We have two kids who attend Cranbrook elementary school (called Brookside) and this is their second year there. We had them elsewhere for preschool and for one year of SK. I can say that I and my wife both consider ourselves lucky to have such a wonderful school within a driving distance. Our kids love the school. The teachers are wonderful and very warm and attentive to the students. The curriculum is very broad and covers not only traditional subjects like math and English, but also such endeavors like drama, arts, science, movie and filming and others that simply enhance the kids abilities in diverse areas. We do not live near the school; so we did not know any in the community before, but nonetheless find most of the other parents extremely friendly and helpful. We also like the other kids whom our children are befriending and find them polite and well behaved. I realize we only have two years of experience with this school, but I can confidently say we are thrilled with our choice and plan to have our kids progress in Cranbrook until they go to college
I have read the negative reviews and am disappointed. I found Cranbrook to be one of the best yet most difficult times of my life. The staff allows a great deal of freedom for the students which teaches one to manage time. Most students are academically gifted and the staff should not have to "baby sit" anyone. One will get from Cranbrook what one puts into Cranbrook. It takes a special type of person to attend such a school especially to board there. If one doesn't attempt to put forth an effort then it is easy to blame the staff or the institution. Cranbrook helped me prepare for college and taught me discipline. I am so grateful. Sure some of the sport teams are not the best but if that is the reason to be there then one is off to a bad start. Cranbrook has so much to offer if the student takes advantage of it. The teachers there were so caring. I can recall one of my teachers who opened the door to his home at 8:00 at night to help me learn to write a better essay. He was not paid extra for this but did it because he cared. No place is perfect but Cranbrook is darn close.
I have had a child at this school for a couple of years and so far I am less than impressed. It seems to work like a secret society on so many levels. Teachers do not allow you to volunteer in the classroom, except minimally and by selective appointment only; this is coupled with minimum communication about what is going on in the class. Prior to sending my child to Cranbrook there was a perception about how great this school is because of the "Community." When, in fact, the community is comprised of the "Haves" and the "Wanna be's." If you are not rich and affluent and well connected, then you can struggle to be one or you can run after the ones who are. But if you are not interested in "running after" or "keeping up with the Joneses" then you will feel left out and NOT part of the community at all. However, if you are in the super rich and elite community already, then you will feel right at home. Academically I do believe they are a step above public school. Also, tuition is about $25K/year but you will find that you are being constantly "encouraged" to keep giving more, which can get very annoying. Money, not "community" is more important at Cranbrook.
Cranbrook is a great boarding school. Offers not only great education, but great faculty. My experience at Cranbrook has only been wonderful. I feel as if I am learning in a museum since I am surrounded by art or even sitting on art. We have 15 min passing periods therefore on nice days, I walk in between campuses and enjoy the gorgeous campus. We have a lake, nicely designed buildings, trees, and just so much to look at. My teachers have always been very helpful. They meet with me for hours during my free hour, after school, and even on the weekends. The lunch compared to public school lunch is delicious! It is a buffet style with salmon, chicken, desserts, soup, a salad bar, sandwich bar, I feel pretty spoiled. There are so many opportunities at Cranbrook. I would have never seen myself speaking in front of an audience of 800, a banking internship in china, and so much more. The community comes together during tough times and I like it very much. Thanks to everyone at Cranbrook for an unreal high school experience.
My school is fantastic to say the least. I've learned so much here, both in the classroom and out of it. Beyond excellent academics, I've learned respect, love, and the importance of having an open mind. This school has changed my life in so many ways. I'd never have chosen to go anywhere else.
Cranbrook was a truly amazing place to go to school. The grounds are spectacular, the buildings are works of art, and the faculty are nearly all great people and great teachers. I feel lucky to have gone from kindergarten through 12th grade at Cranbrook and would recommend that anyone with the means take a look at the school.
You will not get the kind of incredible experience you get at Cranbrook anywhere else. It is truly one of a kind. Cranbrook accepts all kinds of kids from around the world to study together on their beautiful campus that inspires exceptional thought and creativity. The work load is heavy but the rewards are priceless. Friends of mine have gone off to study at Harvard, Vanderbilt, Duke and Yale. The teachers not only educate you, they help you succeed. Cranbrook is not your typical school, it is full of tradition, friendship, ambition and creativity. I would highly suggest attending this school, I promise that you will not find a prettier campus or a more aspiring team of faculty.
I went to Cranbrook and found it to be a terrible place. I encountered some teachers who were bullies, others merely dismissive except of a few favorites. I did have two exceptional teachers while I was there, without whom I likely would have been in complete despair. I was coming to C'brook from a very non-traditional school, so the transition to a more traditional academic format was difficult. But that difficulty and non-traditional background was ridiculed by some teachers (in front of class). While I had close friends at C'brook, the majority of students tended to be self-absorbed and arrogant,. Many students went on to attend mediocre private "frat" colleges. You will often hear alumni praise C'brook nostalgically, but they simply deny the intolerance and hostility that was there. Following C'brook, I was able to achieve a good deal, but I credit that to subsequent education elsewhere. The role of educators should be to meet the student where he or she is and help that student discover a love of learning, then move that student forward to achieve. C'brook did just the opposite when I was there, and I remain grateful that I discovered a love of learning elsewhere.
I have two children at cranbrook. Cranbrook teachers are passionate about educating and the children love to learn. Opportunities for leadership abound for even quiet children. Elementary school may not be as rigorous as some other private schools, but from middle school on it accelerates. The academic rigor in high school prepares them well to excel in college. Children learn by participation in small groups and this helps them voice their opinions and develop rapport which teachers and faculty which carry forward in college. Participation in the arts (music, drama, art, etc.) is mandatory and these kids see the world in a unique way. Most of all this Cranbrook works to deliver character. Respected colleges and universities see this and thus matriculation rates into ivy's and highly competitive colleges are excellent. Take a look at the alumni and you will see amazing talent, which they often credit to Cranbrook. The campus of Cranbrook is a place where natural beauty, art, and intellectual rigor intersect. Kids eventually leave Cranbrook, but it never leaves them. And this unique characteristic of Cranbrook is what makes worth the sacrifice.
My child attended Cranbrook schools for 14 year and recently graduated in 2012. He started at the charming lower school, Brookside. He attended the boys middle school and graduated from the upper school. The faculty and programming at all levels was exceptional. In this unique environment my child maintained connections with teachers and coaches at all levels. The classes were small. The curriculum was diverse, motivating and innovative. My child was well prepared for college. Well worth the investment in my child 's future. The schools also work in collaboration with a science institute and the art academy and museum on campus providing unique learning experiences. The historic Cranbrook community campus is beautiful. I highly recommend Cranbrook schools.