This is a safe place to share your honest opinions of a school, whether good or bad.
The Arts Based School5
Posted January 14, 2015
- a community member
I have been a student at this school for 8 years and I have enjoyed every second of it! I have always heard my other friends that don't go to ABS complain about how boring school is, but I am always thinking "I can't wait to go to school tomorrow." All of the teachers are extremely dedicated and have made me the person I am today. I am a 7th grader but I am currently taking 9th grade math and I am reading at a 10th grade level. I owe all of that to this great school.
The Arts Based School is an innovative, creative environment that teaches kids the basics of education and so much more. As a parent at this school for 7 years, I've seen my children blossom into creative critical thinkers who obsessively immerse themselves in the educational task at hand. I couldn't ask for a more stimulating, enriching environment to lay the foundation for my children's educational future.
I believe this school operates by telling people that they run their school based on the arts. I can honestly say that I believe that is just a way for them to hide their lack-luster education. I had my child in this school for a short period of time before switching them because of the way the principal deals with issues, it's quite frustrating. Along with that the school has hardly any other arts classes than other schools and forced children to take dance without even offering PE which is what my child wished he could take. All in all, very disappointing
My child's fourth grade teacher told me in our last conference that he would never be a 4.0, straight A student and that was ok!!! Now I have a very smart but lazy child that needs to be pushed to give the extra effort. Accepting the minimum is absolutely unacceptable! Outraged Parent
We adore The Arts Based School. We have two children there and have watched them both blossom emotionally and academically in this wonderful, unique and innovative learning environment. The teachers are amazing, and you couldn't ask for a more engaged, capable or caring principal and staff. There is a true sense of community among ABS families as well that makes it such a special place. My advice to anyone who is wanting something more for their child than teaching to the test, being stressed about unending, pointless homework or anxiety over being timed in math drills is to TAKE A TOUR of ABS (call 748-4116 for an appt. the tours are given each Thursday morning). You really will be amazed at their curriculum and what this school offers its students!
Having started in the traditional school system, I greatly appreciate the vast differences in the way The Arts Based School approaches teaching. My once spirited, bright, confident child was miserable in a traditional setting where the curriculum was taught primarily through "one size fits all" lectures. ABS believes in actively engaging each child in the learning process and truly teaching the Standard Course of Study through the arts. Visual arts, music, dance, drama - all are part of daily life at ABS! Not only are the children engaged in what they are learning - they are loving it and ultimately retaining it. There is a reason we all learned the ABCs with a song - you never forget it! The administration and teaching staff are the most dedicated, inspiring and caring people I have ever encountered in education. The sense of community and parental involvement at ABS is amazing. Both of my children have excelled in their time at ABS and we're so thrilled we're expanding to a K-8 school. My children feel valued, engaged, challenged and safe. It truly is the greatest school you could ever hope for.
Couldn't be happier with the experience my two daughters are having at ABES. Respectful, kind teachers allow each kid to advance in a supportive environment. My kids are not just learning the [state-mandated] curriculum, but are also finding out how to approach problems in innovative ways--skills sorely lacking in the standard institutionalized system. Highly recommended for any family that wants to prepare their kids for the challenges of the 21st century.
As a former teacher, I made a specific list of things that I wanted from my kindergartner son's school experience. An academically challenging, child centered environment, kind teachers who spoke to children in respectful ways, adequate time to be physically active, meaningful learning opportunities, a healthy nutrition policy, and heavy parental involvement. I had heard opinions in the community that ABES was a school filled with children with behavioral problems who couldn't cope it in regular schools. That is not our experience. ABES met and exceeded all of my desires for a school for my son. They have academically challenged my child (reading on a 2nd grade level in kindergarten). It is an emotionally safe environment, where children feel free to fail and succeed and try new things. Real learning takes place and an enthusiasm for knowledge and growth is ever present. The work that I see the students produce at ABES is a grade level above what the students at my School of Excellence could produce. They just aren't factory model taught to fill in bubbles. The leadership at ABES is incredible. They are supportive of the teachers and students.
My child is a very in-the-box thinker. ABES has provided him with the structure, encouragement and opportunity to allow his box to get significantly bigger. :) He is willing to take chances when he didn't used to trust himself, expand himself artistically, and his academics are challenging him. He began first grade reading on grade level and is finishing first grade reading on a 3-4 grade level. I am so excited to see him continue on this path and watch him grow and expand in his academics, confidence, and artistic knowledge and comfort.
We have two children at ABES and 'get' their academic approach. It is a very unique but well researched and thought out appraoch to teaching children. As an educator myself, it is very important to us that our children be great learners. This means not correctly filling in a blank but critically thinking about a subject and coming up with well thought out answers. While this appraoch is more cumbersome and a much longer process, the children who are educated this way are much more successful in all other endeavors. This environment requires more self-control and more focus than a regular school setting. The children are taught how to solve their own relationship issues with kindness and respect. One of my children is a great student who would succeed in just about any environment. My other student is a very academically gifted student who is given so many individualized opportunities.