This is a safe place to share your honest opinions of a school, whether good or bad.
Isaac L. Sowers Middle School1
Posted February 03, 2015
- a parent
I would agree with the last poster, especially regarding the Administration at Sowers. "Dr." Guerrero is out of her league and doesn't have the gravitas that it takes to lead staff or crack the whip on behavior issues. Asking students to call her "Dr." and not "Ms." is certainly not the example of servant leadership. I also believe that a certain attitude has been allowed to develop over time regarding the relationship between the teachers and the parents. It should be a partnership and not an adversarial relationship. Although I understand the intention of having students be responsible for their work, including work they may have missed due to sickness, when a parent emails a teacher it should engender some sort of response. Our experience, as well as other parents, has been that teachers at Sowers do not respond to emails. Once again, it's a leadership issue with no apparent action at the District level either (although I get it that their hands are tied in a union environment). It's really too bad and tragic as the elementary schools in this district are all very good. It's been a hard transition due to the seeming lack of caring at this school.
This is a school that has so much potential but really needs leadership. Talbert and Dwyer are much better options if you have the opportunity to put your kids in those schools. Dr. Guerrero runs Sowers. Unfortunately she lacks the leadership skills of a good principal and you can see this in the littany of assistant principals and staff who leave her employ or are smashed down so that they are almost ineffectual. Having met and seen Dr. Guerrero many times I see that she lacks a clear vision for the school and is usually on the defensive. She communicates with people in a distant manner and you leave meetings with her almost feeling devalued. It shows in the students who meet her as well. She fails to inspire. Many times it's been her failure to communicate her position that has caught me off-guard and she has a propensity to avoid situations rather than tackle them head-on so nothing gets done and things fester. Further, when things do go right I've never seen her give credit to those involved. I even once heard her tell a young student to call her "Dr. Guerrero" instead of "Mrs Guerrero" as if her title were important for the student to know.
I 'graduated' from Sowers about 4 years ago, and hopefully it has changed by then. I had no teachers who really cared, and I efficiently learned from (except one who was fired that year due to budget cuts). I understand that with a limited school fund it is very challenging to maintain a proper learning environment, but I was not happy at that school. I was a very smart student, and in all the advanced classes, and I was unable to find help for anything and was given countless hours of busy work. I failed at really making any friends, even though I am not a shy person, and it was overall a very negative experience. My parents transferred me to private school for high school, and it was the best choice they could have made for me. I thrived there and made lots of friends and excelled in my classes. Edison would not have been a good fit, hearing some of the stories my friends who go there tell me about..
Don't go to this school. The students here a snobby and mean. The popular ones especially. They will spread rumors about you and talk behind your back. I left this school after 7th grade and there still talking bad about me. So don't send your child here unless they want to be bullied.
This is school is a great! Every year it gets better. Though I don't think that teachers should be telling students how much they make each year, only to see how much they do actually make. Most lunch supervisors don't pay attention to areas where students can leave the campus and wander off into the near by streets. Most staff are friendly and nice, and it is always sad to see one retire or leave to go to another district. By far the music program is outstanding! The teacher of this program should be paid the most, considering how hard she works and shows how great our school is. This school needs to focus a little less on these fundraiser though it does support the school and focus on funding what actually is need for the school. The computer lab is great, but the music program isn't as modern as the computer lab and needs a tight upgrade. They also need to work on punishment of school bullies or trouble makers, I see at least one student who causes so much trouble, though he never gets nearly punished as others. Also the p.e should at least have a gym, considering on a mayp they call the "black-top" a gym. I say this school is a 5 out of 5 for some reasons. Great School!
To the teacher that said we are there to "serve the staff" I think this really sets the tone for the teaching staff. The staff is there to "teach our children". They should feel fortunate that parents want to be involved...hello? My oldest daugther was bullied by kids and teachers alike here with nothing being done to right the wrong. Teachers that I have come in contact with are complacent and going through the motions. The entire office staff changed in one year how does that happen? The principal is set in her way there are no grey areas. If i had to do this over my child would have gone to Talbert. Think this through people middle school is hard enough but when administration and teachers don't care it is even tougher.
Sad to read the email posted by a teacher - sounds very one-sided, as I have attended the PTSA meetings and they always have a teacher rep and a student rep at every meeting. (When PTSA has their evening meetings, there are never any additional teachers in attendance.) The goal of the PTSA is only to enrich the school by assisting in the needs that are identified by the principal and the staff. Sowers does a great job in working with all of the students and their unique "tween to teen" needs. I do wish the administration would look closer at what makes a student GATE and who is truly the best educator for GATE students. Just because someone has been doing something for a long time does not qualify them for this position.
Teachers do a great job based on what they are given. Parent involvement is to an extreme in doing what they want and not asking the staff of their needs. The so call PTSA is known as PA - when meetings are held they are during hours inwhich Teachers and Students can not participate. Parents need to understand they are here to serve the staff so that the staff can serve the students.
Both of our children went to this school. They loved their friends and teachers. It's definitely one of the best middle schools in the area. They are well prepared for Edison High. We were very happy with the program. Thank you teachers and involved parents!
I have put two children through Sowers over the past 6 consecutive years. Sowers has below average facilities. Although the school was just modernized, it lacks a gymnasium. They also rely on many portables for classroom space. There are some really good teachers there, but the majority of the teachers that my children had were either completely burnt out or brand new and barely qualified. The management staff (principal and assistant principals) do a poor job of communicating with parents, unless its a robo-call about the latest fundraiser. You will get those nightly. The office secretarial staff is very kind, caring and helpful.