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7-12
Public charter
San Jose, CA
Students enrolled: 458
 

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2315 Canoas Garden Avenue
San Jose, CA 95125

School website
(408) 723-1839
(408) 723-1839
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Map of University Preparatory Academy Charter address.
Develops respect: Strongly disagree
July 04, 2015
The teachers don't have respect to my child and his friends as he tells me whenever a teacher is bad.

- submitted by a parent
Develops empathy: Neutral
July 04, 2015
Some teachers at this school are amazing, when i met them, but my child says that there are some teachers who are horrible at teaching and sometimes disrespect the students, whiling being biased.

- submitted by a parent
Develops honesty: Neutral
July 04, 2015
The school is great but my child always complains about how to school rules are "bogus" and do not as much respect the student because if you were to have a school you always value the students opinions and not the teachers.

- submitted by a parent

July 04, 2015
The school is amazing here at UPA with all these hard core classes that give my child a boost to the college course, but my child is always stressed with their school work and also never actually give a break to my child because in the summer BREAK they advise you to read the summer books for the english class and other courses wanting them to not take to long to start the school year and start to being your homework on the first three days of school. I have chosen to put a 4/5 star review to this school because UPA may be a great school, but they are pushing the kids to hard with all this stress which might affect a long run to their long term life, for example with all this stress it can cause unbalanced harmonies in the body, shorting of height sprout and make their brain always active and having no constant state at rest. I believe they should only leave summer reading to not happen because of the stress of so much through the school year, and should take account that these students need a real FULL break from school during the summer. Also if they were to continue summer reading it should only be at the most one book per grade level.

- submitted by a parent
Develops grit: Disagree
June 24, 2015
It develops loathing of teacher and bureaucrats. It clearly shows what happens at a family run business.

- submitted by a parent

June 24, 2015
Great for some, less so for others. After three years of high school, we will be moving on for senior year, as a lot of other students have done. This year the school has become mired in challenges that have led our Junior to plead for another school. Issues include: 1. An almost complete lack of interest in STEM with no participation in GATE or the other great programs in the region. Their participation in Project Lead the Way is a joke with students often knowing more than the teacher assigned to the class. 2. Ongoing staff turnover that has led to a highly inconsistent learning and classroom environment. 3. Inexperienced staff that believe that punishment is an effective tool in modifying behavior 4. A complete lack of interest in the student as an individual. As "His Excellency" Dan Ordaz is fond of saying, "your child is only one of 500" If your child is one of those who can be driven into the mold, then this might be a great school for you. If you child is growing into a thoughtful adult and developing critical thinking skills, they will have a hard time with the authoritarian and hypocritical discipline.

- submitted by a parent
Teacher effectiveness: Ineffective
June 24, 2015
Too many newbies or those with personal agendas thata force the students into agreement and compliance.

- submitted by a parent
Amount of homework: Too much
June 24, 2015
4-6 hours a night is crazy and has been proven NOT to work, but the Executive Director will not hear otherwise

- submitted by a parent
Develops respect: Strongly disagree
June 24, 2015
You cannot develop respect at the point of a bayonet. Forcing the students to tug a forelock and submit is pathetic

- submitted by a parent
Develops honesty: Strongly disagree
June 24, 2015
At the end of the semester, the administration had lost control and was forced to open the gym at lunch to accommodate the more than 10% of the population that was on detention. On detention for what? Lots of dress code violations such as wearing a charcoal grey sweater rather than a black one. Others for being disrespectful or "defiant". Students were given arbitrary discipline with no chance of appeal by "campus supervisors" who themselves failed to meet the dress code. English teachers who force students to write to local politicians to reinforce the teacher's crypto-liberal beliefs and who punished students who refused. And let's not forget that the Executive Director employs several of his family members at the school, so the politics are toxic. Along with a lot of the senior class of 2016, our student elected to leave this mess behind and finish high school elsewhere. Sadly, what started out as a great possibility for a school is going down the drain

- submitted by a parent

December 28, 2014
There was a parent post a year ago that stated there is no funding in this charter for students with disabilities. That may have been relayed by the school, but a quick call to The Office of Civil Rights will correct that misconception. Charters are public funded. Under FAPE, and IDEA, schools cannot discriminate. Regardless of disability, ALL students are equally allowed a free, public education. There IS funding available for ALL assistance if a need is shown. UPA may not necessarily want to tell you this so there academic rates remain high and consistent, but under the law, you can request, and receive, any supports deemed necessary for your child to succeed at a level accustomed by their peers. Sometimes you have to fight for what your child needs. UPA is a very challenging school, but they cannot legally turn away students because of disability.

- submitted by a parent

September 28, 2014
As a graduate of this school that attended this school from it's opening day until my graduation day, and as an alumnus that has continued on as a college student, and as a member of the staff of this school's parent organization, I can say from personal experience that this school is a great concept that is growing to it's potential.

- submitted by a community member

August 15, 2014
Wonderful School! I truly love sending my kids there and they love going there too! If they went to a public middle or high, they wouldn't be as happy and neither would be me. In UPA, everybody gets along with each other and I have NOT heard of any bullying going on. This school provides everything you need, be it counseling, helpful teachers, etc. UPA is sure to not disappoint! Parent involvement is great, parents have to do 60 hours of community service per school year! I would recommend this school to anybody!

- submitted by a parent

August 08, 2014
If you are heading to high school and are looking at an alternative to the public schools in the area and you have a student who wants to get into college, UPA is worth a look. There are also a number of things that I wish we had better understood on the way in. These include: - This school is run by the Ordanz family and you need to be very careful of crossing any of the family members. His Highness Dan is the Executive Director and truly has little time for the little people (like parents). - Dan's wife and son are also employed by the school and the son in particular tends to throw his weight around - This is NOT a school for super achievers. There is no GATE programming, and little interest in doing anything that Dan Ordanz did not come up with himself. - This is a school for the average to slightly above average kid who wants to get into college and the school has an excellent track record there. The school has more interest in athletics than in any of the serious extra-curricular STEM activity. No participation in MakerFaire, GATE, Tech Challenge or other STEM type activitys.

- submitted by a parent

January 24, 2014
This is my sixth year going to UPA. I have been given the amazing privilege of attending UPA since seventh grade, and believe me, not everyone is as fortunate. I previously went to charter school which was rated higher than UPA. But, I performed far better at UPA than I did at a charter school which was rated higher and more popular among my community. The teachers all guided me when I needed help in my seventh, eighth, and ninth grade year, but when they know it is best to let go and let you taste the rigors of collage, thats when you realize UPA is the BEST learning environment. Also, the small learning environment is most effective. I have about 19 students (including me) in my Spanish and the most I have in one of my classes is 26 students. Addressing the comments about the intense education, the people posting this probably were involved in one or more of these situations: a. their child came in 9th grade or later and was not prepared since they were not used to the learning style from students who attended in 8 and 7 grade b. they attended without knowing their own child mental capacity (that's the cold truth, your child needs to put 200%. TV is foreign after sophomore year.

- submitted by a community member

December 16, 2013
As a graduate of University Preparatory academy, and one of the thirteen students that attended the school from its opening year all the way through graduation, I can say from experience that this school has a roughly equal amount of pros and cons. UPA says in its missions statement that it focuses on the students and aims to help its students reach high-achieving schools. This is all true. Many esteemed graduates of UPA have made it to some of the most prestigious colleges in the nation. UPA has one of the highest API Scores in the Silicon Valley. These achievements are due to the incredible staff of caring, attentive teachers. However, as a former student, I believe that this school has focused too much on preparing students for tests, primarily standardized tests, rather than encouraging the students to grow in knowledge and wisdom, in order to be the best students they can be. Essentially, when all is accounted for, the most important thing to this school is the numbers. Not the students, not the teachers, but the test scores and the graduation rate. --Submitted by an alumni

- submitted by a community member

November 06, 2013
UPA. I have to strongly disagree with the last two posts regarding UPA. This is our 3rd year and we could not be happier after having a horrible experience at the overcrowded and underachieving district public schools. UPA teachers are consistently at school, are always available for students, and stay after school. They are some of the best teachers I have ever come across. Age has nothing to do with quality, and this IS what you get at UPA. It is a school for students who want to do well, and plan to attend a 4 year University after graduation. The reason the school is rated so well is because students and teachers put in extra effort to be successful. There are students who need assistance, but the level of academics is not for everyone. Students are expected to keep pace or they will fail. This is the premise of the school. This is not a school that pushes students ahead who should not be. Parents who want their children pushed ahead when they don't know the work and don't agree with the work ethic, should consider a less challenging school.

- submitted by a parent

November 04, 2013
UPA - They have a lot of inexperienced teachers that seem overzealous; they give lots of homework, give tests above the grade level and won't hesitate to fail the student even if they've passed all the tests. Anything turned in late results in a failure. I've observed egregious academic impropriety with one teacher. It seems that their oversight is seriously lacking.

- submitted by a parent

November 04, 2013
This school is great for high-achieving academic students who are already doing great in the system. However, for those of us who were told in the past we only needed to have a fourth-grade reading level to get in, those who are dyslexic or have any other special needs are being told they cannot help them. There is no funding for such things in Charter Schools as they get less public funding than other schools. Even with the new LCFF promising more money, they have no faith of that happening in this year.

- submitted by a parent

August 24, 2013
I'm currently a Junior at UPA (this is my third year) I absolutely love this school. The teachers are incredible and the class selections are awesome. My GPA has risen every year despite the challenging curriculum. This is not the school for athletes and this is not the school for people wanting the whole "high school experience" This is the school for a student who is determined to go to college and determined to work hard and get good grades. I honestly have met the most amazing people in my life here and I wouldn't change it for anything.

- submitted by a community member

April 29, 2013
I'm an undergraduate at Princeton University. I am where I am today because this school challenged me to think and be creative. I have been with this school as a student since the first year it opened and recently graduated from UPA. The beauty of this school is that if you are passionate about a particular group (in my case Science Olympiad) and it isn't on campus, then you can make one. This challenge to create, manage, and run a club really pushes you to your limits in terms of leadership, management, and skill. Plus, it allows you to foster your passion and find out if a certain subject like science is something that you feel strongly about. The lack of groups on campus means that there are endless opportunities to start them. Academically, it is rigorous, but rewarding. If you want to succeed then this is the place to go.

- submitted by a community member

September 04, 2012
Very impressed with the school. The staff is top-notch and extremely dedicated. The facilities are great. Best of all, the student population is great since the school is self-selected by the kids/parents who value academics.

- submitted by a parent

June 06, 2012
This is not the perfect school for everyone. If your child is big into HS sports such as football and baseball, look elsewhere. However, imagine the difference in the environment for a school that doesn't have either of these programs... there are positive implications I don't need to spell out. This school has an academic atmosphere; teachers are simply outstanding, expectations are high, class rooms are named after top colleges and universities, and importantly graduation requirements are higher than other schools - 2 AP classes, and 3 years of Spanish are required. If your child attends and they and both parents take the program seriously, they will be prepared for college. Period.

- submitted by a parent

July 09, 2011
This will be my fourth year going into UPA, I am going into the 10th grade. While in the beginning I felt that the school lacked in sports, organization and communication, it had become better and better over the years. While there have been times where the school slips up, its very normal like with any regular school. There are some things that could improve about the school, it is hard to do so with the limitations and lack of resources that are available to them. -Priya M.

- submitted by a community member

September 14, 2010
UPA have just posted their Academic Performance Index (API) score of 859...this one of the highest UPI score here in the Santa Clara county and they can certainly be proud to be a member of high performance schools that are located in Palo Alto and Cupertino area. UPA is a young school (less than 4 years old) but they're already showing their potential to be one of great school here in San Jose and Santa Clara county. CONGRATULATIONS UPA!!!

- submitted by a parent

September 14, 2010
I have been at this school since the first year it has opened. I am currently a junior and I like UPA. It has a small class atmosphere which helps students receive the attention they need from teachers. Small school=Better learning, Big school=Bigger drama, less individualism. This is a school that challenges your skills and definitely prepares you for College! Congrats UPA for your API of 859! -Alec G.

- submitted by a community member

August 19, 2010
The initial meeting was great, all of the talk from all the staff was great but NO follow through. I have spoken to 2 other parents who have removed their children from this school. Sounds good in theory to have a small charter school, smaller classrooms, but the support from front office staff is non existent.

- submitted by a parent

July 26, 2010
Lots of promises with no or little delivery. We've been extremely disappointed with the way the administration addresses and handles problems. UPA sounds good on paper and administration are good at talking in circles without actually addressing parent/student concerns.

- submitted by a parent
no rating
April 29, 2010
UPA has great academic and curriculm and a small enviroment school.

- submitted by a parent

January 10, 2010
My son did 7th and is now in 8th. He is having fun and doing well in academics. I hear there have been a couple of teachers who are not able to control classrooms, but most teachers are excellent and doing a great job. UPA started sports and gym in 2009, so now it's an excellent choice.

- submitted by a parent

January 03, 2010
We are very pleased with the progress and growth my son made in his 7th and 8th grades in 2008-2010. He has been a honor roll student for several years and he continued to shine at UPA with enough challenging coursework. Our neighborhood public school does not provide so much of personalization of coursework. My son also gained a lot of confidence and leadership skills with participation in several co-curricular activities (music, arts, avid, basketball, PE, tech, etc). We never knew that he had any interest in arts and drawing, but this school (thanks to Ms Crump) helped him discover his own talent and now he has become passionate about painting and arts producing superb work to our pleasant surprise. Thank you UPA!

- submitted by a parent

December 02, 2009
UPA is an excellent school, probably the best I've been to so far. It provides a good academic environment, and a good social environment too. I skipped 6th grade and went straight to 7th here, and even though I was younger than most of the students, i did well in this school.

- submitted by a student

July 08, 2009
My son had been on the honor roll for the last 3 year prior to entering this school. At the end of the year he was average. Majority of the teachers have no idea how to manage a classroom and the principal did a lot of talking but no follow through. The philosophy they preached sounds amazing but that isn t at all what they are offering. I was so disappointed.

- submitted by a parent
no rating
June 21, 2009
I am extremely pleased with this school. My daughter has became an honor roll student,loves school, and very disiplined with her life and studies.

- submitted by a parent

October 28, 2008
UPA is providing an excellent opportunity for our children to prepare for entrance to college. They provide individualized instruction in a small setting.

- submitted by a parent

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Last modified: July 4, 2015

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University Preparatory Academy Charter
2315 Canoas Garden Avenue, San Jose, CA  95125
(408) 723-1839
Last modified University Preparatory Academy Charter is a Charter school that serves grades 7-12. It has received a GreatSchools rating of 8 out of 10 based on academic quality.
University Preparatory Academy Charter Rating: 4 out of 5 based on 42 reviews. Top