Balboa Magnet far exceeds any expectation of a great school! We love it! If you are looking for a place to send your gifted/high achieving student, you would be blessed to win the lottery and get into this amazing school! The teachers, staff and parents are committed to reaching the needs of these special students. The parent organization raises enough money through direct donations ($350 per student, in a soft ask) and FUNdraising events, to pay the full-time salaries of a Computer Lab Instructor, Vocal Music Teacher, P.E. Coach and Science Lab teacher. All these programs are currently not funded by LAUSD and missed at other neighborhood schools. These enrichment teachers then work in conjunction with the classroom teachers to take a basic grade level education to a deeper level. The teachers attend special gifted and talented continuing education and are passionate about their curriculum and students. Mrs. Davenport, the school principal, is an amazing communicator and has the respect and trust of all the teachers. My son is in 4th grade and every year has loved his teacher and looks forward to school and the classroom projects. If your child is an eager learner this is the place for you!
School cherry picks students based on three-questions on Choices brochure completed by prior school teacher. Test scores don't accurately reflect teacher/admin efforts. Parents do a lot of the sent home projects. In 9 years, I felt my concerns were NEVER addressed by teachers or admin. Agree with "brick wall" comment and 5/22 & 8/27 posts. No transparency. Lots of fundraisers. Annual donation request was $300 per child when we started at school. Now up to $1,000. Parents allowed to make monthly payments. Felt pressured to give. Donor's named published. Do your homework. There are other great area SAS/Magnet programs with responsive teachers and admins. If you are a parent who wants or expects concerns addressed or needs to feel heard, this place can leave you feeling frustrated and helpless. Ask around. Ask if teachers are required to do annual training to stay fresh and grow. Ask for SPECIFIC examples of how admin addresses discipline issues (bullying online and off). Ask how school notifies parents about issues (head lice) that can be costly/rampant/perennial/frustrating when parents are unaware. Ask about carpool safety. Nice office staff.
We had one incredible teacher at Balboa, but that teacher would be a star anywhere. If you are considering Balboa: 1) It's a "10" but the kids are gifted/high ability, so the score is skewed. Students are already 'brighter' than most, i.e., not an accurate reflection of teacher/admin efforts. 2) Teachers may or may not "challenge" your child. Each teacher is different, quality varies. GREATLY. 3) Balboa has over 750 students, four grade levels. If you meet with principal and magnet coordinator, they'll smile, but likely you won't get what you want. 4) Don't even think to request a specific teacher from administration. Again, almost 800 children here; you are talking to the wall. 6) If you and child's teacher are on different wavelengths, tough luck. (You don't like it? Leave, says magnet coord.) 7) If your child has social issues you are on your own. Forget about asking for socialization programs. The focus is competition, not empathy, and 'high academic achievement' is everyone's goal. 8) Playground is scary if your child is at 'psychomotor', recess or after school. Yard aides need to teach conflict resolution, supervision is wanting. Result: This school falls short.
Best school ever! Thank you for the best 5 years of my life! There are no bullies at this school , the kids are as close to angels as they can possibly get! The teachers are amazing, sweet, and they help a lot! So send your kid there to the best elementary school in the world!
This is an exceptional school. The kids work hard and are prepared for middle school. The parent volunteer is above and beyond. The teachers care for the children. Office staff is great too. I can't say enough about this school. My son has been there for 3 years now and he loves it so much!
Balboa Magnet is truly one of a kind. The administrators, teachers, parents, and students work together to create a school that operates in perfect harmony. Students are valued for their individuality, as well as for their unique and creative contributions to the school community. Lifelong learners are cultivated at Balboa thanks to the support of the families and staff. I love being a part of such a hard-working and loving team!
my daughter just graduation from this school. we had a really bad expireince with his 5th grade teacher mrs Convirs....She used to lower my daughter grades until I let her know that she needs to be fair with every child that color and religion..... it's a different topic ... she try to changin but I was counting for the last day of school I hope that we never going to see her again.... not good teacher she has preferents.... too bad....
I loved Balboa. This school definitely helped me excel because of their high standards. I'm not saying middle school was a breeze, but I definitely did not struggle as much as the other kids. Thank you to all my teachers who made my elementary years amazing.
There's a reason that Balboa Maget has ranked number one among LAUSD elementary schools -- it has an excellent teaching staff that's supported by a wonderful principal and administrative team, as well as a very involved parents organization.