Both of my children attended Southshire for their entire elementary school education. I was chair of the board for most of these years, working closely with the teachers both as a parent and as an educational colleague responsible for the health and well being of the school. On all counts, I considered it a privilege and pleasure to support Southshire's vision for learning. My children thrived in an atmosphere of discovery, creativity, community, and intellect. Both went on to succeed in high school, college (a recent Oberlin graduate with high honors), and career (environmental work and national parks employee). I continue to be involved with Southshire thru annual donations, informal "drop-ins" at the school, and attending various school functions. Southshire set my children on lifelong paths of self-discovery, inquisitiveness, community involvement, and excellence. I will forever be grateful to the school and its dedicated, inspiring teachers for their commitment to my children's development, both as learners and human beings.
My children attended Southshire through fifth and sixth grade respectively. I credit the school for inspiring their intellectual curiosity and helping them to become truly independent and self-motivated learners. The school values the spirit of each individual and nurtures them on their own path to discovery. They pay as much attention to the students as social beings as they do as learners, guiding them to make good choices in all areas. While my children learned essential academic knowledge and skills they also learned how to get along with others, how to effectively address basic playground injustices, and to be a responsible, contributing member of a community. This is a not a 'drop off your kid and run' operation. Parents are called upon to provide snacks, rides, and participate in annual school clean-ups and fundraisers, thus setting an example of what is means to be part of a community. Parent-teacher meetings are held twice a year and provide an in-depth look at how your student is developing holistically. Both of my children moved on to excel in public high school (top of their classes) and continue to flourish as undergraduates.
This is not going to be a school for everyone. You have to understand it's very much in the spirit of a one-room schoolhouse, with Montessori overtones. The entire staff and faculty of three people are from the same family, and they treat the kids like younger family members. So if some part of this experience disagrees with you, your options are limited. But if it's right for your kid, then it is so very right. It's a school where, if a kid is down, they know they can always have a hug from a teacher. Older kids work with the little ones, to the benefit of them both. Their emphasis on respect, manners and an ironclad zero-tolerance bullying policy are huge in helping kids feel invested in the school, which helps them care a lot about their own education. I think it says everything that last year, the top two students in the local high school came from Southshire, and it's the same story wherever they go.
My son has been at Southshire for 8 years. This is an amazing school with very dedicated teachers who attend to all facets of student's development as learners and people. My son is a better person for having gone to Southshire.
One of the best experiences of my life. Though I love SCS very much, I advise parents to move their children into other schools after 5th grade. The community is beautiful, however curriculum peters out for older students. Please understand that I don't mean to cut them down. This is one of the best institutions you can send your children to in their youth. Such a thing cannot be done justice with words.
I have recieved the most valuable education at this school. I was allowed to discover myself here, there is no pressure to be at the same level as everyone else, academically or personally. By far the best I have ever experienced.