I have always appreciated the quote about perfection being a mathematical concept, as opposed to a human condition. No school is perfect. But it’s my opinion that Cannon strives to do right by its students and their families, and way more often than not, they get it right. They value intention and reflection, which guides the growth of both the students and faculty alike. While we have been at Cannon for years now, we have lived in more than one region of the US and have experienced both public and private schools as a result. My perspective has been two-fold, as both a teacher and parent. I have great empathy for any parent who has a negative experience, but in my own professional life, I have also been witness to parents who could or would not see their role in the situation. As with much of life, things are rarely black and white. An online review, good or bad, is rarely a complete picture. Are there clique-y kids and adults here? Some, as there are in nearly any environment. But the vast majority are kind, open, enthusiastic and proud to be an active part of life at Cannon School. In my experience thus far, the administrators strive to develop best practices for their school and my children have had loving, passionate teachers whose support has allowed them to grow and thrive both inside the classroom and out. If you are looking for a community of lifelong learners who aim to go beyond, you should visit the campus and talk to the folks you see there. It really is a wonderful place.
Cannon School has been a great choice for all four of my children. That is not something we expected. Given the differences among how our children approaches academics -- we were't sure one school could meet all of our needs. Cannon's middle school, it turns out, is a great blend of high academic expectations with lots of support from teachers. That has been a great situation for our youngest children. And I can't say enough about the upper school program. The network of support among the advisors, the deans, and the college counselors is amazing. Couldn't ask for a better situation in terms of teachers and other adults KNOWING my children. Great place.
My kids went to Cannon for several years. Over those years it changed and not for the better. When we first started it was a family school, a friendly school. I felt invited and I was there often. That soon changed. The overall cancer of the school is image and being a "northern" school. It is run by a former Baltimore headmaster who is not as concerned about the kids but more about his own agenda. He is unapproachable and has even yelled at parents. The administration is only concerned with middle of the road kids, not gifted not needing assistance, but average. There is no learning support (though they say there is but their learning specialist is a former 3rd grade teacher who has a LD child and has often diagnosed kids with ADD without any medical/professional backing). There is not a psychologist nor anyone willing to help the kids work things out. Davidson Day has a Learning Path, Charlotte Country Day, Charlotte Latin, they have a learning specialist and a school psychologist - Cannon has a huge tuition without any support for the kids.
They tolerate bullying, thats a fact. I have experienced it personally. My child was severely bullied, and then blamed for his responses. Cannon tolerated this, Cannon stood by and said they were taking care of it but at the same time allowed it to continue, threw up their hands and said the parent of the bully did not know what to do...AND then invited that child back for another year at cannon.
Personally, we left, it was sad for my children because it was a huge change for them. But understand why, I have one child who did not learn to read and hated her "mean teacher" who yelled. Another who begged to be homeschooled because his teacher ignored the kids, yelled, and texted all day. And another who suffered so much from bullying that he suffered PTSD symptoms. Cannon was something good at one point, but it has become something that is run by fiefdoms that do not coordinate, teachers who seem to hate teaching and an administration that has no idea how to “work with kids that do not fit the mold”.
when many parents of high school kids tell me they sent their kids to cannon to shelter them from the public school but that in the end their kids went to the same colleges that they would have if they had gone to public school, then it tells a story that is is very unflattering about cannon.
Image, Image, Image. That is the name of the game at Cannon School. The reality is that while they operate under the facade that they are top notch academically, it is really comprised of average/above average students with parents who can afford the the tuition. It is not an ideal environment for highly gifted children, as they would "stand out", and at a school like Cannon, blending in is preferable. There are some wonderful teachers at Cannon, but mixed in with the wonderful are some horrible. Parents tend to be close-knit which can be a good thing, but parents are unwilling to "admit" and discuss with each other if something is wrong, as parents choose the "image" of the school rather than focusing on what's really going on inside the four walls. So, if asking Cannon parents how they feel about the school, take it with a grain of salt. Instead, call a few school / learning experts around town to get their unbiased opinion and advice. If you're looking for an academically serious private school that is worth that level of tuition, you need to drive to Charlotte.
Cannon school is a place where our children have thrived. The academics, athletics, and arts programs rival the best in the nation and the faculty and staff Go Beyond on a daily basis to support our children and help them reach their goals.
my son went to Cannon School and got his kneecap fractured and a torn ACL from being allowed to play unsupervised TACKLE football during lunch. Imagine the nurse calling you from school with an injury like that. A 4 hour operation and 8 inch steel plate later we refused to send him back to that school but were told we owe the money for the next year anyway because we reserved a spot. They ACT like they care but its really all about the money. I spoke with William Dixon Director of admission and his own words were "this is a business, its all about the money" Know that before you sign your child up there. Disgraceful......
Cannon is an amazing school! When I first enrolled as a sophomore in high school it helped my academics take a 360. I started with barely a 2.5 GPA and graduated with close to a 3.5. Besides the improvement I saw in my GPA my sense of accomplishment and self confidence sky rocketed. The staff, and students as well help attain a family-like atmosphere allowing everyone to feel like family. Although at times it may seem like it involves a lot of "keeping up with the jones'", it is worth a lifetime to look beyond that flaw. I have never lost sight of my dreams because of the confidence I gained at Cannon and the support I still receive to this day at 21, from former teachers and college counselors. Cannon truly changed my life and I think its worth while for everyone to give it a shot!
My son transferred into Cannon as an 8th grader this year, and it's been a great experience. I could not be happier with this choice! My son actually enjoys school again and loves being challenged in the classroom. The staff, coaches, teachers and support personnel have been fantastic to him and were welcoming from the beginning. I only wish he would have entered in the 7th grade. Kudos to Cannon
Our family moved to NC one year ago (from the Northeast) and was faced with the very big decision of finding the "right" school for our 3rd, 6th and 9th grade children. We looked at public, private and parhochial options in the greater Charlotte area. It was at Cannon that we, and our children, felt most welcome. Cannon took a sincere interest in getting to know our children and helping them with their mid-year transition. Moreover, it was at Cannon that we felt our children would not only be challenged academically, but asked to expand beyond their comfort zones and to consider the world around them. I commend Cannon for looking at the whole student and helping each student become not only well schooled, but adaptive experts who will be able to face the changing world that lies ahead of them. This overall "whole person" adaptive educational approach starts in the lower school and continues through the upper school. It is a wonderful partnership at Cannon between the leading administration, well qualified, caring teachers, parents and students that make this an ideal school. I recommend Cannon most highly and without reservation!
We couldn't be happier at Cannon. I do not know any different as we started in Jr K. My kids are upset if they have to miss school. There are a few teachers who have moved to Cannon from the public school system and they have said that they couldn't be happier and that Cannon is "SIMPLY THE BEST". They should be the advocates for the school b/c they have seen it from both sides.