote in our student body, which no college prep profile can adequately reflect. If you'd like to come and see Rockbridge Academy for yourself, you are welcome at any time; our doors are always open to visitors. Please call the school office (410-923-1171) or visit our web site (www.rockbridge.org) to schedule a visit. I look forward to seeing you!
I am a former student. I learned a lot at Rockbridge. Most importantly, I really did learn how to think for myself. Unfortunately, this was not the actual goal of the instructors; in fact, just the opposite. If you are not a hardline conservative evangelical protestant, your beliefs and opinions will be openly condemned and mocked in the classroom and your objections will be brushed off and ignored. Students who advocated for mildly more liberal theology or politics were met with scandalized looks, while students who suggested writing a paper about revoking the woman's right to vote were all but applauded. If you are a parent of a child who is any way a divergent personality, prepare to have Rockbridge do everything it possibly can to crush their spirit in the iron grip of social, idealogical, and theological conformity. Your objections to their methods will meet with resistance. After I graduated from Rockbridge, I was fairly knowledgeable, articulate in speech and on paper, had developed robust critical thinking skills, and was more than prepared for college. I was also left with severe, crippling mental health issues that were due in large part to my experiences there.
Rockbridge does more than provide the highest SAT scores in the area. It does more than train young men and women to be excellent public speakers and thinkers. It helps co-parent them on core values like service, humility, kindness, purity and hope. We are moving away from the area and know that we will never find a school like them.
My kids have been attending Rockbridge for nearly ten years. I can recommend the school without hesitation. What makes it so great? Lots of things, but I'll name one: the teachers. They are dedicated, hardworking, and passionate about teaching and about their own Christian faith. They have, without exception, loved my kids by caring about them and challenging and encouraging them to strive for growth in godly character and instilling in them a love for learning. Is it perfect all the time? No. Of course not. What school is? But I'm thankful for these teachers and administrators who truly do desire to honor Christ and serve the families.
Rockbridge Academy has an average retention rate of 94% for students in grades K-12 who enter the school in kindergarten. For transfer students, our retention rate is 99%. The staff turnover rate averages less than 5%. Our SAT scores are 400 points above the national average. Please plan to visit us any time it is convenient for you! School is in session from first Tuesday in September until the Thursday before Memorial Day. We would be happy to share our vision and mission with you. Contact us anytime at firstname.lastname@example.org.
As a former student of Rockbridge (now a college student) I want to offer an insider's perspective on the "Biblical Worldview" offered at Rockbridge. Let me preface this by saying that I am a Bible believing Christian and a member of a local church near where I attend College. The "Worldview" on offer at Rockbrigde is as classical as its curricular roots. If you are looking for your child to learn how to integrate her faith with contemporary science, history, culture, or philosophy you will find little of that here. This school constantly emphasizes an "us vs. them" mentality of "believers vs. unbelievers". If a perspective runs contrary to the current doctrine of evangelicalism it is deemed "unchristian" or "of the world". Perhaps, as a parent, you are fine with this. But as a student I was jarred by the fact that what was taught to be an"unchristian" belief or view turned out to be held and defended by some of the most intelligent and passionate Christians grounded in the Bible. My point here is that Rockbrige is a school for those deeply entrenched in the contemporary evangelical-bubble. If you want more than an ossified culture-war worldview, send your children elsewhere.
After attending another Christian school in the Annapolis area for 9 years we transferred all of our children to Rockbridge. The academics are challenging- it's amazing what excellent teachers, a classical curriculum, and hardworking students can accomplish. The athletic program and the extracurriculars (like orchestra, debate, and choir) reflect the school's desire to serve God through its best efforts. The most important and appealing thing about this school is that it is truly Christ centered. Not only is every class taught from a Christian worldview, but the people who make up this school strive to follow and honor God-and it shows. My daughter who transferred into the grammar program, her teacher and I had a conference recently to talk about her transition. Instead of focusing on grades, the teacher addressed my daughter's heart- asking her to think and pray about whether she is doing her best for God. (She also gave her practical study hints to help as well.) Choosing a school is about prioritizing your values. For us, the Christian community and strong academics are the most important and we're thrilled to have found both here.
I respectfully differ in opinon with the last comments in regard to Rockbridge not considering learning differences and teachers catering to only the gifted learner. On the contrary, not only was the school founded by a family whose son had a dissability, but there are quite a few students at Rockbridge today with learning differences, mine included. You wouldn't know it perhaps because they are not singled out; there is not a resourse room they go to, which is really, really wonderful. There have been a number of one-on one aides in the school's history, but more impressive is the daily Christ like support that the school provides students of all abilities, including math lab, peer tutoring, and flexibiity in the ciruculum to meet indvidual needs. For example, a student may need to use a computer in class to help with expressive language; that is going on right now at Rockbridge. In regard to being too strenuous, it all really boils down to work, and yes, it is hard some of the time, but I can assure you that it is not the grade that is praised around Rockbrige, it is the effort of a job well done, and that is the real lesson I wish to impart on my family.
The latest review is interesting and I'm glad she posted a different perspective. My son applied to enter the 9th grade at Rockbridge. He had just finished 8th grade in a TAG magnet school taking honors courses and achieved a cumulative gpa of 3.6. The only real difficulty for him is that he's on the autism spectrum and has some learning differences. After he took the admissions test at Rockbridge, we were told that he would have to retake 8th grade in order to enter. Wanting desperately for him to be in a strong Christian environment we approached our son with the question. He agreed to repeat 8th grade in order to attend Rockbridge. Then they reqired him to take the entrance exam for entering 8th. After this, they informed us that he would not be accepted into the school because there was too much remediation required. All of this based on a simple test which we were not given the opportunity to review. There was no consideration given to his learning disability and that depending on the test, it doesn't reveal his true abilities. At his old school, he had lots of academic support. I don't think you'll find this at Rockbridge.
I don't usually write reviews, but I am so passionate about Rockbridge that I am willing to spend the time to do so here! I have 2 children at the lower school and have been so happy about their experience there. Not only have they learned an enormous amount academically (they appear to be ahead of their peers at other schools), they have also been instructed about the Bible, Christian character and values, developing a strong work ethic, treating others with love and respect, and the list goes on! The teachers clearly love what they do and pour their lives into teaching and loving their students. We have also been very impressed with the wise, godly, prayerful leadership of the school. Can't recommend it strongly enough!
If you are a Christian parent looking for a school that will support your efforts to teach your children truth in this relativistic age, then Rockbridge Academy will supersede your expectations. Rockbridge's methods of education are vastly different than more modern ones used in other schools, and this produces results. Rockbridge does not experiment with new education techniques on your children. Its goals are not higher AP or SAT scores, and it doesn't offer classes catered to standardized tests or designed to make sure that every student passes. Rockbridge's faculty truly desire to mentor your children in a Christ-centered fashion, using the time-tested Trivium method that produced the great minds of Greece, Rome, and Europe; which will ultimately teach your children to think independently for themselves - and to evaluate all claims by the standard of truth found in the Bible.
I graduated from here and can say it prepared me for college extremely well. At Rockbridge, they strive to teach students how to think logically, speak/write eloquently, and ultimately teach themselves.
An academically rigorous, Christ-centered K-12 program based on the classical model of education. This school challenges my children in academics as well as life choices! The small class sizes (typically around 15) ensure that the teachers really know the students. The sports program is developing and currently offers middle school and high school soccer, basketball, and lacrosse. Only major downside to the school is the facilities situation, but with the acquisition of land and God's grace, this may be rectified in the near future!
Rockbridge Academy delivers a passion for excellence. Their average SAT scores are the highest in the area as well as scholarships. The kids are sharp, but they are sweet, respectful and kind as well. That is rare. We have tried other Christian schools and decided that we wanted more than just 'Christian' in the name but also didn't want a school that uses the 'Christian' element to justify lower academic goals. Besides instilling a deep Christian sense of identity through kind, gracious, passionate and humble teachers, Rockbridge Academy has helped mold my children (4) in to real leaders with values and a sweet passion to excel. Although excited by the 140+ acres of prime real estate that will house the new school, it is the quality of teaching, the challenges and expectations placed on my kids as well as the sweet humble atmosphere that makes Rockbridge a great decision.
The teachers at Rockbridge Academy genuinely care for my children and I most appreciate how they come alongside me to train my children in Godly character. The classical Christian educational model is also the best method of education there is.
A terrific Christian school with truly integrated K - 12 classical curriculum. Most important is that the small classes ensure that the teachers really know your child and work with you to shepherd your child's heart and build their character.
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