CATS Academy Boston Reviews

Updated Jan 10, 2021

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2.0
17%
Recommend to a Friend
48%
Approve of CEO
CATS Academy Boston Head of School Chris Angell
Chris Angell
4 Ratings
  1. Helpful (1)

    "Pretty Good"

    5.0
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Compensation and Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Anonymous Employee 
    Approves of CEO

    I have been working at CATS Academy Boston full-time

    Pros

    1. Great coworkers 2. Interesting students 3. Nice campus 4. Wide variety of after school activities

    Cons

    1. Management from overseas makes things difficult. It's like having a permanent management consulting firm swoop in periodically, without any knowledge of what is happening in the day-to-day, and then make terrible suggestions about how to improve things.

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  2. "Bottom Line Education and Management"

    2.0
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Diversity & Inclusion
    • Career Opportunities
    • Compensation and Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Former Employee - Teacher 
    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook
    Disapproves of CEO

    I worked at CATS Academy Boston full-time for more than a year

    Pros

    Talented young teachers for colleagues, and a diverse international student body. Opportunities to earn extra through outings and dorm duty. Breaks are a healthy reprieve.

    Cons

    Senior management is focused on the bottom line. Revolving door of staff due to disorganized and unsupportive administration. Teachers work 60+ hours a week with little support.

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  3. Helpful (2)

    "Greatest Mistake in My life"

    1.0
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Compensation and Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Former Employee - Anonymous Employee in Musselshell, ID
    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook
    Disapproves of CEO

    I worked at CATS Academy Boston full-time for more than 5 years

    Pros

    NONE!!! That's is not what it looks like

    Cons

    Taking a job here was the biggest mistake of my professional career. This is not a school this is a company that was designed to earn money. No one cares about students

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  4. "Student Services"

    1.0
    Current Employee - Anonymous Employee 

    I have been working at CATS Academy Boston full-time

    Pros

    Not for this department, there's not really any pros

    Cons

    No advancement or professional development

  5. Helpful (4)

    "an international school with friendly students and caring adults"

    4.0
    Current Employee - Anonymous Employee 

    I have been working at CATS Academy Boston full-time

    Pros

    Students come from all over the world (China, Vietnam, Brazil, Mexico, and Russia, among others), as well as from Massachusetts. It is wonderful to see the interactions of students from different countries and their talents on display in a large number of showcases, held weekly. The Arts department has a plethora of talented students and teachers, including artists, actors, singers and musicians. The Math department is also very strong, with a very effective head and hard-working, caring teachers.

    Cons

    The school has been working on figuring out after school activities that kids can be excited about. More work is needed in this area.

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  6. Helpful (15)

    "Don't WORK HERE"

    1.0
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Compensation and Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Staff in Braintree, MA
    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook

    I have been working at CATS Academy Boston for more than a year

    Pros

    free lunch and dinner. The cleaning staff are taking advantages of the tree meals

    Cons

    Wow, where to start! First and most formal, the school is definitely not living up to their own motto "preparing students for universities." Instead, we are accepting students who are high maintenance, spoiled, low motivated, bratty, and much more. We have about 350 students and roughly about 10% of that population care about their overpriced education. We spend more time complaining, disciplining, writing up, expelling students rather than educating and preparing them. The school decided to build a new dorm that is supposed to be ready in September (which took them less than a year to build it). However; the school is lacking all the necessary tools in order to keep the school functioning, you know like classroom spaces, teachers, staffs, resources, etc. We are losing staffs left and right, and I already talked to a couple of people who already decided not to renew their contracts for next year. It seems that the top people are getting more money for little to no effort of improving the school. The school is constantly reminding everyone that we are on a "tight budget" and that we don't have enough money for anything. But, they have no problem with overcharging the students whenever they are low on money. Instead, they want students to sign up for expensive, extravagant school trips to BU, UCLA, BC, and NYC that most can't get in. It seems the only way to get to the top of the school is not through hard work or qualifications, but instead through butt kissing and two facing. The school will literally hire anyone who has little to no experience with working with international students.

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  7. Helpful (8)

    "CATS Brings Out the Worst in People"

    1.0
    Current Employee - Anonymous Employee 
    Doesn't Recommend

    I have been working at CATS Academy Boston full-time for more than 3 years

    Pros

    -Free lunch -Long vacation time (so long that curriculum is jam packed and learning takes a back seat)

    Cons

    -Incredibly disorganized and reactive -Untrustworthy and unsupportive administration mixed with a lot of ego -Unqualified teachers in most departments; most are not qualified to teach English language learners -Many teachers lack professionalism and they continue to get away with it -Most department heads lack real leadership, skills, and accountability; they also abuse their power -Most professional development is in-house and not useful or helpful -Disciplinary system and academic probation are ludicrous (it takes a lot to expel someone because the school doesn’t want to lose the money)

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  8. Helpful (5)

    "Ugh."

    1.0
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Compensation and Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Former Employee - Anonymous Employee 
    Doesn't Recommend

    I worked at CATS Academy Boston full-time

    Pros

    - It was a good learning experience, although for all of the wrong reasons. - There is often flexibility to suggest or implement new ideas because of the often "hands off" leadership style. - Because of the small size of the school, there is the opportunity to make strong connections with students. - Free lunch - The ability to quickly advance

    Cons

    - HIGH staff turnover rate. I have never seen of or heard of a school that has so many teachers/staff leave at the start/middle of the school year, not to mention those that leave over the summer. For a school that has been open for 6 years, they only have 10ish members that have been there the whole time. This is especially sad when it is considered how many people are hired from within. - Most of the issues stem from the turnover rate, which causes a lot of dysfunction and disorganization. People without the proper qualifications are given leadership roles in order to give consistency, but that only further fuels the disorganization. - Management of CATS has had family members/staff members pad positive reviews to try to combat negative reports - Work/life balance is not always promoted. It was expected that emails were answered outside of work hours and often members are asked to stay late without being compensated properly. CATS does not observe many holiday's which is also something I wish I paid more attention to in the contract. - Although the size of the school lends itself to strong individual connections, the school as a whole does not have a good sense of community. There is little buy in from the kids, which is unfortunate for those students who are trying to have a positive experience. - The graduation requirements are a joke, and students will receive their diploma without meeting the simple requirements. - Minimal staff unity or an attempt to bring staff together. This says a lot when lunch is provided in the same room for all staff. - When I was crying about the prospect of going to work, I felt like there was no one I could turn to for help. It is great that HR is in the building, but HR is also in the building, and it is clear who is going to see them and when, that being said HR is helpful but it should not be there sole responsibility to support staff members. The lack of support in the building is truly a shame, and it is sad that staff are not feeling heard.

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  9. Helpful (7)

    "CATS is a business, not a school."

    2.0
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Compensation and Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Former Employee - Anonymous Employee 

    I worked at CATS Academy Boston full-time

    Pros

    Despite a catastrophic beginning to their last academic year, the fundamental pieces of offering international students opportunity to study in the United States is still a revenue driver and will be until prospective international families no longer value studying in the US. So no matter how terrible a year can go domestically, globally, there is still interest which means there is money in the company.

    Cons

    By operating as a for profit, venture capitalist organization rather than an academic institution, the priorities are always aligned with expanding bottom line budgets and not with delivering curriculum or serving students.

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  10. Helpful (4)

    "Promises, promises, promises. All lies."

    1.0
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Compensation and Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Former Employee - Anonymous Employee 
    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook

    I worked at CATS Academy Boston full-time

    Pros

    At first it was a long drive, then the change to Braintree made it easy.

    Cons

    The offer to free meals, housing, reasonable insurance quickly gave way to a cult-like mentality. Cult in that there's one leader, and everyone drinks something that makes the world go fuzzy for a while, then we all died. There are nut jobs at the helm who have little to no experience leading teams. The ranks are filled with B and C players who are SURE they're A players. I'm OK with the fact that I'm a B player. I know it. I'm not sure the others did. Politics!? See other posts. They'll fill you in. Bosses and middle managers are never-ending. How about another review? How about another review? How about another review? If you are single, expect to continue to be single, if you are married, expect a divorce. Not worth it.

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