I am a educator and am very happy with Burcham! The new principal is awesome and very dedicated to making it a technology based school. He creates a positive environment in this small neighborhood school. We've had great experiences with staff, parents, and students.
We relocated to Long Beach from another state in 2013 and Burcham is our home school (Henry Elem said our children were "too old" to start and we were referred to the next closest school-Burcham). Our child had an IEP with companion therapeutic services from our previous geographical area but obtaining those services and keeping the district on-plan was a CONSTANT struggle, up to and including threatening the district with legal action for being non-compliant. Despite our best efforts and support at home/via private therapeutic interventions, when we started at Burcham my son was in the 3rd grade but his work was that of a kindergartner. He was immediately placed in an RSP classroom, provided with the tools and support he needed to catch up and become and enthusiastic and engaged learner. Mrs. Johnson, Mr. Flores, Ms. Wysong, Mrs. Gauthier, the Speech & Lang/Assisted Technology Teams have all provided an environment of inclusion, positive learning and support which has culminated in our son being able to learn in a general ed, grade level classroom and ready to move on to middle school.
I can't speak to any principal before Mrs. Sanchez but both she and Mr. Eckert have impressed me as engaging and involved leaders who genuinely care about their school and take a personal sense of ownership over the administration of the facility and management of the teachers and programs.
Burcham is a hidden jewel in Long Beach and I owe the aforementioned educators, therapists and administrators a debt of gratitude for leading my son to a love of learning, a sense of accomplishment and a sense of community that he was never so fortunate to have before moving here.
This is a small, community based school. Starting in Fall 2016 this school will only be open to neighborhood families and school of choice families. We love the feeling of a small school where my child is known and recognized by teachers and staff because the campus is small. My child is excelling academically and I love the small, neighborhood feeling of this school.
In 2015 Burcham welcomed a great new principal, Mr. Eckert. He is focused on education and technology. He is a loving, wonderful full-spirited man who is focused on Burcham academics, technology and students. He has written grants and spent school money on technology including iPads and chrome books for classroom use. He is spear-heading a science lab that is almost complete. He is approachable and open to parent involvement. Please be wary of past comments that mention other principals, Burcham's current principal is AMAZING!
Burcham parents or staff, please share how you manage after-school care/support with T-K? I've had a positive impression of the new principal, Mrs. Sanchez, and the TK teacher but am sad there is no after-school option for TK like other grades and schools. I wonder if more families would be willing and able to give Burcham a try if this was addressed? If there is after-school for TK and the WRAP coordinator has incorrect or incomplete information, please share who/where to contact, and I'll happily update my review. I'd hate to think the reviewer and one-star rating (June 6,2012) reflects the current principal, staff and PTA's view (that safe after-school care for working parents is only an individual parent "problem"), but at this point we have to hope we get into another school or else we can't go to TK at all, which is a pretty disappointing way to start our Burcham and LBUSD experience.
Burcham has a renewed focus since Mrs. Sanchez started in Fall 2013. In my opinion, old reviews & earlier criticisms of our school no longer apply. This is a school that WELCOMES parent involvement, has a very active PTA, & staff/teachers that are caring & skilled - all nestled in a quiet & safe neighborhood campus. My kids have been at Burcham for 5 yrs & I d say the school is one of the best kept secrets in LBUSD. Besides engaged teachers & excellent leadership by our principal, we also have a great PTA. Go to the PTA website to see all we do: http://burchampta.org/programs/ Our PTA is also on http://www.Facebook.com/burchamPTA Burcham is one of the few East side schools that has kids from the West side as part of our school a small portion of students are bussed to Burcham. This has sometimes been spoken of as a negative but, to be honest, I think it enriches our school. Our school is a good representation of life in the real world you find all colors, all economic backgrounds, and a range of abilities. So, to close - we have been happy we chose Burcham. Kudos to our staff, PTA & fellow Burcham families for creating a nurturing environment for our Bobcats!