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Does anyone use Calvert? Is it really that bad?

Does anyone use Calvert? Is it really that bad?

Was wondering if anyone uses Calvert? What do you like about it and what don't like about it? We will be starting it this fall and hope it goes well! We also went with TT for my oldest for the math so far that's been a good fit!

re: Does anyone use Calvert? Is it really that bad?

I've used complete years and the individual courses over the past 7 years. Kids get a great education from Calvert, but it is very expensive compared to other curriculum. Other complaints I've heard are that it isn't secular and that there is a lot of busywork. Shrug. They make no secret of the fact that they are secular, and I never had a problem cutting out anything I felt we didn't need to do.

However, I don't use them anymore because of the cost and because both my kids turned out to have learning differences and need more flexibility than a boxed curriculum allows.

re: Does anyone use Calvert? Is it really that bad?

Hi,
I've used 6 Calvert Years:
Pre-K, K, (sent 1st grade back) 2, 4, 6, and 8.

I loved Calvert. I loved that the curriculum was always age-appropriate, fun and colorful. My kids have very fond memories of Calvert. I loved opening up the manual and having the whole day spelled out in a non-overwhelming way. When my son finished 8th grade Calvert, he would have tested straight into Community College, but we waited one year. His writing was absolutely amazing. We did several years of the ATS and we loved his teachers. They gave excellent feedback and were very reasonable to work with! If he forgot to send an assignment, they'd make a note about it and grade it with the next packet of paperwork. Much more reasonable than some online teachers we've had!

We were not a fan of the first grade. It was SO EXTREMELY sight-word based, and most of the program revolved around the reading, so having reading that I didn't want to use, was very counterproductive. Second grade had a lot of sight words too, however, it worked out to use it anyway since my kids learned to read in first grade.

We never got around to 3rd grade, though my kids would have loved it sicne they're huge mythology fans.

Now for the caveats: When I started out, the older grades were less than 700 each, 1000 with ATS. They hadn't amended the program to include COmmon Core (took out wonderful fiction in the older grades and replaced with boring non-fiction), and they hadn't amended the program for Cultural Diversity either. (Took out books like Anne of Green Gables and replaced with that stupid book about the girl on the ship, can't think of the name right now)...

Lastly, and this was our last straw with Calvert, they had a poem in 8th grade, which was SPECIFICALLY ASSIGNED in the poetry section, about how a guy feels, while he is murdering a woman, all his thoughts, emotions, etc. It was so beyond repugnant I cannot even explain to you how disgusted I was (and am)...my son brought it to me after about the third line, and thank God did not finish it...I called the Ed Counselors immediately and they were VERY upset, she was almost crying on the phone with shame. She said they had made many last minute changes the previous year to please some public charter programs, and somehow this poem satisfied a specific requirement (to read about sickos??I have no idea) and she apologized over and over. I asked her, if they would remove the poem by next year (when, possibly, we'd buy the program for my dd) and she said it's impossible because since they are now Calvert Education they are run by a big board of bureaucrats, and changes take years, if they are made at all. Not only that but they had years worth of printed manuals sitting on the shelves.

So that was our last year with Calvert.

re: Does anyone use Calvert? Is it really that bad?

Thanks everyone for the feed back! Will see how it goes when we start here in Aug. It's nice to know how things work and what the difference is in each grade! I was told by our Virtual School that we wouldn't have to do all of the work they have for one lesson in each subject. They say do what works for each of our kids in the lessons. So will see how the yr goes crossing fngers!

re: Does anyone use Calvert? Is it really that bad?

Oak,

Will you have direct access to the Calvert ATS teachers and Ed Counsellors?
How about the tests? Will you be using the Calvert ATS tests?

The reason that I ask is that the teachers and ATS were a very huge part of why we loved the program. They still, as of last year, had a few of the old phone counselors from before Calvert Ed that really cared about and connected with teh students, and were extremely wise and experienced.

THe ATS teachers were a big deal too. Especially in the older years, they really knew how to connect and give extremely constructive feedback.

re: Does anyone use Calvert? Is it really that bad?

I'm not sure yet on the teachers. We go through a Virtual Academy and we get our books through them and they have a teacher that know the curriculum and offer the help. We will be able to go online to do check points etc. and was told this yr they only have the tests online. What our the teachers said is even with the lesson plans we can set it to work for us. They said there is a lot of work for one day I guess? I won't know till we get it. And I want to get working on the lessons and get it in my girls lesson planner.
I will know more once we get the books and get things set up with the Academy. Its nice that they supply the books and the extra help if we need it.

re: Does anyone use Calvert? Is it really that bad?

Does this virtual only offer Calvert?

I'm sorry to be negative. But over my 12 yrs of homeschool the virtuals completely ruin the Calvert experience. There are virtual that let you choose everything and don't require testing aside from the state mandated tests, if that's the kind you have It'll be great.

But if is the kind that requires the checkpoints, daily check ins, etc honestly I would reconsider the entire thing.

re: Does anyone use Calvert? Is it really that bad?

CalmingTea
No your fine, no our virtual school don't require us to do the checkpoints etc. if we don't want to, just the tests and just have to send in our work what we get done once a week and just keep in touch with our teacher by e-mail, phone or video chat once a week it isn't to bad. Its easy going with our school. And they do state testing here too, but we don't have to if we don't want to. But we do so I know where our kids are at just in case we need anything extra to go with our work. Also they have more than just the one curriculum they offer, they let ya choose what we want, but also offer advice for us if they think our kiddos need a certain ones. We had BookShark for the half the yr and just didn't seem to quite the fit for my oldest. They do offer other things you can switch out with the different curriculums so your not doing all Calvert, all Bookshark, and their online classes, etc. So far things work they have changes all the time, but if it ends up not working down the road we may be looking around. :)

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