Fusion Academy and Tilden Preparatory School

We are looking to learn more about the two one-on-one-classroom schools in the area: Tilden Preparatory School and Fusion Academy. If anyone has investigated or has recent experience with either or both of them, we would love to hear from you. Anything that you consider relevant will be news to us!

Thank you for your help.

[Moderator note: there are reviews for both schools, some recent, on the BPN website: Fusion ... Tilden]

Parent Replies

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We looked at both and chose Fusion, where our son spent his junior year last year. He is now back at Berkeley High as a senior. We had a great experience and it was absolutely the right decision. I would say our kid didn’t love it, but he acknowledges that it was the right place for him at that time. Happy to chat in more detail! 

We are right now having an awesome experience at Fusion Academy in Berkeley with our 11th grader.  The admin people are fantastic and so are the teachers. The format has worked great for our child, especially during the lock-down.  They have dealt really well with the closure and re-opening safely (now closed again).  Their format works well with video classes. Feel free to contact me if you'd like to talk further.

I am a former Tilden parent and someone who is very familiar with the school I can truly say that Tilden is amazing. The school is able to individualize instruction to meet the need of students with multiple learning styles. The school also places emphasis on teen social-emotional support and parent communication more so than Fusion from what I have experienced. Moreover, the teachers are well versed in working with students with learning differences on all levels. Student's at Tilden master the material in a meaningful way that prepares them for the next level of study be it the  high school or the college transition. My daughter is now 20 and just thriving! 

I wanted to note that there is one more option - SIL, School for Independent Learners in Los Altos. Similar 1:1 instruction, full-time or dual enrollment, offers a-g subjects, well-versed in remote. https://sileducation.org/

Our 7th grader is a full time student at Tilden Prep this year. He is dyslexic, so after spending elementary school years in Albany public school we signed him up for a school for dyslexic kids in Oakland for his 6th grade. He did not like that school, so before COVID SIP in March we thought he would go back to Albany Middle. Over past summer he took a couple of classes at Tilden prep to make up for the sixth grade content. He absolutely loved the personal attention and learned a lot. Tilden is doing remote learning this school year, but since it is just one-on-one he really got to know his teachers. It also helps that he is not stuck in front of the computer for the whole day. He takes 4 core classes: math, science, English and history, but has only two classes per day. (M, Wed, Fri - English & Math; Tues, Thursday- History & Science). The homework load is pretty heavy, but there is no busy work, so he does not complain. We proctor the tests ourselves, but there is an option to sign up for a study hall. Overall this year is the first when our teen is calm and engaged in learning. 

We visited Fusion in Berkeley and Tilden in Walnut Creek about 3 years ago.  We like the openness of the physical space at Fusion more, and their building is very light filled and nice.  The director, Daniel W., was awesome.  We ended taking just a once/week music class (not for credit) but it was a great experience.  Their staff is great.  Every staff member greets every student.  At the time Tilden WC was larger, and as I remember they had more "field trip" type things to offer.  You should visit both.