This is a safe place to share your honest opinions of a school, whether good or bad.
Challenger - Shawnee1
Posted March 09, 2013
- a parent
Our daughter attended the pre-K at this campus. The academic program was strong but they teach zero social skills (which is arguably as important as academics at that early age). There is no communication between teachers/parents at all. It's felt like this was a NSA/CIA facility. It was very frustrating, as they just keep you in a dark (we even sent notes to teacher trying to get some communication going). Kids might get great test scores, no argument there, but I don't want my kids to grow up weirdo robots ;) Teachers make no effort to help get kids more involved and play together - they seem to only care about academics (I can understand this for middle/high, but for PK this is ridiculous!). Parent participation is not allowed and they walk each child separately from/to car before/after school so you have to make extra effort to get to know the parents and organize afterschool activities if you want your kid to have any friends. It's run like a business not school. Only thing they were interested discussing with us was about when our younger kid would join the school, instead of about our kid who was already attending. One star for PK. Higher grades are probably not as bad.
This school has been going downhill! My daughter attended for PS & PK which was good even though parent involvement was not great. We were not allowed to participate. However, I was willing to overlook all this & registered my son for his PS experience. Not only did the office neglect to inform me of a change in policy (uniforms required for preschoolers) but they were sending communications to my sister who was listed as an emergency contact. I discovered the uniform policy a week before school started since I learned I forgot to mail my son's physician form. You can imagine my shock & when I requested a refund for poor information disclosed of a major change in policy, I was informed I could not get my refund which also included tuition that my son never even attended. A poorly run school. They should rename the school from Challenger to "A Challenged" school. Obviously the school is more interested in trying to wheezle money from hard working parents than to do the right thing when they clearly goofed. I normally do not write reviews but I want to warn other parents from dealing with this. If you want a caring staff try Stratford..what a difference...it is like night and day!
This is the third year my daughter is going to this school, and she will be in 2nd grade this year. It is very well structured, the material is advanced compared to other schools. Kids are involved in a lot of programs and parents are notifed weeks in advanced. Teachers are always available to talk to. Been very happy with the school, as far as overall organization. Keep up the excellent work.
My experience with Challenger for 4 yrs. I noticed, the way they are running the school was not appreciable. There is no Teacher and Parent involvement. They try to avoid meeting parents even if you insist. They have young authors award, speech contest, merit award... these also happen without letting the parents know. The winners' parents are ONLY invited for the award ceremony. They don't invite other parents to avoid the consequences. This school is VERY SECRETIVE. The current teachers who my kid had for this year were bad. They literally yell and scream at the kids. Are they running a slavery?? The words they are using are so harsh. The teachers don't have the capability to handle 20 kids in a class.very bad, All the parents know what's happening in the school, but they don't come forward to complain to the management just because the teachers pick on the kids. Lots of kids in my child's class are examples. Challenger should understand that the school is running just because of the wonderful parents. What If they pull out the kids from the school? try to be open with parents. stay positive with kids. do not bring their self esteem down. They are the future America!
Why are so many parents withdrawing from Shawnee? Too many parents have opted out of this campus and have either moved to a different Challenger campus or to a different school. We have been with the school for 7 years and have seen a gradual decline in its teaching quality. The dwindling count of good, experienced teachers is sadly alarming, especially in the higher grades. The Principal (aka Headmaster) is extremely diffident and lacks the skill sets to bring any positive changes. We stuck around for a long time hoping to see things turn around for the better. But with a looming middle school ahead, we finally took the plunge and have moved to a different campus this year. I hope the administrators put their acts together before it is too late!
This is great school. I have not had any negative experiences so far. My 4 year old son has learnt how to read upto 5 letter words and is writing well. The school has very high standards which is very good in my opinion. The only very minor issue I have is that they donot offer half day classes. The teachers have been awesome. They are fun and energetic.
This is a great school if you want to push your kid. No field trip ever, kids need to have fun sometimes. My kid has a hard time at school and then come to homework, it is just too overwhelming. I ask my kids if they wanted out, of course they said yes.
Challenger kids score over 90 percentile in SAT. In some cases over 95. In California where schools are worst in the nation, we need Challenger to compete at national level without paying 1 million dollars to be in Cupertino or Fremont. Challenger should however must make attempt to address the concerns raised by other reviewers. I hope they are listening.