We took our daughter out of this school mid eighth grade. After numerous attempts to join forces with her educators regarding special needs that she has due to a learning disability, we finally just gave up. Although the teachers seemed interested and willing to make accommodations, the principal fought us tooth and nail for simple accommodation requests, even denying that our daughter had a learning disability and insisting that we get proof and a written diagnosis from her physician of her learning disability. Our physician was taken aback because it is the school's responsibility to test, diagnose, and accommodate the educational needs of their students.Th principal actually lied to us an told us that our daughter's IEP had been previously "Closed". Unbelievable. She has no business in education. We even reached out to the Superintendent of Santa Rosa City Schools. The Superintendent nor her secretary responded to our calls or emails. SO disappointed in the Santa Rosa City School system. Our daughter is now being home schooled at great financial cost to us and Santa Rosa City Schools has lost a student as well as the funds for the student. It is a shame for all.
This is a great school K thru 3rd, after that class size goes up and teacher quality goes down. We have been at the school since it's inception. The first principal helped found the school and had a clear passion for the concept and the road ahead. The current administration not so much. After a promising start I would say the school is sliding back into being a regular public school. I would definitely recommend it for the early grades after that you need to look else where.
My son currently goes to this school and I have to say so far I have found the teachers outstanding. His teacher this year is incredibly inspiring and has challenged & encouraged him this entire year. He's a 2nd grader and I have heard all the rumors about the upper grade teachers (in particular the 7th grade teacher). I really do hope that situation is taken care of before my son gets to 7th grade. There was a change in principals 2 years ago & I have to say this is my major complaint about the school. She glosses over major issues like bullying, which quite frankly is becoming a huge problem (not being addressed), her rules appear arbitrary at times and she doesn't interact well with the kids. This school has the potential to be one of the best in Santa Rosa if there was a change in the upper grade staff and a new principal (or this one showed more of an interest in her school/students).
The arts curriculum weaved into the standards curriculum is wonderful. The school is high achieving, and the kids benefit from the amazing Arts focused curriculum. The parent community is a strong, supportive one. The school has a nice family feeling. Teachers vary in their skills and abilities - some are excellent, some have limitations. The principal comes from a high school setting and is overly punitive...These are young kids! Most things which earn kids suspensions are not done maliciously, but kids (disabled and not) are treated like they are 'bad apples' that need culling from the rest of the herd. The suspensions are relatively meaningless to young kids, and despite some moves to use Restorative Justice techniques for responding to student infractions, the principal remains a martinet, who fails to understand her role as a teacher, guide, and mentor for young children. School shouldn't only address the 3 R's, but also develop the WHOLE child. Punitive discipline measures benefit no one at this school, which was created in part in an attempt to address whole-child development!
We have been quite impressed by the quality of the education at SRCSA using arts-integration techniques that the children seem to find interesting and challenging. Our child is enthusiastic about going to school, has found peers and friends, and fits in. All of the standard education topics are covered (math, science, language arts) and the curriculum is provided with a lot of focus on learning through art. We are pleased she can read, write, and compute, but are most interested in the cool arty stuff they learn during the school day. It is fun to have your child arrive home excited about school and ready to share a new visual art technique, dance, or song. While no school is perfect, we feel that the majority of the teachers are professional, motivated, and supportive of the students, and some are very talented in their artistic discipline. We looked at a lot of schools before selecting SRCSA in 2010 and think it is a great fit for our family.
I think "School for the Arts" is a stretch. This school has very standard public school curriculum with a couple of art type projects mixed in. It does offer band and digital arts, as well as some dance, but none of it is very impressive or run by artists. The teachers are mixed, some nice, some less so, as you would find in a public school. There is also a detention system and our teacher gave out nine detentions in about five minutes for children getting up while she left them alone to get something from another classroom. The principal told me that often people get the misconception that the school is going to be less traditional than it is when I addressed concerns over a few things. It is a mainstream program that I wouldn't recommend going out of your way to get into, but if you live close by and looking for a public school feel it will probably be fine. If you are looking for a progressive school it probably isn't what you are looking for. Also something to consider. This is a K-8 school, so younger kids are exposed to junior high school kids and everything that comes with that.
This school has bully teachers that don't care, a weak principal, no student leadership program, no language program, and a poor academic program that will leave your child unprepared for High School. The 4th, 5th and 6th grade teachers in 2012 are bulllies to the children and avasive to parents. It has cost hundreds in counseling and they continue to bully despite my plea to stop. Yesterday the 6th grade teacher saw my child using a sharpie from her desk to write her name on her favorite water bottle she got from summer camp. The teacher walked over to my child, ripped the pen from my childs hands and rudely said through her teeth "Next time buy your own pen!" I kid you not, this has been going on daily and I'm seeking help to prosecute these documented instances. If you go to this school; keep a running ledger on these types of instances, don't just brush it off as if the child is exaggerating, and do try to speak to the teachers, principals and community members about the instances. I'm sure we will realize that it's worse then we could imagine.
Great arts program. Lots of after school electives that support the arts mission. Current eighth grade teacher is very unprofessional. Principal seems unwilling to respond to parent complaints about his behavior.
Sad to hear about the eighth grade teacher problem, I suspected as much from observation, but didn't realize I wan't alone,(I do not have an eighth grader). The situation with the Boys and Girls club left me without childcare too, the one day a week I need it. It is frustrating and I have to say, the current principal does not seem to care one way or the other about parents concerns.