Terrific school. My child has been there for several years. It's a great place. He is learning a lot, and enjoys going to school. Wonderful teachers, really nice parents and kids. Couldn't have asked for a better place. Nice new principal too.
The school could improve on the following - Our teacher doesn't respond to emails or calls - we have basic questions that are still unanswered. The curriculum is on par of what my child was working on in pre-school. The kinder yard is under-supervised at lunch & there have been incidents of bullying. The principal dances around issues - ex. offsetting the computer lab that is in total disrepair & unusable with the tablet program, I later learned that the tablets are a pilot program, not well liked by the students or teachers & are there for a v limited time. Safety - there was a school shooting a few blocks away in the 2012 school year & the school grounds are still not secure which is blamed on funding. Engaging in the arts during the school day. They boast a robust arts programs but it is all after school at a considerable cost. The front office staff can be hot/cold. We like having the kindergarten yard separate from the big yard. Both outdoor spaces are large & well maintained.
My kids go to Grant and I'm very disappointed the level of education it very low. The entire school is about collecting money, donation and projects which is fine but the problem is they forget how to apply to the education for our kids. The whole team members is all about Drama. The only good thing about the school is clean and nice location. EDUCATION WAY TOO POOR !!!
This could be a phenomenal school. Unfortunately the past 19 years have been marred by two principals with egos to uphold. The latest principal is great at talking around issues, about how her personal life kind of relates to the issue, but never hits the issue head on. It's pretty clear that she has teachers to appease and the parents are not allowed to have valid concerns. She has implemented the most ridiculous changes to an otherwise easy flowing system and won't listen to parents when they complain about the chaos and havoc that these changes have created. Fortunately my child has the most amazing teacher and she will be out of Grant after this year. It's a good thing that the parental involvement is extremely high otherwise nothing would ever get off the ground. You need to learn to speak up and speak loudly if you have issues at this school. When that fails, and it most likely will, don't give up. Call the district and let them know what is going on.
I think this is a great school. I grew up in Santa Monica, but attended private school K-12. I had no real idea what to expect from Grant, but our experience was very positive. My daughter finished Kindergarten with Mrs. Thomas and we loved her. She was tough, but fair and super dedicated. Our daughter is reading full on chapter books by herself now, and loves school (and homework!). We had a hiccup in the beginning with an enrichment teacher and getting in touch with the principal to resolve it, but it was taken care of within a week and we had no lingering issues. The PTA is very active in fundraising and the like, but it's hard to attend if you work because a lot of the planning committee meetings are weekdays at like 9 or 10am.
We have had an aweful kindergarten year here. There are a number of old teachers who really are just plodding along teaching the same way they did 20 years ago and refusing to adapt to anything new. I have heard through other parents that there are some great involved teachers who enthuse their students but this certainly was not our experience. Principal is almost impossible to get an appointment with when a concern does arise. We are dreading next year and hope that we get a better teacher. Parents really do work hard to support but it does feel like there is constantly a hand out asking for money.
This is an excellent school. We moved to the area at the beginning of the year and have two boys there, now in 4th and 1st grades. Diverse student body, in terms of ethnicity, income, and family structure; very active and social parent community (but not in an overbearing way); teachers who don't just dial it in, but pay attention and challenge the kids that need it while supporting the kids who are struggling. The principal is newish (was vice-principal last year), but seems to be doing a good job. She is visibly engaged around the school on a daily basis, open to suggestions, seems to have a good relationship with teachers and pupils alike. Some teachers are better than others, but you get that in any school. Even the not-so-great ones (one of my sons has one this year) are still fine. Good sports, music and arts programs (rescued through the fund-raising efforts of parents). There is a strong emphasis on academic standards, but an even stronger emphasis on developing the whole child, which I think is great. The kids there are confident but respectful. The best sign? I never hear "I don't want to go to school" in the mornings anymore. Go Grant Geckos!