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About This School

Northern Light School is a private middle school in Oakland. The principal of Northern Light School is Michelle Lewis, Kaamil Isles--Principals. 142 children attend Northern Light School The ratio of students to teachers at Northern Light School is 8:1. Hillside Academy is one of the nearest middle schools.

Extracurricular Activities

  • Arts

    • Band
    • Chorus
    • Theater drama
  • Languages Taught

    • Spanish
  • Sports

    • Basketball

Community Rating & Reviews

  • (9 months ago)

    I have one son that attends Northern Light School and so far we are off to a great start. While it was very challenging to find a safe learning enviornment for my son I was greatful to be referred to the Northen Light Family. After attending the summer program I realized that what this school had to offer was exactly what I needed for my son and that was structure and dedicated/compassionate staff members that believe in student success.So far we are very excited and my son loves learning at NLS so for that I''m a proud parent of the NLS!

  • (9 months ago)

    I have one son that currently attends Northern Light School and one son that has graduated from NLS. I have been a NLS parent for over 7 years. My oldest was accepted to all 3 private high schools that he applied to. Then 8 out of 10 Universities that he recently applied to and is now attending a Private University for his freshman year. My youngest son is not only attending Northern Light School because of the success of his older brother but because he loves his school. This is very important to me. All schools are required to teach a specific curriculum but what make s Northern Light School special is the children like going to school and love their teachers. It is an open learning environment where the kids are able to be who they are. A safe and loving school environment creates a student who loves to learn. Current NLS Parent

  • (9 months ago)

    We enrolled our children at Northern Light last spring and they began school this fall. Before school started we were accosted by former parents and employees who tried to convince us that the School was "bad" and that we shouldn't pursue enrolling. To say the least we were concerned. The things shared with us were so scathing that we seriously considered saying "no". But the summer slipped away. It was time for school. We said we'd "try" it for the first few weeks and make a final decision for our family. Boy are we glad that we did! Whatever those former parents and employees said was wrong and (to be frank!) pretty cruel. We've got nothing but glowing reviews for Northern Light. Our kids are so happy. The education and programs offered are fantastic. We were told that the school wasn't making an effort to put its best foot forward but it is. Our son is LOVING PE classes and our daughter is thrilled that there is Drama Club. Every morning there's a whole-school assembly that offers students the chance to come together. Clearly they're making an effort to prove they're committed to positive turn-around in light of whatever slander was spread. It really is a GREAT SCHOOL!

  • (10 months ago)

    I would NOT recommend this school to anyone. The students face hard reality when they go to High School my son is one of them. He is so far behind in math. There is not consistency on anything. The change the curriculum almost every year since the new principal came to NLS and when things started to go down hill she doesn't know how to handle discipline at all. Some teachers have their boyfriends working there and they hang in the classrooms all day. NLS is not what it used to be. Not a good school at all.

  • (1 year ago)

    Two years ago we moved our oldest daughter out of a top pre-school in Piedmont to attend Northern Light School's pre-kindergarten program and have since entered her younger sister into the school. Now in our second year at Northern Light -- our kindergartner has a passion for learning is excelling in her studies has made good friends and loves her teacher. Our pre-schooler is engaged and having fun building a strong set of foundational skills and performing at an academic level that is beyond her years. The administration and faculty are caring and constantly looking for new ways to enhance the curriculum and community at Northern Light School. The student experience is made more dynamic through exposure to community leaders coaches and speakers from top businesses professional teams and philanthropic organizations from around the bay. We are happy to have found Northern Light School two years ago and look forward to the years to come. Our children are experiencing something special and are growing as students and citizens of the broader community. What more could we ask for?

  • (1 year ago)

    We are a veteran family of Northern Light School. Our children have attended their cousins my nieces nephews and several grandchildren. We've been with Northern Light for the long haul. With the recent challenges the school has faced we are making an important decision for our family--WE ARE STAYING WITH NORTHERN LIGHT SCHOOL. We believe in Northern Light everything it stands for everything it has been and everything it will become. We aren't going to give up on what the school has to offer. Families choosing to leave Northern Light have fallen victim to virulent poisonous gossip and a cancer-like rumor mill. The families like ours who stay true and dedicated to Northern Light know what it is worth. It truly is one-of-a-kind and we will continue to embrace it and defend it. We're staying put--for the other generations of our children and grandchildren to come.

  • (1 year ago)

    This school used to be a wonderful school. But the last 3 years have been bad. Classroom sizes increased from 10-15 average to now 20+. There has been no disciplinary structure. The staff has a high rate of overturn. There is no leadership or direction for the school. Test scores are down. Not all the teachers are accredited. But tuition is steady going up. They need to revise their academic and discipline programs. Keep staff there longer. They need to get back to Northern Light 3 years ago.

  • (1 year ago)

    Many of the families who leave the community at Northern Light School are quick to give it a "bad rap". The truth is that Northern Light is a very special one-of-a-kind place. Yes there have been changes in the administration. But that kind of change is inevitable and bound to happen at every school. Leaving Northern Light won't make a difference. If you go somewhere else you will encounter the same changes. Being a parent it's difficult to read through "scathing" reviews and recognize any semblance of what frustrated parents are talking about. My family loves Northern Light School. My children receive a top-notch education. They love going to school. As a parent that's the most important thing I could ask for. I wouldn't save my money and send my kids to public school. I know that they wouldn't get what Northern Light offers. The families that love Northern Light the way our family does have pride for this village and a village it is. I think the unhappy parents on here had an unfortunate one-time experience and take their aggression out on this community. That aggression is underserved. Northern Light is filled with genuine love and has children's best interests at heart.

  • (1 year ago)

    We love Northern Light! Don't listen to anything that other disconcerted former parents are writing and saying. Now there have been some changes. The newer principal has had to adjust to the Northern Light environment. It was challenging at first but in the last year we've noticed that the new principal has taken a more active role in the student's and families lives. She's still got a ways to go but she has made a tremendous effort and we are happy to stick by the Northern Light School community and mission. It is a beautiful place with beautiful families caring teachers and dedicated administration. We aren't giving up on Northern Light. There's good stuff there.

  • (1 year ago)

    I am a VOLUNTEER teacher and fundraiser at Northern Light. If it was OK or good I'd quit tomorrow. i stay because I think it's HANDS DOWN the #1 PRE K-8 school in America. Everyone's entitled to their opinions but the facts remain the facts. our student body is hardly affluent or well connected. Yet 99% of the graduates get HS degrees and 95% get through college. Just this year are kids (all on scholarship by the way) going to Duke Barnard USC Wellesley University of the Redlands. If ALL you care about is your child having the best opportunity in life possible.... than Northern Light would be the easiest decision you ever make. It's more Disneyland than a school...a place where crazy and unlikely dreams come true!

  • (1 year ago)

    We left NLS in pre-k primarily because we felt one of the directors was bent on emasculating the boys. Our son is now in 4th grade and we are pleased with the new leadership his teacher and the small class size. They offer enough sports to keep him busy and he is well challenged academically. The school is affordable and offers a reasonable alternative to charter schools and the failings of OUSD. Their record for graduating students to be accepted into good high schools and then college is exceptional! We are happy with our decision.

  • (2 years ago)

    My daughter has been attending this school for two years and it has truly been a pleasure seeing her grow and develop in an environment that provides her with the greatest opportunity to excel academically socially and in her character. My daughter chose this school over the fluffier schools with the new playground and facility because of the warm and nurturing environment that she felt when she visited the school. In the two years I have seen her blossom into a dynamic individual.

  • (2 years ago)

    My daughter has been going to this school since pre school and is now in 1st grade. I agree that the school has been going downhill since the new administration. A lot of the GOOD teachers left the school. The policies aren't clear and procedures aren't always followed. This school has been living of the name its once had. I'm currently looking for another school for my daughter.

  • (2 years ago)

    The new principal and administrators are horrible this year. Since the original founders of the school have left the school has gone down hill. Over crowding in the classrooms. Students who don't belong. Very few activities for the kids to do... Save your money and try a high performing public school

  • (2 years ago)

    My daughter went to this school and I would not recommend this school to anyone. I have a son who is entering first grade and he is better off going to public school. The principal used foul language to describe how my daughter was acting. Due to her strong personality they treated her horrible. I am scared if i sent my son there they would treat him horrible because of who his sister is.

  • (3 years ago)

    This is my son's 3rd year at this school. He just finished the 2nd grade and will NOT be returning unfortunately. In addition to strong academic program we wanted a nurturing environment especially for the you ger classes. Not for our child to be babied or anything like but it just seems like the environment was more into the robot approach. It was all about them being as smart as they could force them to be not focusing on the children as individuals. Education is a top priority which is why we chose private school but we also don't need our child worrying about that in the first grade. Basically it was too much pressure on the children and several other have had the same concern. We gave the school another year and we didn't see a difference so unfortunately we had to switch schools. We decided on Mills College Children's School until the 5th grade. I happen to know we are aren't the only family to switch to Mills. Mills is a lot more than Northern Lights... I heard it's worth it.

  • (3 years ago)

    I am very thankful that for the staff and faculty of Northern Light. The classroom environments are warm and welcoming and filled with teachers and administrators who CARE. It's also great because of the teacher to student ratio. The teachers provide many hands on learning opportunities that enhances their curriculum. Northern Light encourages parent participation and offers a multitude of opportunities for volunteering. Northern Light is a family school where the teachers are not just teaching but facilitating learning as well. My son is extremely happy again. He is excited about school again. Thanks Northern Light!

  • (3 years ago)

    As an alumni/ graduate of Northern Light I have grown into a loving and respectful young man. Northern Light has taught me skills and preparation for high school. In 8th grade I was learning Algebra 1!!! I learned pre- algebra in 7th grade!!! Normally in public schools you would learn pre- algebra in 8th grade. Learning algebra 1 in 8th grade was such an advantage because in my freshman year they start you of in algebra 1!!!! I really struggled in math So I went to my teacher and I told her my dilemma. She OFFERED HER LUNCH BREAK to HELP ME!!!! No other teacher wouldve done that for me. Thinking about this right now really makes me feel special. And I am proud to go to high school. Next year I will be at Saint Joseph Notre Dame High School. I LOVE NLS. Thanks. I will never forget you.

  • (4 years ago)

    As a current student of Northern Light School i have learned many amazing qualities. In this school the directors dont just help you academically but morally and orally. Coming from a public school things are amazingly different! Students are just so nice and comppasionate towards others its hard even to comprehend! This is an amazing school. Also the comment about hypocritical stuff this is a joke! Yes the directors are strict on discipline but it affects them in a good way. As a student and participating in the Theater Arts my sel-esteem has boosted amazingly.This school was a perfect match for me! I feel that this school teaches amazingly and its a school to visit! You will definetely get a sense of love and caring if you visit. Enroll your child for a better future for your child! This school is outstanding!

  • (5 years ago)

    this school is a wonderful school .if you moving to oakland please check this school.

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