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Duke School

Private | PK-8 | 485 students

We are best known for a balance of core academics and rigorous project work.
 
 

 

Living in Durham

Situated in a suburban neighborhood. The median home value is $181,500. The average monthly rent for a 2 bedroom apartment is $740.

Source: Sperling's Best Places
 
Last modified
Community Rating

4 stars

Community Rating by Year
2014:
Based on 2 ratings
2013:
No new ratings
2012:
No new ratings
2011:
Based on 1 rating

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7 reviews of this school


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Posted February 13, 2014

We have been very happy since transitioning our two children to Duke School. Our son was under the radar at his previous school. We assumed this was because he was well-behaved and had no problems with his schoolwork. Since joining Duke School, his teachers have engaged him, challenging him to improve his work and ask thoughtful questions. Good enough is not enough. We made the transition primarily because of our son. But, within the first several weeks at Duke School, it was clear that our daughter was benefiting greatly. She made a lot of friends and her teachers were dynamic and caring. The curriculum integrates technology with didactic learning, and the project-based work allows the children to be creative and take 'deep dives' into various subjects. it is evident that the teachers put in a tremendous amount of work to help each child execute their vision with the projects.
—Submitted by a parent


Posted January 1, 2014

Individualized instruction for kids, especially gifted/high performing kids, fabulous, in-depth project work that engages kids and teaches them 21st century skills, caring, tight knit community, safe, beautiful campus. The teachers are warm and caring and the teacher to student ratio is the best around. By middle school, kids are independent learners who care about the world around them and each other. Virtually no bullying, fights, drugs, etc. at all at this school!
—Submitted by a parent


Posted March 3, 2011

coming up on our 3rd year with Duke School. PRO's: challenging curriculum. lots of extracurricular activities, real life projects. However, seems like we see a few kids go in the lower school classes each yr. Not a school really geared towards "individual" child. If you don't fit the Duke School Learner mold...you suddenly feel like u are under the microscope. Close monitoring of student progress is a plus but it often feels more political, financial, weed out based than on the actual growth of the student. Campus is sterile looking and less community feel compared to previous campus. Can seem elitist but we have still met some very nice individuals. not much room for informal talks with teachers unless pre arranged face to face or you are there volunteering for lunch coverage. Director seems aloof and with chain of communication instructions, you might have little to no interaction with her. Overall good school but does not value uniqueness.
—Submitted by a parent


Posted June 23, 2010

Education/communication practices are outdated and inflexible, and decisions are made about individual children without engaging parents. Groupthink resulted in poor decisions for our child, who was labeled in ways shown to be incorrect after evaluation. Badly managed project-based learning fosters cliques. I questioned whether the children on the inside of the cliques were gaining valuable life skills as we watched our child react to being excluded. We asked an administrator for help, but her only response was to ask us what our plans were for next year. Our child received less attention after we did not renew our contract. We heard through several educator/psychologist/parent sources that DS is less flexible with meeting the needs of individual children than many other private schools in the area. Our child's behavior and overall progress improved immediately and dramatically at a new school with a better social environment and more diverse student body.
—Submitted by a parent


Posted January 11, 2010

Duke School has a unique ability to engage children in learning unlike any school I have seen. The curriculum is demanding yet made exciting and engaging by the caring and exceptional teachers. This is a revolutionary school and the way it should be everywhere. My children have learned to love learning.
—Submitted by a parent


Posted June 3, 2009

Our kids have learned to be leaders, work with others and most importantly to love learning . A great school, with enivornmentally friendly facilities and an amazing faculty.
—Submitted by a parent


Posted May 18, 2008

My nieces have gone through Duke School from preschool into the Middle School. They always wake up wanting to go to school. They are inspired to love learning and have a fascination with the world here. The project-oriented learning allows them to study interesting topics in depth. They have been doing this with increasing skill from preschool on up. They become experts on a multitude of topics like aerodynamics, African tribes, Colonial healing, native plants, and so much more. In addition to reading and writing about topics, they directly observe things, experiment with them, act them out, build models to scale, collect data to graph and analyze the data mathematically. They learn to solve complex problems, and to work collaboratively with peers. As they gain expertise on a topic, the students learn to share their knowledge with others through factual and fictional writing, to represent their learning through 3D models, varied types of art work, museum-style displays, drama, computer simulation, and multi-media presentations. I ve learned almost as much from them as they have.
—Submitted by a parent


Community ratings and reviews do not represent the views of GreatSchools nor does GreatSchools check their accuracy or verify the reviewers' identities. Use your discretion when evaluating these reviews.

About these ratings

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.

We currently do not have any test score information for this school. Unlike public schools, private schools are not always required to report data about their schools or not required to take the same tests as public schools. Many private schools take different standardized tests; however, that information is often made available only to families of enrolled students. We strive to acquire additional private school data whenever available.

Student ethnicity

Ethnicity This school State average
White 81% 53%
Asian 8% N/A
Hispanic 6% 11%
Black 5% 32%
American Indian/Alaskan Native 0% 2%
Native Hawaiian or Pacific Islander 0% N/A
Two or more races 0% N/A
Source: NCES, 2009-2010

Teacher resources

Special staff resources available to students Art teacher(s)
Computer specialist(s)
Librarian/media specialist(s)
Music teacher(s)
PE instructor(s)
Read more about programs at this school
Source: Provided by a school official.

Special education / special needs

Level of special education programming offered
  • Basic - the school offers or partners to provide services based on the needs of individual students

Science, Technology, Engineering, & Math (STEM)

Staff resources available to students
  • Computer specialist(s)
School facilities
  • Computer lab
  • Science lab

Arts & music

Staff resources available to students
  • Art teacher(s)
  • Music teacher(s)
School facilities
  • Art room
  • Music room
  • Performance stage
Visual arts
  • Drawing / sketching
  • Painting
  • Photography
  • Sculpture
Music
  • Band
  • Choir / Chorus
  • Jazz band
Performing and written arts
  • Creative writing
  • Drama
Media arts
  • Computer animation
  • Graphics
  • Video / Film production
Clubs
  • Yearbook

Language learning

Foreign languages taught
  • Spanish

Health & athletics

Staff resources available to students
  • PE instructor(s)
School facilities
  • Access to sports fields
  • Gym
  • Kitchen
Clubs
  • Girls on the run

Gifted & talented

Instructional and/or curriculum models used
  • Gifted / high performing
School leaders can update this information here.

School basics

School start time
  • 8:00 am
School end time
  • 3:00 pm
Before school or after school care / program onsite
  • Before school: starts at 7:30 a.m.
  • After school: ends at 5:30 p.m.
School Leader's name
  • Dave Michelman
Best ways for parents to contact the school
  • Email
Age at which early childhood or Pre-K program begins
  • 3 years old
Gender
  • Coed
Boarding options
  • Day school
Is there an application process?
  • Yes
Affiliation
  • Nonsectarian
Associations
  • NAEYC

Programs

Instructional and/or curriculum models used

Don't understand these terms?
  • Gifted / high performing
  • Project-based
Bi-lingual or language immersion programs offered

Don't understand these terms?
  • No
Level of special education programming offered
  • Basic - the school offers or partners to provide services based on the needs of individual students
Foreign languages taught
  • Spanish
Level of ESL/ELL programming offered
  • None

Resources

Staff resources available to students
  • Art teacher(s)
  • Computer specialist(s)
  • Librarian/media specialist(s)
  • Music teacher(s)
  • PE instructor(s)
Transportation options
  • None
School facilities
  • Access to sports fields
  • Art room
  • Audiovisual aids
  • Computer lab
  • Gym
  • Internet access
  • Kitchen
  • Library
  • Music room
  • Performance stage
  • Playground
  • Science lab
School leaders can update this information here.

Sports

Boys sports
  • Basketball
  • Cross country
  • Tennis
  • Ultimate Frisbee
Girls sports
  • Basketball
  • Cross country
  • Tennis
  • Ultimate Frisbee
  • Volleyball

Arts & music

Visual arts
  • Drawing / sketching
  • Painting
  • Photography
  • Sculpture
Music
  • Band
  • Choir / Chorus
  • Jazz band
Performing arts
  • Creative writing
  • Drama
Media arts
  • Computer animation
  • Graphics
  • Video / Film production

Student clubs

Clubs (distinct from courses)
  • Chess club
  • Girls on the run
  • Yearbook
School leaders can update this information here.

Upcoming Events

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School culture

Dress Code
  • Neither uniforms nor dress code
Parent involvement
  • Attend parent nights
  • Chaperone school trips
  • Join PTO/PTA
  • Monitor the playground
  • Organize cultural events
  • Present special topics during curricular units
  • Serve on school improvement team or governance council
  • Volunteer in the classroom
  • Volunteer time after school
School leaders can update this information here.

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What are your chances?


4 out of 10students were accepted for the 2013-2014 school year.


Students accepted for the 2013-2014 school year
70
Applications received for the 2013-2014 school year
200
Students typically come from these schools
Epworth Preschool
Westminister Preschool
The Little School

What does it cost?

Tuition range for the 2013-2014 school year
$3000 - $17000
Vouchers accepted
No
Financial aid offered
Yes.
School-based aid

Planning ahead

Students typically attend these schools after graduating
Riverside High School
Jordan High School
Chapel Hill High School
Notice an inaccuracy? Let us know!

3716 Erwin Rd
Durham, NC 27705
Website: Click here
Phone: (919) 416-9420

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