My daughter gets good grades and she loves going to WEST - Happy kid - Can't really ask for more.
Definately one of the best high school's in Torrance. Well-rounded school with great academics, athletics, and nicely-kept campus. Staff are helpful and most teachers are very enthusiastic and willing to help. Daughter and son both go here, and have joined many extracurricular activities and clubs.
My daughter graduated from West High School in 2005 and my son is now a 10th grader. I believe that when you set the bar high most people will typically ascend to it. There are many resources at West to do well. If the parent and student are willing to work hard and utilize these resources your student will succeed. My daughter is doing well and in college to receive her BS in Nursing. My son is on the football team at West. He has Honors and AP classes and must work very hard and manage his time well to perform in the classroom and on the football field. I can attest to the fact that he has not received any special breaks or assistance because he is on the football team. We just work very hard.
Anyway, I was so angry I ran out of space to review the school. I just want teachers to receive the respect they deserve, especially since all I hear in college is 'You don't REALLY know the material unless you can TEACH it.' I was a student at WHS in 2005. I had my best years here. The curriculum was rigorous and prepares you for college. I chose to take many AP/Honors classes, because they were stimulating. WHS encourages learning and has after school tutoring too. There are many different extracurricular activities, so you're sure to find something you like. The administration was not the best, but the teachers are impeccable. Some stay in their class during lunch time and offer extra help. I am now attending my 4th year at UC San Diego as a pre-med, but I wouldn't have done well in college if I wasn't prepped well!
Its the best school in Torrance!!Students who get into it are so lucky!! Although for most of them it would seem pretty simple since West Torrance is mainly for the upper class!! Any how this school is awsome but it can improve. I was a former student, and i got into Stanford, so it did do a good job!!
West High School was a great high school; I graduated this year (2007) and now am at UCLA. West High has great extracurricular activities--from clubs to the drama, dance, music, and choral department--all supported by faculty who really care.
There is an unreality that one sense at this school. It is as if the teachers and administrators are programed in how they address parents and how they address 'discipline' issues. The programed responses all deal with those who are good students. If you do not fit the profile, it seems that the options are always to transfer. Assistance, caring, motivation, if you are a jock or an upper half student you wil do fine. All others, you hear jargon, 'work harder' as the intervention strategy. This is not a school for all kids or parents for that matter.
Sure its great if your child is a natural learner. Meaning they dont have to worry about teachers who are apathetic, vengeful, and what other terms can I use without being censored? The school doesnt do anything to enhance the learning, the kids do it themselves and the parents who monitor their kids. My kids went to this school recently and they are not brilliant but neither are they behavior misfits. They are like many who take longer to learn but not at this school, keep up or you are screwed. They only cater to certain groups and be warned if you challenge the administration on anything, they create a phony defense and are already siding with their 'teachers', those who can do, those who cant 'teach'. pretty much says it all.
I personally loved my experience at West High School. Teachers were very accesible, and understanding. A very safe environment for children, and the extracurricular activities are growing.
What a difference the principal can make. The new administration is a big improvement over the last couple of regiemes. This principal makes a point of talking to the kids (and the parents). Rome wasn't built in a day but West High has made big improvements over the last year.
I attended this high school and have first hand experience. The quality of academic programs is good. Availability of extracurricular activities is excellent. My mother was involved with PTA and there was good parental involvement.
I think west high is a great school. My kids graduated from there this year. I don't think the school's academic level is deteriorating. I think it is the exact opposite. For example, in the graduating class of this year, there are three students accepted by Harvard, two by MIT, two by Caltech, one by Stanford, and one each by Johns Hopkins and Harvey Mudd among lots of other good schools and the UC flagships, UC Berkeley and LA. Isn't the college acceptance rate what a school is judged by among others? As for the ex-principal, Mr. Morrison, I have good things to say about him too. When Academic Decathlon team went to Modesto for the State competition, he drove with the vice-principal, Mrs. Daugherty, to Modesto that Sunday morning to be with the team. He and Mrs. Daugherty also attended every year's Academic LA county award ceremony to show support for the kids. Just so you know, during Mr. Morrison's reign, the West High Academic Decathlon team was the LA county champion in 2002, and second placed in 2001. When my son was on the football team for four years, I saw Mrs. Daugherty at every home and away game. That football team went to CIF. As for the website, if you don't like it, why don't you encourage your kid to do something about it? for example, volunteer his/her time or form a club to maintain and fund raising for the web site? It sure looks good in the college applications.
I totally agree about this person's comments regarding West High. The admistration has removed itself from the people. They do not want to hear any comments on how to improve their school. We transferred into this school from another district and one of the vice principals was extremely arrogant about how great West High was as compared to other schools. I have not seen this. Test scores have declined, they do not welcome any feedback whether positive or negative, they are very rigid in their processes, and some of the teachers do not teach at all. I thought having my child in the Gate/Honors program would make a difference. It hasn't. No wonder Wests' API scores are going down. Of course, no one in administration wants to hear this nor do they welcome you for providing any feedback. Perhaps throughout the school year, the administration should send the parents a anonymous feedback form for comments on how to improve the school. As far as technology goes, the school is in the stone age. The website has not been touched for two years. This is just totally inexcusable and unacceptable in this day and age. There are four high schools in Torrance - only two of them have up-to-date websites. Torrance High has an excellent website which posts the daily bulletin along with other useful information. Why isn't this being used as a model for the other three high schools. Can't information and technology be shared amongst schools in the same district? Wouldn't this save money? Why not pay one person to develop technology that every school in the district can use - including the middle and elementary schools. I don't understand why one school can be technology competent and not all of them. Do they not understand the concept of resource sharing? To conclude, West High is not a bad school but there are may things they can do to improve their school. Encouraging parent input, monitoring their teachers, holding their teachers accountable for actually teaching the material, and valuing input from both the parents and the students - especially the students. They are the ones most affected and many of them have fantastic ideas on how to improve their school - if only they weren't afraid to express themselves for fear of retaliation. How sad. I am truly hoping the new principal this year will make drastic improvements and restore the school to its former glory.
I'm not a parent but I was a former student, I had to move this year so I left over summer to San Francisco (I moved for family reasons). I do regret moving though. I miss this school. I don't know what that parent below is talking about. This school is great, their teachers are committed to teaching West's students and some are enthusiastic about it. When I was there (years 2001-2003), the teachers I had were nice and challenging (mind you I had mostly honors classes). Even without money this school strives to teach its students well w/ what it has and it does so.
Great school, but as with most of them there isn't enough support for the girls sports programs. Softball has the poorest support from the school and we have one of the top teams in the area.
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