I am a graduate of FRA and a current parent. I feel so blessed to have my two boys as a part of the FRA community because the faculty and staff know them, love them and pour into them daily. My boys are very different but FRA has been such a great place for both of them. The academics are challenging, the opportunities are endless and the spiritual piece is something that is very important to our family. Very few schools do strong academics and Christian mission well. FRA is one of those few. The new headmaster, Sean Casey, is the real deal. He is an authentic leader who is honest, driven, and cares about the quality of the staff and education that FRA provides. He even teaches in the upper school! In addition to Mr. Casey, the Deans in the lower, middle, and upper schools are stellar. I could not be more excited to be a part of this community! I encourage anyone looking at independent schools in Nashville to look at FRA.
Franklin Road Academy does a great job executing on its mission of providing an excellent education in an inclusive Christian community. My daughter recently shadowed in the Upper School and I could not have been more impressed. The school offers a great value for the tuition. I loved the fact that there is a writing and math lab that students can use not only when they are struggling with a topic or paper but to achieve at a level they didn't even know possible. While their college placements are impressive, they care more about WHO they send to college than where they attend. This is a school that knows what's important! My daughter even commented that she loved the way the teachers and students interacted with one another. She said she could tell the faculty knew the students well and really cared about them!
I am an alumna of FRA, and was a student here for 6 years. The way the admistration treated me, I wouldn't send my worst enemy's child here. I was being sought out by another student daily for three years and they refused to intervene. The values that this school portrays are distorted and only come to play when it is helpful to the admistration. Zero tolerance may be written in every school handbook and on the walls to comfort incoming parents and students, but it means nothing when you are actually in need of help.
We spent our middle school years at this school. The academics, I finally discovered, were very good, and a few teachers hit the mark precisely. A lot is demanded of the teachers, and they, and the office staff are kind, and connect well with the students. We participated in many ways, such as being room parents, but there was no "family" feeling there. In fact, we disagreed with 7th graders being required to have laptops due to all the social media problems and its huge distraction on academics, much to the outright scorn of some parents. Though FRA had not done it before so it was rough-going, the school allowed our student to take classes above the grade level, and we were grateful for that. The religion distracted from academics, and dominated the schedule over academics. There aren't many good school choices in Nashville, without built-in, time-wasting distractions such as public school fighting, and religious dogma, without breaking the bank. We did not see much bullying, but many students were pampered with designer wardrobe obsessions and were so stunted socially that, later on, they do not remain in out-of-town colleges to be close to mom and dad's money.
My son just graduated this school and is now heading to Belmont. If you are looking for an excellent education with good Christian morals and ethics then hands down this the best you'll get. You'll be double blessed if you have Mrs. Blevins, coach Furgeson, or Mr.Chandler for anything.
If you like Arts, then this is not the school for you. "Integrity and Balance" is their slogan- the two things the school does NOT have. Balance? Please. Balance if you're into sports. The divide between the athletics and the arts would be comical, if it wasn't so...not comical. And the athletics aren't even that good. Instead of snubbing the departments that are actually worth something, maybe they should re-evaluate what they put stock into over there. At the very least they should equally support all aspects. Hey, FRA? You need to check yourself, before you wreck yourself (which at the rate you're going, I give you 5 years). Good luck!
There is no perfect independent or public school system, but if you are looking for a challenging academic environment in a private setting Franklin Road academy fits the bill. The faculty and facilities are top notch. Scholars with integrity and balance is the school motto and is reflected in the students daily life on campus. For the past 7 years the academy has grown and weathered challenges. Sadly, when parents or the student isn't happy they attack or blame the school and slander the institution. Here's a thought, if it's not a fit for your family, then there are plenty of other options, but one families negative experience might be another families ideal environment. Weigh your options and make your own decision. Franklin Road Academy just might be what you're looking for.
I have had children at FRA for 12 years and this past year was by far the best! The last posts in this site DOES NOT reflect the school that I know and love. My children are extremely happy, as am I. We have INCREDIBLE heads of school, much better than the ones we had in the past, and we have an incredible Head of School coming in from a top Atlanta private school. Yes, we had a large amount transfers last year, but the quality of education has only gotten better. It would be hard to find a better, more caring school.
Great school with priorities in the proper places! 3 best principals you could ever ask for. If you want a place where your kids will truly feel part of a family while being held accountable, FRA is perfect. We have children in all three schools there and could not be happier.
I am confident that my children are going to graduate from Franklin Road Academy, attend the college of there choice and contribute to this world in a leadership role all with excellent character, integrity and faith. I have this confidence because FRA has high academic standards, an impressive teaching and admin staff and continues to improve in any areas where they need improvement. FRA has a beautiful campus and is filled with school spirit and my family is proud to attend this exceptional school! WE ARE FRA!
I am student at FRA and I am very happy. There is something for everyone. The teachers are very nice and they care about their students. They listen to your ideas, and they encourage us. I would never want to leave this school.
We have been a FRA family for 8 years. Both our children love this school and so do my husband and I. I used the words FRA family because that is the atmosphere of this school. FRA is a family full of loving and caring members. My kids are growing both academically and spiritually. I love the fact that this is an all inclusive Christian school. As a parent it is my responsibility to raise my kids in a Christian environment but the fact that FRA reinforces the same morals and surrounds my kids in a loving Christian environment is priceless. FRA does a wonderful job balancing academics, religion, sports, and the arts. At FRA students are able to become well rounded and have the opportunity to excel in many different activities. Teachers truly care about their students and do a fabulous job communicating with parents. I have read some of the negative posts about FRA and all I can say is those posts are not reflective of the experience my family has had at FRA. I understand FRA may work for some but I do not feel the negative posts should be taken as fact. We love FRA and are excited to continue being part of the FRA family. GO PANTHERS!
I have been an FRA parent for 6 years now. W love this school and feel very confident in the education our daughter has received. Se is beyond excited about the opportunities he will have next year in middle school. We have a great "FRA family" who have been beside in all things good and bad in our lives during our time here. Mr. West in the lower school has been a terrific addition! Great school all around!
Having been at FRA for 10+ years, I can honestly say that my children are in a safe, academically strong, christian centered educational environment that continually strives to impart moral values and balance. The teachers and administration are caring and dedicated, trying their best everyday to positively impact the lives of our children.
My children love FRA. I can honestly say that the teachers care, the administration is receptive to ideas and concerns and the school as a whole is dedicated and attentive. In reading some of the negative reviews, it struck me that a child's education is a marathon, not a sprint. There will be turnover, there will be bumps in the road. I choose to teach my children that change is a part of life, challenges create opportunities to work together and find solutions....all things I want my children to carry with them after high school. As far as the negative comments here, no reputable administrator at another private school would ever portray FRA in an unfavorable light...if they do, I would seriously question their integrity. Any school that says they do not have challenges from time to time is not being honest. Raising and educating children is tough. I would encourage you to ask the right questions and trust your gut. We did it 12 years ago, and have never looked back. FRA is an awesome place to send your children. They leave with moral values, a God centered heart and an education to be proud of.
I agree with the previous reviews. Please be smart and do research about this school. Talk to people in the community to understand the reputation of this school. It will be many years before this school bounces back, but in the meantime don't compromise your child's education. The school has lowered it's expectation in order to increase enrollment, which has caused lower expectations in classrooms. There is a high faculty turn over rate, which should speak volumes. We tried to wait it out and give second chances, but we just couldn't do it any longer at the financial expense.
I would encourage any parent to do extensive research on the recent history at this school before signing a contract. Ask other school administrators who have heard it ALL from FRA transfers. Roughly 125 families left the school after the 2013 year. Like another parent, I don't know how there can be so many positive reviews unless the FRA staff are rating the school. As one parent said, if you really want a caring and loving environment, consider MBA, Father Ryan or St. Cecilia. Choose wisely.
I'm thankful for FRA, the administration (especially Middle School), and teachers. They love our students and encourage them to do their best. The last month of school is busy and yet with all the the end of year activities, banquets and performances it amazes me how much the faculty really know and care for the kids. They are proud of where the kids started in August and where they are now. My child has grown and become more confident and independent through the mentors at Franklin Road Academy. Thank you teachers and staff for making this another great year for my family. We appreciate you.
About the time that the school switched to Division II sports in 2010, a lot has changed. The admissions department seemed to lower its criteria. The school deemphasized religion. Tuition was increased significantly to pay for athletic scholarship$ which in essence squeezed out the hard working middle class families [the families ..umm.. with values.] Quite the sacrifice in order to win football and basketball games. After 3 years, there was no strategic alignment between teachers, admissions, donors, a fragmented board, athletics staff or the administration. Teachers were forced to lower previously high standards to pass athletes. Religion became an afterthought. MANY families, teachers, staff and board members left. With reduced enrollment $, long-time teachers were fired in favor of low-cost twenty-somethings. At least two principals left. The head of school left the school in shambles. Several board members left .some with extraordinarily deep pockets. This institution would make a terrific case study on how NOT to run a private school. On a side note, the politics are formidable. If you are not on the inside , forget about opportunities for your children.
Franklin Road Academy can be best described as a sort of exercise in futility. This school can't go a single year without a scandal or a dean being fired and has spent all of its time and money in court fighting all of its former donors. Academically speaking FRA is fairly strong, but that is due to the efforts of individual teachers and not to any support, or lack thereof, which they may receive from the administration. Many teachers pay out of pocket to provide their students with learning material. The hallways are covered in cockroaches and the walls are, quite literally, home to colonies of ants. Instead of renovating the facilities, the administration decides to put money into building a school spirit group called the FRAternity, which was formed because FRA's school spirit was nonexistent, and into renovating the tennis courts (only they didn't build enough courts, so the team can't even play matches on campus) and into building a 3rd soccer field. The school, which hosts "Spiritual Emphasis Week" every year in February, made a giant banner for that week where they spelled Spiritual as "Spritual". Clearly, this school is run by only the most intelligent of people.
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