Our children have been attending BASIS Tucson since kindergarten and 2nd grade. They are now in 2nd and 4th grade, respectively. The teachers have been great. My eldest has gone to student hours for extra help and it's made a big difference when she was struggling to understand certain concepts. The school does not permit in-classroom parent volunteers, but I've found that this works well for my kids because there are fewer distractions from people walking in & out of the room all the time. BASIS Tucson provides a very supportive learning environment. They've taught my kids how to take more responsibility in their own learning & education, how to speak up when they need help, how to organize their cubbies, lockers, binders, etc. In order for a student to be successful at BASIS, though, he/she does need a supportive learning environment at home. So if you want your kid to be able to do homework with the TV on or music playing, that might not work so well. You, the parent, need to take the initiative to contact the teachers if you are concerned about your student's grade in a particular subject. In my experience, I've found the teachers to be very open & helpful whenever I've spoken with them. I have heard parents complain about how their kid got a bad grade in a certain subject, but the parent never brought the concerns to the school and the student never asked for help or went to student hours. Don't blame the school when the school has resources to assist but you never took advantage of them.
Some parents have complained about the strict tardiness policy for the older grade levels. Yes, the expectation is that you're on time and in your seat ready to learn when the class period starts. This means that you have to get your kid to school early so he/she has time to put stuff in his/her locker & get to class. If you are late every single day, then maybe you should reassess the amount of time you allot in the morning to get to school. Don't get mad at the school because of your consistently poor planning.
My 4th grader is able to get most of her homework completed at school and in Late Bird, so when we arrive home, she has maybe at most 30 minutes of work left to do. The school also offers a BOSS camp to help prepare them to transition to a locker, no LET (Learning Expert Teacher). That was a huge help for our child.
Many parents have sent their kids to this school thinking that it will make their kids extremely intelligent just because they are at the school. That is not how it works. You need to work hard and do the assignments in order to succeed here. Almost all kids have the possibility to succeed here, but kids that don't try aren't the kind of people that will be able to get good grades at BASIS. All teachers, even P.E., art, and music teachers have times after school when students can comes to receive extra help. Students that actively seek extra help are the kind of students that will succeed here, not people that do not try. I have enjoyed my experience here and I will continue to go to BASIS, because I know that if I try to work hard, study, and do assignments, BASIS can be a great opportunity for me.
We LOVE BAsis! Our daughter is in Kinder and thoroughly enjoys it. We love her teachers and so far their curriculum. The ONLY thing I don't love about Basis Tucson, hence the 4 instead of 5 stars is the constant emails we get about donating money. I realize the charter school needs more monies, but it becomes quite annoying to get bombarded with these emails when we've already donated supplies and other things and volunteered time, which many times cannot really be broken down to how much financial value it is, but that's the only negative we have so far.
I was nervous about moving my daughter to Basis but I'm SO glad we did! My daughter started Basis last year for 1st grade and loves it! The school does a great job balancing academics and time to play and be a kid. (this was my biggest concern) She did have homework most nights but it wasn't overwhelming. (maybe 20 minutes) This year they have added an engineering class. My daughter is super excited for 2nd grade and so are we!
I have two children that went to BASIS. My experience with BASIS was not pleasant at all. I did not feel the teachers knew how to "teach", they may have been subject matter experts in their field, but they were not gifted teachers. I feel BASIS robs children of their childhood, they do not exercise regularly, there is no nutritious lunches served, and most of the students are socially awkward and are not well adjusted to socially navigate their way in the real world. BASIS concentrates solely on building their reputation, which means test scores. If you don't want your kid to become purely a test-taker then you should go somewhere else. If you don't want your kid to become a one-dimensional conformist who does nothing but homework and is stressed to the point of needing a therapist by the 10th grade, then don't go to BASIS. I simply do not understand how on earth this school could be rated as one of the top schools. As a parent you will have NO input at BASIS. There is no system setup so you can monitor your child's progress. If you love your child, don't do it, you have been warned! Work to make your local school better.
The faculty and administrators at BASIS Tucson need to complete a course of their own that helps them understand the nuanced and complex nature of what it means "To Teach" and what is means "To Learn". At this time, they seem to adhere to methods and pedagogy common over a century ago, albeit more technological advances.
I went to basis from 5-8 grade. It was a great experience with lots of fun in 5th, 6th, and 7th. However, 8th grade was very difficult. I had poor grades, Little to no social life, and I absolutely hated it. On top of everything, I was not able to get into the high school I wanted to go to (university high school or UHS). My personal recommendation to parents and students is to move schools before 8th grade. I wish that someone would have given me this advice. Overall, basis is a great school but 8th grade is very intense.
The post on May 3, 2012 is precisely why Arizona is scoring 48 to 50 in the nation. BASIS is one of the best Charter schools in Arizona, and of course takes pride in ranking and tests score like all other great schools. What school or PARENT wouldn't. My younger children have attended and will attend BASIS, and have learned to critically think, appreciate diversity of our global community, and DO say the Pledge of Allegiance every morning. Above all, they are really gaining knowledge and not just getting a free ride for attendance and learning the material on the AIMS test. I totally agree that UHS is a terrific school, but the high school also condones self-expression without bias. If all the districts in Tucson and other cities in Arizona were like UHS, perhaps there would not be as many Charter schools to resent.
I am so glad that they decided to add k-4 to the grades taught here. They have a wonderful set up for how the kids are taught. The teachers are all very encouraging and enthusiastic about the children and their education. My son is in 1st grade and a very smart child. He excelled at this school. It's great to see a school that pushes kids to reach their potential and expects 100% parent involvement along the way. We are very sorry that we had to move and are trying everything we can to get back just for this school. Nothing else even comes close to what this school has to offer.
I know many students that entered Basis in 5th grade at an excellent academic level. They played basketball, piano, did swimming too. By 7th and 8th grade these students stopped all extracurricular activities and if they didn't have to repeat the grade or left Basis already, struggled to keep their grades afloat. Basis manages to bring bright, enthusiastic kids to their knees. I am a pushy parent that knows what a good education is all about and does not shy away from challenges. Teachers do what they are dictated to do and don't last more than a couple of years in that environment. They are pressured into conducting student hours during which they simply teach to the test. There is no other way a young child can learn the vast and difficult material designed for a completely different age group. In the end parents will realize that the time and effort they put into this does not return the much expected good education. I am happy the system works for some, but that is just 1-2 kids out of a classroom, who will do very well in any other school anyway.