My daughter was being manipulated and bullied by a friend "girl drama / mean girl" stuff. I emailed the VP on a Saturday and the next day this mean girl was brought into the office. Fortunately, she left the school that week, to go bully someone else. I was amazed how fast it was dealt with.
Emerson deserves 9 stars and I am tired of people being skeptical and judging because there are some yellow buses out front. Emerson is a great school. The work will prepare them for high school and college. My 6th grader has to analyze literature, prepare lab reports. Much more analytical and difficult than my friends children who attend a few progressive schools that start with "W" and a local common French school. I wonder if they are paying for camp or what?!?! The homework load is not light, but the kids want to learn and the school is not cliquy and teaches how to get along with many types of people. I know my child is being prepared for her future. Sometimes I think is the work too traditional or too structured. But she works hard to succeed. I actually can't believe this is free education, she's getting so much more than at a private school.
Kids come first at ECC. Do I wish that the academics were stronger, sure but kids are learning, and they love it? Teachers, for the most part, are committed and love these children. Children are active and parents care. We left ECC happy, the Speech and Debate program and ESA are worth it. Kids learn about being people in the world.
This school could be great but is unfortunately mediocre at best. 6th grade was OK. The 7th grade teachers are mostly really terrible. The vice principal is a wonderful person, and I wish she was running the place. The principal is no good and has his own agenda. My kid is in the "SAS" program which is supposedly an honors/gifted curriculum, and he is NOT challenged enough. If you are able, look elsewhere - mainly for better teachers.
I can't say enough good things about this school. The school offers so many great opportunities for the students. My only complaint is that it's not possible for my child to take advantage of them all. Our whole family went to see the musical production even though our daughter wasn't in it. The auditorium was packed. So nice to see all the kids come out to support their friends. And it was an amazing production. So much talent. I hear the students help build the sets and make the costumes. And I saw students running the light cues and sound board. They really learn how a theater operates. Also, the robotics students went on a field trip to the UCLA engineering labs two weeks ago. And the 8th grade history teacher had her students do a moot court with a real Superior Court Judge volunteering and parent lawyers helping the students prepare their arguments. I wish I could go back to middle school.
Some teachers are better than others and my kids have clicked with some and not others. But one of the great lessons of school is learning how to succeed even when you don't like the teacher or you don't think the teacher is the best. But there are teachers that my daughter didn't like that I still thought were great teachers. This year, 8th grade, my daugher loves all her teachers. So great.
It really depends on the student and not the teacher. The accelerated math classes are tougher and will have more homework. But it comes down to how well your child was prepared for middle school. Some kids come in well-prepared. Others spend the first semester just learning how to manage their time.
My daughter has told me several stories about students reporting issues to the principal or teachers before they become an actual problem. I feel the school creates an environment where students trust teachers and administrators and feel comfortable talking to them honestly.