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The Madeira School

Private | 9-12 | 306 students

Our school is best known for our outstanding Co-Curriculum internship program.
 
 

 
 

Living in McLean

Situated in a suburban neighborhood. The median home value is $555,000. The average monthly rent for a 2 bedroom apartment is $1,780.

Source: Sperling's Best Places
 
Last modified
Community Rating

4 stars

Community Rating by Year
2014:
No new ratings
2013:
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2012:
Based on 5 ratings
2011:
Based on 3 ratings

Teacher quality

Principal leadership

Parent involvement

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17 reviews of this school


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Posted November 10, 2012

This has been our experience....Outstanding teachers, involved administration, clear concise curriculum and girls that want to work and play hard. Girls that may be struggling at Madeira may not have been properly prepared for the rigor. The school wants to create a community and I believe they succeed. My daughters teachers really know my daughter and what works best for her. If you review the curriculum there are no ridiculous pre-reqs. The focus is on the relationship between the girl and her teachers which is entirely appropriate for high school girls. We previously attended a private school that was known for its rigor and program and found it to be inferior to the Madeira program. Attend an open house and you will be impressed.
—Submitted by a parent


Posted November 10, 2012

I rate this school average because Madeira is, in my opinion, average academically. I left another DC area all girls private school to board at Madeira rather than move with my family, so I have experience with different schools. The school I left was in the top tier of DC private schools, of which I do not consider Madeira to be a part. Madeira is fine if your child is not "academically gifted," but I was not challenged as much as I had been at my previous school. The teachers are great, however the caliber of the student is lower here than at the area's top private schools. That being said, the Co-Curriculum program is great. Ultimately, if your child is very bright and wants to attend a top 10 or 20 "big name" school, I don't believe Madeira is the place for you. The college counselors are great for the majority of the school's students, but for brighter students I think they fall short. Their athletics are also not great, with the exception of the riding program and I believe the swim team (at least when I was there). My last complaint is that they refused to acknowledge academic achievements however there was an assembly that recognized athletic ones every year.
—Submitted by a student


Posted August 29, 2012

The co-curriculum program at Madeira is wonderful and presents girls with amazing opportunities. The people you meet are so nice and friendly. However the staff/administration ignores your problems and gives you no freedom. I almost transferred to another school this year because of these obnoxious and ignorant staff at Madeira. I personally do not have any qualms about the headmistress because she is not in the picture much. Some of the grading is suspicious because of the lack of explanation given by the teachers as to why you received the grade you did. The history program at Madeira is top notch but all of the teachers left and thus leaves the students with worry about the state of the history program. In the departments, the teachers for each class grade completely differently so if you get the hard grader then you have to work twice as hard as your peers in the easy graders class. At Madeira you have no say over what classes you want to take because of the ridiculous prerequisites they make you fufill. The students at this school are so nice and the co-curriculum program is so unique.
—Submitted by a student


Posted June 5, 2012

I agree with the alum who posted previously. I am an alum whose daughter is also there. The school is in transition with some outstanding faculty and some whose time has passed. All, however, are earnest, attentive, and work tirelessly to provide an overall outstanding education, and I'm encouraged by the vision I see emerging. One thing that puzzles me is that the new head, a wonderfully accomplished, highly educated and elegant woman, seems to take a back seat (at least publicly) to the assistant head. I would like to hear more from the head of school, and so would the girls. The co-curriculum program has been imitated by may area independent schools, but none of those imitations holds a candle to Madeira's. I am overall quite happy with the school.
—Submitted by a parent


Posted February 24, 2012

As an alum I couldn't wait for my daughters to go to Madeira, but right now the school is going through a downswing. I think that it probably relates to the change of leadership- starting in the couple of years before the old head left, and carrying over into the beginning of the new heads tenure. New head shows a lot of promise, but there is a lot of work for her to do. A lot of the really good teachers bailed toward the end of the old regime, leaving a lot of mediocre ones behind. It will take her time to correct this, and to change the seige mentality that set in amongst some of the long-time admin during the transition. The co-curricular program is still the most amazing thing going in a secondary school. Once the teaching staff gets strong again, Madeira should rise back to it's former glory.


Posted September 13, 2011

I am a former student of Madeira and I can honestly say that my experiences there were incredible. The co-curriculum program alone is worth every penny of the tuition and both the community and campus made the entire 4 years an absolute dream (although at the time as a high school student, I definitely had my..."moments"). The transition to college was smoother than I (and my family) could have hoped and I would recommend this school to any and everyone. I would not be the person I am today without having gone to Madeira.
—Submitted by a student


Posted April 16, 2011

Madeira is clearly an outstanding school. The demanding academic program and the overall pace of the school - including academics, co-curriculum, and activities - can only be managed by very talented and capable girls. The incoming freshmen quickly develop into capable leaders - in whatever areas they choose. There is no other place like Madeira. Truly amazing school, truly exceptional students, faculty, and administration. And the girls love it!
—Submitted by a parent


Posted March 13, 2011

Madeira is a fabulous school . They focus on teaching the "whole girl" and focus on learning and becoming a valuable member of society.
—Submitted by a parent


Posted April 27, 2010

My daughter is a sophomore at Sarah Lawrence College and will be studying in Japan next year. Madeira prepared her for college so well that most of her freshman professors thought she was a senior! It's expensive and demanding, but the education she received was worth both her efforts and our money.
—Submitted by a parent


Posted March 5, 2010

Good school, but not the best value for the money. The tuition is outrageous and continues to increase each year. The academic program is okay, the co-curriculum program is disorganized and the sports program is sad.
—Submitted by a parent


Posted October 4, 2009

I love Madeira. I think it gives me a great education and has wonderful extracurricular activities. Go go escargots!
—Submitted by a student


Posted April 16, 2009

Our daughter is a freshman at Madeira and we asked her if she would like to transfer to another school or a Public School. her response was 'no way', I have never been challenged academically as I am at Madeira'. That being said, we are sending her back September 2009 for her Sophomore year.
—Submitted by a parent


Posted June 29, 2008

I am entering my 3rd year at Madeira and have few complaints. The teaching and attention that each girl is exceptional. The Headmistress is phenomal. She encourages us to be strong, independent and thrive in what ever we do. The small classes allow for extra help and attention. The Co-Curriculum program speaks for itself. If I had to sum up my Madeira experience I would say that Madeira has given me opportunities that I would have never experienced, like the friends and Co-Curriculum, as well as encourage me to find and develop what interest I may have. I would definately consider sending my daughter to Madeira!
—Submitted by a student


Posted March 16, 2008

It was horrible. The school and headmaster claims to foster individuality and leadership: it does niether of these things. Complaints are ignored and the administration is very rude. Do not send your daughter here.


Posted June 26, 2005

Excellent school with motivated teachers, small classes. A good place to have your daughter encouraged to her academic potential. The co-curriculum program exposes young women to the community and helps them develop their career interests.
—Submitted by a parent


Posted January 5, 2004

Excellent instruction. Overall very consistent high quality. Quick response to inquiries and complaints. Girls are smart, inclusive, and highly motived. Instructors are excellent. School is very well run. Physical facility is also excellent and a beautiful setting. If you are considering this school (and can get in) don't hesitate, assuming an all girls school interests you.
—Submitted by a parent


Posted September 9, 2003

I was a student at Madeira a few years ago and it was the best decision I've ever made. I would highly recommend any girl attend this school. Your daughters will thrive in the environment they have created to help each girl grow into the woman she has the potential of becoming.


Community ratings and reviews do not represent the views of GreatSchools nor does GreatSchools check their accuracy or verify the reviewers' identities. Use your discretion when evaluating these reviews.

About these ratings

The Community Rating is the school’s average rating from its community members (e.g., parents, students, and school staff). The highest possible rating is five stars; the lowest is one star.

We currently do not have any test score information for this school. Unlike public schools, private schools are not always required to report data about their schools or not required to take the same tests as public schools. Many private schools take different standardized tests; however, that information is often made available only to families of enrolled students. We strive to acquire additional private school data whenever available.

College readiness and student pathways

Percentage of students going to 4-year college 100% (2013)
Colleges most students attend after graduation University of Virginia
The College of William & Mary
Syracuse University
Read more about resources at this school
Source: Manually entered by a school official.

Teacher resources

Special staff resources available to students Assistant principal(s)
Art teacher(s)
College counselor(s)
Computer specialist(s)
Dance teacher(s)
Librarian/media specialist(s)
Music teacher(s)
Nurse(s)
Poetry/Creative writing teacher(s)
Security personnel
Read more about programs at this school
Source: Provided by a school official.

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Special education / special needs

Level of special education programming offered
  • Basic - the school offers or partners to provide services based on the needs of individual students

Science, Technology, Engineering, & Math (STEM)

Staff resources available to students
  • Computer specialist(s)
School facilities
  • Access to farm or natural area
  • Computer lab
  • Garden/Greenhouse
  • Outdoor learning lab
  • Science lab
Clubs
  • Math club
  • Recycling club

Arts & music

Staff resources available to students
  • Art teacher(s)
  • Dance teacher(s)
  • Music teacher(s)
  • Poetry/Creative writing teacher(s)
School facilities
  • Art room
  • Music room
  • Performance stage
Visual arts
  • Ceramics
  • Design
  • Drawing / sketching
  • Painting
  • Photography
  • Sculpture
Music
  • Band
  • Chamber music
  • Choir / Chorus
  • Instrumental music lessons
  • Orchestra
  • Vocal lessons / coaching
Performing and written arts
  • Creative writing
  • Dance
  • Drama
  • Improv
  • Poetry
Media arts
  • Graphics
  • Technical design and production
  • Video / Film production
Clubs
  • Literary magazine
  • Student newspaper
  • Yearbook

Language learning

Foreign languages taught
  • Chinese (Mandarin)
  • French
  • Latin
  • Spanish
Level of ESL/ELL programming offered
  • Basic - the school offers or partners to provide services based on the needs of individual students
Clubs
  • Foreign language and culture club

Health & athletics

Staff resources available to students
  • Dance teacher(s)
  • Nurse(s)
School facilities
  • Access to farm or natural area
  • Access to sports fields
  • Garden/Greenhouse
  • Gym
  • Kitchen
  • Multi-purpose room ("cafegymatorium")
  • Swimming pool
Clubs
  • Cooking club

Gifted & talented

Instructional and/or curriculum models used
  • Advanced placement courses
College preparation / awareness resources offered
  • College presentations or information sessions
  • School-sponsored trips to college campuses
  • Visiting teachers or lecturers from colleges
School leaders can update this information here.

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School leaders: Help your school shine on GreatSchools
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and more! Get started »

School basics

School start time
  • 8:00 am
School end time
  • 3:45 pm
School Leader's name
  • Pilar Cabeza de Vaca
Best ways for parents to contact the school
  • Email
  • Phone
Gender
  • All girls
Special schedule
  • Part-time study
Boarding options
  • Some boarding, some day
Is there an application process?
  • Yes
Affiliation
  • Nonsectarian
Associations
  • ABS
  • NAIS
  • NCGS

Programs

Instructional and/or curriculum models used

Don't understand these terms?
  • Advanced placement courses
  • Internships
Specific academic themes or areas of focus

Don't understand these terms?
  • None
Level of special education programming offered
  • Basic - the school offers or partners to provide services based on the needs of individual students
Foreign languages taught
  • Chinese (Mandarin)
  • French
  • Latin
  • Spanish
Level of ESL/ELL programming offered
  • Basic - the school offers or partners to provide services based on the needs of individual students

Resources

Staff resources available to students
  • Art teacher(s)
  • Assistant principal(s)
  • College counselor(s)
  • Computer specialist(s)
  • Dance teacher(s)
  • Librarian/media specialist(s)
  • Music teacher(s)
  • Nurse(s)
  • Poetry/Creative writing teacher(s)
  • Security personnel
Extra learning resources offered
  • Career/college counseling
  • Counseling
  • Mentoring
College preparation / awareness resources offered
  • College presentations or information sessions
  • School-sponsored trips to college campuses
  • Visiting teachers or lecturers from colleges
Transportation options
  • Buses/vans for students only
School facilities
  • Access to farm or natural area
  • Access to sports fields
  • Art room
  • Audiovisual aids
  • Auditorium
  • Cafeteria
  • Chapel/spiritual reflection center
  • College/career center
  • Computer lab
  • Garden/Greenhouse
  • Gym
  • Internet access
  • Kitchen
  • Learning lab
  • Library
  • Multi-purpose room ("cafegymatorium")
  • Music room
  • Outdoor learning lab
  • Performance stage
  • Science lab
  • Swimming pool
School leaders can update this information here.

Let your school shine!

School leaders: Help your school shine on GreatSchools
by verifying community responses, adding program highlights
and more! Get started »

Sports

Boys sports
  • None
Girls sports
  • Basketball
  • Cross country
  • Diving
  • Equestrian
  • Field hockey
  • Judo / Other Martial Arts
  • Lacrosse
  • Soccer
  • Softball
  • Squash
  • Swimming
  • Tennis
  • Track
  • Volleyball

Arts & music

Visual arts
  • Ceramics
  • Design
  • Drawing / sketching
  • Painting
  • Photography
  • Sculpture
Music
  • Band
  • Chamber music
  • Choir / Chorus
  • Instrumental music lessons
  • Orchestra
  • Vocal lessons / coaching
Performing arts
  • Creative writing
  • Dance
  • Drama
  • Improv
  • Poetry
Media arts
  • Graphics
  • Technical design and production
  • Video / Film production

Student clubs

Clubs (distinct from courses)
  • Book/reading club
  • Community service
  • Cooking club
  • Foreign language and culture club
  • Lesbian, gay, transgender club
  • Literary magazine
  • Math club
  • Model UN
  • Recycling club
  • Student council/government
  • Student newspaper
  • Yearbook
School leaders can update this information here.

Upcoming Events

No upcoming events found for this school
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School culture

Dress Code
  • Dress code
Bullying policy
  • This school has a bullying and/or cyber bullying policy in place.
Parent involvement
  • Join PTO/PTA
  • Organize fundraising events (school auction, bake sales, etc.)
  • Serve on school improvement team or governance council
School leaders can update this information here.

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What does it cost?

Vouchers accepted
No
Financial aid offered
Yes.
School-based aid
Outside scholarships

Planning ahead

Students typically attend these schools after graduating
University of Virginia
The College of William & Mary
Syracuse University
College preparation / awareness offered
College presentations or information sessions
School-sponsored trips to college campuses
Visiting teachers or lecturers from colleges
Students' post-graduation plans in 2013
4 year college - 100%
Notice an inaccuracy? Let us know!

8328 Georgetown Pike
McLean, VA 22102
Website: Click here
Phone: (703) 556-8273

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