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This review is based for people trying to decide if they want to send their kid to RMA. In short, if it's for problems with drugs violence or any behavioral issues, congratulations, you spent 40k to make your kid worse. I'd say 80 percent of the kids there are in for drugs, the other 20% is 5% fighting, 14% grades, and 1% by choice, so basically it's sending your kid to hang out with more people of his same issue, and hoping he'll get better. Odds are your kid will get hazed on their roc cycle, bullied, targeted for being gay if they are (let me make this clear if your kid's gay, don't send him here unless you want him leaving traumatized and depressed, or you don't wanna pick him up from the mental hospital). If your kid is anything other than Caucasian odds are he will hear racist comments, or be targeted by staff of the school for his race.
You may send your kid for failing a class or 2, and he'll come out like me with way more drug issues than the ones from before, before I got sent to rma, I had vaped a handful of times and smoked weed twice with no intentions of trying it again bc I got violently sick the second time. After riverside prescription pills and weed was my go to. Pills are easily the most used drug at rma, they give out prescriptions to any kid who is prescribed them and then they are distributed for money or other substances, ** and ** (depression meds and adhd meds) are the most common. And even if your kid doesn't do anything bad odds are he'll be pressured or forced to one day. I've seen it happen first hand to a kid who went in having never done anything at all, and I mean anything, and watched him forced to hit a vape by another cadet bigger than him.
Now that we got a *few* of the cons out of the way (excluding mental health and the process of taking stuff away and giving it back so many times that the kid stops caring if he has it or not and a few other issues) let's talk about if your kid is the right type to go and do well, if your kid is motivated, OK with having 90% of his creature comforts taken away, unfair student leadership, won't fold to peer pressure, will work everything by the book and is OK with being an outcast just for trying, then your kid maybe a 1% deal where he will do well and thrive, much to the cost of how he is treated by everyone else.
If your kid wants to go and is like what I stated above, send him, bring him home every moment you can, help him get out of the bs parades and closed weekends, and help him in anyway to make it easier for him bc I can promise if he's doing everything by the book he's getting bullied and people are trying to make him quit.
The school itself isn't the worst, the TAC officers are all trying to help (varying degrees of success @sargent **) and in the end it's us, the cadets that make it so bad, but your one kid won't help, odds are he'll get eaten and spit out worse. And if you're about to get sent, try your best to stop it, show your parents all the reviews and offer other options. If you can't stop them, relax and get ready for a hard year, but as soon as it's over it's better, it won't be the end of the world, just sucks for however long you're there for, get close with leadership, and tacs, don't let anyone make you give them anything or they won't stop, get the wifi passwords, and make friends with old boys who have been there for a while, they can teach you the ropes.
Get ready to meet a new weird kind of people, it's gonna take a while to understand them until your one of them. But in the end it's what you make of it, my advice, don't make yourself stand out or be a crazy try hard, get everything required done, pass classes, and stay outta trouble, make friends in high places who can help make life easier, don't try to sell anything on campus and focus on getting home or getting your phone. And if you're a parents trying to decide if it's right for your son who got caught with weed in public school, don't send 'em here, we'll just glorify it and make them worse and send em back to you a worse person than before, save yourself the bill and try to help them in other ways. I'd also like to include a video that you can find under guy jumps on other guys arm *painful* on YouTube, it's as bad as it sounds and what goes on in the school.
We decided to send our son to Riverside Military Academy and was mistake of our life. Our son received drugs from other students, mistreated. Poor leadership and staff at this school. We do not recommend this school and one should look for other better options for positive environment.
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After 4 years at RMA my son is graduating as honor student with leadership skills and maturity beyond his years. Beautiful facilities, dedicated staff, awesome teachers and parent group! We'll miss it!
I graduated as the valedictorian from RMA in 2002. I enrolled during January of my sophomore year, and is common for many students, the first 6 months was a difficult transition period. I didn’t want to conform to the institutional rules, and was occasionally spending my free time marching the quad. Eventually I realized that I wasn’t going to win anything by fighting the system, so I learned to get along with it. I became a crew captain and played varsity soccer, was the president of the literary society, National Honor and Horton Society member, played concert and drum line percussion and a member of the Rangers program. Along with 6 AP classes and student leadership (honor council and a company commander my senior year), these activities kept me active and productive. Most of my teachers were excellent, I had a caring college counselor, and I developed some close friendships. The structure of the program was an aid in all of this, to be sure.
However, all my success at RMA did not prepare me to enter college. I attended an elite public school on a 4 year ROTC scholarship, but was quickly distracted and had developed no real skills of self-discipline outside of the RMA rules and systems. It was a journey through the wilderness for me, and I eventually did develop some of the skills to succeed in the “real world”. So here’s the critique: The environment at RMA is very artificial. There are surely some good order and discipline you can instill and carry with you through that experience, but I found it to also be a bit of a hindrance towards developing the maturity I needed. I will not be sending my children to RMA, but at the same time, I do not regret some of the great experiences and opportunities that opened up for me in part because of what RMA has to offer.
Other Riverside student cadets are the strongest negative of the school. Older cadets abuse younger cadets. It is the school's ethos. That is, the administration of the school has the antiquated attitude that peer discipline is the most effective discipline which leaves the older cadets to control the younger cadets. The administration of the school has had this warped philosophy since the founding of the school more than a hundred years ago. Gen. Sandy Beaver instilled it during his 50 years as owner and director. Successor superintendents, presidents, administration personnel and staff are chosen on a strong basis that they accept this readily and adhere to it always.
The abuse of cadets as school policy and practice includes the ongoing pattern of sexual abuse which is just never ending at RMA. Sexual abuse is almost always done by older cadet boys against younger and newer cadet boys. Perps are the bigger boys against smaller boys. Admin dismisses the abuse, keeps knowledge of it on campus, saying boys will be boys. Admin says boys will fight and so what. The school believes that sexual abuse too will toughen up small and weaker boys as needed by them. This is demented and deranged. I taught there for one year then out. I'd advised the academic dean after the first semester that I'd leave and I did, at the conclusion of the academic year. The one thing the boys did acquire during their miserable existence at RMA was to solder on despite all the hell and high water they were thrown into by the admin and the older cadet boys. Faculty are helpless against this.
Faculty are the positive influence at the school, both to one another and to the cadets. This is true generally. The military cadre staff retired from the armed forces are obligated to the school for their position so the officers and NCO retired go along with the administration to get along with them. Most of the mare also true believers in discipline for the sake of discipline. Faculty are in contrast and in general the only presence at RMA that can protect a student cadet boy who is achieving. Be assured here that Admin doesn't care about the boy in the least bit.
This school has been such a blessing to my son and family. I have NOTHING but good things to say about this academy. If you are looking for a school that will make a difference in your child's life and contemplating about if you should send them to RMA, Please do! My son came here in AUG 2018, had taken the SAT in May 2018 at previous school getting a 740 Score. After being at RMA, for less than a full 2 months (enrolled in SAT PREP at the school) taking the SAT on 10/6/2018, he has a score of 1130!!! YES 1130! They have helped him tremendously. Keeping him busy and focused! He now has a real plan. He can now do better and greater things. His SAT prep teacher suggests he takes the test again and get an even higher score. I am beyond grateful and satisfied that I chose to send him here. If you have any questions of me, PLEASE feel free to ask. THIS IS THE PLACE TO BE.
This school is a complete nightmare, I'm still here and I hate it. I've went to the hospital for self harm already. No one and I repeat no one likes it here, they give out demerits like candy at Halloween.
I have a 17 year old son who just started attending Riverside Military Academy as a Junior. This school is a perfect fit! He just completed his 30 day ROC cycle and is truly a changed young man. The structure and leadership provided by the staff combined with the comradery of the students and the smaller class sizes has been a true benefit to him. He has met many interesting and fun boys (some of whom are from other countries such as South Korea and Mexico). My son has gone from indifference about his grades to having a goal of straight "A"s this semester. Now that he is surrounded by other young men who have goals and high expectations, he is changing the way he is thinking about his future. He is more respectful of authority as well. When we began considering Riverside, I was unsure about having my son sleep at the school because I would miss him and I wanted to be sure he was safe.
Now that he has been boarding there for 6 weeks, I am completely relieved and have faith that he is safe. I am forever grateful to Riverside Military Academy for the structure, leadership training, and unique experience that my son is gaining through attending RMA. I am so grateful he has had the opportunity to meet international students as that has given him a better understanding of other cultures and the differences and similarities that we share. The teaching staff, infirmary and TAC officers want what is best for my son and it shows!
My son joined RMA in January of 2018 as a sophomore. This school is absolutely amazing. My son was failing multiple classes, was making bad decisions, and had no purpose. We tried everything to provide the structure, discipline, and motivation for him at home, but nothing was working. It was obvious he was going down the wrong path in life and would not live up to his full potential. In a matter of 3 months we have seen tremendous progress in him. He now stands up straight, has confidence, and has purpose. He went from failing, to making A's and high B's in his classes. He talks about his goals often and is excited for the future. We owe this all to RMA. They have a proven formula, top notch staff and teachers, and instill a sense of pride, self-respect, and respect for others into the boys.
I am writing this review because I also looked at these reviews when deciding to send my son to this school and some of them scared me. This is a huge decision both financially and emotionally and the last thing I wanted was to send a child who needed help to a school that would do more damage than help. I did some more research, spoke to parents, and spoke to the school about their policies related to bullying and was comfortable with the responses so took the "leap" and enrolled my son.
This was the best decision I ever made and we plan to keep him in this school for the remainder of his high school career as true behavior change takes time and old habits are hard to break and need lots of reinforcement. The only regret I have is we waited until Sophomore year to enroll him and now he is playing catch up vs. sending him when the signs first began as a Freshman. In terms of drugs and alcohol, I will say it is in every school and some of the boys who are sent to RMA have had some issues (which is why they are going); however, RMA has a zero tolerance policy and many of the ones that do this are dismissed. They proactively handle this issue vs. public school where there is very little monitoring.
My son attended RMA for summer lead and junior year fall semester until January 2017. Summer was excellent, so he expected the school year to be the same. He complained about the rules and about other boys that had various issues. He was accustomed to freedom, cell phone, game station, T.V. etc., and not having such a strict schedule, so it was a major adjustment for him. He has ADD disorder as well as anxiety, and we felt the scheduled routine would be a major benefit for him. We visited often, and not once did we see anything that created concern about leaving our son at RMA. We saw respectful, well mannered young men and we felt a huge sense of pride knowing our son was being guided by RMA staff.
Our only regret is that we allowed him to play on our sympathy side, and we placed him back in public school. It is something that I will ALWAYS regret. He has reverted back to laziness and isn’t concerned about his grades. He doesn’t have the sense of pride that he had when he was a cadet at RMA. He now sees that he was challenged at RMA and he actually wishes he were still there. He constantly talks about his memories at RMA and what he once felt were negative issues are now positive memories. Yes there are kids that test the system with alcohol, drugs and tobacco, but kids do that in public school. The difference is RMA takes action and they do not tolerate drug use. Don’t be afraid to allow your son to be challenged to be the best he can be.
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