Milton Academyreview by Yale University student. Milton Academy is a fabulous academic environment. Although the teachers are noticeably stronger in English and history than in mathematics, all departments have some stars. The biggest problem with Milton teachers is inconsistency: while some are fantastic teachers and generous graders, others are only one of the two, and still others are neither. I know of several teachers who students absolutely fear getting in required classes. I got lucky and had none, so my experience was a clear 5, but that does differ. All classes are under 15 students, and the school very clearly avoids a focus on exams. There are no finals (only midterms) - at the end of the year most classes culminate with a large written project. APs are only offered in some subjects though students can study on their own if they want to take APs in subjects where a specific test prep class is not offered. This lack of specific AP prep leads to much better classes with much more learning rather than memorizing. Milton's focus on clear and grammatical writing was invaluable for me in college, and doubtless will be in the years ahead. The science offerings have changed markedly since my graduation so I do not feel comfortable commenting on them.
The Milton area is very suburban, though public transportation into Boston is only a mile away. While the immediate surrounding area is predominantly white, many more diverse neighborhoods are within walking distance. The student body is also quite diverse, though the faculty is less diverse. I was a day student so I can't comment personally on the quality of housing (the dorms I saw looked quite nice and I know that the students and dorm parent faculty members have very close relationships). The food has also changed markedly since I was there (they've gone through several food providers since 2004). The school offers many on campus social events during the year (comedy shows, plays, a capella performances, etc.). The boarders never complained of boredom. A Cappella Night, a night in which top college a cappella groups come to campus, is particularly popular, as is the annual Dance Concert.
Milton's extracurricular offerings are fantastic. Milton is the only New England prep school to participate in NFL/NCFL/TOC speech. As a result, its debate and speech opportunities far exceed those offered at any of its peer institutions. If other schools tell you they have debate teams, they are probably referring to DANEAS debate (which Milton also participates in, albeit secondarily), which is significantly less interesting and offers students many fewer opportunities for national exposure. This activity was by far the most significant for me during my time at Milton. Through speech I met many of my closest friends and had unique opportunities to compete against some of the best students from around the country. Speech made Milton extra special for me. Milton also offers a host of publications, including both an independent and a school-sponsored newspaper, many cultural groups, many branches of national organizations (Amnesty, etc.), several political groups (Young Democrats/Republicans, Public Issues Board), etc. Milton also offers plenty of non-debate/speech competitive teams, including an academic team, a model UN team, and a robotics team.