One can easily distinguish a good school from bad because all the good schools have these things in common: the teachers treat their students with certain level of respect so that students can learn self- respect and dignity; and the teachers and the principle are genuinely interested in what the parents have to say and they will actively address parent concerns. This is far from being the case with Ms. Tyson the current principal and most of the teachers at this school. There are a few dedicated teachers (especially the younger teachers and the male teachers) and there has been some efforts to bring in new programs and to diversify student curriculum. But there is still a lot of room for improvement.
The Best school. Teachers give an warm and homely environment to the kids. My son was in ELD Program , I was very worried how he would learn the language. But the way Ms. Ligocki helped him patiently is awesome. Although he is been moved to his neighborhood school, he still misses De vargas. I also have to give a lot of credit to Ms.chow and Ms. Johnson for their efforts to help my daughter too. Thanks to De vargas and all of them Associated with the school :)
De Vargas rocks. My son is in fifth grade here. It can t get any better than this with Mr. Shane Tatman teaching them. He is the best. During CUSD middle school open houses, when I say those teachers that my son is at De Vargas at Mr. Tatman s class, they give rave reviews about him. This shows the respect he commands. Mr Tatman makes teaching simple yet effective and his style is unique. His depth of knowledge is amazing. He gets the kids to present on an interesting topic once monthly, gets them to do an auto-biography and positively critiques every bit of output. He is a great motivator and gives kids performance based weekly I Can Manage Myself ICMM certificate. Beyond teaching, Mr. Tatman genuinely cares. He talks to them about ill effects of smoking, promotes discipline, offers school-life balance, takes great personal pain to conduct a 3 day offsite science camp, executes No TV week, conducts walkathon and the list is endless. He is a bundle of energy and always smiling. The positive influence of Mr.Tatman will remain with my son through his career. The best words in dictionary aren t enough to say how great a teacher he is. Thanks. Mani & Geetha.
Our daughter is in First grade here. A school is only as good as its teachers. Be it Harker or Challenger, if the teacher isn t good enough, the brand doesn t matter. De Vargas has great teachers. My kid is with Miss O Rourke Lauren, who is exceptional. She goes above the call of duty and works minimum 12 hours a day. She is very friendly, humane, passionate, exceptionally skilled and truly cares about each kid. She calls the group Team Super Kids and communicates frequently with parents on emails. Ms O Rourke ensures each kid has customized teaching plan based on their skills and monitors performance. She does not settle for anything less and really challenges the kids to go the extra mile. Most kids in her class have already covered second grade Maths/English for which Ms O Rourke takes lot of personal effort. She also ensures kids are disciplined, participate in group events and understand / respect people from all cultures. It s a blessing for my daughter to have a school like De Vargas and teacher like Ms O Rourke. Thanks. Mani & Geetha.
We have two kids who currently attend. One of them used to be advanced when entering school but started getting bored in school and came down to grade level. Some teachers are highly committed but most are stuck in their ways. Course teaching is always behind schedule defined by the California guidelines. Principal is the biggest disappointment - no wonder the teachers aren't motivated. Parent involvement is non-existent, partly because the most committed parents want to hog the limelight all the time.
I currently have two children who attend De Vargas, they both love their teachers and are always excited to attend school. The teachers at De Vargas really go the extra mile for your children. As a parent it is very comforting to me to know that my children feel safe and comfortable at school. I find that whenever I have a question or concern the teachers and/or office staff are always available. On an academic level I see a great improvement in their reading, rhyming, and math skills. There are always parents that help in the classroom, and not only for a special occasion.
The academics at De Vargas is at a very slow pace. My child was a fast paced student with good grasping abilities. He felt that the entire class is going slower speed. Not too many extra curricular activites were available.