We give this school a few stars because it isn't horrible but rather average and certainly not worth the money. In three years at the school, our daughter had to be tutored outside to keep up. In short, don't buy all the hype and really consider what you're getting. We were very insecure and unsure where to send our daughter when we came to NJ. The admissions department excels on preying on our fears and we got sucked in. Stevens needs all the bells and whistles to compensate for what it lacks. We've become wise since then.
Stevens Cooperative School continues to be a wonderful place for my kids! I am especially impressed with my daughter's middle school teacher this year. She has already set a tone of teamwork and collaboration that's transferring to my daughter's work and sense of community. I'm so glad we are there!
We moved our son from public school 3 years ago and Steven's has completely changed his life. He has found a supportive community and great teachers. He just started 8th grade and the high school guidance has been stellar thus far.
We were holding out and staying the last year in the hopes that the new principal would elevate the school. As nice as the principal is, we realized that no leadership can eliminate that Stevens is an average school. Stevens is more about hype and fluff than good hard academics. Since our background is in education, we know many kids that graduated from Stevens and they have no more of an edge over graduates from other schools both public and private! In fact, those outside of Stevens needed less hand holding and seemed more independent. Instead of being a unique experience with high quality academics, we found Stevens to be a cookie cutter experience with little diversity. It was not helpful that our children were overpraised for what we found to be mediocre work, effort, and attitude. We have higher expectations for our children and although over praising might be considered kind, it did little to stretch our children and bring them challenging experience. They will not be getting anymore of our money for encouraging kids to be average.
My child has been attending Stevens for the past 8 years. I first decided to apply to the school after I heard the eighth graders speak as I was very impressed with how confidently they articulated their positive experiences. I've been happy knowing that my child and many of the other children that I've gotten to know, uniformly seem to love being at Stevens. The children are motivated and have balanced attitudes. This enables a high percentage of graduating students to get accepted to an impressive array of super competitive NYC high schools. In all fairness, this is a progressive school and parents who want a certain traditional type of education are bound to complain. This was never the right fit for those individuals. It's important to recognize that no school can be all things to all people. The ratings here are obviously submitted by those with positive experiences versus those of disappointed parents who didn't get what they wanted.
So glad to be done with this school. The facilities are above average. Administration bullies and uses fear to keep parents from vocalizing their opinions.
Wonderful school! Fantastic new leadership, brilliant teachers, beautiful facilities, warm and down to earth parents all help to produce inquisitive, thoughtful, independent students who will be successful at whatever they wish. Hands down the best school in Hoboken and one which easily competes with the best schools of NYC.
I'll let my kids speak for themselves... when school ended this Spring, my grade schooler AND my middle schooler both told us separately that they were excited for summer but wished there was just one more month of school because they'd miss it!! I never said or felt like that at school...it was a chore we all tried to get through. And I've been in the classrooms numerous times as helping parent... there's a solid curriculum; its not party central. Stevens just makes learning enjoyable and keeps kids involved and invested. My kids also never complain or try to fake being sick to get out of going to school. What a great foundation for lifelong learners!
After two years in the elementary grades, our son seems happy here, but we are disappointed as parents. After realizing how many other students were getting outside tutoring/lessons and testing, we decided to have our son's academic skills tested using the CAT. His math skills were far below the national average, though we had never been told that he was behind in math, or been offered any one-on-one help from the school in this area. While it sounds great on paper, the progressive style of teaching doesn't seem to work for him, and judging by the skewed boy/girl ratio, I think the cooperative style of learning may not work as well for young boys as for girls. The lack of structure, clear goals or practices seems to make learning more confusing, not less so. The pressure to donate ever more financially is also wearying, given that we will now have to pay thousands more for tutoring to get him caught up. On the bright side, I am always impressed by the maturity and poise of the 8th graders as they depart for other schools...but then, maybe this is just because they were naturally suited to succeed in this style of learning from the beginning, and those who weren't leave...
Great school for highly sensitive kids who can't handle social or academic pressure. Not a good school for Type A, competitive personalities.
There's no question that anyone who heard the 8th graders speak at graduation on Tuesday would know that this school prepares students to take on real world challenges. There are many adults who could not stare down a room of hundreds on a very important day in their lives and speak with clarity, inflection and humor about their experiences in school. This goes beyond the average 'performance' where a young person is 'prepped' and delivers a canned statement. My child is in middle school and when I look at where the 8th graders are going to high school -- Dalton, Calhoun, High Tech, St. Peter's Prep -- I know that this school is doing something right. And I think with the new Head of School in place it will get even better.
Stevens Coop has turned out to be exactly the right choice for us and for our daughter. She is very bright, but had some problems fitting in at other schools. We were so afraid that she'd be bullied a bigger school, and found that Stevens gave her the safe haven and support she needed. Part of this is because the student/teacher ratio is kept to no more than 22 students with two teachers in each class in elementary, often with a "Helping Parent" in the room as well. Over the years, the teachers set up many extra conferences on top of the regularly scheduled academic ones, at one point even emailing us weekly updates on her progress. If a child needs a little help keeping up in math or reading, the school has specialists who work with them one-on-one, but in our case it was the school counselor who provided the extra guidance, still seeing her once a week just to check in. Today, she is more confident, happy and well-adjusted than we ever could have dreamed, and we credit this in no small part to this fantastic school. But don't take my word for it, all you have to do is meet any one of the eighth-grade graduates, they are all the very impressive result of this kind of attention.
We love this school! The curriculum is intelligently designed and very creative - even for the youngest students. A small example: over the course of two months, our Kindergartner learned about a variety of cultures by baking bread with parent volunteers who chose recipes which had ethnic or cultural significance to them. We were so impressed by how much our daughter learned from this experience, and by the appreciation she developed for the traditions of others. In addition, because the school administration and faculty have regular and very open communication to the parents, we are able to read regularly about the classroom activities of the older children in the school. We are so delighted to have a glimpse of the amazing educational experience our daughter has to look forward to.
I find it odd that reviewers complain of a lack of customer service at Stevens, because customer service was very much on display as my 8th grader was going through the high school process. We had many meetings with the high school guidance counselor, where she discussed our options in great detail, and explained to us how we could apply for financial aid to offset the high tuitions at New York private schools. They didn t just guide us to those schools though they talked about local competitive high schools, Catholic school, New Jersey private schools and New York City private schools. We got weekly reminder emails of all of the deadlines and I could pick up the phone and call at any time that I had a question. Best of all, she got to know my son and helped him (and us!) present ourselves well in the interviews for these school. Preparation for the major entrance exams was offered on Saturdays at school. Wherever my son ends up, he is going to be at the school that is right for him because of all of the hard work that Stevens put in not only in educating him, but also in guiding our family towards the right choice for continuing the great education he has had so far.
I've also pulled my daughter from this school because of their lack of customer service from the Administration. I wanted to speak to some of my daughter's teachers and was told that there was to be no communication with parents and teachers. I have hired a math tutor, pay for art classes, and science tutor because the academics are not up to par.
My daughter has been attending Stevens since the 2s program. She LOVES her school, her teachers and her classmates. She is a bright, independent child who is curious and eager to learn. The progressive education style fits her personality. We are hoping that there will be more emphasis teaching kids how to read and do math in the coming years. Parents are highly educated and mostly involved, admin staff is very friendly and helpful and we have always had good interaction with the management. If your child is developmentally challenged, regressive, has impulse control issues and needs more discipline and highly structured environment Stevens may not be the right place for you. But so far we believe it is the right school for our daughter.
I'm surprised by some of the reviews of Stevens Cooperative School, particularly the negative reviews of Stevens and some of the comments left by those reviewers. I have two children at Stevens Cooperative School who couldn't be happier and practically every day I am impressed by the quality of the education they are receiving. The teachers take the time to get to know the children as individuals, teach to the needs of the individual, and create and foster a caring community which can be felt both in and out of the classroom. The school is true to its progressive philosophy and forward thinking. But as a parent, the most important metric is the eagerness and excitement my children have for attending school everyday.
Overall, we pulled our son from this school because there was a complete lack of customer service from the Administration. I have never been treated so poorly despite writting a large tuition check. It was if I should be grateful for the privelege to write that check. The school administration was accurately depicted in multiple reviews here. In addition, my son was not learning at a fast enough pace compared to peers in other schools. Perhaps progressive is not for us, but I felt that my son shouldn't regress in that educational setting. Overall: teachers were older, admin staff arrogant and unfriendly, too much focus on fundraising despite the tuition. My child's learning experience was negative.
I used to teach at Stevens-- it was a horrible professional experience. It's great that the school will soon get new blood overseeing the school-- i feel for the parents and teachers of the new school to which she is relocating. The school has a very "top down" structure which is ironic because this is a not a very progressive way to manage. One has to think: how does this effect the children's learning when best practices are not modeled for teachers and staff? The current director rules using fear to keep staff there. Teachers who are certified and have a masters leave for a more fulfilling school.
The Stevens cheerleaders are out in full force...probably because the suffocating leadership of the current head is about to end! If you want a school full of Type A professional parents then you found the right place. No economic diversity here, nor diversity of thought is welcome either. If you can swing with the board and have money to burn, go for it. We pulled our kid a while back and our wallet and academic happiness was worth it. You have to keep wondering: why would people leave after 4th grade? I was glad to hear that the families who opted not to send their children to Mexico fought back when the head attempted to block their children (for whom tuition had been paid) from participating in all aspects of their purchased education. Go parents! You won't have to deal with the principal for much longer.
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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.
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