FAQs

List of 11 frequently asked questions.

  • How old must my child be to attend Kindergarten at The Willows?

    Students must be 5 years old by September 1st for kindergarten. We suggest students be 4 1/2 years old by September 1st for developmental kindergarten.
  • May I sit in on a class during the application process?

    No. It would be disruptive to our current students to offer this opportunity to every family applying to The Willows. We believe that the best way for you to get a “feel” for The Willows is if you attend a tour. At that time, you will get to visit many classes that are in session.
  • Do you give grades?

    The Willows does not issue “traditional” report cards with grades of A, B, C, D, and F. In the Lower School, parents receive written narratives twice each year that describe in detail their child’s progress over the recent months. In addition, there are three parent/teacher conferences each year. In the Middle School, parents receive evaluations at the end of each trimester. These evaluations include written narratives about each class along with a percentage in the academic classes. There are also two parent/teacher conferences each year. In both divisions, teachers also communicate frequently with parents throughout the year by telephone or email.
  • What is your homework philosophy?

    At The Willows, the purpose of homework is to reinforce skills introduced in the classroom and to help children develop the organizational skills that come with completing an assignment independently and turning it in on time. We appreciate that children need time to pursue interests outside of school, and, more importantly, to enjoy relaxed, unstructured time at the end of their busy days. With all of this in mind, teachers aim to assign a reasonable and age-appropriate amount of homework each night. In Lower School, we do not assign homework on the weekends. While we recognize that every child works at a different pace, some estimates per night are as follows:

    Developmental Kindergarten/Kindergarten - none; occasionally 5 to 10 minutes
    • 1st and 2nd grade - 20 minutes
    • 3rd - 4th grade - 30 minutes
    • 5th grade - 45 minutes
    • 6th - 7th grade - 60 minutes
    • 8th grade -60-90 minutes
  • What are the parent volunteer opportunities at The Willows?

    The Willows has an active parent association that coordinates numerous parent activities. We welcome and encourage parent involvement in many committees, including some of the following:
    • Library Committee
    • Hot Lunch Committee
    • Cultural Events Committee
    • Fundraising: Book Fair, Annual Auction, Party at the Pacific Pier
  • How can my child participate in sports at The Willows?

    All children participate in the physical education program at The Willows. Our physical education program emphasizes gross and local motor skill development, conflict resolution, team building, sportsmanship, and enjoyment. In the lower school, 4th and 5th grade students have the opportunity to participate in our after-school competitive sports program. The Willows currently offers co-ed flag football, girls’ volleyball, boys’ and girls’ basketball and boys’ and girls’ soccer. Teams practice after school twice a week and compete against other local private schools as part of the Coastal Canyon League.

    Middle school students also have the opportunity to participate in our after-school competitive sports program. In the past few years, over 80% of our middle school students have taken advantage of this opportunity. Teams practice after school four times a week and compete against other local private schools as part of the Pacific Basin League. We currently offer the following sports:
    • football
    • volleyball
    • basketball
    • soccer
    • golf
    • track
    • baseball
    • tennis
    • softball
  • What is your policy on sibling admission?

    We recognize that many families value having their children attend the same school. While siblings are given special attention during the admission process, no applicant is guaranteed admission. In reviewing sibling applications, the Admissions Committee considers the commitment the family has made to The Willows, in terms of time and resources, relative to each family’s ability to participate.
  • Do you provide scholarships?

    We do not provide scholarships. We do, however, offer financial assistance based on need. Click here for financial assistance information.
  • Do you require students to take standardized tests?

    Beginning in the third grade, all Willows students complete four days of standardized testing each spring. We administer the CTP-IV, a test designed by the ERB (Educational Records Bureau). This is the standard test administered by most independent schools. We use the test results to assess student progress and to help us to assess and refine our curriculum. Additionally, the CTP-IV is the most similar in format to the ISEE (Independent School Entrance Exam) and the SAT; we believe that these annual tests help students to become familiar with test formats and more comfortable in formal testing situations.
  • Is financial assistance offered to applicants in all grade levels?

    Financial assistance is offered to applicants for DK - 8th grades.
  • What is the cost of tuition?

    The cost of tuition for the 2016-2017 school year is $29,140 for DK-5th grade and $33,000 for 6th-8th grade. There is a one time new student fee of $1850.
The Willows  |  A DK-8 independent school serving greater Los Angeles.
8509 HIGUERA STREET
CULVER CITY, CALIFORNIA 90232
PHONE 310 815 0411 FAX 310 815 0425