The Middle School is clearly run like a business, instead of a school - with the focus on revenue generation and "academic reputation". This does not foster a welcoming learning envirnonment for the students. The principal can best be described as the ultimate politician. It is very clear that he is not concerned with the well-being of your child. He is more concerned with checking the boxes of his chartered "mission". I find similar traits throughout the teaching and support staff. While there are some caring teachers, it is clear that others cannot be bothered if you have a child that needs some individual attention. The transition process between the lower school and middle school can best be described as abysmal. Additionally, you will never have any idea what is going on in terms of activities because the staff simply does not communicate them. Their expectation is that your 12 year child will all of a sudden become super responsible - as if they are an adult. If you have a typical 12 year old child, you will know that this notion is ridiculous. The bottom line here is if you have an alternate choice you should consider it once you get past Grade 5.
We are so pleased with our choice of Francis Parker. Our children are challenged, engaged and motivated as a result of Parker's rigorous, project-based curriculum. The kids here are exceptionally bright and capable, and the parents and teachers form a supportive community. Parker's facility is second to none and its college placement record is incredibly. We can't imagine a better place for our kids.
This is an excellent school. My daughter graduated 2 years ago and my son is currently a senior. The teachers are caring and helpful to both of my kids. My daughter looks back at her time at Parker with great fondness. She's still in touch with her teachers. The course work is rigorous which will prepare them for college. We will miss Parker when my son graduates next year.
Truly an amazing school. Every teacher my kids have come in contact with at the school have truly had something valuable to add to my children's education. The school certainly isn't for everyone, but if you have a child interested in learning and exploring opportunities, this is the place. Tuition is very high, but at this school, they deliver on their promises. Parker is not a fa ade. The academic environment and love of learning at the school is the real deal.
I have 2 children at FP; middle school and high school. I feel quite the opposite of reviewers who have said it's about what you wear and how much you have. I have really never experienced that nor have my children. They have friends from many parts of SD County. We chose this school over Bishop's because of the low profile that money has in the school environment. In addition, it is a very diverse group of kids; socio-economic, ethnic, academic. I feel that it is an accepting environment of all types of kids. The academics are very good, but kids do not seem overwhelmed with homework. Teachers are extremely available for students after school or even later via email.
Parker is a gem, offering the best of all worlds in a private education. The arts, athletics and enveloping academics offer every student a chance to grow. Our kids are different from each other, yet all love Parker. More importantly, they are being challenged and rewarded every day with an enriching, world-class education.
My experience at Parker has been absolutely phenomenal. There are so many opportunities to get involved with the community, take a wide variety of academic coursework, participate in athletics (both competitively and recreationally), and to join one of the many clubs and extracurricular activities available at Parker. To address the comments on grade inflation and getting into top tier schools: I know personally people who are going to Harvard, MIT, Stanford, Duke, Yale, Columbia, Cal Tech, Johns Hopkins, Rice and the list goes on. I feel that even though the students tend to be wealthy and some are very wealthy, your family's socio-economic group does not factor in at all to how the Parker students will accept you. I chose Parker over LJCD and Bishops because I felt that to be much more prevalent there. Also one thing that I really like is that there are not really cliques, and there is certainly not a "popular group." Everyone hangs out with everyone and no one really judges. The food at Parker is also really good; everything is made in out cafeteria and the ingredients are from local farmers. This stimulates the local economy and gets us fresh, great tasting food.
Probably worst school ever. The leadership was lost after Mrs. Ostos left. Now it's Mr. Lang who is a terrible dean, followed by Mrs. McKenna. None of the teachers are even good and they pressure too much and treat people differently according to how much money they donate, and their race, it very ridiculous. Mr Lang is the worst though, worst thing that has ever happened to this school PERIOD.
We started at Parker this year and it has exceeded all of our expectations. The quality of teaching is excellent and communication from the teacher is more than we could have hoped for. The school definitely has a community feel and it has been a pleasure getting to know other parents and school officials. I really appreciate the holistic approach to education and nurturing of the person, not just focusing on the academic task or memorization. I am looking forward to many years at the Parker community and feel that my money will be well spent.