My school is Yick Wo Elemetary. It is a wonderful school. The teachers and staff are great and supportive. The students really enjoy learing and being part of the school community.
Yick Wo is a gem among SF public schools. It's small size is an asset. It has only 2 classes per grade in the lower levels, and because of it's small size, everyone knows everyone. All the teachers, coaches, and principal know my kids. I was first impressed with the school when I went for a tour: kids were actively engaged in learning math, science, music, and opera but weren't having to sit at their desks all day. Kids and teachers were so engaged in what they were doing that no one noticed our group observing them. Student-created art lines the hallways and is impressive. This is a late start school (9:30), and there is no before school option on campus. It's also very neighborhood-centric. There are limited-none extra-curricular options compared to other SF public schools. It partners with SF Opera, SF Ballet, and has a resident poet for half the year.
Outstanding Special Ed program! The principal is incredibly supportive of the Special Ed Program and the Special Ed teacher and staff are outstanding. I absolutely LOVE this school and my son is making huge improvements. Thank you Wick Yo and your amazing staff!
Yick Wo is a secret gem. The school is very small and its size creates a real sense of community. Everyone involved with the school, teachers, parents, administrative staff and students come to know each other well and to look out for one another. There is a strong emphasis on mentoring younger kids by the older kids through reading programs, math and a Peace Keeper program where the older children learn to mediate disputes between their younger peers. The warm, supportive environment encourages kids to develop their interests in multiple directions and the strong parent involvement and PTO bring opportunities into the school that other elementary schools lack. All classes take frequent field trips around the city and the bay area. Some of the special programs the children enjoy are: Opera with the SF Opera, Dance with SF Ballet, a Poetry program, an Orff music teacher, a Choral music teacher, Playworks (a program teaching organized play, co-operation and teamwork), PE, Art, Chess Club taught by a Grand Master from the Mechanic's Institute and this year they will have a Newspaper Club. The teachers are wonderful. The Principle is exceptional. I wish it extended through high school!
Yick Wo is a wonderful school!! It's our neighborhood school and was fortunate to be ale to attend. I tell everyone that it may be small but it has such a tight community of parents that are so involved that it makes it such a wonderful school. I read a comment that said that the principle is not experienced. I beg to differ. She has yet to display anything that is less than satisfactory. She goes way beyond of what I would expect. With her and the staff, they are great to the kids. The kids have fun and have fun learning and that because of the staff.
Yick Wo is simply a wonderful school. The principal is truly your "pal" .. you might remember that from spelling class when you were a child. Stephanie Young does an amazing job managing the school especially with tightened budgets and the parent organization is run by surfer dude Chris who is tremendous. Both are energetic, engaged and lead with their hearts and minds. Our daughter finished kindergarten last year with Mr Steve, THE BEST TEACHER any parent can hope for. The school did not "close" as described in prior review, the school moved for a year to a temporary location a couple blocks away while the campus is being refurbished. We feel blessed to be at Yick Wo and lucky to have gotten in.
Yick Wo is a small school with dedicated teachers (many have been there for eons) and a smart principal focussed on improving teacher collaboration and raising academic standards. If there's one thing that Yick Wo suffers from is discontinuity. It's confusing as a child (and parent) as the teaching philosophy, grading and expectations changes with every teacher. One teacher is all creativity and social emotional, the next back to basics, the next a really hard academically, kids end up feeling unprepared and the parents wonder: "hey, I thought my child was an A student, what happened?" The new focus on teacher collaboration and high expectations will hopefully create a clearer culture but it's hard to make changes with teachers who have had reasonable success. All in all these are good problems -- since it already offers kindness and conscientious focus on learning. There's art, music, and the PE coach who mentors many of the less academic boys. The one sour note is Playworks -- a 30K program paid for by the PTO -- that controls recess with a humorless fixation on rules, limiting free play and real physical exertion. Maybe it's the coach, but it doesn't work.
Yick Wo has lost its special feeling over the past two years. The new Principal is not experienced and it shows. The school is closing next year for at least one year and maybe more years and parents have not received any details on how this will affect their children. It still has several excellent teachers and overall is a good school. There is still less than one hour a week for PE but Coach Robinson is great with the kids.
Yick Wo gives public schools a great name! It is a small neighborhood school with a wonderfully diverse student population. The principal is enthusiastic and responsive; the teachers are excellent and foster a love of learning; there are many very involved parents who raise funds for programs like SF Opera partnership, SF Ballet partnership, art classes, Playworks, PE and more. The only thing differentiating it from a private school is the facility which is about to be greatly improved. I know parents with children in SF private schools who wish they had the community feel and programming of Yick Wo.
This is a small, exceptional school with the winning combination of great leadership and committed, experienced, and caring teachers. The academics are top-notch, and the PTO raises the funds to have physical education, art, and music for every class. The parents are very involved, and the student body is diverse. You can't go wrong at Yick Wo -- both my children attended here (one still does) and they are enthusiastic learners, for which I give the school a lot of credit.
This is school is amazing. It's diverse, the parents are very involved, the neighborhood community is strong. We feel so lucky that both our children are spending their elementary years here with teachers I could have only dreamed of when I was young. It's been a financial salvation for us, as we get to afford in our wonderful Russian Hill neighborhood, give our kids an amazing childhood in the City, and be a part of a tight community.
It's a great neighborhood with wonderful enrichment programs for the kids.
I don't get why Great Schools ranks it only an 8. It should be at least a 9. The test scores are higher than Grattan and Rooftop. The amenities and school grounds are far better than either of those schools. Plus, the principal is superb. The kids are doing great, there is a tight community. Art? Poetry? PE? Smallest class size? Great diversity? All sorts of things other schools dream of. So again, I ask, why is our school only ranked an 8?
We transferred our child from a top private school, and Yick Wo is better. Our child is happier, the class size is smaller. I am stunned that public schools can deliver at this level. The teachers are highly educated and passionate professionals who go out of their way to create a wonderful learning environment. The facilities are a dream, and squeaky clean and safe; they could film a sitcom here. This has been a friendly neighborhood school, in an ideal SF location, but my daughter takes the bus across town and loves it. Focus on art, poetry, ballet. PTO is very active, building gardens and making sure there are lots of field trips. The racial balance of the class looks more like San Francisco than any other school I toured. Come by and see for yourself, and you'll put Yick Wo at the top of your lottery form next year.
My son just started kindergarten here and we couldn't be happier. His teacher is fantastic, he is learning rapidly, the classroom is creative and full of energy, and the parents and staff at the school are friendly and helpful.
We have been extremely happy with Yick Wo school, which our son attends. His teachers are experienced, effective and innovative. It is a small school with genrally low class sizes and a good sense of community. We feel that our son has received an excellent education in a safe and supportive atmosphere.
This is a warm and caring school with an active Parent Teacher Organization. The school community works well to provide students with many extra programs (music, dance, field trips, camping and outdoor education) plus are strong academically.
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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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