This is a safe place to share your honest opinions of a school, whether good or bad.
Posted October 31, 2014
- a parent
We're new to Summers-Knoll, but couldn't be happier with it. Our son doesn't want to leave school at the end of the day; at his prior school (in California, which was one of the best-rated in the nation), he often didn't want to go in the first place. Every single person we've encountered has been caring, informed, and welcoming, and our son's teacher -- because she only has 14 children to guide -- can provide detailed feedback and attention. She also brings 24 years' experience to the table, as do many of the other staff there. There are a few very critical reviews here. Some of them don't merit comment, but to the ones that allege that communication is poor, I don't know what possible basis there could be for this. If anything, I'm sometimes put out by the sheer volume of it! EVERY aspect of how the school is run is communicated to parents, including finances. Our son's teacher sends us email when anything seems to be presenting problems. They solicit detailed feedback from us about the school and about our son. There may be better schools, but I've not found one. And we won't be looking further.
I am grateful every day that this school exists. The head of school has created an atmosphere of exploration, curiosity, respect and tolerance that I have not seen in any other school. These are the nicest, smartest kids you could meet anywhere, and they genuinely support each other's learning. The curriculum includes Latin, art, and music for all kids, all grades, in addition to the 4 core subjects. Students can progress at their own pace in math. Writing assignments are interesting and relevant. The teachers seem to really enjoy the kids, and the kids love school.
We enjoy being part of this school and community. School Head and all the teachers are extra-ordinary people that see education as a life long expericence, not only loading data. Every kid is different and members of this school are not here for easy way out. They are not trying to put all individuals in the same mold. This school respects differences and acknowledges that all good things come from people that can find the best in themselves, not necessarily the normal as others perceive. You can see a 2nd grader working on 5th grade math at her own pace. This is not reflected to others as fearce competition. Teachers achieve to promote this as a positive motivation factor focusing on strengths of all. Our son started Summers Knoll in 2012 as a 2nd grader after a not so good experience with a Montessori school in the area. If you are a parent excepting your children the way they are and what to bring out the best in them not necessarily what is best for you or others, this is the school and community you should be part of. Go Summers Knoll.
After finding out that we were being transferred for my husband's job in the middle of the school year, my first thought was about my son and his transition. We visited several schools in the Ann Arbor area. We came from a Parochial background and felt certain that we would maintain that course. I visited several websites, did lots of research and settled on a long list of schools to visit. Summers-Knoll was our first stop. From the moment we came through the front door, we were welcomed by staff, parents dropping their children off and even students. They approached us with warmth and a very high level of self confidence. It is true that it doesn't feel as structured as a traditional school, but isn't that one of the reasons we are seeking out alternatives? Traditional environments can be great for many students. For my son, we feel most comfortable at S-K. Our son is thriving! His creativity is being developed and praised. His self confidence is constantly being built up. There aren't any sports programs offered after school, but there are tons offered through the parks and recreations in A2 and the surrounding areas. Bottom line, S-K is passionate about their students learning!
The teachers at this school are exceptionally dedicated, thoughtful, innovative and caring. I am thankful for the school every day- and in response to the parent who thought there was a lack of communication with parents, I have found that teachers are extremely approachable, connected, and responsive and they all post on their class blogs so you can get a sense of what is going on at all times. My child is having an amazing experience at this school she is learning to love learning.
Lack of communication with parents. No homework assignments, so parents have no clue how a child is doing and WHAT he is doing at school until it is a time for a parent and teacher conference. Elitist spirit of the school is very disappointing.
Perfect elementary school for my gifted but dyslexic son who attended this school for 3 years. He found a group of friends, enjoyed learning, and developed leadership and self-advocacy skills. Highly recommended without reservation.
My son has had an exceptional year at Summers-Knoll and I could not be happier with his experience. It is a nurturing yet demanding environment with abundant creative learning methods. Not only has my son learned a great deal academically, the school emphasizes personal responsibility in interactions with others and with regard to the community and environment. It is a truly wonderful thing to watch the students from five years old to pre-teens playing and interacting together. I highly recommend S-K.
As an educator, I was familiar with the effectiveness of activity-based learning (themes that integrate multiple subjects and experiences that utilize new knowledge/skills). Even then, our son s transformation over the last five months as a kindergartener has been beyond our imagination. After the first French class, he came back counting to 12 and now enjoys watching French movies. He made tremendous improvements in his art, and I get unsolicited compliments on his artwork in my office frequently. He is making strides in learning to read, and recently I found out rather accidentally that he could do multiplication and division. They also teach the importance of caring for one another and for the environment. He absolutely loves being at school so much that he complains when I pick him up early! S-K is giving him a high-quality body of knowledge and experiences that only a school with this unique approach, curriculum flexibility, and terrific teachers can provide (including frequent field trips like horse-back riding, theatres and museums). Great teachers, bright and kind kids, and friendly and committed parents create this amazing community. I cannot recommend S-K highly enough.
I am a former student of this school, and I had a great experience overall at the school. It was an amazing experience that not only was the best thing for me at that time, but has helped me now that I am in the public school system. Summers-Knoll provides a great, unique atmosphere in which to learn and have a good time. The teachers at the school are very effective in helping you learn. They give you a lot of personal attention and time to work. They suit what they do to the student and not a class as a whole, which enhances the learning experience for each kid. The teachers are high quality and say respectful things. They show class while being good with kids in a class environment that stresses the kid not the teacher.