Teachers are the first line and 99.9% of the time, they are all that is needed becaude they are self-sufficient.
The escalation point is to the division head. So, unresolved issues, if there were any, would be cleaned up quite quickly.
As anywhere, you have your favorites and less favorites. What I will say is that my least favorite teacher, my daughter made the biggest jump in many key areas.
In other words, the teacher's focus on the girls and don't spend a lot of time holding the parent's hands. I would not have it any other way. They are all fantastic.
In 3rd grade, Homework is daily. It takes about 40 minutes a night on average. Half of that is mandatory reading of 20 minutes which my kid has to be asked to stop so that she can eat dinner, shower, etc.
She is always prepared and so the homework cements the day's or week's learning.
I have a nine year old daughter who attends Springside Chestnut Hill Academy. She has been there since Pre-K. Always intelligent, I have seen her grow from curious and willing to learn to someone who continually amazes herself (and me!) and who has a zeal for reading and mathematics.
The teachers are amazing and self-sufficient. The administrative staff instill confidence but engage parents only when needed, in my experience. The parent leadership (if you're a sheep, like me) range from very effective to somewhat overbearing. I don't blame them, pushing issues and people are what helps to propel the school even further.
The facilities are recently renovated in some areas, new in some areas, and aged in others. Overall, they are quite fine with a warmth that you feel as soon as you walk in.
What i am most impressed with about the school is the curriculum. How it stretches or contracts to meet the girl's needs (you can do that with a 1:12 ratio and plenty of subject matter teachers and a dedicated librarian). In Pre-Kindergarten, my daughter hatched chicken eggs. They candles them, held the chicks. One of the baby chickens pee'd on one of the girls; a great experience overall! In Kindergarten, my daughter's reading aptitude went thru the roof; no problem, each girl has a tailor-made book basket based on level. In first grade, we had a STEM-fanatic teacher (a great thing!) and the girls were introduced to coding. My daughter actually presented to the general public at the STEM convention in the city.....in first grade! In 2nd grade, (back to my earlier point about the curriculum expanding to meet the student's needs) my daughter found herself in math and excelled (maybe due to all of that coding work in 1st grade?). So, the teacher began working with her on 3rd grade math; always gently pushing her to get her to go as far as possible without burning her out. In 3rd grade, the girls are doing tests on water, scientific experiments, learning the methodology. There are plenty of opportunities for the girls to collaborate and present. The academics, and the teachers that put them forth, are the stars of this school.
Last point: my daughter just last night read to me from Chinese characters that she transcribed and then translated. SCHA has taught her Chinese since PreK. I was flabbergasted!
(Forgive any typos, I am typing my on my mobile phone).
Lower school is rigorous and nurturing. New head of lower school is energetic, supportive and responsive to students and parents. The merger with Chestnut Hill Academy mostly affects the Upper Schools. Both Springside and CHA have committed to keeping K-8 single sex. Let's hope it stays that way, and that achieving the so-called "economies of scale" in consolidating departments doesn't adversely affect academic or teaching standards. For now, lower school is excellent. We'll give middle school a chance. Maybe administration will enforce school uniform standards by then. Most girls maintain an acceptable length on their mini skirts, but some are just downright jaw-dropping by how short they are. Overall an excellent school. Can only hope the trustees shepherding the merger between CHA and Springside keep academic standards and excellence at the forefront of their decision-making.
My daughter attended Springside for 14 years, Pre-K - 12. She was challenged from the moment she started until the day she graduated. At Springside she found her inner artist, her inner athlete, and a life-long love of learning. The school taught her self-discipline, compassion, gave her impeccable study-skills and imbued her with the courage of her own convictions. The academic program gave her a deep grasp of international political issues and a love of literature, language and culture. She is amazingly well-rounded, self-reliant and independent--the school demanded this of her. Every girl should be lucky enough to attend a school like Springside.
I have been at this school for ten years and I believe that it is a great school because it raises girls to be responsible and powerful in all aspects of life. The coordinate program with Chestnut Hill Academy is different from any other schools, offering the best of both schools to boys and girls. There have never been any major problems and everyone behaves and performs to the best of their ability for the most part, whether it be in or out of the classroom.
I was skeptical at first of all girls education, but I've become a believer. In part, it's because Springside is neither a finishing school nor a place where girls are taught to feel superior to boys. Instead, it focuses on developing girls as leaders -- teaching them to be confident in their abilities, and willing to accept challenges. Academics are excellent, but without the pressure cooker atmosphere preferred by some (parents and teachers). Sports are improving. The physical plant is better than just about any other private school in the area, and the art program, in particular, is spectacular. My daughter is a lifer who started at Pre-K and is now in Middle School and she (and we) couldn't be happier.