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Old 01-13-2014, 03:39 AM
 
2,599 posts, read 2,975,823 times
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Maybe the moderator could split the recent discussion about NE schools vs GA schools and the ivies into another thread to bring attention to it for those interested and to leave this thread for applications to private schools? The diversity of the education threads in this forum is great, by the way!
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Old 01-13-2014, 07:12 AM
 
1,683 posts, read 1,667,261 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by deacongirl View Post
I think East Cobb is a great place to live, and I do love Atlanta. However, suburban Philadelphia has suburban Atlanta beat because I could afford to live in a historic, charming, walkable small town with excellent public schools that would meet the needs of all of my children and be in center city Philadelpia in 20 minutes. Hard to beat. If my husband could get a job there I would throw a party myself!
Deacongirl, you have hit upon a universal truth--it is cheaper to live close to the city center in cities where there are fewer jobs.

Also, I find it hilarious when Northerners move to Atlanta and want to live in historic homes while they work here. Apologies but Atlanta was BURNED. Not much around here from before 1864.
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Old 01-16-2014, 11:44 AM
 
126 posts, read 206,255 times
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Does anyone have any idea or opinion about the academics of Westminster. I spoke with a present parent who said that there is not much homework in the elementary school and that she was concerned that her child was not being adequately prepared for their own middle school. She said it almost feels as though a "Reggio" type thing is creeping in. I have no idea what Reggio means...

Also while touring, a high school student said that they don't get much homework either compared to Pace, where the students are up till 1am.

My questions are this...is Westminster trying to get away from its reputation of being an "only academic"..."rigorous academics"..."only straight A students can survive" type of reputation....and so in the process, there is now an imperceptible shift to a curriculum that is not as challenging as it used to be?

I would appreciate any of your insights or opinions. We are looking for a strong academic school
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Old 01-16-2014, 12:19 PM
 
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Yes, the new lower school principal at Westminster has implemented some Reggio Amelia-based strategies at Westminster (just google Reggio to learn more). These are meant to integrate the disciplines, do more hands on exploring, dig deeper into problem solving, and not just move the kids from one subject to the next like robots. I think Westminster has the best lower school going right now hands down--mostly b/c of her changes.

Pace is getting a new lower school principal next year and, although I love the current one, I hope Pace also moves in this direction in its lower school.

I do not believe for a second that Westminster has lightened up in the middle and high school. It is very rigorous and very competitive. It selects the brightest, most driven students it can get and it has its choice. These children look for challenges and want to be challenged.

There may be some movement to keep the kids from being too stressed, but I have not heard about it. I haven't talked to a Westminster high schooler recently, but I know recent graduates from there. If so, that would be a good thing.

I went to one of these Buckhead privates--was academically very motivated--and, you know what, I was pretty stressed and maybe even a little burned out when I got to college. . .
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Old 01-16-2014, 01:12 PM
 
126 posts, read 206,255 times
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I went to one of these Buckhead privates--was academically very motivated--and, you know what, I was pretty stressed and maybe even a little burned out when I got to college. . .

AtlJan...therein lies my dilemma. We want a top notch rigorous academic program...but are worried about burn out due to the pressure cooker like environment and all these super stellar top notch kids put together....

Having said that, I have also heard that the pressure in some North Fulton high schools is just as competitive (like North View HS)
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Old 01-16-2014, 01:51 PM
 
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rather pay 25K/yr for westminster
or
nothing to go to walton?
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Old 01-16-2014, 02:14 PM
 
126 posts, read 206,255 times
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pathkid....though the cost of these schools is a factor to take into consideration...we would be willing to make the sacrifices and pay the dollars to ensure a top notch education for our children.

The question on my mind is whether putting too many stellar kids together is a good thing or does it lead to too much competitiveness, frustration, burn out and more...Our goal is to send our kids out after high school..turbocharged, full of energy and enthusiasm, ready to take on the world...not as burned out, tired, jaded kids...
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Old 01-16-2014, 03:43 PM
 
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To the OP, for whatever it's worth, I hear as many, if not a few more, stories about Walton's being a pressure cooker vs the privates, Westminster included. As well, I have heard from staff that Westminster's upper school has made efforts to help their students achieve a better balance and more quality time with family. Good luck. It's such a difficult decision, but you clearly have your kids' best interests at heart, so you'll make the right choice for your family.
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Old 01-16-2014, 03:44 PM
 
41 posts, read 66,089 times
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PS: If the story about early action into Harvard is true, Westminster's efforts on behalf of their students' well being certainly have not harmed their students' academic achievements ... IF admittance to an Ivy is indicative of anything.

Last edited by atlmomoftwo; 01-16-2014 at 03:45 PM.. Reason: punctuation correction
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Old 01-16-2014, 07:13 PM
 
550 posts, read 757,504 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by snsh5713 View Post
Does anyone have any idea or opinion about the academics of Westminster. I spoke with a present parent who said that there is not much homework in the elementary school and that she was concerned that her child was not being adequately prepared for their own middle school. She said it almost feels as though a "Reggio" type thing is creeping in. I have no idea what Reggio means...

Also while touring, a high school student said that they don't get much homework either compared to Pace, where the students are up till 1am.

My questions are this...is Westminster trying to get away from its reputation of being an "only academic"..."rigorous academics"..."only straight A students can survive" type of reputation....and so in the process, there is now an imperceptible shift to a curriculum that is not as challenging as it used to be?

I would appreciate any of your insights or opinions. We are looking for a strong academic school
I would absolutely not judge the curriculum based on the homework requirements. I don't see any value in a high school student staying up until 1 a.m. and I agree with the educators who are not in favor of hw in elementary school. (or very limited hw)
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