This is a safe place to share your honest opinions of a school, whether good or bad.
Welsh Hills School5
Posted April 22, 2014
- a parent
Our three children have had an outstanding year (2013-14) at the Welsh Hills School. It is wonderful to see how this school has overcome past challenges, and has flourished under the leadership of Michelle Lerner. We are excited about the new (lower) tuition rates and expanded hours - it means so much to our family to have WHS as both a school and child care resource.
We ve had our children at WHS for over six years, and we are very pleased with the quality of education that they are receiving. The class sizes are small, which allows very individualized attention. This is key, because the school s philosophy is to provide a child-centered education, where a student that is excelling in one area but lacking in another can be readily accommodated. The children collaborate with the teacher to learn, they re not taught at. There is a strong emphasis on self-learning, where the student is encouraged and enabled to learn and self-discover outside of the school. They have unique, experiential programs each year like Nature s Classroom, where they spend several days at a nature preserve immersed in the natural sciences. There is a strong culture of respecting others student-to-student and student-to-teacher. We have noticed this positive behavior in our children, which is especially apparent when they are with children from other schools. We are fortunate to have several great schools available for the education of our children, public and private, but the best choice for us is Welsh Hills School, without question.
From the moment you walk into the farmhouse style building you get the feeling that this school is unlike any other. There is no smell of feet or Clorox and no teacher with a whistle. Instead you enter the foyer, greeted by the sounds of the grandfather clock and classical music.The headmaster is often found shoveling the walk while greeting parents and students. The aroma of fresh coffee and muffins leads you to the farmhouse kitchen where the early arrivals have breakfast and welcome parents to fill their thermos. This sense of community is carried over to the classroom where children work among others of varying ages and abilities. Students are shown and taught mutual respect and collaboration are keys to success. The classes are small and have allowed a tremendous amount of personalized learning for our son. He is excited to excel and move ahead in his classes. His learning program is based on his needs, not the majority of the class. Every student has their own learning plan so he is always challenged now and truly loves his Welsh Hills experience. I encourage any parent who is questioning the quality and sustenance of their child s current education to come experience WHS.
We had children in this school for a number of years. In 2010, the school hired a dynamic, energetic Head that brought vision to a school that needed it. When he decided to leave(can't say I blame him) the school has reverted to its old days. Disengaged Board and Head of School, a teaching staff that is hardly qualified and an overpopulated special needs student contingency. When paying over 14k a year, I would expect teachers that have perfected their craft, as well as a student body that has undergone a thorough admissions process. Save your money and send your kids to the local public school or make the drive to CSG OR ACADEMY!
My daughter is in the Intermediate class - of 4 children. She is a visual learner, and so is her teacher - also the art teacher. The school has worked with us to help my daughter catch up and stay current with school work after a hospitalization. I cannot imagine any public school helping as much as Welsh Hills has.
I have two children attending this school, and I have been completely impressed with the education that they receive. While the academics are excellent, this school provides much more to the child, namely self-confidence and character building. You can see these qualities in every child as you observe what happens in the classrooms and at school functions. I recently toured the much-acclaimed Granville Elementary School to help decide whether that was a better choice for my children. I was amazed at the chaos, large classes, and constant talk by administrators of how my children s progress would be assessed by testing. At Welsh Hills School, my children s progress is assessed by the top-notch educators that work one-on-one with them every day, not only a test score.
I have a student in the Welsh Hills Middle School and have been a parent at Welsh Hills for several years now. This school provides an excellent learning environment that helps children develop skills well beyond just memorization of facts. Strong faculty members and small class sizes combine to provide outstanding education that reaches each child in the most effective way. I also like the 'service learning' programs, helping kids get involved in community service programs beyond just their school learning. I'd enourage prospective families to check this school out first hadn and stop in to visit the Head of School.
Excellent program in the Children's House (PS-K). Beyond that, our children attend the Granvile public schools. There's no real differentiation or value-added to justify the high tuition beyond Kindergarten. As are other parents, we are very concerned about the continuing financial problems that this school faces and, apparently, has been unable to resolve for at least the past four years. We're not comfortable with what the future holds for this school. Fundraising performance and greater community involvement by the Head and Board appears to be minimal, if anything at all. The school appears to have great difficulty in retaining children long-term, particularly at the Intermediate and Middle School levels. Most parents are just not comfortable with the school's academic foundations and value-added delivery in the 3rd - 8th grade classrooms. There appear to be fundamental leadership issues, also.
The deep financial problems that have plagued this school for over four year have taken their toll on the education quality for the kids here. The lower grade levels through the Children's House are outstanding. The upper grade levels through grade 8 are no better (and in many cases, simply worse) than the excellent public school choices in the Granville area. For the $10,500 cost, if you're considering private school for your child, you'd be much better off looking at the outstanding Columbus area private schools such as Academy, CSG, etc. who have lower student:teacher ratios, extracurricular activities, an education available through grade 12, 100% college degreed, certified teachers, and much more. This school has a Board that is, essentially dead, an Advisory Board that does nothing but lend their names and cannot fundraise, and a Head who has outlived her useful purpose at this facility.
As parents, we would rate this school as average or slightly above. We definitely do not feel that it does not provide the value-added that you would expect from a private school charging $10K tuition/year - plus addition fees. This school really has no identity nor is it able to clearly differentiate itself from either good public schools or the other excellent private school choices available in Central Ohio. The early education programs are excellent. It is baffling why the programs for grades 1-8 continue to fail to meet the standard set by those programs.
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