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Waunakee, WI
Students enrolled: 365
Before care: No

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5606 River Rd
Waunakee, WI 53597

School website
(608) 850-6000
(608) 850-6006
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Map of Madison Country Day School address.

June 03, 2015
MCDS is the most academically rigorous school in the Madison area. The facts speak for themselves: 1) Highest ACT scores in the area, 2) Highest percentage of elite college acceptance in the area, and 3) Highest percentage of merit scholars in the area. I'm perplexed by the negative reviews from those complaining about the tuition or the affluent parent base. It's a private school for goodness sakes, and frankly, the tuition is a bargain at 14k. Similar schools on the west coast are 25k, and on the east coast are 40k a year. MCDS offers generous financial aid and there is a reasonable amount of socioeconomic diversity. Honestly, if one is going to complain about others being, "rich and white" or complain about the tuition, then the solution is simple: send your child to public school. It's inaccurate to characterize MCDS as an elitist institution when it so clearly is not.

- submitted by a parent

February 23, 2015
Madison Country Day School is the perfect fit for my two boys. Not only is the curriculum outstanding, but the culture and support and enthusiasm of the parents and teachers exceeded my expectations. I've always been a big supporter of public schools and didn't expect we'd end up at an independent school. But I wouldn't have it any other way. MCDS has changed the trajectory of my children's lives.

- submitted by a parent

September 05, 2014
Our children go to Madison Country Day School. We chose the school for high academic standards. Since we have entered the school we have grown to love it for the community at MCDS. The character integrity taught to the students surpasses the schools academic reputation. We love MCDS.

- submitted by a parent

December 05, 2013
Our daughter is in 3rd grade at Madison Country Day School. When we approached the school for admission in 1st grade, they bent over backwards to get us in. They offered us financial assistance, which we needed. The year after, all that changed. They had someone ready to pay the full tuition so they were not interested in us any more. Now, about academics. The teaching quality is erratic and teachers range from mediocre to pretty good. If you are not significantly wealthy, you are going to be under a lot of pressure given the unequal treatment kids and parents are given by the Business Development office and the school management depending on the donations received from parents. Our other child graduated from Van Hise and Hamilton in Madison and I would say the level of academics is not significantly better at MCDS. But as parents, we felt much more at home in Van Hise and Hamilton than we do at MCDS.

- submitted by a parent

September 23, 2013
Absolutely amazing! Our daughter is getting an education far beyond what the public system offers. It's the way school should be, a place kids love to go, rather than a dreaded institution lacking a sense of community. MCDS is all that they say it is, and our daughter is skyrocketing. I'm simply amazed and can't believe school can be this good. Way to go MCDS! Keep it up you're making a big difference.

- submitted by a parent

August 26, 2013
Excellent school. We have 2 kids at MCDS for the last 10 years and very pleased with their progress. The tution is expensive but the quality of education is worth it. Excellent IB program for all around development of students. Highly recommended.

- submitted by a parent

June 06, 2013
I cannot recommend this school for any family who values academics. The leadership of the school is horrible. They say the right things but do none of them.

- submitted by a parent

April 29, 2013
We chose to come to MCDS after experiencing a public school in our neighborhood that is known to be one of the best. The teachers we had were good but very stretched with children who needed extra attention behaviorally or academically. Because my child did not he didn't get a lot of attention. Since coming to MCDS a couple of years ago he truly has blossomed as a result of the teachers really getting to know him, being academically stimulated and challenged and being part of the strong community here that truly is not just lip service. Coming to MCDS truly has been one of our best family decisions and now he has two siblings following in his footsteps and we couldn't be happier!

- submitted by a parent

February 15, 2013
We're entering our 3rd year at MCDS, with 1 child currently enrolled & another on the way. We spent a lot of time researching prior to enrollment. I cannot say enough good things about the faculty, staff, curriculum and culture. The students are engaged and inspired -creatively and intellectually - on a daily basis by wonderful, caring, thoughtful teachers. The arts and music emphasis is second to none. There are many things that set MCDS apart but what stands out most is its character education. Every morning, the students gather for assembly with their peers and focus on a character trait: generosity, tolerance, kindness, cooperation, etc.They learn from one another & share thoughts, ideas & opinions, becoming comfortable speaking in front of others at a very young age. Contrary to other posts, we have seen an abundance of concern and effort dedicated to problem-solving if there is a social or behavioral issue. The teachers listen and work very hard and ensure an environment that is free of bullying, one that encourages and embraces individuality. If you are considering MCDS, please take a tour. You'll find yourself inspired & ready for your child to experience all MCDS offers.

- submitted by a parent

December 20, 2012
Our child is in her third year at MCDS and we couldn't be happier with the school. It is academically challenging -- no doubt -- but a child need not be a genius to succeed. Motivation to learn, with strong parental support, is really the key. Because of the low student-to-teacher ratio, teachers are able to meet each child's individual needs. If a child needs help in a certain area, s/he will get it. Just as important, kids who are stronger in certain subjects don't get a pass on being challenged. Our daughter has never been stressed about her schoolwork, nor has she been bored because it's too easy. We feel very at home in the school community. There are families from a wide range of backgrounds, including income levels, but we have never experienced snobbiness from anyone. Parents don't send their kids there for social status reasons, but for the rigorous academic training in a nurturing environment. The kids are genuinely nice to each other, including across grades. Recently, at an all-school assembly, kindergartners read short essays they had written (yes, written), and the biggest cheers of support came from the high school kids. We are so thankful for MCDS.

- submitted by a parent

October 29, 2012
We have lived in other areas of the country, and our child has attended private and public schools. This was by far the worst experience we had. The principal and administration are unable to handle very serious disciplinary and legal issues but are quite good at writing dress code manuals. I would like to be more specific but cannot because of legal issues.

- submitted by a parent

September 13, 2012
I cannot say enough good things about this school. We actually moved our daughter from the strongest public school district in Dane County after seeing the experience our youngest had in Pre-K at MCDS. And I have to say there is absolutely no comparison between the type of education she has received at MCDS and what she learned in public school. Of course the academics are strong at MCDS, but there is so much more. The teachers are passionate about they do and instill a love of learning in their students that is truly amazing. The attention given to each child is incomparable. Their character education, arts, languages and sports are wonderful. All kids receive instruction in piano. Even in Pre-K, they receive science, Spanish, art and music instruction from specialist teachers who teach higher grades. It's the kind of rich learning environment and nurturing place that every child needs to fully reach their potential. And it is no surprise to me that it has enjoyed significant growth in the last few years. This year alone, they added 70 new students. I guess people are finding out what a true gem this school is. Visit MCDS and you will immediately sense the difference.

- submitted by a parent

September 04, 2012
Not a great experience for my child. She was bullied by a classmate but when she reported it to a teacher she was punished for being a tattle tale. They lacked the ability to assess gifted/talented kids. I was told that my child was slow when in reality she was a gifted child. Finally frustrated with the school I removed my child and we are in public school. Funny thing, the public school quickly picked-up on her advanced abilites and placed her in a special program that allowed her to work at an advanced level. She is currently working 3 grade level above her age group.

- submitted by a parent

May 25, 2011
This Pre K through High School is a safe place where children are truly engaged in learning. If you walk through any hall you will see students who are actively listening and participating and happy. My 6th grade son loves school and has remained eager and curious through the tough middle school years. You really owe it to your child to take one hour and visit the school. Do not let the cost of tuition scare you. There is a generous scholarship fund and financial aide available. Best of luck to you!

- submitted by a parent

February 03, 2011
Absolutely amazing, this is the perfect environment for a child to learn. The teachers are so involved in making sure each child is learning, and go out of their way to provide additional enrichment in strong areas, and additional help in weaker areas, for each student. This is our 3rd year with a child attending here, and I'm still amazed at what a wonderful community this is, for the kids and families. (And the academics are amazing! All teachers believe that every child has an amazing ability to learn, and children live up to those expectations.)

- submitted by a parent

March 23, 2010
MCDS provides an excellent education in the type of supportive environment all children should have.

- submitted by a parent

June 18, 2009
I love this school. My children (5th grade and 1st) have learned so much -- of course academically (WOW), but they also have developed an appreciation of the arts and music, and what it means to be part of a community. The teachers and principal know everyone by name...and the parents rock, too :)

- submitted by a parent

May 11, 2009
The school (both teachers and general staff) go out of their way to create an environment where the children learn to appreciate knowledge and learning new things! The handson learning helps foster imagination and curiosity which helps lead the students onto new discoveries as they learn. The staff and teachers go out of their way to greet the children by name and say goodbye at the end of the day. A wonderful environment!

- submitted by a parent

December 31, 2008
An amazing school and learning environment that still seems too good to be true after 5 years at the school! We couldn't be more happy, our kids are exceptionally well served at MCDS. Well worth the cost of tuition.

- submitted by a parent

November 18, 2004
MCDS was incepted in 1997. We are fortunate to have an extremely well endowed first decade - our campus includes waterfront acreage, forrestation, yet easy access to metro Madison. MCDS emphasizes international community, character development, and college preperatory academics in its program. As parent who has had children enrolled since 1997, I have seen tremendous growth in our campus and enrollment - we started with less tha 30 students PK-3 in 1997 and now have 200+ students PK-10 this year. In two years we will fully reach our intended PK-12 status and graduate our first class. MCDS has a tremendous fine arts program - especially music - and strives to offer the finest curriculum in each subject it teaches; for example, Singapore's math program was specifically chosen by this school - one of the first nationwide. This is also the only non-sectarian private school in the Madison area.

- submitted by a parent

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About this school

The mission of Madison Country Day School is to provide an intellectually stimulating, personally enriching, and academically challenging program in the liberal arts and sciences to an able and diverse student body. Furthermore, we measure the curriculum and student achievement against the finest programs in the world. We also contribute to the larger community by developing effective educational programs to serve as models for other private and public schools.

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Last modified: June 03, 2015

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Madison Country Day School
5606 River Rd, Waunakee, WI  53597
(608) 850-6000
Last modified Madison Country Day School is a Private school that serves grades PK-12
Madison Country Day School Rating: 4 out of 5 based on 29 reviews. Top