My child is in his second year at Community, and we couldn't be happier with all that he has learned/is learning! CMCS is an ethnically and socioeconomically diverse community, which is hard to find in LA, but the school is small enough to be protected and nurturing. The principal, teachers, and staff are truly caring, wonderful individuals and we've made good friends here, as has our child. Our child is incredibly happy. One downside is that the aftercare is not robust as it is at other schools - it is supervised babysitting, there is no STAR program. As well, students come from all over the city, so playdates can be challenging. But given all of the pluses here, those are small things.
My first son graduated and went to Walter Reed IHP. He is highly gifted and new school teacher said he has been well prepared by his elementary school. He said CMCS (Community Magnet Charter School) is best school ever. All the kid whom I have met are very proud of their school. I love this school. I love all the teachers I have ever met. My second son is still in the school and he is doing good, too. CMCS is best school in LAUSD.
As a parent of 3 students at this school, I can say that we have one of the best schools in LAUSD. We are so lucky to have a diverse student body and a wonderful staff of hard working and loving teachers. Every school has to fund raise - ours just works extra hard at it.
Community provides my child with opportunities that simply do not exist at other public elementary schools in Los Angeles. For my child to be able to attend a school where they are not only exposed to kids from different parts of the city, but from all different cultures, is amazing. And although LAUSD continues to cut back on funding -- most schools have lost librarians, P.E. Coaches, and art teachers -- Community has an enrichment block built into their schedule so that students get a daily dose of some "extra" taught by specialists: dance, drama, art, music, Spanish, computers/technology, P.E., and library. I'm not a test scores person, but if that is your thing, Community has that going for it as well. The campus is beautiful, and from the moment you walk in the front door, you are made to feel welcome. What more could you ask for?
I think this school has excellent things to offer: the diversity of students, the involvement of parents, the openness of the principal to parent ideas and input, the quailty of teachers and instruction, etc. I have met many wonderful parents and made great friends here. My son's teacher uses a smart board and laptop every day. Both my children went to this school and I feel blessed that they got to experience such an excellent learning environiment with children from all over the city and from various backgrounds-- a great way to learn respect and tolerance!
Its like the Emperors new clothes. We heard so many great things, yet the progams that we thought we would get ,such as band,drama and Spanish are just not good have been cut. Parents are expected to fund raise for teachers that they have little say about hiring. The Principal hires her friends and there is no review of these classes. Parents cant help with any of these things, they are seen as an ATM for the schools staff. The teaching in the class room is great, bit really no different from any LAUSd school at this point. Other than that there are laptops..but,wait, the teachers dont check them out to teach with. Dont think there is something extra. There just isnt. The only extra is an extra heap of homework designed to keep parents in line with task after task and an extra helping of guilt on the kids if one chooses to let a kid just play after school. Additionally with the long bus ride and lawless,but expensive afterschool program, trying to find after school classes to balance a childs interests becomes very hard. The parents are so spread out that no one knows each other. The principal makes it impossible for parents to get to know each other.
So far, so good! Our family feels very fortunate to have won the lottery and gotten into this very special school. The teachers and staff are filled with passion and are invested in the students. The grounds are out of this world! Spanish, PE, drama, art, computers, music are a part of the weekly curriculum. Like all public schools there is a gap between what is state funded and what is community funded. The fundraising element seems wholly balanced for realities of budgets issues. The fact that every class has its own dedicated TA is almost unheard of in this day and age. As far as feeling a sense of community, you get what you give. When you invest your time and reach out you are met with like mined, driven teachers, staff and parents.