This thread is fantastic -- thanks to everyone who's contributed. These are exactly the issues I've been thinking through as I select programs to apply to. I've been taking drawing and anatomy courses part-time for a few years now, and I'm definitely drawn to the constructive approach -- Gottfried Bammes, George Bridgman, etc.
The Ashland Academy was mentioned in a few posts, and I know from the school's Web site that it has a Russian heritage and rejects sight-size. Does anyone here have any experiences with that school that they can share?
I'm interested in classical figure drawing and working in illustration. I found it interesting that Ashland even has an illustration track after the foundation program is completed.