Transition to High School

When Kazoo students finish 8th grade, their families make decisions about where they head next. There is not a 9 - 12 school like Kazoo (independent, secular & progressive) in the Kalamazoo area. This means that families weigh their options carefully. Whether they decide to enroll at Kalamazoo Public Schools (and receive 65% of the Promise upon graduation), attend another local public school, go to a religiously-affiliated private high school in the area, or seek out a boarding school nationally, Kazoo students and their families report positive transitions. Kazoo alumni describe feeling that they are well prepared and able to meet the demands of high school classes. They tell us that moving to a larger setting can be surprising at first, but that they are socially-emotionally ready, and are able to initiate a connection with their peers, teachers, and school counselors. Because students develop a love for learning at Kazoo, they are able to bridge any gaps in knowledge by seeking out information needed to succeed. Alumni mention that the biggest challenge that comes with a change to a larger public school include managing their time with a larger homework load.

We are happy to work together with families through this important process to have as smooth a transition as possible.

 
At Kazoo I learned how to find the support I needed, but also how to work independently and manage my time and projects. It was a lot of responsibility, but it was a lot of one-on-one attention, too. For me, Kazoo was a place where we could talk with teachers and ask questions, not just blindly accept information.

The way our teachers taught us, project based learning, was more effective. We walked away with specific memories that stuck with us, like the time we dissected squid and then fried and ate them. The learning from History Day projects has helped me, too. In my high school classes when we are learning about research, writing papers and thesis statements, I feel prepared because of how Kazoo built up my research skills.
— Simone, a Kazoo School alumna attending Loy Norrix High School.

High Schools Attended by Kazoo School Graduates

  • Leelanau School

  • Loy Norrix

  • Mattawan High School

  • Parchment High School

  • Paw Paw High School

  • Plainwell High School

  • Portage Central

  • Portage Northern

  • St. Paul’s, Concord, NH

  • Schoolcraft High School

  • Three Rivers High School

  • University of Chicago Laboratory Schools

  • Battle Creek Math and Science Center

  • Bangor High School

  • Comstock High School

  • Cranbrook Schools

  • Delton High School

  • Galesburg High School

  • Gobles High School

  • Gull Lake High School

  • Hackett Catholic Central

  • Kalamazoo Central

  • Kalamazoo Area Math and Science Center (KAMSC)

  • Lawrence High School


 
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I love Kazoo. I was there from 4th grade until 8th grade. I felt like the teachers respected me–which I think is vital for kids, and that allowed me to be creative and self-driven. My teachers at the time gave my group a long leash, so to speak. But I think they were also good at stepping in when we needed an adult voice whether for structure, guidance, authority, what have you. They were also great at tailoring the work we were doing to our level of learning. It is impressive that they could encourage students to choose the projects we were most interested in, and yet the teachers were able to ensure that each of us could be working and learning at different levels and speeds where necessary. The variety in learning styles in tandem with the close relationships of students to each other and their teachers meant that students had the chance to feel both ownership and support. And I know that many of my peers continue to regard learning at Kazoo as formative in their education and life beyond academics. For me, my time at Kazoo gave me the confidence to pursue what really matters to me, and to be able to take on the challenges that come in life with positivity and creativity.
— Lauren Brady, attended Kazoo 2005-2009

  

Beyond Graduation

Colleges and Universities Attended by Kazoo School Graduates

  • Michigan Tech

  • Middle Tennessee State

  • Milwaukee Institute of Art and Design

  • New College of California

  • Northern Michigan

  • Northwestern

  • Penn State

  • Rose Hulman Institute

  • School of the Chicago Art Institute

  • Stanford

  • Suffolk Univ Law School

  • Tufts

  • UC – Riverside

  • Univ. of Chicago

  • Univ. of Colorado

  • Univ. of Iowa

  • Univ. of Maryland

  • Univ. of Michigan

  • Univ. of Pennsylvania

  • Univ. of Toronto

  • Univ. of Wisconsin

  • Valparaiso

  • Virginia Tech

  • West Point Naval Academy

  • Western Michigan University

  • Wooster College

  • Alma College

  • American University – Cairo

  • American University – Paris

  • Aquinas College

  • Bates College

  • Brown University

  • Cal Tech University

  • Carnegie Mellon

  • DePauw University

  • Denison University

  • Duke University

  • Earlham College

  • Eastern Michigan

  • Ferris State

  • George Washington Univ.

  • Harvard Business School

  • Hope College

  • Illinois Institute of Technology

  • Indiana

  • Kalamazoo College

  • Kenyon College

  • Lehigh University

  • Lewis & Clark

  • Loyola

  • Maine Maritime Academy

  • Miami (OH)

  • Michigan State

Ross as a Kazoo Kid

Ross as a Kazoo Kid

Ross

Ross

Kazoo School was invaluable in shaping the life I have today. The teachers and staff at KazooSchool make it an inspired and progressive community. What I took from Kazoo School after 9 years was more than an education, it was a perspective. I learned the merits of tolerance and open mindedness as well as how to be an honorable competitor and the value of equality. I was emboldened with the courage to be myself and try incredible things. To date I have traveled to over 60 countries and I am currently residing in Prague. I played American football here for two years, I do campaign promotion and event planning for Hewlett-Packard-Enterprise. I am also voice actor and am involved in several start-up projects. I am finishing my MBA and hope to make a career in the film industry. Kazoo School is a social place and those who are there learn to interact with all kinds of people. I feel very fortunate to have attended Kazoo School for so many reasons.

A sincere thank you to the the teachers and staff, you guys ROCK!
— Ross VanSlambrouck, Kazoo School Alum

Careers of Kazoo School Graduates

  • Pharmacist

  • Photographer

  • Physical therapist

  • Physician

  • Psychologist

  • Poet

  • Political consultant

  • Political researcher

  • Registered Nurse

  • Rehabilitation nurse

  • Software engineer

  • Teacher

  • Nutritionist

  • Writer 

  • Actress

  • Artist

  • Attorney

  • Bio process developer

  • Book buyer

  • Computer engineering

  • Dance studio owner

  • Electrical engineer

  • Environmental engineer

  • Environmental attorney

  • Episcopal priest

  • Fitness instructor

  • Human rights attorney

  • IT manager

  • Lobbyist


I carry Kazoo School into my classroom every day. Kazoo shaped the way I learn, the way I teach, and my steadfast belief in the potential of student centered learning.
— Stacey Zelinger Parrish- attended Kazoo 1975-1980