School Details

Cougar Mountain Academy

5410 194th Ave SE, Issaquah, WA 98027
(425) 641-2800
NR

(out of 10)

Private Grades PK-5 59 students 7 students/teacher (WA avg is 17)

Test Scores by grade

About this school

Cougar Mountain Academy is a private elementary school in Issaquah. The principal of Cougar Mountain Academy is Donna Ballard, Headmaster and can be contacted at CMA@cougarmountainacademy.org. 59 children attend Cougar Mountain Academy and identify as Asian/Pacific Islander; Asian; and White, non-Hispanic. The ratio of students to teachers at Cougar Mountain Academy is 7:1. Sunset Elementary School is one of the nearest elementary schools.

Student Ethnicities

Ethnicity School District
Asian/Pacific Islander 57% %
Asian 56% %
White, non-Hispanic 42% %
Hispanic 2% %
Black, non-Hispanic 0% %
Native American or Native Alaskan 0% %
Multiracial 0% %
Native Hawaiian or Other Pacific Islander 0% %

Community ratings & reviews

  • (5 months ago)

    We looked at several schools for our gifted son entering 1st grade. We sought a strong curriculum as well as a school that had a positive vibe. We attended an Open House and CMA felt like "home" to us. Here our son could excel at his own pace. We saw enthusiastic teachers encouraging students in their studies as well as helping with the snaps on coats at recess. We enrolled our son and he is thriving at CMA. He has French class twice a week is taking piano lessons and loves his electives Lego Robotics and Chess. He has developed a deeper love of reading. He raises his hand in the weekly Assembly eager to share what he knows. The Headmaster and staff have a genuine care and concern for the students. Questions we ve had have been answered promptly. Communication with the school has been wonderful. Our son loves CMA and often is not ready to leave at pick-up time. He is challenged in his studies and excited and proud to participate in special school events such as the Art Show and Science Fair. We are thrilled that CMA has been such a wonderful fit for our son and would highly recommend it to parents looking for an excellent private elementary school.

  • (5 months ago)

    Our 3- and 5-yr olds started pre-K and K at CMA this year. We value most about CMA s individual based curriculum. Our kids are not limited by what they are supposed to be learning at their age group but what they are ready to learn. Our older son is excited about learning because time is not spent in repeating things he already knows. Student-teacher ratio is great allowing more 1 1 attention and closer bonding among students. This is especially helpful for my 3-yr old who is very shy allowing her to feel safe quicker so she can grow academically. Our son is excited about the achievement roll projects and the school events which provide excellent opportunities for developing skills beyond the core learning focus. Seeing other children participate is also motivating. Perhaps one negative is the small upper elem group. We sure hope that more kids will continue onto upper elem in future years so there will be a greater pool of students our kids can grow to middle school with. All in all we are very happy with our investment. Our kids love going to school day after day. They are excelling academically developing friendship and they love their teachers.

  • (5 months ago)

    My older kid studied in CMA and developed her natural abilities so much that she easily got into LW Quest program after just studying pre-k in CMA. My second one though had significant delay in exhibiting academic and social skills. We sent him also to CMA and he is now developed a lot in his skills after being there just for a year. We are quite happy that we made the decision to send him there though the cost is a little on the high side for us.

  • (6 months ago)

    My daughter is 7.5 years old at 2nd grade when we decided to pull her out of Rachael Carson and enroll in CMA. We've been at CMA for 5 months now and can't be happier with her progress here. At Carson she was getting bored and complained about not having things to do and always having to wait for others to complete their practice. At CMA she's happy that there're so many others just like her. Class is fun again. As parents we see her finally having the opportunity to maximize her full potentials. She joined CMA when the fall semester already started. She had a bit challenging time catching up on math as CMA class was on 3-4 digits additions and subtractions while Carson class was on A&S within 20. Five months later my daughter is able to do multi-digits calculations that I have to use a calculator to check. She's mastered multiplication up to 9*9 and is expected to start divisions and fractions this semester. I never took myself off Carson's classroom news letter. The one I received last Friday says that my daughter's old class would start 2 digits additions in the upcoming weeks. I was so much surprised to see how much a difference 5 months in the right program could make!

  • (1 year ago)

    This was the best decision we have made so far for our son s education. We found Cougar Mountain Academy thru an internet search in Geneva Switzerland and decided to visit. The staff s professional demeanor portrayed not only a positive first impression but maintained a positive impression throughout the school year. This is a small school with small class sizes that allows a lot of one-on-one interactions between the student and the teacher. The individualized and advanced curriculum is so well managed and structured that it has challenged my son to the point where he is not only one grade level ahead academically but he also loves his school and looks forward to going everyday. The school is next to the zoo which allows them to just visit or to coincide the walk over with a lesson. They offer French! Robotics Piano to name a few and they do Book Fairs Science Fairs Art Exhibitions Piano Recitals and the list goes on and on. We are here only for a few years for work and I wish we could take this school with us wherever we end up going.

  • (1 year ago)

    Cougar Mountain Academy has done a terrific job education our children. The structured thoughtful curiculum has been well taught and the warm caring enviroment was the ideal platform for early education. My oldest is now in public middle school and is a top honors student-- much of his success comes from the education he received at CMA. Our youngest is now in the Pre-K program and I have been impressed once again with the schools commitment to excellence.

  • (2 years ago)

    We couldn't have found a better Pre-K/elementary school for our two kids. Coming from international backgrounds ourselves with a strong emphasis on academics we were looking for a school that meets or exceeds international standards in academic rigor towards laying the right foundation for our kids early years. The individualized advanced curriculum and approach at CMA was just the right fit - consistently aiming to be one or two grade levels above in the core areas of reading writing math and science. The student body seems an enthusiastic and motivated one which has really helped motivate our kids to excel. What I like most is the staff's ability to cultivate a genuine love of learning while still keeping academics rigorous and demanding. Our kids have often been reluctant to come home from school (wanting to stay longer) and have longed for school on weekends. To its credit CMA has done an excellent job of cultivating extracurricular interests- both of our kids have taken to piano our daughter is into yoga as well. The school is fortunate to have incredible teachers; Mrs. Ballard's leadership in driving high standards for the school has been exemplary; .

  • (2 years ago)

    We are glad we got out when we did. Our child attended CMA up until the end of the school year - from Pre-K through third grade. We now realize that the school was teaching to maximize test scores. We are now having to go back and fill in knowledge gaps.

  • (2 years ago)

    I would give more stars if I could. Cougar Mountain Academy has been an excellent Elementary School for my child a 6th grader now that prepared him for his responsible independent learning expected in middle school. The teachers pay individual attention to each student carefully designing the curriculum that meets the students needs. They also help children with social/emotional/behavioral skills in classroom and playground and when the children hear a clear message of the high expectations the children work to meet it. My son absolutely loved the reading rewards spelling bee choir singing hot lunches piano P.E. french and the achievement roll projects. He loved the school assembly and the school spirit that showed in their song and pledge. He shined when he found the place to belong the right amount of challenge and the staff working for his success. The administration is very welcoming and works very well with the families. Mrs. Ballard the headmaster and Mrs. Olson are always willing to hear parent inputs. The teachers work with parents as needed in addition to the usual parent conferences. This is the best investment we did and highly recommend the school.

  • (2 years ago)

    This year marks my 5th year educating high achieving and gifted children here at Cougar Mountain Academy. I have been fortunate to experience the students both as a teacher and as an administrator. In both roles the focus of the school has consistently been to provide a well rounded learning opportunity. This is evident in the fact that all events at the Academy have a defined learning objective which serves the student above and beyond the event itself. The commitment fo the Headmaster at the Academy is refreshing as she enables the team comprised of parents teachers and administrators to truly set each child on the path to sucess. Individual accomplishments are achieved through low teacher to student ratios accelerated individualized curriculum and a loving and nurturing environment. The firm foundation students receive at the Academy ensures future success as a lifelong learner. Excellence in education has been a way of life at Cougar Mountain Academy since its founding 50 years ago. I am proud to be a part of this long standing tradition and am eager to share it with the families who are raising the promise of our future.

  • (2 years ago)

    Our child started Cougar Mountain Academy in the 3rd grade. We came from 1st grade in a public school where our child was bored but still achieved A's and B's. We felt the "No Child Left Behind" rule was only for the struggling students leaving the children that could excel governed. Cougar Mountain gave us the sky to learn. We feel we received the one-on-one attention we were looking for. Though our child was challenged it was at his pace. The teachers knew when to challenge and when to pull back. The teachers got to know the kids individually and understood our child's learning ability. The three years we attended Cougar Mountain we very seldom saw bulling. When we did the staff took immediate action toward the problem child. The staff takes immediate action and resolves any issues directly with the parents. Starting with the first day of school every child is taught courtesy kindness and respect. Cougar Mountain is a respected primary non denominational private school. Because of the reputation Cougar Mountain has in our community we felt it help us place in the middle school of our choice. Our family really enjoyed our three year experience at Cougar Mountain.

  • (2 years ago)

    Cougar Mountain Academy is a unique private school with wonderful warm and caring families and staff. Busy parents can rely on the nurturing environment and loving attention that staff give to each student. Quality research based Individualized and advanced curriculum and individual solutions to each families concerns are the hallmarks that have made the Academy a trusted and innovative educational institution for 50 years. Parents who want to give their children the precious gift of an excellent education and the chance at a truly great future of promise can do no better than to choose this school.

  • (3 years ago)

    Cougar Mountain Academy is a disappointment. The school markets itself as a school for gifted children but the school is ill-equipped for the academic and social needs of truly gifted children. The children spend weeks preparing for programs (like the holiday concert) that look good in the school newsletter and very little time doing meaningful work in the classroom. Most of the curriculum is workbooks that leave your child bored. I would encourage parents to look elsewhere for a more enriching educational experience. Due to low enrollment (around 50 children) it seems the school has relaxed it standards. Although the school has a policy that aggressive and unruly children will be asked to leave the school we found that this type of behavior wasn t addressed and it spread throughout the classroom becoming a major disruption. Our child was tackled hit and had their food thrown on the floor. Despite raising these concerns to the school very little was done. Cougar Mountain Academy may look appealing at first glance but it isn t what it seems.

  • (3 years ago)

    Do not send your children to Cougar Mountain Academy. CMA attracts students and parents with a mission of academic excellence. However the curriculum is little more than workbook activities with optional enrichment activities that are to be completed by home with parent instruction. My child was bored. The more critical issue was the out of control classroom dynamics. It started at the beginning of the school year with a couple of unruly children but unchecked behavior led to a classroom where learning was secondary to trying to maintain control. Despite parent complaints throughout the school year the administration sited a teacher problem and did not step in until May when the damage was already done. The school administration appears to be focused on making money and not on creating a nurturing enriching learning environment which is likely why the school is curently experiencing a mass exodus of students - including long time students. With the number of private school options available you can find a much better option for your child and likely at a much lower price.

  • (3 years ago)

    We have been at CMA for 3 years. It has been a great school where children are loved and cared about. The curriculum is individualized and has helped my children excel quickly and at their own pace. The teachers and principal are very loving and my children love going to school.

  • (3 years ago)

    My son has attended CMA for two years now and we have had the best experience from all aspects. He absolutely loves the school his teachers and the principal. One of the major strengths of CMA in my opinion is a very well thought out indvidualized curriculum which helps the students to achieve their best. The Principal and the teachers were very supportive and understanding during the initial phase where my son had trouble adjusting to the environment. I am very happy with my son's academic progress. I would highly recommend CMA for anyone looking at private schools.

  • (3 years ago)

    My daughter has attended CMA from Pre-K through 4th with the exception of 2nd grade. She has absolutely loved it and excelled in all areas. I have found all the teachers to be extremely strong in the subjects that they teach. During the one year that we were unable to attend my daughter transferred to another highly respected private school in the Issaquah district. We were shocked at just how far ahead she was academically on almost every level. I believe that by encouraging each student to excel to their individual capabilities and not holding them back to their particular "grade level" has allowed my daughter and others at the school to score particularly high on the national exams. There is always a warm and caring atmosphere and teachers encourage respect and self discipline. The school is highly effective and focused on high standards in all areas. Many of the projects that are done outside of the class room have had a tremendous impact on my daughters learning. I would encourage any family looking for a "home" for their child to attend CMA. I promise you will not be disappointed.

  • (4 years ago)

    We have had our two children at Cougar Mountain Academy for the past 4 years. The curriculum is excellent and the teaching staff is wonderful. The administration and teaching staff bends over backwards to ensure all needs are met and to provide challenge at every level. Small class size ensures individualized instruction. Respect Leadership Love of Learning and Pride are evident in each child due to the strong positive role models of the staff and administration. Our children LOVE going to school and LOVE learning. We could not ask for more.

  • (4 years ago)

    Our children have attended Cougar Mountain Academy for the past three years. Having interviewed many schools I can truly say this is the BEST school for my children. The staff goes above and beyond on every level possible and has treated us with the utmost caring and respect. Cougar Mountain academy has fostered a love of learning and sense of school pride that my children will have for the rest of their lives. I cannot recommend this school highly enough.

  • (5 years ago)

    Our son just finished 5 wonderful years (K-4) at this small caring and nurturing school. With a TRULY individualized curriculum and teachers that helped him explore his leadership skills and his love for learning with fun he is more than ready for Middle School. A highlight for him was the chance to have lunch with the HeadMaster on reaching a reading milestone. One school where we saw children take pride in the Pledge of Allegiance the National Anthem and the School Spirit.

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Overall score

(based on 40 ratings & reviews)

  • Teacher quality
  • Principal leadership
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