Both of my daughter attended this elementary school from Pre-K to 5/6. Being a public elementary school, my daughter really enjoyed attending the school, loved their teachers, - who are really caring and help my daughters achieve their best. Most of the staff and teacher are very friendly and care for the student at San Jose Street School and are committed to maximizing individual student performance, inspiring students interest and instilling a sense of self-worth among all students. As a parent one of the most important components to your child's education is being involved and building a relationship with your child's teacher, be it volunteering in the classroom, doing things from home or just donating items to the classroom. We as parents must work along side the teachers to make sure our kids are staying on track and working with them when they need that extra support.
Reading other postings regarding bullying was very upsetting that this school allowed this type of behavior to occur on school campus! The Principal, teachers and yard duty staff all need to take a seminar class/meeting on bullying. This behavior is not acceptable nor should it be tolerated without facing some serious consequences.
This school is big disappointment to me and my son. This school did not help him when he was bullied over months in schoolyard. He was called bad names and was told he was weird and stupid by kids that have no right saying this. My child felt very bad about himself and is not trusting toward others because others were not responded to his complaints. He felt that the teachers did not care about him or hear him. It is very sad to see my child hating school and he is good studnt.
We are in regular school and are extremely disappointed and very upset. Some of the teacher are good, but we experience a lot of bullying and nasty talk. Some of the playground personal should not be working with kid since they have no skills at handling kids and the problems coming along with them. My child is so happy the school year is over.
My son has been in the San Jose Highly Gifted Magnet program now for 3 years. The program is a great place for kids that have the gift or ability to excel. They can be themselves and not be labeled and really get the education they deserve. We were told up front how things work in terms of the special programs and that parents are asked to donate to fund them. Yes, not all parents can afford it, and for those who can, they do give a more. You couldn't buy this kind of education at a private school. My son hangs out on the playground after school for about 3 hours daily and has gotten along with all the kids especially the regular "home school" kids, I have not had an issue in 3 years. We are grateful for the Highly Gifted Program because the teachers really care and provide a wonderful learning experience and environment. Just as important is the other staff members from the principal to the cafeteria folks, the ladies in the front office to the Beyond the Bell coordinators. I as a parent would encourage anybody to visit the school and talk to the kids like my wife and I did originally and you will see wonderful, well balanced kids flourishing in a wonderful environment.
I have children in both the Highly Gifted Magnet and in the regular school. Before we visited, my daughter (just finishing 2nd grade) very firmly told me she was *not* changing schools. On the way home from our tour she told me she'd changed her mind and she would like to go to San Jose HGM. That's how amazing the Magnet program is. (I was also blown away by the kids, teachers, and program at this school.) This year my son started Kinder. We enrolled him in the regular school. I have nothing but good to say about his amazing teacher as well. Other parents have said the campus is grubby. It isn't. It is a typical LAUSD school. In fact, it is cleaner and nicer than both our home school and the school where I teach. It is in a nice little residential neighborhood. Other parents have said the board decides on the extras. That's not true either. The teachers decide what they want, and the Booster Club just figures out how to pay for it. The HGM teachers are *amazing* and go above and beyond for these kids. They are always willing to talk or e-mail. After 2 years in the magnet, I am crossing my fingers that my son is HG because we aren't ready to leave. The school is great!
My child has been very happy at San Jose Highly Gifted Magnet these past two years. When she first tested HG I looked at a bunch of Gifted schools. Most of them made me feel like my child was smart so she could do more work. Then we visited San Jose HGM and it felt like "Your child is smart, so we can do all this other great stuff." They go on a bunch of wonderful field trips: to an adobe, to the Skirball, to JPL, to a nature hike, to City Hall, etc. They have done forensic science and studied DaVinci. They have sung with the LA Opera and put on Shakespeare plays (where the kids designed their own costumes). They have book clubs in class where the kids can discuss novels of their choice. They do Lego Robotics. They even do yoga to help with stress during state testing! So, yeah, the Booster Club does ask for money to help pay for those things, but it is less than some other schools ask, and it is totally worth it. The Booster Club even managed to replace old lap tops and buy ipads this year. My daughter is now more tech savvy than I am. Plus, the teachers are all specially trained to deal with the needs of these kids, and they all work together. SJHGM is a gem of a school.
I have had three kids go through this school, one is still there. There are some really terrific teachers and my oldest daughter was blessed to have many of them as teachers. The Pre-K program is top notch! However, my second child had some bad experiences and the school kept a teacher around who was simply there collecting a paycheck and not teaching. Since Mrs. Shambra left the school has declined. I was not a big fan of hers, but she sure cared about the school and loved the kids. She knew every student by name and greeted parents and students at the gate every morning and afternoon. The current principal is cold and uninvolved. The neighborhood is declining and there have been MANY lockdowns this school year. If my child was not so emotionally involved and happy at the school we would go elsewhere. But luckily we only have a little bit left. This school use to be fantastic, lets see if it can rally! I do agree that the school caters to Spanish speaking families and we are Spanish.
My daughter attended this school for a little over 2 years. The first year and a half I was happy with my daughters education. She has a learning disability and struggles to keep up. her 3rd grade teacher worked really hard with her. Unfortunately, this school does have a bullying problem and the yard duty staff tend to look the other way. I pulled my daughter out the school half way through the 5th grade because my daughter was being bullied daily and when her teacher made fun of her in class, I was fed up. Its bad enough for kids to be bullied by other kids, but when the teachers starts bullying too. its wrong.
We are in the highly gifted magnet and have found a clearer picture of the varying opinions. The 5th grade class was extremely large, 31-33 students. Several with behavior problems. That is too many students for one teacher to handle, and affected more than half the students negatively. These parents are rightly unhappy. We, in the 4th anf 2/3rd grades have been lucky with class sizes around 20-22 all year. A difference of 10-11 kids (some with behavior issues) can make the world of difference to any class. The Grade 2/3/4 parents seem happy, the 5th grade parents-not. Caution to incoming parents: it will depend upon enrollment and the make-up of students to really determine the quality of the experience. All other comments about being pressured to donate are true. Small grungy school is also true. Unless parent pays extra, there would not be some of the extras. I also would prefer my students spend much more time in class with teacher, not taking neuroscience, drums and other things not very fun. Ms Garcia's 4th grade play the last week of school was AWESOM--we need much more of that! We pray the enrollment for next year stays small so our kids can keep enjoying it.
Main reasons we recommend the highly gifted: 1. Amazing teachers who go way beyond run-of-the-mill topics. They keep working parents in touch by email 2. Fun student-led projects done in class, not at home by parents 3. Less homework, quality more than busywork, so we have time for sports, music. Most kids at San Jose play musical instruments. 4. Mostly well-rounded kids who consider "nerd" a compliment. 5. Interesting extra classes we're more than willing to pay for. We like some more than others but there's something for everyone. Let's hear it for the active parents who make this happen. 6. The campus is grungy, but the program is much better than private school we had, minus the huge tuition and constant fundraising. Overall, a great move. My child's very happy.
Our magnet experience has not bee that great either. The teachers are very nice and we like them a lot. Tthe program leaves a lot to be desired. We came from a larger school where there was music, PE and other offerings. At the magnet school, parents are pressured to donate money to pay for everything as extra fees. A small, very active, board makes all the decisions on how the money is spent, planned from the previous year, mostly. Some of the extra programs were a waste of class time, I would prefer my child spend more time with the wonderful teacher and let the teacher plan extra activities. I did not realize that the main school pays for things like music and PE - NOT! So the smaller school has much less to offer. Fewer yard supervisors because of cutbacks makes bullying a problem. Overall, disappointing.
My son has been attending SJ Highly Gifted Magnet for part of 4th grade this year, and we've been nothing more than impressed. The teachers are knowledgeable, patient and they truly understand the special needs of the highly gifted. We've felt welcome by the administration and parents from the first day. My son has finally started making friends and doesn't feel ostracized for being a science/math/chess kid. Yes, the school is short-staffed like every other school at LAUSD, but any issues we've had have been addressed immediately and satisfactorily. Yes, the magnet asks for money from the school to pay for enrichment programs, but the amount is half at what we paid at our previous "distinguished" school, and I actually know where it's going to - not new playground equipment and fancy smartboards, but to actual classes for the kids (this year, Shakespeare, yoga, neuroscience and the like). Most parents pay. Some can't. Just like at all schools. And there are no fundraisers (where the school usually gets a fraction of the money that comes in). My son and my family are extremely happy with San Jose HGM.
Extraordinary! Better than the best money can buy but at a public school. I cannot believe San Jose Highly Gifted Magnet was a LAUSD program. I am not sure why Los Angeles does not use this program to showcase what they are doing. All the talk about Charter schools and different programs and yet we found out about this program after three months of research. San Jose Highly gifted is a gem. We are so fortune that our daughter was accepted into the program! Coming from one of the top home schools we were hesitant at first. The drive and leaving a great home school people were fighting to get into. But we know we found the right match after the first week. The program transformed a shy kid into a chatter box of knowledge. What a difference a right setting can make.
I'm fascinated with the plurality of opinions of the Highly Gifted Magnet expressed here. It just proves that good schools are about good fit. We've been at San Jose for two years and my child could not be happier with the engaging and challenging work, the kids who relate, and the extra classes, some of which parents also paid for at his previous school and some of which are new, like neuroscience. I hear they'll get opera next year. I would just like to point out that in almost every public school in LA, parents now have to fundraise for PE, arts and "enrichment" classes, and many families to not contribute elsewhere as well. Last I heard, 80% of the San Jose Magnet families donated this year. My husband and I are happy to give what we can, so that ALL the children in our child's class can participate and so that we don't have to sell chocolates, go to MacDonald's, or do a different fundraiser every few weeks, but most importantly, so our child gets a great, diverse education!
The San Jose Highly Gifted Magnet Program is providing our son with a GREAT education. We feel that he is getting an education beyond the typical LAUSD curriculum which helps to expand and contribute to his capabilities. The variety of programs such as Shakespeare, world drums, yoga, field trips are wonderful. We were always having to supplement his learning because he was at least 2 years ahead of his peers, now we can focus on alternative learning techniques and let him be more of a typical 9 year old boy. I am happy to be an advocate for this program and what it provides to other families that have a child that needs this program.
We are so happy with the San Jose Elem Magnet program. With her high academic capacity and low social skills, our daughter was struggling at our resident school. Her previous teachers focused on her challenging behaviors and she received very little feedback on her accomplishments. At this school, the teachers, administrators and other staff put forth the effort to nurture her strengths. Now she has a good time at school, and she is learning in a way that will serve her well for a lifetime. If your child qualifies for this program, you must give it a try.
I am completely convinced that my nine year old son is rewceiving the best education he has ever ecperienced at San Jode Highly Gifted Magnet.. I'm so happy that he was accepted into this program, as we Ifind it to be just the educational experience we ( his parents ) were hopiong for for our gifted child.
Things that were horrible about this school, and why we left: 1. The principal is inexperienced and makes bad judgements. For example, during the summer the school decided to "do away" with the 1-grade level acceleration of math because of a sudden influx of new students (over 50% of class were new) due to a change in policy. Instead of informing parents of the situation she simply implemented her decision - lowering the standard - without consultation and without warning. 2. Health and Social Studies subjects are only taught "once in a while" (maybe once or month). They do not follow the standard curriculum for these subjects, as they are not "core" subjects like language arts and math. 3. Science is taught through "Mad Science" or video, and not by the teacher. This sounds GREAT, except that 'Mad Science' does not provide the basics for a strong foundation in this subject. 4. The music program is unsatisfactory. The students are forced to learn how to play a recorder - and the kids in all grade levels actually get the same lesson year after year, to accomodate for new students. 5. The shakespeare is inappropriate as a content for this age group. There is no personal growth
The highly gifted magnet is a gem. All three teachers are amazing -- they present the curriculum (and them some) in a challenging and creative way. The kids are really engaged. And the extra programs sponsored by the Booster Club are first rate.
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