This is a safe place to share your honest opinions of a school, whether good or bad.
Posted November 22, 2014
- a parent
We love Cubberley! My girls, currently 3rd and 1st graders are thriving there. All of their teachers have been fantastic--focusing on teaching the "whole child," with a emphasis on science and social studies. The before/aftercare program, Kids Club very we'll run. The staff truly get to know every child and connect with each family. I am a teacher at a very high performing, more wealthy school here in Long Beach. Cubberley doesn't have quite all the extracurricular programs that my school does, but the quality teaching and neighborhood school atmosphere more than make up for it. In our experience so far there is not an emphasis on teaching to the test and homework expectations are totally reasonable and age-appropriate. I'm so glad we have such an awesome home school!
Overall, I think Cubberley is a great school. The teachers are good and the office staff is very friendly. My two kids attend this school and they love it. Their is a warm feel to it because the small student body (compared to other schools). The only reason I don't give the school 5 stars is because the principal needs to get her act straight. Mrs. Jarels needs to be more approachable to parents. Most of the time she doesn't even say hello when she passes by parents and students. How are parents supposed to go to the office and talk to her about issues, when it seems like she's not even going to listen? Get it together Jarels!
My son has been going to Cubberley since Kindergarten. He is now in 2nd grade and improving so much. My son has a learning disability and this school, counselor, teachers and resources staff have been nothing but a blessing. I am not sure where all the not so favorable comments are coming from, but I can say this very much so is a school with major parent and teacher involvement.
I toiled between sending my child to Cubberley or to a different school in a highly rated school district on permit. Where has fundraising money gone? Many classrooms have no AC/heat and kids came dragging out of kinder dripping with sweat during the heat wavel. Others are correct about the organized groups for playground time. They have balls, a small structure, a sandbox that's been closed recently due to feces, and jump ropes. No tricycles, hula hoops, balance boards, etc. Kids can't just play. There's no library time for Kinders. The playground for the other lower grades is limited to one slide, one small climber, basketball courts, and monkey bars. Compared to other schools I've seen in poor neighborhoods, this school's facilities are dilapidated. There's no technology in the classrooms, no overhead projector, screens, computers, tablets, etc. Old wooden furniture in okay condition, somewhat quaint, and in decent repair, but the halls filled with extra furniture making for a very messy state. The kids aftercare is super though! The "valet" drop-off is great. The curriculum also seems far to simple for any child who has had a decent amount of preschooling.
We have been at Cubberley for a half a decade & have seen this school go from a Great School to an average school. This school's strength used to come from the past principal. The current principal, Mrs. Jarels, has been here 3 years now and most parents you talk to will say they are disappointed with her overall performance. She does not reach out to the kids, is not outwardly friendly toward parents, does not show her presence enough outside of her office, does not speak at all assemblies, is lax in upholding the dress code. And, most importantly, does not treat her job with enthusiasm. The school counselor isn't the most friendly, personable person either. I must say Susan does a wonderful job as secretary! The one strength this school has is the high parent involvement. The parents are vocal and try to direct the principal when necessary. In fairness, Jarels is responsive when approached by a group of parents on an issue. The PTA does a good job to support the school, though the meetings are usually the same small group of parents --the PTA meeting attendance has dwindled over the past 3 years. I'm not sure why this school does not have a rating. It used to.
We have 2 daughters at Cubberley and have found that it is a nice and supportive environment that also maintains very high standards (and similar high expectations of its students academically). Sure, we all miss Mr. Navia, the last Principal, but the culture here is strong and aside from a few 'quit but forgot to leave' teachers that one is likely to find anywhere, the quality of the teaching staff is very high. Kudos to probably the best teacher we've ever met, Mr. Heath (6th Grade Accelerated)!
I also attended the open house and I was really disappointed with the way they handled things. The school counseler was the only one to speak. The princiaple didnt say anything. They have too many excuses for why they do things differently then the only schools. EX: kinder is only part day because they found that the kids learn just as much in a short day than they do a long day. But, they have only 15 mins to be kids. The rest of the day is work work work for these kids. Oh and there 15 mins of (PE is what they said) is organized play. The kinders are in groups by color and they are ASSIGNED to activity. They do not have free choice. REASON: we were told because if they are not assigned they get bored and end up doing nothing. NOT IMPRESSED!!
If I could give Cubberly less than 1 star I would. I was so dissapointed with Cubberly. I felt my son was in no way prepared for High School when he left here. We loved the science teacher, but the rest of the staff left alot to be desired. Too many fundraisers, and not all the students get to participate in what they are raising money for. My child was there middle school and never got to have a single elective.
I just attended the Open House today at Cubberly and I am extremely pleased with this school. I am hoping to enroll my son in September and I am debating whether to enroll him at our home school which is Cubberly or persuing another amazing school (Patrick Henry) with a dual immersion Spanish program. Very tough choice. Both schools seem pretty fantastic. I would appreciate hearing from other parents on these two schools.
All 3 of my children have attended Cubberley. The teachers and staff are always helpful and accommodating. Even though all 3 kids were at different levels, they were placed into appropriate classes. Many wonderful memories were made here. I recommend it highly!