My daughter is currently in kindergarten at Mckinley. I was a bit nervous about the school because it is in 'School Improvement', meaning test score improvements have not kept pace with the requirements of NCLB. However, now that a good chunk of her first public school year has gone by, I am very glad I chose to send her to our local school. The new principal, Cher Mott, is very motivated and energized. The teachers that I have met so far are all dedicated and seem talented (admittedly, I have only observed my own daughter's teacher so far). I think overall, the school's administration and teaching staff are unified and organized in their effort to improve the school despite continued cuts to education and rigid curriculum guidelines imposed by the state. I gave only 4 stars because I wish that in general public education were more progressive, not the school's fault.
My children have attended McKinley since Kindergarten and have had a great time at McKinley. Regrettably the discipline at the school has become a problem. Kids caught fighting are put on in school suspension. These same kids return to class and get into another fight the follow day. In my experience the Principal has difficulty working with 'some' parents. This is odd because SLUSD encourages parent participation. My son has even been questioned by the principal about my presence at school. Overall, I love McKinley and feel the teachers are doing a awesome job. Mrs. Ball a fourth grade teacher, takes her kids on standardized based field trips and several teachers have in class projects that bring a hands on approach to learning that works well w/kids. The outdoor education program, math club and organized play at recess shows that McKinley teachers care about their students.
Last year I had noticed that McKinley's rating was lower than some other schools, but when I looked at the school composition, I realized that McKinley was taking in a lot of the 'harder' students and succeeding in educating them.
McKinley is a school that has undergone many changes over the years that our children have attended. Overall, we have been very happy with the education that they have recieved. Appropriate recommendations were made when it became apparent that one of our children had a learning disability. This child has happily remained at McKinley, and has thrived. We understand that we are undergoing another change in principals--perhaps for the better.