10 Best Private Elementary Schools in USA 2022

Last Updated on May 15, 2022

Looking for the best private elementary schools in USA? If this is the case, then we are happy to help you find them. In this article, we cover information on the 10 best private elementary schools in USA 2022.

Private Elementary Schools USA

Paying for a private elementary school education places a substantial burden on families, especially when one considers that the corresponding public education is essentially free. Nonetheless, many parents believe a solid, private education for their children is worth the expense, giving students the artistic, religious, or personal attention they might not find elsewhere.

Discover the Best Private Elementary Schools! The schools on this list each have their particular appeal. A reasonable tuition may be the crucial consideration for some parents (annual tuitions on this list range from $5,000 to $50,000 annually). Small class sizes and personalized attention may be crucial for others. Some families look for academic distinction, or a way to escape bullying, specialized education within a certain field, or a place where their children will be appreciated and encouraged.

Ranking criteria include the following:

  • The schools must have at least three of the six grades (first through sixth grade) that are traditionally categorized as elementary-level grades.
  • They must exceed nearby public schools in course selections and success.
  • They must have a reputation for producing students who are well prepared to take the next steps in their education.
  • Though they are organized as businesses, the schools must have a reputation for treating families with fairness and compassion.
  • They actively seek to treat parents as partners in the educational process.
  • They openly and regularly celebrate the students and their accomplishments.

In determining whether and the degree to which these criteria were met, we did extensive research on these schools, which included finding and evaluating parent and student reviews.Finally, we decided to put a premium on geographic diversity in the selection of schools. Rather than focus on a few high-density population centers with a large concentration of private schools, we felt it important that all regions of the country be represented. Here, then, is our list of the best private elementary schools across America’s full length and breadth.

Best Private Elementary Schools in USA

1 The New School

On a 26-acre campus with an amphitheater, certified wildlife habitat, trails, and outdoor classrooms, children in nursery school through eighth grade enjoy a varied STEAM (science, technology, engineering, arts, and math) curriculum. Students in grades one through eight each have computer access. In nursery and preschool, the young students have a dedicated indoor gym, and physical education begins at age three. There are four playgrounds and four school buildings. The New School has over 350 students, 52 part-time teachers, and 63-full time teachers.

Founded in 1971, the school is accredited by the Independent Schools Association of the Central States, the Arkansas Nonpublic School Accrediting Association, and the Arkansas Better Beginnings: 3-Star.

The lower school is comprised of first through fourth grade and technology is integrated into every phase of learning. Students are grouped for literacy and math training according to ability, so that all students can succeed and advance to their fullest potential. Students are given standardized tests to measure learning and their scores exceed the scores of students regionally and nationally. Students have in-depth study of vocabulary, phonics, and spelling, as well as frequent assessment of reading ability with the Developmental Reading Assessment.

Math students are encouraged through innovative instruction to develop critical and creative thinking skills. Students learn problem solving strategies and teachers use manipulatives and visual models to engage the students with hands-on learning activities to give students a view on how math applies to everyday life.

Students also learn social studies and science. Community service projects are integrated into the social studies program where students learn about economics and geography, as well as history and civics. Science teachers provide projects for students that will ignite an interest in science.

All students from preschool to eighth grade take art classes. Art is heavily integrated into the curriculum, as is technology. All students in kindergarten through fourth grade have personal iPads, while students in grades five through seven are given a MacBook Air to use for their lessons.

Students also have the opportunity to participate in choir, Lego robotics, science club, drama club, and private music lessons in guitar, violin, and/or piano, as well as many other enrichment activities.

2 The Lexington School

School begins at the Lexington School with nursery school and goes through the eighth grade, with almost 600 students who are geographically and ethnically diverse. The school has a special learning program for dyslexia and is accredited by the National Association of Independent Schools and the Independent Schools Association of the Central States. The student-to-teacher ratio is approximately seven-to-one.

Sports offered at LS include archery, ultimate Frisbee, lacrosse, soccer, tennis, cheering, and several other athletic pursuits. Students have eight extra-curricular classes from which to choose: Girls on the Run, chess, intramurals, Math Counts, Chinese, applied music lessons, speech and debate, and Scouts.

The curriculum is vertically aligned for each grade with Handwriting without Tears, science, integrated technology, English, the Open Court reading program, social studies, and Everyday Math. Competitive athletics are offered in cheer leading, archery, lacrosse, tennis, and several others. Intramurals are available in golf, yoga, drama, dance, lacrosse, hockey, cooking, and several academic offerings.

In first through third grades, students learn art, computer, PE, music, and Spanish in classrooms specially designed for these subjects. In academics, students advance at their own pace, developing their basic skills before transitioning to fourth and fifth grade where students undertake a more in-depth study of science. They study math with a math specialist. English and social studies are closely planned with other courses. All these efforts help students transition from elementary school to middle school.

Students in fourth and fifth grade are afforded lockers. They are encouraged to keep up with their own assignments and learn more independently. Fourth-grade students deliver snacks for each lower-grade classroom and fifth-graders lead the recycling program for the school.

The Lexington School uses the Mission Skills Assessment to measure the character traits of resilience, ethics, creativity, curiosity, time management, and teamwork, giving the school a way to measure how well students are assimilating these skills.

Students get to take hikes through a creek to help them understand the dynamics of that ecosystem. If students have difficulty with language, they are offered an alternative to the regular classroom at the Learning Center, where the student-teacher ratio is much lower. Multi-sensory approaches help students with difficulties in math. Science and social studies in the Learning Center are taught with projects that students can accomplish using their hands. Computer skills help students to become independent learners and their special interests are investigated through Talent Classes, which the students get to choose.

3 Forsyth Country Day School

In January of 2014, Forsyth Family Magazine reported that 60 percent of students at Forsyth Country Day School in grades four through seven qualified for the Duke Talent Identification Program (TIP) because they ranked in the top five percent on the national Education Records Bureau tests. Students who started at FCDS during or prior to grade one were two times more likely to qualify for the TIP program than those who enrolled once they were older.

Duke University actively seeks academically gifted students in elementary school to help finance their education. Many parents become concerned about college admittance when their children are in high school. It would appear that early childhood education is just as important as high school education, and this is certainly the approach that Forsyth Country Day School takes. In 2014, it began a new curriculum entitled Our Path to Excellence and will follow that up with even more innovative programs in the next school year.

FCDS offers a year-round program for children aged two to four, called the Early Advantage Program, which will prepare students for the grades to come. During this time children are given knowledge that will act as a foundation for the future in math, writing, communication, literacy, and phonemic awareness. The preschool is part of the lower school. Kindergarten through fourth grade comprises the rest of the lower school where students study the core subjects, but also world languages, the arts, PE, science, and social studies.

Students in the lower school interact with students in the middle and upper schools so that they learn from other groups in a community atmosphere. Lower school students take several trips a year to places like the Carolina Raptor Center, the All-a-Flutter Butterfly Farm in High Point, the North Carolina Zoo, multiple museums, the Science Center in Greensboro, and other centers of educational interest. There are also several after-school enrichment programs such as ballet, tap dance, soccer, and ukulele class, to name but a few. Private music lessons are offered on several different types of instruments. In the spring, the Community School of the Arts puts on a play with the lower-school students.

Middle school is comprised of grades five through eight, where students are taught skills and offered a wider variety of learning opportunities, including community service projects and clubs and academic competitions.

4 Rocky Bayou Christian Academy

Rocky Bayou Christian Academy is a member of the Northwest Florida Christian Education Association and the Christian Schools International. RBCA is also accredited by the Florida Association of Christian Colleges and Schools, and the National Institute of Learning Development. RBCA begins with a preschool program and goes through twelfth grade. Over the last 10 years, 90 percent of RBCA graduates have been eligible for the Florida Bright Futures Scholarship, and graduates earn millions of dollars in scholarships each year.

The school has a Special Services Program for students from ages three to seven who have developmental delays, or who have needs in the area of basic academic skills, with interventions designed to help each student succeed. Kindergarten students learn to read and are taught phonics, short and long vowels, silent vowels, and diphthongs. They are taught to count money, tell time, and the basics of addition and subtraction, as well as counting to 100.

The Talent Development Program concentrates its efforts on students in grades one through six, giving individual attention to students. The Victors Class exists for the benefits of students with cognitive challenges to develop their academic and life skills. Therapy Services offers children with unique learning challenges assistance to help them navigate through school. Additionally, RBCA utilizes the National Institute for Learning Development Model, which includes a Search and Teach Program, Discovery Educational Therapy, Group Educational Therapy, Prescription for Reading, Speech and Language Therapy, and Testing Services. All of these programs offer interventions for students who have difficulties with processing information, academic skills, and language acquisition.

A second campus in Destin serves grades K through sixth grade with a high-achievement program with advanced technology in each classroom. The student-teacher ratio is approximately eight-to-one. Talent Development Class students who may have differences in the way they learn have the opportunity for advanced placement. Students are taught foreign languages, music, art, computer, and may even participate in the Ukulele Club.

The elementary curriculum includes Singapore Math and the Student Technology Program is run through a partnership with Boston University and the University of Richmond. Students take a standardized achievement test in the spring, the scores of which are used to monitor student learning success.

Rocky Bayou Christian Academy also ranked among The 50 Best Christian High Schools in America.

5 The Brearley School

The Brearley School bears the distinction as one of the oldest schools in the country. The school was founded in 1884 and remains an all-girl college preparatory school, teaching approximately 700 students, kindergarten through twelfth grade. The lower school has approximately 250 students and encompasses kindergarten through fourth grade. The middle school has a little over 200 students and encompasses fifth through eighth grade.

The core values for the lower school are responsibility, respect, honesty, courage, and kindness. Students are encouraged to conduct themselves with dignity and to act with integrity so that they make a cohesive community of learners. Homeroom is the base of all learning, but as students become more responsible, they are given more privileges and responsibilities. There is an assembly every week where the girls sing, recite, and put on plays. There are also guest speakers on a wide range of topics from caring for rescued wildlife to the history of jazz.

By fourth grade students will be well trained in handling fractions, decimals, and percentages. They will be writing multi-paragraph papers and engaging in planning what they write. They will be reading short stories and novels and participating in speech, debate, skits, and plays. They will be learning about Judaism, Christianity, and Islam. In science they will be learning how machines work, including levers and gears as well as the anatomical structures of animals and the phases of the moon. Students will be continuing their knowledge of the Mandarin language and rotating through several art courses, including pottery and ceramics. They learn carpentry, music, and photography, as well as physical education and service learning. In other words, the students at Brearley have a robust curriculum.

The lower school seeks to develop character in all its students to be a foundation for their behavior in the middle and upper grades, and for life. Students are taught to respect the thoughts and work of others, while also giving back to the community through service projects. Students discuss peer conflicts in discussions that arise out of the academic activities in the lower school.

Lower-school students are offered gymnastics and soccer programs after school. After-school soccer does not begin for students until grade two, but gymnastics is open to all lower-school girls. Brearley also partners with the Chapin School to offer the LS Clubhouse after school for grades K through 6, where students engage in a variety of physical, intellectual, and artistic activities.

6 Forest Ridge Academy

Children from junior kindergarten through eighth grade attend Forest Ridge Academy. Junior kindergarten uses several active learning experiences where they interact with classmates, people, events, and hands-on learning centers. Teachers post the day’s schedule in writing and in symbols so that children will be encouraged to read. Children are given the opportunity to make choices about what they do and participate in problem-solving activities.

Children are encouraged to describe in words the things they are experiencing. They are taught the alphabet, sight words, and beginning reading skills through a phonics program. Math concepts are taught through use of manipulative objects and students are taught to recite and write their numbers, as well as count by fives and tens. They also attend classes in PE, music, art, Spanish, computer, sign language, wood working, and science. Science includes walks on nature trails, field trips, and age-appropriate experiments.

The kindergarten program has a complex reading, writing, spelling, math, social studies, and science program. Science uses experiments with magnets, light, and sound, as well as the different stages of butterflies and ladybugs. Students also attend the same special classes as the junior kindergarten students, including sign language and music.

Once students enter first grade, they are taught using Whole Brain Teaching. They learn about science through an interactive classroom garden and learn to read different types of media such as articles and poems. Students are taught tolerance for diversity, drawing, age-appropriate musical production, painting, and writing stories and essays up to five paragraphs long. Students get to take exciting field trips to the Art Institute of Chicago, as well as many other places.

Second-graders go the Chicago Field Museum and participate in a scavenger hunt. They also tour the Pawnee Earth Lodge and learn about the lives of the Pawnee Nation. Every other year, students return there for an overnight trip along with the third-graders and their parents. Third- and fourth-graders take an overnight trip to the Indiana Dunes to learn about nature and explore the several ecosystems found at the Dunes.

Fifth-graders travel to the Medieval Times Restaurant, take a trip to Camp Tecumseh, and go to the Field Museum in Chicago when they are studying Egypt, so that they can view the Egyptian exhibit. At the end of the year, they go to Space Camp where they experience many fun activities that simulate walking in near zero gravity and what it is like to fly in a spacecraft.

7 Journeys School of Teton Science Schools

Journeys School offers education to pre-kindergarten through twelfth grade. Currently, Journeys is a day school, though boarding is being considered as an option for the future. There is also a long-standing home-stay program for international students.

Elementary students are immersed in a seven-course program that includes the usual academic courses, as well as Spanish and fine arts. The curriculum adheres to national standards known as Common Core. Students are assigned to math and language arts classes based upon the ability and social and emotional development of each student so that they can learn, receive help, and accelerate at their own pace.

Giving children a strong foundation in both reading and writing, the literacy curriculum uses multiple renowned and proven reading and writing programs. Students have reading and writing workshops daily and are instructed in skills that will make them strong readers and writers.

Math is taught with fewer topics being delivered in a more intense method using Math in Focus: The Singapore Approach. Science is taught using all scientific disciplines, including technology, to train students to think like scientists through an inquiry method so that students learn to ask questions and design their own experiments. Classes take place both indoors and outdoors.

Social studies classes emphasize citizenship and community. All classes are taught in such a way that students can make real world applications.

In addition to visual arts, elementary students also have music or drama classes twice a week. Elementary students give public musical and dramatic performances. Students study the type of sounds each instrument makes and the distinguishing characteristics of different types of music. The instruments played by elementary students are mostly confined to percussion instruments, the keyboard, and recorders.

Elementary students go on frequent day trips in and around the community and go on three extended day trips (of one to five days) per year to areas in Wyoming, Washington, and Idaho. Elementary students also participate in service projects designed for their age groups, such as building bird boxes and collecting wildflower seeds to plant in areas in need of beautification.

In the summer, a number of camps are available for lower-school students, such as the Jackson Hole Summer Science Camp, the Journeys School Summer Innovation Academy, and the Teton Valley Community School Summer Camps. At these camps, students can study the environment, discover how different animals make their homes, explore natural waterways, go on nature hikes, and camp out.

8 Cliff Valley School

Cliff Valley School is accredited by the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools, and the Southern Association for Independent Schools. Cliff Valley is also a member of the Georgia Independent School Association and the National Association of Independent Schools. There are approximately 300 students and 57 full time teachers, the majority of whom hold graduate degrees. There is a very low turnover rate among the faculty, providing continuity within the school.

The campus is located on almost five acres in Northeast Atlanta and has 47,000 square feet of facilities, including a music room and performance stage, science lab, art studio, gym, outdoor classroom, a rooftop garden, outdoor play areas for recess and organized sports, and nature trails.

Spanish language acquisition begins at age three in Cliff Valley School. Preschoolers learn through exploration and visuals. Students work in a garden to plant and nurture what they grow.

The kindergarten through fifth grades are taught by teams who provide warm-up exercises in key subjects, activity centers, and instruction in language arts and math. Students go to recess and then lunch, after which they study science and social studies and go to enrichment classes in art, environmental science, PE, Spanish, technology, library, and music.

Various assessments are used to determine student skill acquisition and parents receive weekly progress reports and newsletters. Standardized tests are used in the upper grades to help determine how well students are acquiring knowledge and skills.

Students go on several field trips throughout the year and guest speakers come to the school from various professional fields so that students can make connections between what they are learning and the world around them.

Elementary and preschool students have reading buddies and lunch buddies so that older students can experience what it is like to mentor younger people and to act as role models.

Students in grades three through five may participate in club-style sports with no chance of being cut from the team. Sports include cross country, volleyball, basketball, flag football, and soccer.

An after-school program provides students with the opportunity to learn about and participate in drama, art, fencing, chess, golf, robotics, and music. After-school care is available for all students age three and above. Activities include games, free play, crafts, art projects and activities, and homework time. In the summer, camps are held for all age groups with age-appropriate activities that include computer programming, games, cooking, and sports. Before-care and after-care are offered in the summer where students participate in less structured activities with their own age groups such as free play, arts and crafts, and reading time.

9 Maret School

The Maret School, a college preparatory school founded in 1911, serves almost 650 students in kindergarten through twelfth grade on a seven-and-a-half acre campus. Originally, it was a French school that taught students from different nations, and with such a beginning, it most certainly respects and celebrates diversity. Students come from 41 countries and 42 percent are students of color. Students attend classes on a single campus with an average class size of 15, with a student-teacher ratio of seven-to-one. There are 106 teachers and 65 percent of them have master’s degrees or higher. The school is accredited by the Association of Independent Maryland Schools.

Spanish instruction begins in kindergarten, while the study of French and Latin begins in grade six. By ninth grade, students are studying Chinese.

Every student is required to take classes in visual and the performing arts, and every student must take classes on twenty-first century essential skills.

Even though Maret is a college preparatory school, the elementary school does not try to teach at an accelerated pace nor teach more than students need for a good foundation before going into middle school. Children get to be children while going to science class twice a week, along with art and music. Students go to the library once a week and have PE four times a week. The number of times students go to Spanish class depends upon the student’s grade level. Fourth-graders act as reading buddies to the kindergarten, and students from the high school plant gardens with the kindergarten classes. High school students help first-grade students raise fish (shad) and release them into a river. There are celebrations in which all students in every grade participate.

All students have access to laptops and there are also 3D printers, tablets, digital cameras, and more for students to use and learn from to prepare them for life in the twenty-first century. Service learning is also part of the curriculum.

An after-school program is in place for students in kindergarten through eighth grade. Students are given study help if needed, but it is a time for them to relax with activities such as a weekly movie, Puzzle Club, Girls on the Run, Culture Club, French Club, and Chess Club. During the year, the lower school has several celebrations, assemblies, and guest speakers.

Maret is accredited by the Association of Independent Maryland Schools and a member of eight professional educational associations.

10 Pacific Northern Academy

In August of 2013, Pacific Northern moved into a brand-new campus that includes a multiple-purpose gymnasium, a music room and large art studio, and a comprehensive science lab where students are challenged daily to develop independent and critical thinking skills. Students are afforded the opportunity to explore themes across the curriculum.

Though students do work collaboratively, they are held individually responsible for their learning in this college preparatory school. Nevertheless, teaching is differentiated so that all students can achieve to their own potential. Aiding students in this quest is a team of devoted teachers in small class. There are approximately 150 students in this pre-kindergarten through eighth grade school. The Responsive Classroom program is used so that students will become comfortable discussing their ideas and receive the support they need to continue stretching their thinking skills to newer heights.

Tuition is currently $16,995 a year, and tuition assistance is available.

PNA offers an after school program as well. The youngest students through third grade participate in both indoor and outdoor social and athletic activities. The fourth through eighth grade students attend Homework Club where they have an hour to quietly work on homework on the computer, then participate in both outdoor and indoor social and athletic activities.

Beginners and Early Kindergarten is considered Early Childhood, Kindergarten through fourth grade is considered the lower school and fifth through eighth is considered the middle school. All core subjects are taught by the classroom teacher and specialists teach the elective courses in PE, performing arts, Spanish, and studio arts. Students are encouraged to work through self-devised projects and consider with others the various ways the problems associated with the project can be solved. Students are then to compare and analyze their solutions.

All students are taken on field trips, some of which are overnight, and all of which are tied to the curriculum. Students have visited the Alaska Sea Life Center, Kachemak Bay, Denali National Park, the Alaska Native Heritage Center, the Performing Arts Center, and Campbell Creek Science Center, the Puget Sound, Washington, D.C., and Costa Rica.

Grades 2, 5, and 7 are required to participate in the Science Fair; participation is optional for all other grades. All students participate in a day of service (to the community), a fall concert,a spring musical, and a student art exhibit. Different programs are used for each subject, thus maximizing the students’ learning.

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