I'll start by saying that this school has a FEW outstanding teachers. However, for the most part, it's not a good school. My children come home telling me that they are bored in class, some of the teachers yell at the entire class on a regular basis, I've experienced teachers being very defensive when I question why my child was disciplined and others doing the same thing were not. There is a huge bully problem. Teachers see things in class and look the other way. Communication with parents is terrible! I don't know about things until after the fact and I read the newsletters and check powerschool which is never up to date. If you want a good education and school experience for your kids, don't send them there.
I AM A DISAPOINTED PARENT OF THE BRISTOL SCHOOL SYSTEM THEY ARE FAILING OUR CHILDREN AND TREATING THEM LIKE THEY ARE JUST ANOTHER JOB. THEY HAVE A SYSTEM IN PLACE FOR PARENTS TO CHECK ON THERE KIDS SCHOOL WORK AND IT DOES NOT WORK AND IS NOT ACURATE OR UP TO DATE BY THE TEACHERS THERE HAVING TO SEND MY KIDS OUT OF TOWN FOR ADDITIONAL PRIVATE SCHOOLING , DESPITE PAYING AN ENORMOUS AMOUNT OF TAXES IN TO THIS SCHOOL. VERY DISAPOINTING
The teachers at Mt. Abe are exemplary, amazing, wonderful, and I can't say enough good things about them. They teach students to actually think rather than simply regurgitate the "right" answer. This is unique for a public school, anywhere, and why I am glad that I went to Mt. Abe. That being said, the building is horrible, as most VT school buildings are. Some classes are held in trailers; some teachers teach from carts. Too much money goes to athletics, and not enough to textbooks (though the knowledge of the teachers does compensate for this). When I graduated in 2005, the administration was functioning TERRIBLY. A ridiculous lack of respect for students and teachers from the administration turned the school in a bad direction. Admin cut vital programs like the FISH room, a counseling area where students could go for 15 minutes if they were struggling with personal issues. The FISH room was incredibly important to the academic success of many students, including myself, during a difficult time in their lives. The rating of the school may be misleading. It is largely based on standardized test scores, which many students purposely botched to express their dislike for admin.
As nice as Mount Abraham is, with a large indoor pool and other academic plusses, the administration has a lot of work to do. In the 05-06 school year things have gotten much better with the addition of a dean of students rather than a disciplinarian. The dean has a very nice outlook on things and believes if you treat the kids like adults, they will treat everyone with greater respect. As far as I can see this year it is working, violence is down, as well as drug use and littering.
Mt Abe has a lot to offer just not enough for the gifted students. I'll be moving to a different school that fits my needs. They have lovely indoor pool and planetarium. Parents are involved as much as they could be, and there is a large issue with violence this year.