This is a safe place to share your honest opinions of a school, whether good or bad.
Long Island School For The Gifted5
Posted April 24, 2014
- a parent
My son attended LISG and loved it. This school is NOT for every child. It is only for gifted children who love to be challenged. Curriculum in most grades is about 2 grade levels above good public schools like Cold Spring Harbor or Jericho. By 9th grade my son had completed most of the course work requirements of NYS to graduate from high school. He took AP and college level courses after leaving LISG. Like most of his class mates from LISG, my son got admission in three of the top IVY Leagues. My son played soccer, tennis, baseball and lacrosse outside of the school. He was chosen in the tennis team of the high school after leaving LISG.
I am a former student of LISG and I found it to be a very sterile and unwelcoming environment in which to learn. I was one of the lucky few who adjusted well to high school afterward but I know many who didn't. I think this has to do greatly with the fact that they do not promote socializing, have few clubs, and have absolutely no sports. They are very rigid in their ways and do not take any constructive criticism to heart no matter how many people say the same exact things about this school. Many graduates go on to do great things (myself included) but this is more because we all have high IQ's and were good students to begin with. I do not believe that these successes have as much to do with the school as one might think. I would never send any of my own children here and I would suggest that people think long and hard before they place their child into this program. It is a good concept that is poorly executed.
This school was not the right choice for my gifted daughter. She learned differently from the way that LISG teaches. This gave way to many obstacles. The principal refuses to compromise. There are few extra cirriculars, math and science are the only subject accented, and the school is very rigid. The school does not allocate any special needs what so ever.
A one of a kind school in the New York Metropolitan area! We moved to Long Island for this school. We commuted from the North Bronx for six months before moving our family to Huntington for this school. Prior to that we searched and visited schools in Connecticut, Westchester, Jersey and NYC. My 2 children have attended LISG for 4 years now and love it!! Classes are capped at 16. The teachers are fabulous. Families are very involved. Though the school cannot offer all of the amenities that the public schools do (it is comparitively very inexpensive for private education), they do a remarkable job with the resources they have in music, art, gym, computers and technology, foreign language, etc and is not lackning in any way. Gifted children are appropriately challenged in a way not offered ANYWHERE else. They are all working above grade level and are even more specifically re-grouped in reading and math to best suit their needs and ability. And though parent access to the building is limited, (contrary to negative reviews below) many parents who volunteer or are involved in any activity during school hours have the pleasure of observing children during their school day.
If your gifted child has ANY other special needs--whether it be ADHD, social/emotional issues, or a simple motor skill delay--do NOT send them here. My son attended here for 3 years and though he got straight A's the school did nothing to address his other needs, & don't want to let OT's, para's, etc in their school. Some of the teachers there are top-notch, caring, dedicated professionals. Unfortunately, some are quite the opposite. one teacher mocked, bullied, embarrassed and belittled my son for 3 years straight. Though he had a doctors note from a neurologist explaining his vocal tics, she told me to my face, and to his, that she "believed he could control them". She made him sit in the hallway to do his work so he didn't disrupt the class--despite being told numerous times that this was not acceptable. Administration is secretive and deceptive. Switching my son to public school was like going from hell to heaven. Unfortunately, he's not as academically challenged in public school, but it is better in every other way. Enter at your own risk, and be VERY careful if your child has special needs.
I cannot say enough positive things about LISG. My son attended from kindergarten-8th grade, and will be attending an Ivy unverversity in the fall. What makes LISG special, is that is actually encourages students to learn at a much faster academic pace, and usually, and by high school, students are at least one to two grade years advanced in math and science. The school is a "fortress" in that parents can't go and brown nose administration and teachers as I've seen happen in public and other private schools. I think this is a positive. There are downsides -- sports is lacking, but my son was able to make up for this at his high school, and most kids do sports on the side in their communities. LISG gave my child the best foundation possible to excel in high school and beyond. Now, many of this classmates are Valedictorians of their local high schools and winning national science competitions. Granted, LISG is not for everyone, but for the lucky few who are gifted and need a challenge, I can think of no better place. Some people commuted from New Jersey just to attend. Best thing that ever happened for my child.
The school has an unhealthy culture of paranoia and secrecy - parents are never allowed in building, decisions by teachers and administrators are never explained (very "white tower"), administration feels that they know your child better than you do (and will actually say that) and will often make decisions for your child behind your back, and justify them. The attitude is very "you give us your money, now shut up and go away." It was our feeling that the school lets itself get away with this, because they feel parents of gifted kids are desperate for differentiated education...save your money...unless you want to have yourself and your kids mistreated.
Steep price tag for a school that is basically tutoring your kids in basic subjects ONLY ( and even the lower school science is literally retaught from Pre-K -3rd, same exact curriculum)..No arts, no sports, no real music program = $16K to accelerate your already brainy kid as far as possible so they can never fit into any other school until high school, which they do not accommodate. Material is skimmed over - kids learn nothing in depth - all acceleration and zero enrichment. They are not in business of educating great thinkers, but rather create rule followers and test takers. Academics are taught in a very 1950's rote way - our child (who attended for several years and was a straight A student), actually had a comment on a paper once that said it was "too creative." A few years ago we were invited to a "science presentation" which had a teacher at the front of the room literally dictate to the kids every step of how to present their project (that each child had exactly the same).Children who did not open their kids in perfect time with others were corrected - was so strange. Smart/gifted kids deserve a challenging curriculum, but not at this price (and I don't mean financial).
This school is K through 9. To be considered the student will have an IQ of 130 or above. Both my children went to this school. One through 9th, one left after 8th to start H.S. sports in 9th. If your child can get in to this school, they will get a superior education and their future will change drastically. My son just started law school at a top tier NYC school on FULL scholarship. My daughter will graduate H.S. this coming year at the top of her class and is eligible for any college of her choosing. The difference is the students don't have to wait for others to learn what they have mastered. Every student moves at their own pace and all of them are accelerated. This means that in H.S. they are able to take at least 10 AP classes. (Make sure your H.S. offers many). Their college app is exceptional because this is rare. My son and his former classmates (one just graduated from MIT and is going to Brown for a pHD program. The other just graduated from Lafayette on scholarship and is already employed as an engineer), were reminiscing about all the wonderful times they had together. The teachers are awesome. I am thankful every day for LISG and what it did for us.