This is our first year at Sweetwater and I couldn't be more pleased. The principal Luanne Herman is receptive to parents needs and always maintains an open line of communication. She has a great rapor with the kid's and they come up and greet her as if greeting a friend. The office staff is absolutely super. The two ladies who work the front desk are two of the most helpful and kindest ladies. The sixth grade teacher, Mr.Basista is literally the best of the best. He's very supportive towards his students and keeps the classroom full of lightheartedness and laughter. Sure the campus could use an updated look and appearance, but this school's staffing makes up for it!
Mrs. Batsford, the Kindergarten teacher is an absolutely fantastic teacher. She believes in challenging the children and does not look to satisfy 'district' requirements. She wants to 'exceed' them and not for any reason other taking an honest interest in the education of our children. She includes the parents in projects the children need to complete throughout the year and my wife and I loved the fact that our daughter was learning about Thanksgiving and not just about that people eat turkey on a special day. The project led into history, understanding what people ate, our daughter learned about the first settlers, learning to share, being cooperative, understanding people's differences. These are projects that share our families morals and values. As for the education, our daughter excelled in reading as Mrs. Batsford challenged her kindergartners to read every day. Not just 5 days a week, but 7 days a week.
Children learn at home and in school. With parental participation and quality educators my son has had a vey successful year in kindergarten. He is reading at fisrt grade level, just a few levels from 2nd grade. He loves the school and his teacher Mrs Batsford. I follow the standards he is needs to meet and with the support of his teacher and asking what can I do at home, he is well on his way to having a successful 1st grade year at Sweetwater Elementary
The upper grade teachers are heavily involved in extracuricular events for their students. They provide instructional information for both the parents and students via a teacher-based website. Grades are provded every thee weeks to keep parents abreast of their child's progress. High energy instruction, creative lessons and activities as well as a well-rounded anti-drug/character education program is evidenced at the junior high level. Students are treated with respect and encouraged to become actively involved in classroom and extracurricular activities in order to broaden their view of the community and world events. An A+ school!
My daughter has attended Sweetwater since preschool. Every teacher she has had have been great. The teachers are not the problem. (thought they seem to loose more every year) the problem is the extracurricular activities, and the non-parent involvement when it pertains to things like the PTO. There are maybe 2 parents at any meetings. (not including the PTO board.) The lack of outside sports,etc for under 6th grade is amazing.
The arts programs are excellent at sweetwater, but the extracurricular activities are less than encouraging for students. The academic standards are poor for the upper grades, students that attend sweetwater and then enter high school will be unprepared for what real school is like. The children have fun but do not learn allot. Although parent involvement is excellent. I would give the school a 3 out of 5.