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Old 09-15-2010, 04:31 PM
5 posts, read 34,970 times
Reputation: 14


Following up further. I definitely think my kid has responded better to Challenger than to the ALPS/SALTA program. He likes school much more and seems to pay attention better and learn more. The Challenger teacher seems much more enthusisatic than the ALPs teacher we had. It may also be the pacing. I won't claim this as universally true for everyone. My son is a bit of a daydreamer sometimes, so the structure at Challenger helps.

I would say that I am not pleased with his class size at Challenger this year --- it is in the high twenties. I think it is somewhat the luck of the draw (depends on how many kids at the school), but that number seems too high to me for something I have to pay for. Nevertheless, I am so far happy with my choice of returning my son to Challenger.
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Old 06-29-2011, 12:38 AM
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I used to work at Challenger and it does have an excellent basic academic program. However, there are also a lot of problems. 1. The directors and corporate office do not seem to want input from staff or parents.2.There is a lot of stress on some kids and there is a lot of homework.3.There isn't much in the way of extra programs. No foreign language, no sports program, music is basically standing on a stage and singing from a select list of songs, not much art, aand so on. Other private schools have these things.4. Teachers are not required to be certified and they are allowed very little creativity. There is a large turnover in staff. 5.There is too much politics. Barbara Baker is extremely right wing and she pushes it.During the last election, the campuses were plastered with ads for Tea Party candidates.She requires job applicants to write an essay on their views of America. This impacts whether you are hired and helps to insure a conservative staff. Kids should not be taught what to think IMO, they should be taught how to think. All in all, I would not send my child to Challenger. I think there are better schools out there for the money and without the political baggage and which offer extra programs.
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Old 11-02-2011, 04:14 PM
5 posts, read 34,970 times
Reputation: 14
Default Further follow up

I hear that with budget cuts, etc, the quality of ALPs (now known as SALTA in my district) is declining somewhat and that it has been harder to qualify for. I would be interested in hearing from current parents in SALTA to see if that is really the case.

Despite some annoyingly large class sizes, I have been very happy with Challenger school, so for my kids I believe it has been the right choice.

Of course, everyone's circumstance is different -- you can't beat the price of public school and different schools and methods of instruction work better for different students.
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Old 01-01-2014, 09:53 PM
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I appreciate the information you have shared with us. My daughter sounds very similar to your son. She went to preschool and kindergarten at challenger. I decided I wanted a more well rounded education and I have placed her in a different private school for first grade. She has regressed a lot. I took for granted what an excellent program Challenger has. I now realize that she does better in a more structured environment. The math sheet she did for homework at challenger would take her 10 minutes max. Now the homework she brings home takes longer because of the coloring and is less quality. When my daughter went to challenger she came home daily with information she had learned. Now she has nothing to share. I am trying to decide if I should pull her in the middle of the year. I want her to go back to Challenger and I am concerned she may not test in next year. My daughter wants to stay at her current school because she is having "fun!." I feel like I am dropping her off at a nice and loving daycare. Do u have any advice?
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