This is a safe place to share your honest opinions of a school, whether good or bad.
Academy for Academic Excellence5
Posted August 19, 2014
- a parent
It is amazing, the bad reviews and the negativity from parents on here. It's easy to be negative behind a computer screen & dole out criticism without the repercussion of saying it in person. My kids have gone to AAE for over 8 yrs & for the most part, we have been very pleased at the caliber of education being taught by these amazing teachers. To counter what one parent wrote re: students only being wealthy, athletic or related to staff...well, we are none of those & we STILL love it over at AAE. SURE, there are flaws, but you'll get that anywhere you go. One of the great things about this school: it's a CHOICE school. There are plenty of other options to pick from. This school might not fit the needs of every student. Your child DOES NOT have to attend here . Fact is, many kids come and love it here...a few realize it's not for them & they leave...& there's nothing wrong with that. It doesn't make the school bad. It's just not a fit for your kid. AAE is and has been a "fit" for us and we love it, we're blessed to be a part of such an amazing campus filled with caring teachers and administration that seek the best direction for the students.
I graduated from AAE this past June after attending the school for eleven and a half years, since first grade. Truly, I cannot imagine a better place to have grown up. I doubt that most people would refer to their school as the place that they "grew up," but, I think that there is no more accurate way to convey what my experience at AAE has meant to me. Academically, AAE served me incredibly well, with teachers that simultaneously held students to high standards but also made personal attention a priority to help us achieve such standards. Thanks to this combination, I am headed to UCLA next month to study biochemistry. Personally, AAE's students and staff truly made the school my home. Among the students, I developed a strong group of close friends, but still enjoyed amity with most of my classmates. While there were different social groups, there weren't cliques. Not only that, but now that I've graduated, I miss the staff greatly, with many of whom I developed what I know will be lasting friendships. AAE made me a student and a leader, and introduced me to a group of people with whom I have become family. In short, I wouldn't have gone anywhere else.
I am responding to the writer who wrote that the AAE is getting worse and said, "There have been so many students and staff that have left, including the founder of the school," I am the Founder, Rick Piercy and this statement is intentionally misleading. Three years ago I began a transition plan for my retirement. After 35 years of teaching and 7 years with the State Park System I retired to spend time with my grandchildren, but continue to volunteer at the school as the Cross Country coach and Advisor to the Young Ambassador program. I felt secure in handing over the job I have had for 29 years because the school is doing exceptionally well with about 1,400 K-12 students and a waiting list of over 2,800. The comments made by this individual were in my opinion intentionally misleading and disingenuous. I welcome anyone to come and visit the campus and see for yourself. We never shy away from constructive criticism and work hard everyday to improve our school to benefit all of our students, but it is disturbing to see someone try and purposefully taint the works of so many outstanding parents and educators.
The quality of education at AAE has progressively gotten worse, especially beginning in junior high and throughout high school. The athletic program and coaches have also declined. Good coaches have left, and poor role models have remained. There have been so many students and staff that have left, including the founder of the school, that the writing on the wall should be clear. There are better schools available in the high desert to choose from for both academics and athletics. Parents should seek those out for their children.
This schools elementary is good, but as soon as you hit HS there's a wall. The good teachers leave do to low pay. The bad teachers stay and can't teach. It's a Math & Science school and every HS child I know had a personal tutor at home to teach what their class teacher couldn't. My senior wasn't prepared for the college assessments through the bridge program, which this school is the pilot for. There was no direction in the bridge program at all. They have a 1 to 1 laptop program which just went to 4-12 grade, with no advance notice to parents of 4th graders. You are required to purchase a laptop through the school or use one of their loaners and risk your child damaging it and you being responsible. My 5th grader had migraine headaches the entire first semester of 5th grade. Admin. likes to pluck parents off one by one instead of facing them together. This school is disappointing to say the least, and NOT at all what they claim to be. :( What another parent posted about faculty is absolutely correct, they are all family/friends and they are also afraid to speak up to admin for fear of being fired, as there's no union and completely at will. It's not what you know it's who.
A very Sad experience ever. Have two girls and we are leaving this school. Can't allowed this people educate my children any more. Proctors are family or related to teachers or board of directors. You don't need to have a degree to teach in this school. The worst is one of the male proctors touch one of my girls and w reported to the principal and she did not do anything. (to sad). The rest are several things that you as parent will disapprove before you put your child in this school. Substitute teachers are present almost half of the year. So many thing I want to say but no space in this review. The waiting list they are proud of, is only a fraud. The reason the have this is only to have control of whom enter to school. Check this out : almost none of the neighborhood are attending the school. Everybody are related, family, friends, and people they want in the school. So very sad to post this. We are leaving with this experience. I hope they change. Good luck to parents looking for a great school for your children. One more thing the few good teachers they have; they are leaving and some a knew they are gone. Now to teach in this school you don't need a degree.
This school is an absolute gem! I love that the teachers genuinely care about students. There is so much parental involvement that behavior issues are almost non existent. Its so easy to get a hold of staff members when you have concerns or questions. They staff keeps me very informed and treats me like a partner in my childs education. I honestly could not be any happier with this schools mission and values.
AAE is one of a kind. Despite the rumors about requirements to succeed at this school being high affluence and athleticism, it is quite fair in those departments. Any awards achieved at this school has been earned. I have attended AAE since 7th grade and i honestly do not think there is anywhere I'd rather be. The culture of our small but might charter school is so unique and there is something to offer for everyone. In public schools the people who aren't 'popular' don't fit in, but at AAE everyone fits in. Another fantastic quality of AAE is the programs it offers like AFJROTC and ASB. The ASB advisor recently earned the "Teachers Are Heroes" award. The AFJROTC unit is about to receive their award of 'Distinguished Unit With Merit'. These two things alone prove how superb the staff, students and parents are at the AAE. I am confident in saying that the wait is well worth it.
I am a parent of a lower elementary child. AAE had been a wonderful school. The staff is very caring & thoughtful. Individual needs of each child are met. I plan to continue here as long as possible with my children.
I have been attending AAE for around four months, I transferred from a nearby school quite recently. At first, the school seems wonderful, small class sizes, other high school kids who are anxious to learn, and a lovely campus! It is quite enticing until the excitement of the school wears off. I came from GHHS where I worked tediously and earned my reputation as a great student, along with a reputation for my work in extracurricular activities and sports. This school has an established hierarchy that is based on appearance, wealth, athleticism, and whether or not you attend HDC. if you're looking to transfer to a new school in hopes of a fresh start and a chance to change yourself, I would highly advise those reading to look elsewhere. The school will not provide for the new students, but instead cater to the needs of the students who have been attending this school for many years or are athletic prodigies. Academically, AAE is inferior to other schools with limited AP classes and less-than-rigourous courses. The harder I look for redeeming qualities in this school, the less I seem to find. I hope any who read this will consider attending AVHS or GHHS if you want a chance to excel.