Like anywhere, there are plusses and minuses, but in short, this is simply the best option in the region if you absolutely HAVE to live in Greenville (which we do). The Head of School is overtly liberal (like most academics), so you should be prepared for all the typical liberal propaganda. The Liberal Agenda is live and well here and will be presented to your kids. (We teach ours to keep their mouths shut on controversial topics - money, religion and especially politics... to keep them out of conflict and trouble).
Academic-wise, it's "okay" ... not great, but only okay. Again, understand this is the best in the area, sad to say. We are talking about Greenville, in "Pitt" county (yes, it's the pitts here). We supplement with private tutoring in the summers, so we can expect them to gain admittance to top colleges. Do NOT however, think that the school adequately does the job when you see high-end college acceptances on the website. If you simply pay the bill and send your kid here, expect admittance to ECU and the like, maybe NC State, but don't think Duke or Chapel Hill unless you work with your kids outside of school. That's just how things are around here. Sigh.
As long as you keep perspective that this is "as good as it gets" in this region, then it's a fine school. Parrott Academy also used to be better, but has declined in recent years. Honestly, both are comparable these days, and should make a choice more dependent on where you live and what is most convenient. We are in between, but found Oakwood to be a better choice for us, for a variety of reasons, but really you can't go wrong either way, as long as you supplement your children's education. Hope that helps!
This school has many positives such as security, a personal touch from the teachers and principal and cutting edge technology. Your faith is not shunned upon. however, this school is heavy on Greek and Roman myths. It is a great college prep school and character building school. The school is dedicated to the whole person.
I have two children at The Oakwood School and am very happy with their experiences. The teachers make an effort to get to know their students and help them reach their full potentials. Every year the program offerings, campus, staff and extracurriculars are improving and growing. Character development and learning to love learning are emphasized as well as community service. No school is perfect but this is the best option for us.
The Oakwood School appealed to us for three primary reasons: the faculty and staff are engaged and excited about their work; the parent community is involved and inclusive; and most importantly, the students are obviously happy and eager learners. We looked for a school that provided academic excellence in a nurturing environment and we found that in Oakwood. My daughter loves to go to school each day and that makes it worth every penny. We believe fostering a love for learning is a priceless investment.
The Oakwood School is very safe overall. Each student receives a laptop in the 4th grade. This is good and bad, it helps the students learn how to use technology and to access all of their notebooks on the laptop. This is a very elite school, I personally have been going to this school for 8 years. The middle school is very poor, the lower school is okay. The high school is very good. I am leaving The Oakwood School, because everyone is in small knit clicks and teachers favor children. The parents and teachers treat it like a country club.
My honest thoughts on The Oakwood School is that overall, it is a great environment and is a very involved community. I can leave my laptop or my expensive instrument anywhere on the campus without hesitation and not worry about it being stolen. However, there are some major downfalls. For example, the math curriculum has rarely been up to par with other schools (esp. in lower-middle school). A lot of the academics aren't quite what you'd expect from such an expensive independent school. Also, quite a few of the teachers aren't qualified teachers and have no experience in the subject. This in my opinion is very inappropriate of such an expensive and higher class school, albeit several of the teachers are extremely good and know what they're doing. However, even it being higher class, I find my peers not to be snobby in a serious manor nor the staff or administrators to be rude. Overall this is a very good school, yet it has some minor and major downfalls. If you want a very safe environment and a very comfortable environment, then look no further. Yet, if you want a top of the line academic-focused school, I would look elsewhere, but do not take TOS out of consideration.
When you search for Greenville-area private schools, Oakwood consistently pops up as the best (great internet marketing!) choice. Moving to Greenville, we then placed our children at Oakwood for a few years, but quickly became disappointed. Our older son was fully a year ahead of the rest of the class, and we found Oakwood teachers generally pander to the lowest-common-denominator, rather than challenging students across the class. When confronted with this, the teachers and administration (overlap) gloss over reality and "paint a pretty picture" about how wonderful the school is. Whether conscious denial or not, I've never seen such deluded self-promotion. After further investigation and by reputation, we moved all three of our children to Parrott Academy last year and are thrilled with the difference in our children's education - as are they. We could have saved a great deal of time & money, had we found Parrott sooner.
We have a high school student at Oakwood and we're very pleased with the education he is receiving. The new headmaster has done an excellent job restoring school spirit and credibility. The faculty cares about the students and they are all very accessible to the students. At least 20% of the graduates ('09 & '10) have been accepted to UNC-Chapel Hill and the other students have done very well with the college admissions process as well. The school's athletic programs are improving and there are other extracurricular activites available as well. It's located on a nice, safe campus west of town. Admittedly, the student body is generally upscale but there is diversity and there are financial aid opportunities for academic excellence. While I don't have much first hand knowledge of the lower school, 99% of what I hear from those parents is positive.
I love this school. bad thing is that some of the parents are extremely involved. but besides that i love the school. the classes aren't small and the teacher are very good. the sports program is well too. i reccomend thiss school.
The class sizes are small, the teachers are well supported and the children seem challenged and happy. Children are involved in community service from Kindergarten on. The tuition is very reasonable, especially when compared to larger cities where you may pay twice as much. It has been a good investment.