This is an awesome school with devoted, experienced teachers. Students are taught in a loving, safe, Christian environment. My children have been attending NDS for a long time & are above grade level in all subjects due to the excellent teachers and curriculum. Science, math, reading, social studies, art, P.E. & Bible are taught; students are left understanding & excelling in all subjects. Teachers stay after school to spend time with students who need extra help & are always available to communicate with. The setting of the school is beautiful; manicured gardens surround the property. Lessons are often held outside to get away from the routine of desks and chairs. As to the "barn" comment, the inside hall is lovely & perfectly suited for school. Hundreds of weddings have been conducted in this "barn" when previously owned. My kids are thriving & love school. I appreciate that the teachers help them get their work done in class so after a day at work I can enjoy being a family at home instead of working on homework. I could not be happier my children have found teachers that love them & a school that fosters their love of learning not only for the core subjects but also for God.
If your top priority is Bible study, you'll be happy with this school. Even their math books are "From a Christian Perspective", whatever that means. If your top priority is education, particularly science education, you will be disappointed. My child's "science" class was nothing but what we used to call Health. No science at all. I am puzzled by the beautiful school building comments. It is a white metal shed next to a farm field. You would be forgiven for thinking it was a barn. If you are busy and want group Christian home schooling, NDS is the place to be. If you want a good school that includes Christian values, keep looking. Reciting the Pledge is great, but how about teaching the kids too?
This is truely a gem of a school. They have small class sizes and the teaching staff is dedicated and ambituous about providing a superb education to the students. They moved to a new location that is absolutely gorgeous and fitting for their hands-on nature focused curriculum. Its a great christian based environment and they uphold traditional values like reciting the pledge of alegence every morning. Plus they have affordable tuition. Because of this they do rely on parents to be involved by volunteering time and organizing fundraisers, but in my honest opinion that's how it should be!
I rated the school 5 stars (but if they offered half stars it would be 4.5), but all schools have room for improvement. As an educator in a public school, there are things both present and lacking in NDS; but for us (my spouse is an public school teacher as well), the benefits far outweigh my few complaints. Comp: The school is 90% finished. If you want your kid going to a school with baseboard trim in the halls, this is not the school for you. As it is, the school is constantly fundraising to put the finishing touches on the beautiful school. Go physically look at the school grounds and see if you've ever seen a more beautiful and fitting setting for a school with the title: Nature Discovery School. Complaint #2: No buses. Every parent drives their kid to school, and to field trips. The field trips are getting better organized, but still have some details to work out. Pro #1: Dedicated staff. They are there all the time. Unlike my own school, if you want to talk to a teacher, they are there, and they love our kids. Pro#2: Full curriculum. The teachers are not all certified (master's degree), but music/art/PE/Bible/ + core are taught. Happy with my kid's progress.
This year they are holding class in a building that is still under construction. Although they are well-meaning, they do not have the skill or resources to run to school.
Be aware that the Christian values they teach include teaching children to fear God. They discipline by humiliation and control. Along with low state testing scores and they are not up to benchmark standards with the rest of the state. My child took major steps backwards after being under the instruction of a very inexperienced teacher.
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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.
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