General Operations

What makes West Branch School special?

It is truly a family school. It is a developmental, functional, child-centered community, providing children with the social and emotional support vital to academic learning. It is a safe and happy place to learn.

Is the school licensed?

Yes, the school is licensed by the Pennsylvania Department of Education and has been since it was founded in 1971.

Are all the teachers certified? 

Yes, all are certified.

What is the student-teacher ratio? 

10:1 (although this varies slightly from year to year)

How many students does the school enroll?

Between 45 and 55.

What grades does the school offer?

West Branch School is licensed for Kindergarten through eighth grades. Children may enter West Branch School at any time between Kindergarten and sixth grades. Families wanting their child to attend West Branch School for the seventh and eighth grade years must petition the school body after the teachers reach a positive consensus.

What are the hours?

Morning meeting, the first formal event of the school day, begins at 8:30 a.m. Students are encouraged to arrive at school prior to 8:20 a.m. School ends at 2:45 p.m., and students should be picked up no later than 3:00 p.m. 

How does the calendar compare with that of the public school?

It's very similar, and the number of school days is the same.

How does the school handle discipline?

We work consistently at helping the children develop social and emotional maturity. When there are conflicts, they are addressed immediately. In a small meeting, the children meet with a facilitator (generally a teacher, but sometimes another child), take turns explaining their personal perspectives of the issue, and try to work out solutions. In cases of persistent misbehavior we use a time to "stop and think" about choices and behavior and family consultation. Our objective is to help children internalize discipline. Bullying and abusive behavior is not tolerated at West Branch School.