School Reviews

Our own experiences have been very good.

My son is super smart, and always did well at Sidwell. He was there for six years, but we decided to leave the school before he entered the Upper School for several reasons: 1) The school never conveyed any sense of individual care for him despite the low student-teacher ratio. My son did fine academically, but he couldn't get his groove socially, and the teachers were totally oblivious to his difficulty. 2) The academics are strong, but they are also very old-fashioned. For all their attempt to show interest in technology, the school leadership are complete Luddites in their understanding of how technology and learning can work well together. 3) For all the tuition dollars, I would have expected much, much more individualized attention from the teachers and staff. The curriculum and approach to education is very top-down and dogmatic. They talk a lot about diversity, but there is no room for diversity of opinions at this school. There is much more to say, but bottom line: save your money for a great college. When we let the school know we were leaving, there was no follow-up or interest in what motivated the departure. They could not have been more indifferent, which was extremely disappointing after 6 years.

Sidwell is a great school for a lot of kids. It is great for very smart kids who want to go on to do great things. But if your child has some learning disabilities or seriously is thinking about being a professional athlete, this is probably not the best school for them. It is an extremely academically challenging school. But the athletics don't do so well and the theater is just okay. It is a great school for a lot of kids but not for everybody.

Very challenging academics. Students will have already experienced college level academics by the time they graduate from Sidwell. Lots of high achievers. NO grade inflation here. Not for everyone but a great school.

A great school with challenging and engaging academics and a wide choice of athletics, arts, and extracurriculars.

This school is a very, very special place. All the lessons learned really do last a lifetime.

I'm a highschool student at Sidwell, and I'm here to set things straight. A parent cannot base the school on their own child. Individuals have drastically different experiences from one another, based on personality, courses, and friends. Their class/grade will have a large impact, varying greatly year-by-year. The true basics: - expensive! - very intensive academics (depends on course levels) - liberal - very conscious of its image (Who can blame them? Diplomats'-children galore.) - Quaker-based (with plans currently in progress for furthering Sidwell Quaker values) - a vacuum/bubble (If you take advantage of all academic, artistic, and athletic opportunities given to you, there is little time left over) Sidwell seems quite idealist (google Quaker "S.P.I.C.E.S.") and there's MUCH room for improvement, but students are given the opportunity to have a fantastic education and flourish with dedication. The ride is up to the student, and a good fit.

Easy to be ' wonderful school ' when you identify and keep those students with the right 'inner light' and the chance to do well no matter where they go. Sidwell's focus is on making sure it keeps it's name rather than the energy required in putting Quakerism truly into practice for all students. Sidwell Teachers are far from being top rated--the school continues to shine because of handful of outstanding students (not because of sidwell Leadership/teachers!). Sidwell outstanding cadre of volunteers who work around the clock to support the system. There are far better school that provides truly diverse environment for students rather than the far from reality bubble that Sidwell provides. Ratings: Lower school--nothing more than glorified day care. middle school--poor leadership; lack of individualized support/loss of critical years. high school---kids survive --school keeps only the self driven outstanding students. PS. kids love the school and we think we could have done better!