This is a safe place to share your honest opinions of a school, whether good or bad.
Posted February 24, 2015
- a parent
We removed our gifted child from this school. Her Wood Johnson III test documented her mathematical skills at the >99.9th percentile. To our horror, the math teacher dropped her BELOW her age-equivalent grade level because the teacher refused to work with her to help her understand the word problems - our daughter is below grade level in reading. Out of frustration with the poor level of teaching at Rainard, we withdrew her from the school and started her on an internet-based home schooling program for gifted children. She is currently working at two grade levels above her age-equivalent grade in math. Rainard supposedly lets gifted children thrive by enabling them to work at the highest level they are able to achieve. That was not our experience. Not only was our child NOT permitted to develop her gifted skills, but the teacher actively quashed our daughter's love of the subject she was most gifted in. This school is NOT the place for a gifted child to thrive. In fact, I would go so far as to call it a sham.
We had to remove our children from this school. The nepotism and lack of experience of the Board of Directors and the Chairman of the Board (who made herself the new Head of School after a turnover of four Heads in four school terms) is amazing in the worst possible way. Not only would I not recommend this school for gifted children, I would not recommend this school for any child. There are so many student bullies who are encouraged by bully teachers who are kept by a bully Board of Directors. Run away. Run quickly away. Ask the Head of School what her previous work experience has been.
I moved my kids to Rainard last year from another good local private school. One had been unhappy in a school that simply wasn t a good fit and my other child was happy socially but tuning out academically. Both of my kids absolutely loved Rainard from their first day and my husband and I enjoy the community. The teachers inspire and love our kids. The other kids are enthusiastic, intense, quirky and creative. Their education is more exciting, deeper, interdisciplinary and project-based Our head of school, along with our wonderful teachers, have done a wonderful job of removing discipline problems, restoring school traditions and strengthening community. If your child is gifted come visit and see why we are so happy and pleased with the education our kids are experiencing
The written philosophy of Rainard and what it could offer are amazing and what was created by the founder many years ago is exactly what helps students thrive. Unfortunately, political problems, an over-involved board comprised solely of parents, and deep pockets making all big decisions in spite of very little to no knowledge of educational philosophy, Rainard just continues to struggle and repeat the same history of a disastrous attempt to be a school. A small group of happy parents get exactly what they want for their own children, run the school, and everything else falls apart. The reviews here bring to light the unrest that has plagued this school for well over 20 years, since it's founding. It's unsettling to know that it just keeps continuing, causing unbelievably high turnover in students, teachers, and staff. If you think Rainard is the right choice for your family, be sure to dig deeper and know exactly what you are getting into. Your child only gets one school experience, and the stakes are far too high to take a chance that these reviews are the only thing wrong at this school.
I have been a long-time student at Rainard. At first it was a very good learning experience for me and I highly recommended it. I can no longer recommend this school due to the significant changes in administration which has resulted in an unfriendly learning environment and deteriorated level of teaching.
I found Rainard by chance. It is a small, little-known school that isn't fancy and doesn't have a huge budget, but it focuses entirely on teaching gifted students. Because of their small class sizes, the faculty gets to know the students individually which means more tailored learning and a better education. At Rainard, they allow for individualism while still expecting students to adhere to basic principles of citizenship (e.g. being responsible for their actions, being accountable, volunteering), thereby creating students we can be proud of. I am thrilled to have found such a wonderful opportunity for my child's education and will not hesitate to continue to send my child to Rainard.
Excellent school. Small Classes. Great Teachers. Nice campus - the portable classroom buildings are not perfect, but they work. Welcoming place. Diverse student and family population. Good value. This is a good school for gifted students.
The school has made great headway towards having the best teachers and a formal program that still gives each child the opportunity to be unique and learn at their pace. My children love going to school and keep improving their skills at a higher than average rate.
This is the ONLY school for my children! They totally get and understand the truly gifted child. They also differentiate which so many schools claims to do, but don't. Dr. Tara Tomicic has done marvelous things for the school since taking the reins as Head of School at Rainard.
We came to Rainard because of the small class sizes and opportunity for our children to be engaged in learning that matches their abilities. We have stayed for these reasons, and also because the teachers and staff have been great, and they care deeply about joy in learning, and they care about our children, and our children are learning a lot. The curriculum roughly tracks most US schools but there is a lot more attention to project based learning, and learning through field trips and in-depth exploration of topics. Sometimes these supplementary methods leave room for improvement. Most of the time, however, they appear to provide a richer and more fun education they spark kids' desire to learn while imparting real knowledge. Rainard has been a good school for us. It has improved significantly and consistently each year that we have been there, and looks like it will continue to approve. And, to be perfectly honest, we expect to stay as long as the school does the basic things well. After all, it s the only gifted school in Houston that is small and welcoming that allows students to learn consistent with their abilities. We have been and remain very happy with Rainard.