Thank you for looking at Rainard. It is our belief that some of the reviews here do not accurately reflect our school. It appears that families who are unhappy, and especially if they were expelled or withdrew in lieu of expulsion, may be using multiple reviews in this comment area as an opportunity to vent their frustration at the unfortunate nature of their situation. We deeply regret a family leaving our school in this way. It is an unhappy decision, particularly as we consider the potential implications for the student who must leave. However, these decisions are approached with consideration for the school experience of all of our students. Rainard has improved consistently and significantly in the past several years - each year has been an improvement over the last. To the extent that a problem with the school is legitimate or appears legitimate we welcome and address such feedback from our community. Our school meets the educational, social, and emotional needs of gifted students. We do so each and every day on our campus. It is a happy and productive place of learning and we invite you to come and visit us. We invite you to learn more about our school and program at www.rainard.org.
March 06, 2015
This is a safe place to share your honest opinions of a school, whether good or bad.
Leadership is largely absent. We have had meetings scheduled with the Head of School and she has not only not been at the meeting but nobody seemed to know where she was. The communication at Rainard is also abysmal.
While there are some good teachers, most teachers at Rainard have neither experience teaching gifted students or teaching at all. If you are thinking of going to school here, you should ask if teachers have been accredited and then ask for proof. We thought that this was standard at Rainard but we were wrong!
At first, Rainard seemed like a good fit for our children, but we have become progressively displeased at the experience and the lack of learning at the school and will be leaving next year. We have come to realize that Rainard not only does not understand gifted education but education at all. Teachers are creating their own curriculum (at best) or making it up on the fly (at worst) which has resulted in our children now testing below grade level! The administration is largely absent (including physically) and communication is intermittent at best. We have also noticed a steady decrease in students over the years including those of parents most closely involved in the school and now realize why. There are also persistent problems with discipline--the same children with the same issues and nothing ever gets resolved.
Early on, we were very pleased with Rainard. However, we are currently so displeased with the school that we will be removing our child before the end of the year. Despite the school being called a gifted school, there is no curriculum in place. Teachers create everything themselves so there is no rhyme or reason to the flow of the lessons. Second, there is very little instruction. Not all of their learning should be done at home or with tutors! This year just seems to be random project after random project with lots of busy work. To improve they need curriculum plans that align to some kind of national standard. The school also struggles with discipline. Since Gifted kids also have other traits (like ADHD) they need structure or else it becomes chaos, which distracts from the teacher being able to teach. An example of this are the many poorly-planned field trips that change with barely any notice. Also, communication is terrible because some teachers completely ignore emails. It’s also hard to meet with the school leadership because they are NEVER there l when it starts in the morning. To sum it up we are regretting moving our child to Rainard as we feel they are not learning anything beyond what they learned before they got here.
Rainard is the first school where my daughter has "fit in" and where she is excited to learn again. The teachers are engaged and know each student on a personal level, and they show an enormous amount of enthusiasm in their teaching. I love hearing my daughter's daily report of what she's done in school that day and all the things teachers have introduced that she never would have heard of if not for Rainard (i.e. she learned binary and hexadecimal in geometry class this week along with the geometry lesson, they did a computational linguistics exercise last week, etc). Her science teacher truly individualizes the assignments according to each student's level of comprehension, and the high school English teacher is amazing working with the kids. So while no school is perfect for every child, Rainard is a wonderful school for my daughter. Rainard has returned my child's enthusiasm for learning.