JCC Brooklyn Bay Ridge
Review from the 2022 Summer Camp SurveyLocation: Bay Ridge How old was your child when they attended camp this summer? 6 Review: We ended up pulling my son out of JCC Bay Ridge because we had such a bad experience. It started off fine; the campus is wholly within the Ft Hamilton army base which has great facilities. Parents can’t drop off or pick up or come on base but there’s a bus which was fine. However, a few weeks into camp we got a call from one of the camp admins that my son was misbehaving and not listening to the counselors. Ok fine, he’s 6 and high energy, we had a talk with him and I thought things were fine. About a week later I get another call from an admin, apparently my son had behaved so poorly he was being suspended from camp! The story they tell me does not jive with what I hear from my son; I’m not allowed to communicate with his counselors at all, only admin staff, and I’m told if he acts out again the camp could decide to expel him. Again this is not a rowdy teenager we are talking about, hes 6. We send him back to camp after a one day suspension and the following week he is suspended yet again. At this point the kid is so stressed about possible misbehavior (he has no clue what he did wrong and keeps guessing at what it could be), again we are not allowed to talk to the counselors and we get a third hand story of alleged misbehavior. From what I can tell I think the kids were not well supervised and there was a lot of downtime in between activities, which is not what I was looking for on top of this weird thing where we can’t talk to counselors. At this point I decide to pull him out of camp for the rest of the summer because clearly this is not working for us or for him. No refund for unused weeks of course but at that point I didn’t care because my sons welfare is more important. We moved him to Sprout camp where he happily finished the summer with no incidents. What would you change about the program, if anything, and why? Pretty much everything. We will not be returning.
Review from the 2022 Summer Camp SurveyLocation: Bay Ridge How old was your child when they attended camp this summer? 4 Review: This camp is quite the experience. It is located on the Fort Hamilton army base in Bay Ridge - which does involve a 20-25 bus ride 2x a day. My kiddo was 4 and her first bus ride experience, which she seemed to like. **It was a problem that we were promised air conditioned buses, but that didn't always happen. So, during the heatwave it took several angry parents for them to ensure that there was always an air conditioned bus. The camp overall is extremely organized. Communication is excellent, we received daily camp pictures. There are so many activities, both indoor and outdoor. The campus is beautiful and sprawling. Kiddos were in a pool at least 3x a week. There is such a variety, theater, karate, cooking, circus camp, sports stuff, water bouncy house. So... my daughter liked it all and she was super exhausted at the end of the day. BUT I think she felt overwhelmed by the sheer size of it all, the tons and tons of kids and the myriad of activities. There are 15-18 kids per camp group with 3 counselors per group. She will likely go back next year, but not for the entire summer. What would you change about the program, if anything, and why? Be able to communicate with the camp counselor. Would you like to add anything related to COVID and how the camp handled it? They handled it well. Kiddos could be masked on the bus or indoors.
Review from the 2021 Summer Camp SurveyName of camp: JCC Brooklyn (Bay Ridge location) Location: Bay Ridge How old was your child when they attended camp this summer? 5 Review: It was okay. There was a lot of scramble at the beginning about the bus routes, activity schedules, etc. I know it was very challenging with Covid, also they hoped to keep everyone outside for Covid-safety but then were faced with heat wave challenges. I think they did an adequate job at pivoting, but not amazing. Communication was not fantastic.
Review from the 2021 Summer Camp SurveyName of camp: JCC Location: Bay Ridge How old was your child when they attended camp this summer? 9 Review: Lots of variety in activities. Unfortunately very disorganised, lots of staff turnover, very hard to get hold of management to discuss concerns, inexperienced counsellors and zero swimming instruction even though that was one of the reasons we went there. My son enjoyed it though! What would you change about the program, if anything, and why? Improve their communication drastically, as well as their swim program.
Review from the 2020 Summer Camp SurveyAge of child: 4.5 Comment: It was our first time sending our kid to day camp and he had a great time! Seems like there was a good deal of sitting around (some of the older kids complained about this) but our son appreciated the down time. There were about three activities a day including swimming (three days a week) or water activities (two days a week) then additional activities including art, science, dance, etc. Communication could have been better in the beginning - we only occasionally received emails with schedule info but by the end received that on a daily basis. Conversely, we received daily texts with pictures from our son’s counselor in the beginning, only on occasion by the end. Would have liked more info on some of the activities - “field”, “theater” and “Jewish education” still not sure exactly what went on during those but our son came home happy and was excited to go every day which was the most important part for us! What would you change about the program, if anything, and why? Would have liked a list of counselors and campers from the beginning. We asked for a list so we could help our son learn the other kids’ names and the camp was hesitant to give, presumably for privacy reasons. Eventually we received a list of the first names of the kids in his group. The last week we received a list of his counselors (for tipping purposes). Anything related to COVID and how the camp handled it you'd like to add? Kids wore masks on the buses, the camp sent regular reminders to do so, they did daily temperature checks and to our knowledge there were no cases!
Review from the 2020 Summer Camp SurveyAge of child: 5.5 years old Comment: My kids really enjoyed this camp this summer. I was so grateful that the JCC ran the camp and gave so many kids the opportunity to be outside. My kids enjoyed swimming, playing sports, and dancing. They also had a great time on the bus to camp and on the busses around camp. The only thing I can think of that they didn’t like was that there wasn’t that much shade. What would you change about the program, if anything, and why? I heard some talk from my kids about mean kids - I wonder if the counselors could have intervened more. Of course, as a parent, you never know what is really happening on the ground, so maybe they were intervening. Anything related to COVID and how the camp handled it you'd like to add? They took everyone’s temperature every day and masks were required on the busses. Counselors and staff were required to wear masks - kids were not. The camp was run at a lower capacity than usual and they kept the kids in groups that did not interact. I did not hear of any Covid outbreaks during the summer and my kids attended for 8 weeks.
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