GVCS is ok. My child has been there 5 yrs. She hated public school and likes GV ok. The classes are way too large (30) to do much more than manage behavior and my child appears to be falling behind her public school peers, we are supplementing her education so she can transition adequately to high school. It is not a Waldorf school but rather Waldorf "inspired". It is a hybrid between public and waldorf which I think is better as waldorf kids are wonderful but "weird" according to their public school peers much of the time when transitioning to public school. The sense of community is good but administration is cold and the rigid adherence to the over abundance of school rules is ridiculous and leaves parents feeling punatively punished frequently which is beyond annoying. I like that my child isnt stressed by too much homework like her public school peers and that we don't pay a fortune. Immersion spanish is a joke, after 5 years she hasnt learned much and there is a lot of turnover in teachers incl specialty teachers who are clearly frustrated and take it out on the kids. Great for K-2, maybe not for higher grades.
My children have been attending this school for 4 years. They absolutely love school! They have teachers who really consider their well-being. They are gaining so much more than an education: compassion, cooperation and unity. GVCS has an incredible warm, inviting community of teachers, parents and staff who come together to celebrate the children on their educational journey.
This is a great school. I am a parent here now and love that it offers a Waldorf education without the tuition.
We love Golden Valley Charter School! Our daughter is just starting kindergarten, but we already feel so welcome and the teachers are so warm.
Golden Valley Charter School is a Waldorf inspired elementary/middle school. The option to offer a Waldorf education through a public school is a privilege. We are so grateful for the specialty programs offered through Waldorf education, as well as the patient, creative, and dedicated teachers.
Golden Valley is on top of the wave for charter schools in California. It has been on the cutting edge of charter development, with its synthesis of Waldorf methodology to public school delivery and quality of teaching staff and administration; I'm thankful to have had this option for my childrens' schooling. BEST FIELD TRIPS EVER!
My son has attended GVCS since Kindergarten. Our family wanted a school that provides a well-rounded education and was not teaching to the standardized tests. As a previous public school teacher, I personally witnessed subjects being dropped (history, science, etc.) because they were not being assessed by the test. You're child will not be forced to complete monotonous assignments or take continuous quizzes/tests. Instead, children develop a deep understanding of everything they learn. There is plenty of research and personal experience to embrace this wonderful gift we can give to all our kids (i.e. play more outside and be creative at home). I do wish more parents at GVCS embraced this routine at home. My husband and I both come from traditional schools and are very grateful for our son to receive an education that nurtures his mind, heart, and soul. All teachers have a CA teaching credential and have either graduated or are in training to receive their Waldorf teacher credential. Kids get Spanish, music, handiwork, etc. Considering all the programs being cut at public schools, we are very lucky at GVCS! Parents work hard to make sure our kids get the best education possible.
Nothing is perfect, but GVCS is close. Certainly, it is more than just a school. Golden Valley is a community, parents, teachers, and staff working together to develop each student's best self. I cannot fully express how good the school has been for my daughter in the remaining 918 characters, but there's this--I cannot imagine a better place for her. The school challenges her mind while her teacher respects her as a person; it challenges her body while she is in the midst of loving friends; it nourishes her soul. I am so happy that we found Golden Valley Charter School.
My daughter has been attending Golden Valley Charter School since kindergarten and we absolutely love the school! The teachers are amazing. The Waldorf learning methods are perfect for all children. The campus is beautiful. The administrators are friendly. I am so grateful for the school because it has been such an amazing blessing to my daughter and our family. We're always welcome on campus to work in the classroom and more. Thank you for all of the wonderful years, Golden Valley!
This school has CARE down to a science...their mantra should be it takes a village and the community always always puts in 110%...The warmth from the staff is rare; always a hello to all always a smile, always there to help from the tiny problems to the Herculean one and non stopping till answers are found...the time and energy each teacher devotes to each student is a rare gift.
I'm thrilled with my daughter's education at GVCS and at the community within. The teachers, students and parents care for and nourish each other. Students are seen as individuals and treated and taught as such which makes for beautiful, creative, imaginative learning. Not the place to go if you are looking for formulaic, test-driven teaching. But, it is the place to go if you want your child to be taught how to be a life-long learner.
Golden Valley has many wonderful philosophies and ideas, but many are not carried out as promised. The teachers are not fully Waldorf trained and so many of the activities seem chaotic and not the way I would expect them to be. I imagined this school to be peaceful, but the classrooms seem pretty out of control. My child loves the art, music, Spanish, etc, but not how crazy the classroom always is. It looks like we will be returning to our local public school and will be doing the Waldorf activities we love at home instead. Perhaps things would be better if the administration had more time to really get into the classrooms to help teachers be great teachers. The class sizes are just about the same as public schools, too. Volunteering is much lower here than at local public schools, and many families do not follow the low/no media policy - and it would be really hard to enforce that I am sure. Great philosophy and intentions, but they are not being carried out well. I think if you got really lucky and got a phenomenal teacher, things may be alright - but otherwise I would look elsewhere.
As a parent at this school for almost 12 years now, I have watched this school blossom from a small school of less than 75 students to a large campus with over 400 students. Both products of the public school system, my husband & I had our reservations about the relatively non-academic nature of the early grades. However, the proof is in the pudding: After 10 years in this school, my oldest daughter wanted to go to a public high school, where she is in honors classes. She often serves as a class/ project leader in her new school. My younger two daughters, in the 4th & 8th grades, continue to thrive at Golden Valley. Both eagerly complete their homework each night, since it is based on material that they see value in. Finally, as a Math teacher at a public middle school, I get to compare how the two groups of students are learning. Perhaps it is the small class size at GV, the well-established bonds that exist between classmates, or maybe it is the years of experience in 3D rendering that makes the difference, but whatever it is, GV 8th graders work at near college-level in their math; whereas, even the highest math classes in the main stream struggle. A dream school.
My children have been attending Golden Valley for 3 years. My children are completely thriving in this school. They both have teachers who nurture them with love and structure. They are learning Spanish, how to play the flute, paint, sculpt, write, explore mathematics in a living way, garden, handwork, dance, sing and read with passion. Golden Valley has inspired us to be the best parents we can be.
We love Golden Vallley and have had very positive experience for the 5 years that we have been here. We have moved all the way from another state so that the kids could attend this school!!! It is a very warm and nurturing environment.
As a teacher and parent I have been involved with a number of different schools, and I do not hesitate to call Golden Valley a great school. The social atmosphere is warm and supportive, the teachers are dedicated and loving as well as capable, and the school community is a real community - diverse, active, joyful, and cohesive. The school is based upon Waldorf Pedagogy. While the Waldorf education is very effective in developing moral, emotional, and intellectual excellence, it is not everybody's cup of tea. Parents who are primarily concerned with the kind of learning that is best measured by standardized, multiple choice tests may not understand or appreciate this approach, since it is geared to educating the whole child by supporting independent and creative thinking while attending to the education of the heart and will as well. I recommend that parents become aquainted with the Waldorf philosophy, visit the school, and think deeply about the meaning a purpose of education. Golden Valley will support your child's growth into the person he or she is meant to be.
Our family's involvement at GV has truly been life-changing. However, based on the reviews here, it is not for everyone. If you are opposed to providing a life for your child outside of school that is rich in literature, physical activity, communication, and positive discipline then you may have difficulty in this community. If, however, you are sincerely attempting to give your child an education (both in and out of school) that is rich in arts, media free, and focused on the growth of the whole child, then this is the place for you. Be prepared for positive change.
This school is like a daycare... This school's teacher : Non-Talk to parents regularly about their children's progress. Non-Challenge students to learn. Non-Give students the attention they need to thrive in class This school's principal : Non-Reach out to parents. Non-Listen to and answer questions from parents and students. Non-Make efforts to improve the quality of the school. Staff : Rude.
I do not think the review posted 1/21/12 is written by parent. It must be done by schools staff prior to the enrollment season. I do agree with the negative review dated 5/4. The teachers and atmosphere of the school are COLD. Seriously involved parents have noticed them and pulled their children out from the school. Fake smiles and empty curriculums by dreamers. The reality is NO homework because of lazy teacher. Very poor disorganized leadership in classes. Parents are very much unaware both of low academic achievement and teaching the philosophical basis by no-proven-science / songs / verses in this publicly funded school.
My child went to this school from K through 8 and I would do it all over again in a heartbeat! I wish every child could have this experience. Those who have trouble with the admin staff probably do not know the constraints of state rules and regulations, nor do they understand the realities of budgets, and are likely demanding and unreasonable in other areas of their lives. If you truly care about your child(ren) please go to a parent meeting, meet the staff, and do a Walk through the Grades. Your child will be known for who the are, respected, guided, and loved.
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The Community Rating is the school’s average rating from its community members (e.g., parents, students, and school staff). The highest possible rating is five stars; the lowest is one star.
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