It’s really unfortunate that a school system that focuses only book learning, with no effort to set up the students or staff for success, is so bent on growing their franchise, with no effort to foster the students that are currently enrolled to become good citizens or community leaders. I also tend to see quite a bit of favoritism when it comes to the teachers. I have requested from my child’s teacher her weekly plan, which she was kind enough to show me. After coming for the open house this past weekend, there are simply not enough hours in the day for her to get everything done and expect quality – My child’s class has many disruptive students (my child has told me on numerous occasions that it is hard to learn because of other kids in the class), and I’m sure it’s not just in my child’s class.
I have also seen on numerous occasions a rather tall, very inappropriately dressed (kindergarten?) teacher at pick up – long brown hair wearing, on more than one occasion, mini-skirts or a long maxi skirt with a nice view of her undergarments and sandals – really? I didn’t’ want to wait until parent surveys come out because nothing will change until next school year, and since I am currently enrolled, I’d like to see changes made more quickly.
It seems the management, because let’s face it, this is a business, is focused only on the bottom line. I will be considering another education option in the future. I encourage any parent to drop in and see for themselves. Or better yet, sit in the drive through line as said (inappropriately-dressed teacher) yells and screams and runs toward a small child while he stands there with eyes wide open, unsure what to do.
My son has been going to Stratford LG since 2014. He went to Stratford Winchester from 2012-2014.
We love the way Stratford builds the foundation for learning. Besides learning the basics, they study coding, music, sports, Spanish and they have a fantastic STEAM program. Every Friday they have STEAM.
My son is at the end of his second grade year. He is learning pre algebra, can tell you all about the different Greek gods, the anatomy of a plant, how to spell hypothesis and how to code.
The curriculum used is Saxon Math and Shurley English. You can get an idea by reading "What My Second Grader Should Know".
He loves learning. My son has challenges with controlling his energy and his teacher's out of the box thinking has helped him a ton.
As a parent, I am able to volunteer as much as I want. The parent committee has a lot of say, when it comes to the events.
The teachers share pictures on the online class bulletin, so you can see what they are doing.
I love the teachers here! I think there maybe a little disorganization with management, but they don't show it. The principal and assistant are great with the kids.
The after school clubs are amazing! The clubs range from golf, dance, drama, chess, soccer, basketball, etc.
The school grounds are pretty. You can see the Los Gatos Hills.
Overall, I am VERY happy with this school. The cost is higher, but worth it. I wish they had Financial Aid.
Homework takes about 45 min- 1 hour, depending on the mood of my child. I find that the habit of HW makes a difference.
The homework and projects are given with advance notice, so you have enough time to complete the work. There is also a pattern to the HW, so you know what is expected during the week.
They teach students to take responsibility for their actions and learn from their mistakes without having to shame them. They are given second chances and encouraged to problem solve solutions. They are guided during this process.
Stratford is a terrible school system. Focus is far more on growing and making money than on serving children.
-No selectivity: If you can pay, your child is in. Doesn't matter how much of a problem the child is or how disruptive they are to the rest of the class. They are a revenue source, so they stay. I have observed students who are terribly disruptive, but management will not do anything no matter what other parents say. At most, they tell the teacher to just "handle it" and tell parents whatever they need to hear to be quiet and sign up for another year.
I noticed a lot of children of foreigners at the school. I think we immigrants (especially from South Asia and the middle east) have the perception that a private school must be better. Stratford just isn't. They know how to say the right words to make us feel good, but the results are not great.
For example, if you ask about a standardized test or program, Stratford leadership will say they have it - whether they do or not. They will even show you a letter to teachers saying they have to do the program. I compared notes with another parent about promised programs - I was told they had certain programs i had inquired about. He was told they had programs he had inquired about. Stratford can't be doing both programs - they are alternatives to each other. Turned out Stratford actually did neither program - they just promised it and told the teacher to say they were doing it.
I also had a talk with the teacher about all of the activities/classes management had said my child would attend. I couldn't figure out how she could squeeze in all of those things into the school day. I finally asked the teacher show me her weekly plan. It was packed full (and I am impressed she could do so much), but there simply weren't enough hours in a week to do all the programs that were committed. She finally admitted she just tried to do the best she could and had to let a lot slide (unless someone was asking about it specifically). I really felt sorry for the teacher. Management had set her up so there was no way to win.
I think the underlying problem is Stratford's key focus is on growth. They add campuses far faster than they can manage. As soon as they get more kids signed up, they open a new school. It is all about making money from foreigners.