Acacia Academy Testimonials from Parents, Students, Graduates

 

                                                                          Testimonies  

 Parent 

We can't thank you enough for doing so well what you do, day in and day out. You make such a difference in the lives of so many and deserve so much credit. I'll never forget what a godsend all of you were to our entire family when [student name] first came to Acacia, about seven years ago. It was as if the clouds had finally lifted and the sun came out. We'll be forever grateful. 

Graduate

I am a former student of Acacia Academy, I came there in 2003 for eighth grade. I came to Acacia diagnosed dyslexic and with very little social skills after spending 8 years starting at kindergarten to seventh grade in a Catholic school that did nothing to help my failing grades or they way kids treated me. After a few months my grades went up, I had tons of friends and I actually wanted to go to school. I stayed through high school where I worked on my own level, exceeded all my own expectations and then helped others. When I went back to my doctor who diagnosed me he was amazed that I didn't show any signs that my dyslexia was slowing me down. I went to college, excelled in psychology, got great grades and did not need further assistance with learning other then what a normal college student would need. I am now a successful adult, who has worked for great companies like Walt Disney and excelled in all my positions. If it were not for Acacia Academy, the caring staff and the attention I got I would probably be working a minimum wage job and not have any social skills. Acacia Academy saved my life and I will forever be thankful. 

Parent

I wanted to share with you both [student name] went over break to take his written test to get his drivers permit. He had taken Drivers Ed over the summer. When all the paper work was finished and time to take the test he asked for head phones so he could listen to the test...he was told that this office doesn't have the audio test and he could try reading the test or go to another local DMV that offers the audio test. He decided to take it there and read it himself, he passed the test with only 4 questions incorrect!!! He is so happy he has his permit. I am so happy and proud that he read the test and passed! Of course for me this is much more than passing his drivers test, that he retained the information from summer school along with reading it himself gives me relief of worrying and wondering how is learning disability will impact his adult life. This would of never of happened if he wasn't at Acacia! I can't say enough how truly life changing you all have been to our whole family. 

Aunt

My nephew attended Acacia for 3 years and this school was absolutely amazing!! He has grown and made a lot of progress. I will recommend this school to everyone I know :-). If you are a parent and your child is struggling in a traditional public school, Acacia creates an environment in which they will be understood, accepted and strive. Acacia Family, my family truly adore and appreciate you!

Student

January 4th, 2010 my first day at Acacia Academy, the BEST school ever! Before Acacia, I missed a lot of school for my 5th, 6th, 7th grade year. Altogether weight loss plans for celebs almost 100 days for all 3 years. But I’ve changed since then. I have only missed a few days and I love it here. It’s so different from other schools. They actually care for you, and if you are feeling down or upset, they care. Or if you just need a break because you’re not having a good day, they will give it you. It’s such a different atmosphere, they have smaller classes so that you have a better chance of learning. Sometimes they will even take you outside to our beautiful nature center to do class. The nature center is a beautiful place and it’s very peaceful out there. There are so many plants and animals and trees out there, it’s wonderful. For earth day we have a day where we take all our class time to help make our nature center even more beautiful. We plant flowers, fruits and veggies, and we will even make art work for it. Over all Acacia Academy is the best school ever!!!!

Parent

This school was a life changing experience for my child. Rather than focus on what he doesn't know, curriculum is designed for his success. My son entered the school a sullen child and is now a happy confident one. Amazing difference!

Parent

I just wanted to sing my praises for your school. I have watched one of your students transform into quite a young man over the years. I have been with his father for 7 years now and I remember the days when the 'one word answers' and the lack of hygiene were the most predominate thing you noticed about him when you met him. Now, we have a clean-cut, decent young man that has 'a lot' to say and seems very happy. Over the past few months his level of conversation is what really impressed me. I know there are still things going on with his friends/ neighbors that shouldn't be, but I feel more confident now that he has more common sense to weigh the decisions and hopefully make the right choices for his life. At one point I thought a tiny cell was going to surely be his destiny. We don't see nearly as much of him as I wish, but at first things were strained between he and his dad, and now that part being past us, he has turned into a young man with so many things to do other than hang with parents. But that's okay... I have been there with my own kids and knew to expect it. 'Dad' is still having a hard time with it, feeling left out, but we are working on that. *smile* As you have noticed, I have not divulged any names, with good reason. It isn't necessary... nobody needs to know of my writing to you, and that is the way I prefer it. I just wanted to let you know how happy I am that your students are lucky to have a school like yours to attend. Looking back, I sure wish I had such a place to attend. I grew up struggling (and still do) with ADD and had such a hard time. Back then you were just a 'bad kid'.. a daydreamer. Nobody knew. Keep up the great work you are doing to make our world a better place.... one kid at a time.

College Counselor

I have just had a graduate of yours come for an Intake in our Disability Services Office (Student Accommodations and Resources, STAR) at Joliet Jr. College. I wanted you to know that he and his mother spoke very highly of Acacia Academy. I am glad to know about your program and of the excellent reading programs you use there. Mom said he came to you at 7th grade reading on the 2nd grade level and left his senior year reading at the 9th grade level! Having been a learning disability teacher in the past I know that what you did was nothing short of a miracle. Just awesome! Best Wishes.

Graduate

Dear Kathie, I can’t be more grateful for a person and a school like Acacia. I felt very welcomed, well liked, and very comfortable here. Your school curriculum and staff have made my high school career enjoyable, less stressful, and made me feel like I could do many things that I thought I couldn’t. Everyone has made me very happy and proud of who I am. Thanks a bunch.  Your graduate, Catherine

Student

Dear Kathie, I’d really like to thank you for accepting me to this school because I had a hard time in the other schools. Also, all the teachers are nicer to me than the other schools that I went to. Teachers here pay attention to me and are always ready to help me. I feel excited to be at Acacia. There are a lot of things about this school I didn’t know. I was scared on the first day, but now I’m not scared anymore.

Parent

Dear Mrs. Fouks: Please allow me to say thank you to you and the staff at Acacia. The teachings and expectations that you all have given [student name] are immeasurable. When my daughter entered Acacia, I believed that she would finally have a chance in life to change many of the challenges in her life. With your help she has met and made a difference in her life. You helped to keep her self-esteem motivated. She has stayed on task. She is excited about all of the doors that can open for her by staying positive and focus. She is now looking forward to going to college. You helped her to unlock many skills in reading. She now curls up with a book and read, read, read. She is looking for various books and sharing books with other  people to read. I am so excited to see that this process is moving to higher heights. The one thing that helped her in her challenges was, no one had to be smarter that the other person. Everyone is unique in their own way and no one is singled out. There are still some challenges that will have to be met, but [student name] now knows that she can make a difference in her own life with hard work, discipline, and giving her best. I hope and pray that she will make herself, her family, and Acacia proud of her. Respectfully submitted, Mother.

Parent

Kathy, I can’t thank you enough for taking my most prized possession and giving him the self-confidence along with the self-esteem to know that he can succeed in this world…he graduated with the goals he needs for life. You have and always will be a blessing in our lives. Bless you and the staff each and every day!

Parent

Dear Acacia Staff, It is with overwhelming gratitude that I say “thank you” to all of you. When [student name] was at the district he was asked to say three words to describe himself. He chose “loser, failure and stupid.” This is the sad boy who entered Acacia. Four years later [student name] is an outstanding, confident young man. He describes himself as “the funnies one in the class, and the best chef.” Our family owes so much to you and your amazing staff.

Student

I really like Acacia Academy. I like the teachers and the students. I can’t wait to come back in the fall. I really belong here. I don’t feel like a ghost here at all.

Parent

Ms. Jessica, Thank you! We’ve seen a wonderful change in [student name] since he’s been in your class. He has grown leaps and bounds in his confidence and his love of learning and curiosity have flourished. We appreciate your nurturing of his talents.  And we’re excited at the gains he has made in reading and spelling. What a blessing for [student name] to have you as his teacher!

Parent

Hello Acacia Family- It has been on crazy move for our family to North Carolina…but we’re finally here and on our way to settling in. Ben and Caroline are both making friends quickly. The greatest surprise is that Ben is ANXIOUS to begin school. Don’t know what y’all did to my little boy, but somehow you taught him to like school!! You can all retire peacefully with that success under your belt!! Good luck with the new school year. Give our best to Ms. Jessica’s class and all of Ben’s wonderful friends at Acacia. Warm regards, Bill and Mary Judy

Parent

My son entered this school in 5th grade. he had been bullied so badly that he rarely spoke. within a month he had friends and was feeling confident again. within a year he was the class leader. his academic skills have surpassed any expectations the district had for him. the tangible learning and frequent Jr. high field trips give them a far more useful education than the traditional schools do.

Parent

After attending a therapeutic school and needing a different environment - Acacia has been a breathe of fresh air and a welcome change for our child. They have been understanding, compassionate and the very change that was necessary for continued growth. The academics are just right and our child has grown due to 1/1 teaching with a group of friendly and understanding staff - and students! We are so thankful!

Parent

Acacia is absolutely amazing! The culture of the school is completely opposite of public schools. My son just started in September and the entire staff at Acacia is outstanding. Everything is about students needs. My son is now happy and excited about learning and I give Acacia all the credit. I highly recommend Acacia Academy!

Parent

My daughter started at Acacia when she was 3 years old. Now she is a successful child with straight A's. I am so impressed with the staff and how my daughter advanced there that my son (3 years old) began school there this year. I wouldn't trust just any facility to nurture and educate my children. What a fantastic opportunity for any child.

Parent

This school saved my daughter's life. There is a wonderful nature center that she enjoyed reading alone with her aide. She made her own guitar in her music class and still plays it daily. The art teacher gave her many opportunities to try many different materials. The school attended so many educational field trips. They slept over in a museum one night down at the Field. A great school.

Parent

Great student to teacher ratio, with exceptional support staff. My son has been at this school for several years, he will be graduating and moving on to college. Something that would not have been achievable in the public school system. This school has an excellent reading program and they work with the students as individuals not as numbers. The staff has changed my son's life, working with him to read and helping him to see he is not alone. Staff is encouraging and supportive of each student and their individual skills.

My granddaughter was in public schools starting at age 5 to 8th grade graduation. Her grades were B's C's until junior high school and then her grades dropped to D's and F's. Often she came home from school crying. One teacher told her she was a waste of space, other teachers would give her after school detentions for forgetting her homework or not completing what was asked of her. In 8th grade, they told me she could not even do 6th grade level math or reading. She is not working hard enough, not applying herself they would say.  My granddaughter said she felt stupid. I felt I had failed her.

Bullying by other classmates was on going. From pulling the chair out from under her while she was in need of crutches, causing her to fall to the use of sling shots using rocks to strike her and name calling; all going on in a school with a no bullying tolerance.  At a high school orientation, the boy who hit her with the rocks threatened her. 

At this point, I sought an alternative to public schools.  I found Acacia Academy and requested an evaluation so that I would understand her social, emotional, intellectual and academic needs. She could not do 6th grade level math and reading because she was at a third grade level. I found out that she has learning disabilities.  The evaluations indicated that she had difficulties with short term and long term memory.   I enrolled my granddaughter at Acacia Academy.  Now there are no more detentions and no punishment for having a disability.  She has been given so many tools to help her be a productive, well adjusted girl.  She feels so smart and confident now.  Her grades are now A's and B's. We are so happy for the opportunities now available to her at Acacia.

Student 

Hey Ms. Fouks, I just wanted to say hi and see how you've been. I start my senior year tomorrow and I honestly couldn't have gotten here without the help of you and THE AMAZING STAFF at Acacia. I hope everything's is going good for you and the rest of the people at Acacia and I miss you guys SO much...I couldn't have done it without you and the positive changes Acacia made for me. I was just talking to my dad about my experience in school and wanted to thank you and the teachers for everything you guys did to help me get where I am today because it was a challenge but we got through it! Thanks again for everything! 

Visitor 

Thank you so much for allowing me to come and observe your school this week. Please pass along my thanks to Jessica and her team, as well. I was so impressed and heartened by the way that team of adults worked with chidren in their care. They were all genuinely caring, concerned, and helpful to the children they were working with. The families in your area are lucky to have your school as as resource. 

 

 

 

 

 









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