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Dalton School

Student rating 4.6/ 5 by Sarah Lawrence College student
108 East 89th Street New York NY 10128 United States


Dalton Schoolreview by Sarah Lawrence College student. Dalton has completely prepared me for the academic rigors of College. In fact, I have heard from many graduates that Dalton classes were harder than the classes they take in University. While I may have felt overwhelmed at points, Daltons teachers were always there to assist me with whatever I was having trouble with. The Lab system in particular was incredibly helpful and something unique about Dalton that I think is one of its best attributes. Although most math and science classes were lecture based, the teachers always would put us in groups or ask us one on one answers to different questions. In science classes we would have experiments and be able to find things out for ourselves. Similarly, in math classes we would get the building blocks to the equation and figure it out for ourself. A method that not only encouraged intellectual curiosity but made sure we would remember the lesson itself afterwards. Class sizes were generally small, perhaps 16 students to a teacher. However as I mentioned earlier, it does not matter how big the size is because if a student is looking for a one on one environment all they need to do is schedule a Lab with a teacher. Never was I told I could not meet with a teacher one on one, even if it was just to chat about new topics to come or life in general. If the lab system was not enough, then Dalton offers many helpful options. Peer tutors, mainly upperclassmen, are offered to students who just need a little bit of help in a class. In other areas there are teachers who are hired just to tutor students who are having difficulty in any particular subject, preceptors.

College Counseling

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Sample insights on college counseling
  • "They have contacts at most of the major universities and feel perfectly comfortable picking up the phone and advocating for a student to get accepted somewhere they feel is a good fit for that student. However, these counselors are certainly not magic bullets. They cannot guarantee that a student will get into an Ivy League university…"
  • "For those wishing to move on to Oxford or Cambridge, the provision is second-to-none. In the months running up to application and interview, every subject faculty offers classes (often run by former Oxbridge tutors) exploring further areas of their subject as well as offering advice on personal statements, interview technique and more…"

Admissions - Getting Accepted

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Sample insights on admissions
  • "Most younger siblings have an easy time in the admissions process. I can only think of one case of a younger sibling not being admitted. About half of the students who entered with me had come from public schools. The remainder came from private K-6 schools, or had transfered from other New York private schools The Elizabeth Morrow School and St. Bernard's were two of the larger feeder schools…"
  • "For the interview, dress conservatively. Try to be very clean and put together. Also, I was a tour guide for two years and at the end of every tour, we were asked to evaluate the candidate so if you think the tour is not apart of the process, you are very wrong. Ask questions and be interested. Also, tip for the parents*the kids speak on the tour. Don't ask their questions for them because their evaluation will be affected by the fact that the guides didn't hear a thing from the kid…"

School Life

Dalton is a pretty liberal school. I would say only 5 percent of the students, possibly 10 percent are republicans. The Dalton staff and teachers are very liberal and welcoming of the LGBT community, but I wish I could say as much for the students. Most claim they are, but it's not unheard of to hear someone call another boy a fag when he does something embarrassing. Most students are very rich and live uptown. As a middle class, native downtowner, it was slightly difficult to involve myself in the same things my peers did. As such my main friends were also from downtown and shared a similar mindset. This didn't stop us from being called "those hipster downtowners" though.

Dalton is one big community. As in any community, there are smaller sections, but everyone knows each other and are willing to support one another without a moments hesitation. There is an incredible amount of school spirit and I regularly saw alumni and parents attending sports games. My favorite part of Dalton is that anyone can completely involve themselves in whatever they are most interested in. For me, my main interest was Dance. I was able to choreograph for the student choreographed dance concert my junior and senior years. I was also able to choreograph the middle school musical as well as the high school musical my senior year. I can't think of another school that would have enough faith in its students to allow them to take on such weighty responsibilities.