I entered Lakeside in fifth grade. Academic achievement is a cherished goal, and every teacher will help you succeed. The adults acknowledge the amount of stress students face, and they actively work to lower that stress. The teachers and the the students bond quickly, developing strong friendships that make learning fun. There are plenty of clubs to join (art club, karate club, ultimate frisbee club, etc), and sports to play (volleyball, sculling, lacrosse, soccer, basketball, track, etc). It's really a great school that if you can, you should attend.
Lakeside has some excellent aspects such as the best facilities that money can buy. However, our experience with our child was less than ideal. I would not recommend anyone who is from public school to attend the upper school as a freshman because it is too much stress and pressure for someone who is behind naturally from having attended a public school system. Our child went from being the most confident happy child to a stressed out self doubting student who went through a lot just to get through at lakeside. To me, they were more interested in punishing and pressing him than providing him with support such as putting him on academic probation (He is no dummy!) He was freaked out and turned into someone we didn't even recognize. That said, he was very well prepared for college and did very well on his entrance exams. He also made lifelong friends and had a couple teachers who believed in him enough to get him through it. He just wasn't a happy kid and we feel like he lost a part of himself. Very sad really. If your child is doing very well in public school, even to the point that he is bored.... don't put him in lakeside. Challenge him in other ways!!!!
Both of my daughters went from Lakeside to one of the top 10 universities in the world. The preparation they received at Lakeside was more than adequate to prepare them for the transition from high school to university. The opportunities, academic, athletic and social, are absolutely first rate for students who chose to take advantage of them.
My son went to Lakeside high school and he was completely prepared for college. He is graduating from USC in 6 weeks. We made a lot of sacrifices for him to attend Lakeside and we are so grateful that Lakeside made his college experience a wonderful experience. There is nothing I would change about Lakeside. It is perfect in every way.
I have talked to many people about their high school experience and absolutely none come close to the overall excellence of Lakeside. (disclaimer: I am an alum) In a comparison with Harvard-Westlake in LA for example, whose academics are equally as rigorous and teachers just as qualified, Lakeside surpasses the school by providing a superior cultural environment. Lakeside students graduate level headed, posses an inner confidence and strength that is unparalleled. As an alum of Lakeside, I did the summer boarding schools in CT, and had close friends at Harvard Westlake. Lakeside is untouchable and I truly hope it continues that way. There is no excuse if your child does not excel after this school.
At a meeting for prospective parents, the Director of Admission was asked, "What characteristics do Lakeside graduates have in common?" The answer: "the ability to work very hard, and the ability to write very well". Neither of those qualities comes without dedicated effort over a long period of time. For students who are SELF-motivated to strive for excellence, the Lakeside community will provide support for unlimited development across all disciplines: academic, athletic, artistic, and civc. It would be a mistake to think that Lakeside will give your student talent, intelligence or drive - or a ticket to a prestigious college. What Lakeside will do is allow your student to fully develop their talents and abilities - along with a lifetime membership in a community that supports life long learning and cultural competence.
Creme de la creme of private high schools in the nation. Amazing academics, college counseling, athletics, global service learning, the list goes on and on. Amazing atmosphere and overall excellence define Lakeside. Just look at the number of National Merit Finalists and the top tier colleges these kids end up in. No other high schools even comes close.
I dont understand why people rave about the Lakeside School. I am a graduate and dont think i got the best education possible. I would not recommend this school to any students that want to go far in their life.