This is a safe place to share your honest opinions of a school, whether good or bad.
Fremont Elementary School3
Posted July 28, 2014
- a parent
I just have to say that I agree with the post below regarding the Principal (have not experienced the other stuff regarding class bias or whatever, etc). When kids get in trouble for playing tag, there is something wrong with the system. Way too strict for Fremont. Also when kids have conflict it should be a teaching moment, each side heard, so they can learn. Yes I agree with the prior poster that free play and games such as tag are so important (it's not all about academics) in the development of children.
I found that the 'community' was based on exclusion with cliques, racial and class bias, with fierce competition among the most well to do. Partly this was due to the ''accelerated' PALS class where there were more resources and even separate field-trips. This elitism grew and deepened over time. The 'other' classes were unbalanced to the point where there were more unruly kids and desperate measures. PALS class is traditionally 2/3 female; if you missed the chance in kinder, tough luck. New Principal has some skewed priorities and is strict about them. Pink slips issued to children playing tag for example are targeted and told to choose a structured play activity during breaks. Yet free play is great for developing a child's self direction. There were a couple of great teachers but there are a few awful ones that have emotional difficulties, lack of boundaries or simply mistreat children and parents who complain.
As recent immigrants, this school was the best decision we could possibly have made, the close knit community that is its secret to success, has also proven to be ours. The parents are overwhelmingly supportive of the school, its programs and their children. Our daughter has been at the school since first grade (now almost ready to start fourth) and her experiences have been exceptionally positive, aiding in her development as a student and as a person. In her first year she had Mrs Driskill, who helped turn a shy South African girl into a confident, enthusiastic american student. Last year she was lucky enough to get Mrs Chung, who has this amazing ability to connect with all her students on a unique and personal level, no matter how many individuals end up in her room. Every one of these teachers has something special to offer, and is dedicated to providing their students with the best possible all round experience. The support staff is also just that, supportive. Total win.
I can only review Kindergarten, and only Mrs. A's class. I almost shed a tear when my son graduated because she was such a committed teacher. All the kids loved her, all the parents too. The parental involvement is what keeps this school great despite heavy state cuts. I was never there a single day without parents volunteering.
Our son just started kindergarten at Fremont, and so far our experience has been overwhelmingly positive. You can feel that the staff share a common goal with the parents--to have the best learning experience for the students. His kindergarten teacher goes above and beyond her duty and spend her own unpaid time to give each student individualized attention. We certainly feel very fortunate to be a part of Fremont.
This is my 7th year as a parent at Fremont and I love it. The teachers are fantastic and the PTA is wonderful. I know schools are suffering from budget cuts but we are lucky to have so many volunteers in the classroom which helps to allow the teachers to focus on teaching. Also, what other school has a science lab and a computer lab? Not to mention an amazing drama program! It is a wonderful, nurturing school, with approachable teachers and down to earth parents. My children have been fully supported, and any concerns I have had have been dealt with immediately. The teachers and the school address bullying, and have even implemented the Peacebuilders program to teach the students about what bullying is and the importance of acting kindly and respectfully. I would not want my kids at any other school!
I have been a parent at Fremont School for 10 years. It is true that it is suffering due to budget cuts like most schools. The impact has been considerably softened because of a professional staff and an amazing community. The PTA continues to be amongst the best and has not only increased volunteerism, but has continued to fund the Science and Technology labs and has recently started funding teacher aides. They have additionally funded technology upgrades in every classroom in an effort to help the teachers face the challenges of increased class size and decreased budgets. Fremont continues to be the among the best in the district.
While I've had some very positive experiences with this school's community prior to the 2011/2012 school year, what I witnessed this year is that the school is experiencing great difficulty in dealing with the state budget cuts. I will be shocked if the school remains at a "10" after this school year. If it does, then this rating system is flawed. Fremont may have been a jewel within the public school system of Long Beach, but this doesn't fit at this time. AND I hope that it can return to what I've heard it was.
My son went to this school for two years. We loved it his first year and hated it his second year. We made the decision to homeschool because of how he was being treated. He was regularly picked on and on occasion was even beaten up. At the time we thought our son had autism but his teacher didn't believe us (he was later diagnosed with high function autism). Her attitude was that if he would just stop being so weird and make some friends that he wouldn't get picked on or have the other kids hurt him. One day he was pushed down, punched repeatedly, and choked. The two boys involved got pink slips. I never got a call to tell my what happened to my son who was in the 3rd grade. This school does have a lot going for it. But it wasn't a good fit for us.
Fremont school is AMAZING! I'm in 4th grade now and this school is totally gate. The teachers are awesome, the programs Fremont provides are excellent. And is healthy, for it has a Days of Taste program, which teaches me to be careful of what I eat, also it has a SALAD BAR! For all of you parents out there I hope you attend your kids here. GO FREMONT FALCONS!