Congressional has a great academic program with dedicated teachers and administrators. Our two kids have been at Congressional for 3 yers and I appreciate that the teachers have helped them to become independent and imaginative thinkers. Although the program is accelerated the teachers are also mindful of the fact that kids may learn differently. The early childhood programs also focus on teaching kids how to be good people with an emphasis on empathy and social skills. We are looking forward to many more years in this nice cummunity.
- Ceramics sculpture
- Computer arts
- Drawing painting
- Theater drama
- Video film production
- Cross country
- P.E. classes
- Rock climbing
We have been at CSOV for 4 years and are very happy with the academic experience the class sizes the overall program and the teachers. It is very friendly & nurturing with a gorgeous wonderful campus and an inclusive community feel. The times when I have had questions or want to give feedback I have felt the teachers and administration are very responsive to parents and attuned to the needs and characteristics of each individual child. Previous reviewers note that there have been administration changes -- I think that is par for the course in any school. My oldest raves about his math class that has 6 students. I believe that small class sizes are a huge plus it's certainly part of the reason that we have selected private school. The school works very hard at a well-rounded experience to include events such as an ice cream social pool party & BBQ where administrators do the grilling and informative back to school nights. I think CSOV is doing a great job with tweaking and revamping components of the curriculum to include the 1 1 iPad program for middle schoolers. I think that is very well-managed with great educational resources for the students. It's worth a visit for sure.
Our daughter had such a fabulous start here at CSOV that we can't imagine another place better to begin her early school experience. From the minute you enter the campus you sense a love of learning and exploration. The teachers and staff are always very present and available to nurture your child academically intellectually and emotionally. CSOV hosts a myriad of yearly events that foster a a great sense and caring of community. From the Back to School Pool party (yes a pool at school!) to the wonderful Fall Festival to the CSPO Ice Cream Social there is always a time to gather your family and meet others and have a great time. When our daughter was in SrK she attended an event called SrK Night Out. The entire evening after school was spent bonding with friends and eating ice cream (what child would not enjoy that!) and even crashing the 1st grade classrooms. She s thrilled with her new found 1st grader privileges like swimming at school during PE and borrowing more books at the weekly library visits. We look forward to watching our daughter grow and are forever thankful to CSOV for the experiences that our daughter and family have so far!
I am a student at Congressional and I honestly used to love it. When the new administration came in everything changed. There is too much of a focus on equality; there is no communication between teachers and it is overall unorganized and unprofessional. The curriculum has not prepared me for high school and there is a big fuss about the Jason program but we have only used that twice in all of science. I felt like the teachers consistently acted like they were above us and treated us like we were below them and that is especially true with the administration. The head of school and dean of the middle school were rude and often avoided problems that they did not want to face. The athletics are not good and the class sizes are way too small. As a student I have been treated years younger than I actually am and I do not believe that seventh and eighth graders should have the same limited privileges as first and second graders do. Overall I would not recommend Congressional to anyone until MAJOR changes are made.
Middle school needs a lot of work. The school has had a change of leadership and they are still trying to re-identify who they really are. Many families have left the last 2 years and class sizes are too small. Congressional used to stand for accelerated curriculum but not that is not the case anymore. Do your research especially with other schools before you decide.
I've been very favorably impressed by the quality of the work and depth of thinking demanded of students. The work is several steps ahead of what was being asked in his former Annandale private school in terms of conceptual thinking. The teachers make themselves available to help and seem really focused on each children. 5 Stars!
This is our first year at Congressional. We moved from another local private school hoping for improved academics and we could not be happier! I am very impressed.
This is my daughter's second year at Congressional and she usually greets me with "My day was awesome. Did you know that..." She then proceeds to tell me about all that she is learning. I continue to be amazed by what she is studying as a 6th grader from the accelerated math to French. I'm learning from her! The curriculum is demanding but the teachers are equally supportive and are available to assist as needed. The other parents have been great as well. I was initially surprised that so many children had been there since preschool but now I understand why. Once you find an excellent academic program that is also nurturing there's no need to look further. I wish the school went to 12th grade! The tuition is significant but it's a sacrifice we feel very good about.
Before enrolling our students in CSOV we did extensive research on regional independent schools. After touring several and talking with eight heads of school we decided to enroll at CSOV. What was lacking at other private schools was a true leader. All the private schools had excellent academic heads but only CSOV has a leader with business acumen combined with an extensive educational background. This is a HUGE difference. Like any organization CSOV is a large non-profit enterprise and needs to be run as such. Yes academics and child development are first and foremost but if there s no fiscal discipline no parent engagement and most importantly no executive leadership the school and ultimately the students suffer. I was amused with the comment about the executive director being unemotional because as the head of the school her job is not to get emotional. Her job is to run school and ensure our kids have the best education possible. Her job is to lead. But what I love most is the sense of community. Teachers staff and parents know each other and care for each other. We re very happy at CSOV and look forward to many years.
I wish we had found Congressional sooner. This is the school of our dreams. I have two children here and they have never been happier. They love school now. The curriculum is challenging they teach a year ahead but the teachers so engaging and talented that the students absorb the material and thrive. CSOV is both technology based and nurturing. The students and teachers all use technology ( weekly teacher emails and Tweets) but the school uses 1 on 1 support and interaction to help students thrive in a nurturing environment that no joke promotes global thinking and compassion. There is also an amazing campus with several pools and horses. Some schools like NySmith focus only on academics but CSOV go beyond that to find what is unique in each child and use that to help them learn and develop in the most meaningful way to them. CSOV produces top students AND good happy children. They can take a child who was struggling and make them a success and can take a great student and challenge them. We LOVE the school and so does every parent there I've talk to. It's probably the best k-8 education in Northern VA.
We have two children - in the early childhood program and in the lower school - who both absolutely love Congressional. We have been at the school now for about five years and our children's education phys ed summer camp and other experiences have allowed them to grow in a safe environment where they feel safe to make mistakes and learn from them where they are encouraged to try new things and are given a lot of care and attention by a superb faculty and staff. Recently the school changed administrations and this change in its second year it already adding to our positive experience with a new math curriculum being added a new physical education program teacher fellowships this summer and many other positive additions to an already wonderful school. The school sits on 40+ acres inside of the beltway in Falls Church. The campus is used for community events science classes (a creek runs through it) and other outdoor activities like hiking and ropes courses which is an added bonus among everything else we enjoy about the school.
We have been at Congressional for many years and have all three of our children here. What initially brought us to CSOV was the amazing 40 acre campus that is inside the beltway. It's an undiscovered gem in the DC area. What has led us to come back every year and tell everyone we know about Congressional is the amazing faculty and staff there. They are hands down the most devoted group of educators I have ever come across. The small class size lends itself to a very hands-on child-specific learning environment where they teach to each individual child. It has changed the course of our children's education for sure. The school went through an administration transition last year and although there were many changes made it has definitely been for the better. Both division directors and the new executive director have gone above and beyond to improve the school and make it an even better educational experience. Things like Singapore Math Responsive Classroom techniques 1 1 tech program and an impressive athletics program are just a few of the recent improvements. This school is a hidden gem. We have loved having our children here and I would recommend it to anyone.
I am a former parent of this school and we have had our 2 kids at Congressional for several years but became increasingly unhappy. We do love the setting and teachers who are warm and this review is not about the teachers because they are mostly great. However the administration appears unwilling or uninterested in addressing parent and teacher concerns. The new Executive Director is cold and unemotional -- all she cares about is more enrollment. When we had issues that we wanted addressed we had no one to go to even after several emails requesting a meeting with the administrators. If you pay about $22K per child I would EXPECT service. It used to be better -- we were so disappointed in the school so we had to take out kids out.
I have two children at CSOV and have been thrilled since day one! Year after year we have been impressed with the teachers at the school -- their creativity passion for teaching and ability to teach to the individual child. The foundation of the school has been strengthened signficantly this year with the addition of three Directors and a new Head of School. The teachers are empowered and supported by the innovation of the school administration which plays out quietly in the backdrop but has elevated the school and the day to day experience for our children. We are so fortunate to have our children at Congressional and cannot wait to see the new advancements that the administration and faculty come up with over the course of the next few years. I highly recommend this school for anyone looking for an accelerated curriculum that has depth and richness not just pace of moving through the curriculum. Congressional offers students with opportunities to thrive and explore in small classes with exceptional teachers and peers!
Our kids switched from public school to Congressional in Fall 2011. It has been a very positive change for our family. Congressional has a tremendous teaching staff that is both very challenging and caring. There is a strong emphasis on academics that takes place in a nurturing environment. We are very happy that we made the change and can't see our children going anywhere else. The new Executive Director of the school who started in April 2012 and the new positions of Lower School Director and MIddle School Director are a very good fit for the school and the leadership team are moving the school forward in a very positive direction.
My child went to Congressional for both lower and middle school. It was a great experience both academically and socially. Most of the teachers are the cream of the crop and the atmosphere is warm and caring.
Our child is also in the Bright Beginnings program and I can't speak highly enough about the program. Depending on the age of the child the ratios are anywhere form 1 3 to 1 4 which are within or above the required ratios. The program is fantastic the teachers loving and caring and our child is clearly thriving. Yes they close for Christmas and snow days (as do all schools) However when you are paying tutition for the. year at any school they do not pro rate the tuition for snow days holidays teacher work days (which ar far fewer than public schools). This is true of any of the private schools in the area. Our child is in one of the top if not the top program in the area and we are grateful for every day she spends there.
When we first came to the school we could not have been happier. Over time though it became clear that the Bright Beginnings program was simply an attempt to increase enrollment at the expense of children parents and teachers. Though most of the teachers are wonderful and kind the administration leaves a lot to be desired in their ability to recognize the issues and address them. CSOV has to decide if they are a school or a daycare (which closes for 1.5 weeks at Christmas and for 8+faculty days and various and sundry days of snow lack of power etc. all of which you pay for) and make changes accordingly. The hope resides with the new Executive Directior. I hope for the sake of the school the teachers and families that she is successful in addressing the issues that have continued to plague the school.
CSOV continues to go above and beyond in how they manage our children's food allergies. Our children have a history of being severely allergic to milk eggs peanuts tree nuts seafood shellfish and sesame. Congressional has met us with full support and understanding every step of the way. From meeting with us regularly to establish a safe inclusive environment for our children to installing hand washing sinks in the cafeteria to help facilitate hand washing to avoid any possible exposures. The nurses at CSOV are very knowledgeable regarding the proper management of children with food allergies and the teachers are so understanding caring and accommodating they really make our children feel included and welcome. We would highly recommend CSOV for the wonderful enriching well-rounded education that our children receive but would also highly recommend it to those who have food allergy concerns as well. This school has shown us countless times that they not only understand how to manage a child with food allergies but they continue to amaze us on how they strive to strike a balance between safety and inclusion in our children's school environment.
A great education and learning experience for our son who has been at Congressional for 6 years.. Great teachers campus and parent community... All in all Congressional is a great school especially with the emphasis on an advanced curriculum the care and attention students receive... Our esperience has been very positive with Math Science foreign language and arts.. The soccer program needs a little bit of improvement..