This is a safe place to share your honest opinions of a school, whether good or bad.
Vanguard College Preparatory School5
Posted May 26, 2012
- a parent
Vanguard is a wonderful school. As the parent of a student on a needs-based scholarship, I can promise you that my son has never been made to feel like he is not as important as his peers; rather, teachers, coaches and admin go out of their way to help all of their students. My son is in the 7th grade, and the essays that he wrote this year on The Odyssey and The Lost Books of the Odyssey were creative, interesting and analytical (in the 7th grade!), and the work that he did on To Kill a Mockingbird was equally thoughtful. If you are interested in Latin, this is the school for you, too - the 12-grade Latin class translates The Aeneid and they are planning to offer AP Latin soon. Vanguard has more National Merit Finalists than any other central Texas school and the AP pass rate is phenomenal. There are also lots of wonderful traditions - the mud pit during field day, the Senior Haunted House, spring trips to Italy - the list goes on. If you are interested in this school, you are warmly encouraged to visit. I recommend that you do!
Both my kids graduated from this school. They not only loved it, but they got great preparation for college. My daughter received a generous four year merit scholarship and my son had scholarship offers, but elected to go to his first choice (that didn't offer one). Each of them felt very well prepared in the college classroom and really appreciatede Vanguard when they saw the other kids struggling. I don't know where all the back-stabbing comments come from. Both my kids attended public schools before Vanguard and found Vanguard remarkably friendly, tolerant, and clique-free -- a welcome change.
I am a graduate of Vanguard and had a wonderful experience academically and socially. I found classes to be engaging - the teachers encourage discussion and give assignments that are creative and challenging. I felt well-prepared at my liberal arts college, and I know it's because of the strong study habits I learned at Vanguard. The school is a close-knit community, supportive of each student's diverse talents and interests.
This school is overrated. The education is rigorous, but the school confuses quality with quantity. They assign ridiculous amounts of meaningless homework but very few intellectually stimulating assignments. The students are very cliqueish and exclude and bully others. The teachers and administration play favorites among the students, often favoring those whose families are particularly involved or have made recent donations. It is, sadly, one of the better schools in Waco, but it is by no means an excellent option.
Vanguard is the best thing that could have happened to my daughter. She was in a public high school (Coolidge ISD) and the teachers had to spend so much time dealing with behaviors they did not have time to teach. Vanguard students are like one huge family no matter your income or your race. The teachers teach at a higher level of learning on a strict basis so that the students are well prepared for college. The headmaster is outside every morning greeting the students, you would not see a public schools superintendant doing that. The older students mentor the younger students so they always have someone to ask questions to if they need it. Mr. Borg, Mrs. George, Mrs. Graves are simply the best as is all of the teachers and staff. If you are serious about your childs education then Vanguard is the place your child needs to be.
First and foremost, I am a graduate of Vanguard and would not recommend Vanguard to anyone in Waco. While I think it is a great school in terms of having the visual appeal, and the administration will certainly make it look amazing, the school should not meet any normal parent's expections. The social scene is very weird. The girls are mean and backstabing, but worse than public school. Although there are not physical fights, there are plenty of social fights. If you do not have a lot of money, you will not fit in at Vanguard. And if you are a boy, You must be a wonderful athlete to be excepted. The guys make fun of people who don't play sports even if they are very smart. If you want to go to Vanguard because of the academics, fine. But don't expect to be happy. Graduate of 2008