I can't say enough good things about Gates. I am in the unusual position of having two kids in the immersion program and one in the regular English program. All of their teachers have been nurturing and wonderful! My second grader is capable of doing all of his homework in spanish by himself, despite the fact that we have no native speakers at home. I have had close interactions and meetings with both the principal and the new vice principal and find them both professional and looking out for the best interests of my child. The fact that they are both busy (and therefor seem unavailable/unapproachable when dropping by the office) is irrelevant to me, as the most important thing is that they were there for my child when it really mattered. The English program academics are on the very low side for the district, which reflects the socio-economic status of the neighborhood. The PTA is amazing.
There are some really great teachers here, and some mediocre. My daughter is in second grade here, and so far we are very glad that she is going to Gates. There is plenty of diversity, and I do not believe any one school can have it all. The principal does not seem friendly or approachable, but often times I realize appearances can be misleading. Over all I think it's a great dual immersion program, and I like how the parents seem invested and interested in their children, but like any other school, it has it's cons as well.
Amazing!! We transferred into the dual immersion program and can't say enough wonderful things:) Principal is involved, open and knowledgeable as are the teachers and parents.
My son entered into the two way immersion program this Fall at Gates elementary. I don't know yet how the rest of the school is, but i am thoroughly impressed with my son's teacher and the enthusiasm and involvement of the parents in the immersion program. I have tried in the past to contact the principal but to no avail as it seems she is extraordinarily busy. This is one of the things that does concern me as i wonder how responsive she will be to requests for a meeting should any future issues arise during our child's attendance at Gates. Overall though, i am pleased with the quality of the two way immersion program here.
In July of 2012, my family moved to Tustin from San Jose where my oldest attended a Dual-Immersion Language School for Kindergarten. So, it was utmost important that I find a similar school as good or better. Gates Elementary has exceeded that expectation. From the moment I walked into the office approximately one month before school began to place my son on the waiting list to the moment I received a call that he had been accepted. From the moment of his first day of school when the principal provided a personal escort to his class to the moment I met his 1st grade teacher with whom I knew my son would be nurtured and strongly guided in his further acquisition of the Spanish language. And to all the moments through the end of the year, Gates has lived up not only to my expectations but the high standards it sets for itself! There is no other school I would want my oldest son and subsequently my youngest son to attend. My goals for my children are to be bilingual, biliterate and bicultural as well as succeed academically in a traditional program. Which means more than ranking by state scores that don't provide a world wide advantage to children as other countries do. GATES rock!!!
I have been in this school for about 7 years. I had a great experience here at Gates. I am in the immersion program and I will hopefully continue until high school. The school over all is awesome from the assemblies to learning, it's all FUN! Yes some may say things about the principal, but it is amazing that she learns everyone's name. She started the same year I started going to that school. Teachers I have had, have been the best from patience to making learning easy! I am glad Gates was my school!
We absolutely love the Spanish immersion program! My 1st grader is doing AMAZING! She's now able to carry full conversations in Spanish. I would recommend it!
My son is in 2nd grade and is doing really, really well in the Spanish Immersion Program. The teachers use effective methods to educate the children. In addition, the parent involvement in the school activities is impressive. My husband and I made the right choice when we picked Ralph A. Gates Elementary.
Love the two-way immersion program that this school offers. They have been doing the Spanish immersion program for a very long time so they understand what works and what doesn't. The teachers all seem very dedicated and because of the special program at the school I feel like the parents are more involved and connected. The principal does have an unapprochable look to her but everytime I need anything or have had an issue she is on top of it.
The two way language immersion program at this school is unbelievable! The principal, along with many teachers have their own children attending here, so there is an incredible amount of support and accountability. You will experience a "private school" feel because of the amazing parent involvement. My nine year-old is completely fluent in Spanish and is an A student in both languages. She sounds like a native speaker and more importantly she has an appreciation for the other cultures that we come across in Orange County. While the state is taking out the music and art from our schools, we have an awesome opportunity to add the gift of language into our students' lives.
The immersion program seems good. However I'm not agree with the way how to treat students in this school. When I went to visit to the school, I saw some staffs screaming horrible at students over loudspeaker during recess and lunch time.
This is a fantastic school with an incredible immersion program. The teachers are passionate and committed to seeing each child succeed. The principal is supportive of the students and parents. We cannot say enough good things about Gates!!
My kids are also in the immersion program which is the only reason I stay in the school. This program has some wonderful and skilled teachers, but there are an equal number who are not up to the task. The principal is unapproachable, defensive and frequently unprofessional; the grounds are dirty; the over-all tone is un-welcoming. The parents who are involved are fantastic, but few in number.
Great teachers and a wonderful principal! Any parent that is involved with our school knows exactly how great it is and how lucky we are to have our kids involved in such a great immersion program!
"Great school with amazing teachers and the most involved parents I have ever met" - I couldn't have said it better myself! I am very happy with the school and the progress my daughter is making in the immersion program.
HORRIBLE PRINCIPAL...HORRIBLE. My daughter has been in this school for 6 years and the environment is a very punitive, disrespectful one where kids are not allowed to be kids. I am taking my daughter out of the IMMERSION Program and the school next year.
Great school with amazing teachers and the most involved parents I have ever met. Not to mention the amazing immersion program that has made my kids bilingual.
Ralph A. Gates Elementary School is a 5 star school. I live in Laguna Niguel and I travel 25 minutes just to get my kids to school. A total of 1 1/2 of driving a day and it is worth it! My children are in the Spanish Immersion Program and come from a family that does not speak Spanish. This program not only wonderful and amazing but it really does work! My children are now bilinguel and we are tickled pink! Last summer break, we traveled to La Paz in Baja California, Mexico, and my children were checking us in the hotel, talking to the taxi cab drivers, ordering our food in the resturants, asking for directions, speaking Spanish in stores and snorkling trips! My husband and I do not speak Spanish and we were not only relieved but surprised and proud of our children. Thank you Gates Elementary!
My sister attended Gates in the immersion program to then graduate from Mater Dei High School (one of the best private schools in the country). Gates has a great immersion program that teaches Spanish alongside their usual English. Its a public school yet is one of the most well known in the stateU.S. (California Distinguished) The immersion program, which has a waiting list that parents apply for up to a yr before the child even starts kindergarten (which is where they begin the lingual prog.) in order to even have a chance of getting in soon, guarantees the student's bilingual by 3rd grade!!!. My sister read her own book (1 Fish, 2Fish, Red Fish, Blue Fish in Eng & Span!) before her kinderYear was 1/2over and is now fluent in Spanish, yet still has no problems with English and she's only turning six October this year08. I highly recommend!!!!
Gates Elementary School offers an exceptional program in Spanish Immersion. Our entire family reaps the benefits from the opportunities available in this program. We have developed life-long friendships and a tremendous network of support for our kids.
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