My daughter is in SI kinder. I'm blown away by how amazing Alvarado is. Her reading and writing skills have improved tremendously and is now completely bilingual. The kids are also exposed weekly to science, art class, computer class, music, gardening and outdoor education, etc. It's amazing all the extra programs this school offers, the festivals, fairs and events are also really fun and great for the community. The PTA is amazing and parents are very involved and supportive. We haven't even been here for one year and already feel part of a strong, diverse and loving community. Both principals are wonderful, and the teachers are so inspiring. We are so lucky that we got into our first choice, very thankful for being part of Alvarado.
I am not sure where the previous reviewer draws his or her information, but Alvarado is not at an all time PTA membership low. That's silly. Moreover the PTA raised as much money as ever last year - money that translates into a wealth of excellent enrichment and remedial programs, including extra literacy and math tutoring for large segments of the school population.
Have doubts? Look at how Alvarado's test scores have come in over the past several years.
No school is without issues. Decisions about how to integrate and manage the after school program left some people bitter and anxious to criticize the whole community (I wonder if that is reflected in certain reviews). There are questions about "smart" kids being under-served as attention is steered primarily to kids that need more help - but I would say this has improved as well. And no, the two most distinct "communities" are not completely integrated. Welcome to the human race. But nor are there giant chasms between us.
Alvarado is a happy place with a caring, diverse community and a positive energy, and the school continues to improve and perform exceedingly well academically. We feel lucky to be there.
There isn't much of a community feeling or welcoming environment at Alvarado anymore. It is at an all time PTA membership low and the parent leadership is not very responsive. There's been a sad shift in the population and sadly there's fewer of us volunteers willing to deal with the obstacles to do anything anymore. Hopefully in two years things will turn around as I think PTA term limits have limits.
Jilma Ortiz is an incredible teacher and one of the highlights of my kids experience at Alvarado. She is the perfect combination of caring, dedicated and firm and brings out the absolute best in all of her students.
My two boys went through the Spanish immersion program at Alvarado and I couldn't have been happier with their experience as well as ours as a family. Wonderful dedicated teachers, diverse and engaged community, and really nice kids.
Strong Spanish-immersion program with very dedicated and inspired/inspiring teachers. Very diverse but divided community. It is hard to bring together such different groups: Spanish-speaking, low-income immigrant families who are struggling to survive in SF and the very wealthy Noe Valley homeowners who seek out the school because of its proximity to their million dollar homes or desire for Spanish immersion. (Yes, there are many families in between who often serve as a sort of "glue"...) Brand new principal and assistant principal seem out of their depth and haven't yet earned the respect of teachers and parents, but that may come with time.
Hay my name is Camille Personius and i am in 7th grade and i went to this school. It is a grate school for kids to learn and it has grate teachers as well, i would have never know the things i know now if i had not gone to this school.
Alvarado Elementary School has teachers that focus on students with a higher ability and ones that may need more help. Alvarado has a Spanish immersion program which is excellent and really improved my daughters spanish, as well it has an english program too. Two things that I would tell everyone about is the art room with Ms. Tremblay and the computer lab with Mr. Bianchi. In art they do clay to drawing and everything in between. Overall when my daughters graduate from Alvarado, no mater what happens to them I know they will always remember this school.
Alvarado is an amazing school. The students treat each other kindly, the parents are incredibly involved, committed participants and fundraisers, and the teachers are dedicated, talented and top-notch educators. We love Alvarado!