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Loomis Chaffee Review-honest review from a parent

burfus91burfus91 17 replies1 threads Junior Member
My daughter has been at Loomis for the past 4 years. What an incredible school!! When she was applying to prep school she got into every school she applied. Some were "ranked" higher than Loomis, but she made the best decision ever!
Academics: Stellar. The English department is amazing. They make the kids take a freshman writing course that is off the charts. They drill writing skills into these kids. Her freshman English teacher was very old school. In the middle of class she randomly calls on students to stand up and recite a Walt Whitman poem. Very tough graders, but you learn a ton. When my daughter had to do the essay part of the SATs it was no problem. I honestly can't think of a bad course she took. She also took a lot of AP courses. A lot of the AP courses are called college level courses and not AP so that teachers have flexibility in the curriculum. You are paying a lot of money to go to this school, if you want a school that only teaches the "AP curriculum" you can get that at your public school for free.
Activities: My daughter was able to have a ton of leadership roles. When it came time to fill out her college application it was really hard to narrow it down to the 10 slots they give you. Loomis wants you to get involved and there are plenty of opportunities. Everyone has to have a work job. Freshman year my daughter was assigned to vacuum a classroom 3 times a week. Other jobs include taking care of the chicken pen, recycling, tour guides etc. The kids all do it and it is not a big deal at all.
Teacher access: The teachers are always willing to give extra help. They are always on email even at night.
Advisors: You get assigned an advisor based on your dorm. Some advisors are better than others. My daughter's advisor was fantastic and had her for 3 years. She was honestly like having a second mom. Some people don't bond with their advisors, but that can happen any where.
Dorms: The new dorms Richmond and Cutler are gorgeous. The Cutler rooms are so big that I assumed it was a handicapped room. Some dorms are crap. I'm not going to lie. The few times I went into a boys dorm it smelled like sweaty boys.
Stress levels: The kids all work hard and at time they can get stressed out. I would not call it a cut throat environment. They all seem to have a good balance of working hard and relaxing.
Study Skills: Freshman year you really learn good study habits. During the day the kids have a supervised study hall. At night they have a supervised study hall as well. All phones have to put outside their dorm room. Wifi is cut off at a certain time so they can sleep. They learn when it is time to study, when it is time to do sports and when it is time to socialize. As the kids get older the structure is lessened.
Facilities: The new student center is gorgeous. It has a beautiful dining room, hang out areas etc. Really nice school store. Gorgeous fields. The gym is big, but a little tired looking.
Technology: They have a brand new giant room filled with the newest 3D printers, laser cutters and all of that stuff. It was not my daughters thing so I can't comment on it.
Students: They have a pretty diverse student body. They do have a bunch of kids from Asia, but not as many as other prep schools. All of the international kids speak English very well. A lot of the kids are from Connecticut. They don't tolerate bad behavior at school. If kids misbehaves you get kicked out. There are kids who do stupid things and they have to pack their bags. If your kid likes to party, this is not the right school. There are no alcohol parties on weekends like you find at day schools.
Sports: Everyone has to do an activity each trimester. If you are not into sports, there are other things you can do. The trimesters my daughter was not on a team she signed up for cardio. The hockey games are really fun. They do something with Lobsters when they play Avon.
Social life: The school has dances a few times a year. Some of the dances are just for Loomis kids and at times other prep schools are invited. Some of the dances are super fun like the black light party. At the end of one party this year they let all the seniors jump into the pool. Some of the dances were lame according to my daughter. There are always activities on the weekends. They bring in performers, outings to the movies, mall, shopping etc. Some kids would rather stay in dorms and chill. The school does NOT empty out on weekends like some other schools. The dorms do a really good job at bonding the kids and having fun. They decorate doors for birthdays, they have snacks together. The girls all watched the bachelor together this spring. Each dorm is responsible for putting on an all dorm event. The heath center is the bottom of one of the new dorms.
Cons: Not a lot of academic support it you have a learning disability. It does not have a learning center like a school like Proctor. 30% day students, which is higher than other competing schools. Not much to do in Windsor. Some of the buildings are old.
Food: Really good now. Before the new dinning hall was built, it was horrible. I just ate there a few weeks ago and what a difference. There were a lot of option and it was good quality.
College Counseling: You get a counselor assigned to you junior year. My daughter really liked her counselor. My daughter is going to an IVY next year! They help you make a list of schools that are likely, possible, reach and far reach. They are very honest about which schools are realistic for your child. There is no need to hire an outside college counselor.
Leadership: The headmaster has been at Loomis for many years, so there is a lot of stability.
Travel. There is a small train station walking distance to the dorms.They provide transportation to NYC and Bradley airport over breaks.
Bottom line: TAKE A TOUR OF LOOMIS! I really encourage the Massachusetts kids to look. It is only 1 hour 15 min drive away from Boston and it is right off the high way so a very easy drive.
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