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River Farm Cooperative Reviews

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It was a terrible experience for our family. The school now struggling to survive because so many families have made the decision to leave the toxic environment. It’s an unprofessional environment. I’d tell you to check their IRS form 990s to see how terrible their finances are but whoops, they haven’t bothered to file taxes in years.
Love how much my child learns about nature and the amount of hands on learning they receive! The Lower class teacher is truly amazing and I can't wait for schools to be back in session!
Great small school option, only three classes with a 10:1 student teacher ratio. No homework for grades K-5th grade allowing kids to focus on their Home life , sports and dance activities. This school is a great fit for families looking for something small and cozy for their child.
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We are grateful for the chance to be part of this affordable gem! Helping to run this coop has been an amazing opportunity to learn, grow, and share and staff and other member families have become life-long friends. Our kids have thrived as their teachers challenge them daily. Our kids have experienced tremendous growth in how they relate to others, resolve conflict, and respect the world around them. They excelled with the individualized attention and child-paced learning. Academics are strong, but are not the singular focus of this school; attention is also paid to fostering a love of learning and an appreciation for nature. Plus, they have ample time outside (an hour or more every day and a weekly nature hike), a big change from our previous school with 15-minute recess.
Engaging and flexible. This school is very unique and is a great alternative to public education or homeschooling. Our kids love it! Our latest assignment had us exploring nature looking for birds and taking pictures. Then our daughter sketched and labeled the different parts of the bird, we talked about where they lived, and why they are in trees. All the students started a online curriculum days after schools were closed due to COVID-19 which kept students engaged. Just a small example of the learning depth this school has offered. Learning should be fun and this school created that environment. Excited about the future!
River Farm is a wonderful opportunity to get involved in your child's school experience and connect with a like-minded community. I appreciate the garden and outdoor area, the hour of recess everyday, weekly hikes and daily yoga and have seen first hand what a benefit these things are to the students! Small class sizes and multiage classrooms are exactly what we were looking for, and I love that each student is met where they truly are. This school is exactly what we were looking for and has been an incredibly beneficial experience for our child.
I'm not sure how such a defensive post that repeatedly uses the word 'toxic' is going to make interested families feel confident about a school...

In any case, the poster encouraging folks to ask about the facts is absolutely correct. Just as with any organization, if you ask several people to explain the state of things, you'll get several different answers. So ask for the numbers.

How many families only stay one year? How many families leave mid-year? How often do board members serve for a full year, let alone return for a second or third year? How many staff members has the school been through in under six years? How many staff members did not make it until June?

Get the facts, and then ask yourself if you really want to be part of such instability.
The school is a thousand times better now that the toxic families have resigned from the school and left. You may find some of their bitter reviews online , this is because some people in the DMV think that if the world doesn't behave how they think should than it shouldn't exist.

The River Farm Cooperative School is just that - a Cooperative school.

What does Cooperative mean ? It means everyone gets a vote , not just the loudest voice. We had a very toxic president who was new to the school, this person felt their title gave them power over the rest of the community . School is operating amazingly after getting members of the community who will actual work towards the success rather than try to fail the school because they want out of their contract.

This school serves a small community of up to 36 families. Great environment for those looking for community.
Unfortunately the toxic environment at this school is causing it to circle the drain. The school struggles to recruit, and periodically put out calls for positive reviews to get new students to cover the budget deficit (note the 3 reviews previous to mine were all made on the same day). Families are fleeing this school. All 5 board members have resigned this year. They are on their 3rd director in the past 6 months. Substitute teachers aren’t actually teachers - they are family members of students. The website is enticing but the reality is vastly different. If you are considering this school ask to see their statistics of family turnover over the past 3-4 years. Ask to see teacher turnover rates, and board turnover rates. Not just this year....go back several years and you’ll see the pattern. Good luck. :-)
Our child is absolutely thriving in the lower elementary class as school and he has declared that he wants to stay here until after 8th grade. The class sizes are small and mixed age and the kids have a good mix of freedom and responsibility. The students get a lot of individual attention from the teachers and opportunity for directed group work. Best of all - no homework in elementary and an hour or more of outdoor time every day.
Small classes where teachers really get to know your child, lots of time outside and on field trips, and a warm, welcoming group of people. We have been here for several years and are very happy!
The River Farm Cooperative School has been amazing for our child and family. You will not find a kinder more involved community of parents in the DMV. Over the last three years our child has excelled in Math , Science and has genuinely grown to love learning. The Children get outdoor playtime everyday, kids do not lose recess. They experience many field trips and activities throughout the year going to museums , local farms and more. Finding a place as special as River farm and affordable just seemed unreal, we gave it a try and we can't believe how great it has been. My child looks forward to every school day!
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