Willow Glen Middle School has done a tremendous job at improving over the last few years. As an alum myself, I see improvements in the curriculum, campus, and programs that are available to the students. I have lived in WG all my life, and pay to live in this great community, so I feel strongly about supporting our local schools. For the 2015 school year it appears that this is the highest attendance for neighborhood kids! Great news. Every school has something, you can never get your kids away from that, it is reality. Support Willow Glen!
I drive the neighborhood kids to school. All the kids hang out with different groups of kids. Yet, all of them love Wg. They are all going to be in 8th grade soon and have all had a great experience. They offer all kinds of sports, dances every month, a bunch of clubs, a lot of electives. There administrators are strong. I have been a teacher for 20 years and the teachers are great. They have classes for the gifted and children with special needs. There are parents involved. Yet, most kids at this age, in my experience as a junior high teacher, don't want their parents involved. They want their space. I am happy we sent my son here and we didn't put him in private school. We made the right choice to send him to WG.
Going from Booksin to WGMS was like going from Beverly Hills to East LA. Sorry, I know none of the local parents want to hear that, but its the truth. I agree with the last reviewer that the assignments are "dumbed down"...some of the assignments were literally 4th grade level when my child was in 7th grade! If we had an issue with a teacher, all we got was a shrug from the administration, and the bad behavior noted by the last reviewer is literally ingrained in the school culture. Parent participation is very minimal and not encouraged by the school. If I had it to do over again, I would have moved before putting my children here. Just a bad experience all around.
After a bad 6th grade experiences, we are pulling our daughter out of WGMS. Coming from Booksin, our expectations were high and WGMS was a disappointment. Here are the reasons we are leaving: 1) The curriculum is sub-par. Our daughter read more books, wrote many more papers, and did more special projects in 5th then 6th. In all subjects except for math, the curriculum was easier then 5th (dumbed down and shallow). Homework was a waste of time. (She outgrew crossword puzzles and coloring in 3rd grade.) 2) She had only two strong teachers in 6th (Math and PE) and the rest were poor or mediocre. Boring, unorganized, unresponsive, uncaring, strict and the opposite of inspirational. 3) The new (non-Booksin) kids she met were mostly mean and poorly behaved. She saw kids bullied, shunned and ignored routinely, mean comments and swear words spewed daily and teachers disrespected. Also, about half the kids could care less about learning. They didn t turn in their homework or participate in class and regularly became nuisances and distractions to the kids who actually wanted to learn something. 4) Parent participation is minimal and parents are not welcome in class. I hope they improve.
Outstanding school community and academic experience. WGMS has improved each year. The administration is balanced and caring. The academics are great at the advanced levels. Parental involvement the last 5 years has resulted in an explosion in arts, sports, and leadership.
I have very mixed feelings about this school. Bullying is a HUGE issue. Get that fixed ASAP! In my 7th grade year, I was bullied excessively. It was to a point where I felt everyone hated me, and the staff barely did anything about it. They let the other kids off with a warning and a lecture, but that did nothing. Other than my bullying issue, the academics are OKAY. Teachers need to be a bit more willing to help the students. I would someday like to send my kids to this school because it IS a neighborhood school. However, if the school hasn't solved the issues on bullying and/or tolerance, I'm not sending them here.
Willow Glen Middle schools staff and administration in caring. There offer a lot of electives, sports, clubs and activities. Two of the best schools in San Jose Unified feed into WG. Most of them go to the middle school. They have challenging classes for the gifted. Many of the teachers and police officers who live in WG send their children to the school. I am a middle school teacher in Santa Clara for 20 years and all middle school have bullying unfortunately. Yet, WG staff nabs it in the butt right away. They just have to be informed like any staff. They have an excellent Principal and VP which makes the school run well. My children and myself have been in the private and public school system as students and we love Willow Glen Middle School. I went to WG and we made the right decision putting our sons into Schallenberger and WG.
The administrators here do not communicate will with each other. I have requested meetings for my son's teachers and the principals they notified the other parent but did not notify me at all. The meeting was held without me. I met with the one teacher and reached out to her but she was not helpful to me at all. However another teacher was very kind and did provide the help I asked for and helped my student out a lot. I have struggled for two years with this school and feel they communicate with the other parent and exclude me. I cannot even get mail from the school or district even though they have my address and I have requested the DO to add my address. They have yet to do this. I suppose if your child does well in school and does not struggle the school is appropriate. However, I have had very little support.
My daughter just completed her 6th grade year at WGMS and I have been impressed on so many levels. I work in education and feel I have a good understanding of what's important in a school (it's not just the API score - what is often referred to as the Affluent Parent Index) and this school has it! The communication is excellent, curriculum is targeted to state standards with lots of project based learning, teachers are kind and caring, discipline is good and bullying is NOT tolerated. This is a public, city school so it's not like Challenger or Valley Christian where you can kick anyone out. This is an environment of learning but also social learning, being with a diverse group - that's life. Additionally, extra-curricular activities are amazing - more choices than most middle schools in the county.