Unfortunately the new principal has sunk this school. He is extremely difficult to talk to and spends a great deal of effort to avoid talking with parents one on one. He does not appear to have concern for individual students. He is dismissive, and I found him not truthful. The class sizes are extremely large. Some programs like the music and theatre are wonderful.
This is one of the worst schools I have ever been to. Some reviews say the academics are too rigorous. Those people must have the minds of some primitive cave man! There is little to no homework, and a very small percentage of teachers are reasonable and expand from the moneyless void Common Core brought them into. The administrators are not helpful with conflicts, they simply give you a detention or Friday school (it's like a longer detention that's worse and is before suspension). If you want the real math experience or a decent science class, or any class for that matter high in quality and expectations, you'd best scrimp and save for private school!!
Well i am a 6th grader at Dana and it has been a really good experience. My teachers will take you for after school tutoring if you need it. They try to work with your schedule, and they keep your children well behaved. So I recommend this school very much. It will give your child a challenge.
Fifith grade is not too young for the middle school experience at Dana! They rise to the challenge quickly. Each of my kids at this school have had mostly innovative, wonderful educators. Science is disappointing (not hands-on, just textbook), and rotates weeks with physical education. Students get only one elective (non-core) class for the entire year (art, music, drama OR tech). No foreign language, sports, or elective choices on a semester basis. This is probably budget- and testing-related, but sadly, it results in less well-rounded students. The school is doing very well with incorporating student technology in the classroom. When attending orientation and open-house events, it was assumed we knew how things worked here, but we were new to the area. For those not coming from one of the feeder schools, attending the parent association meetings is the best way to meet some wonderful, energetic parents at Dana and to get information. Overall, a pretty great school considering the confines of being in the San Diego public school system!
My son is now in 6th grade at Dana and I really don't have one good thing to say about this school. The student to teacher ratio is ridiculous. They push the online correspondence yet it is not updated so it is little to no help. If your child is having any issues regardless of what they are and you need to speak to a councilor or teacher, GOOD LUCK. Both my younger children will not attend this school!
Both of my children went here. The teachers were hard working and fair. Both my kids were in music/band - the teacher had his favorites which was hard to swallow at times. Their school trip to Sacramento was great. The principle was engaged and the parent volunteers were amazing.
Our second child has just finished his 5th grade year at Dana and we are dreading 6th grade. I wish there was an alternative available to us. While we have found the academics to be fairly rigorous the delivery and the homework are not developmentally appropriate for the age of the students. Dana's staff and administration seems to think these kids can handle six teachers a day and two hours of homework a night. Unless you have a personal connection with a teacher forget about them responding to questions or comments. We continue to search for viable alternatives-it sickens my husband and I to think of another year of the same.
i cannot say enough about how great this school is. the campus culture by staff, students, and parents is amazing. we've had teachers initiate contact with us when they are concerned about something AND to tell us how great our child is doing! (how often does that happen?!) whenever we have had to approach counselors, principal, vp, teachers, etc. about a problem---they are attentive and caring with their follow through. the opportunities our two kids have experienced here are unique to 5th & 6th graders in San Diego. Dana operates as a middle school with electives such as band, orchestra, jazz, guitar, chorus, musical theater, drama, spanish, computers, and video production. they're in a protected environment where kids stay younger/innocent longer before moving to jr. high. no school is perfect though. it makes me sad to see some have had a rough experience here. check for yourself! www.danamiddle.com