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K-5
Public
Van Nuys, CA
Students enrolled: 957
Before care: No
After care: Yes

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5353 Kester Avenue
Van Nuys, CA 91411

School website
(818) 787-6751
(818) 787-5480
Nearby homes for sale
Map of Kester Avenue Elementary School address.

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October 07, 2014
This teacher we had for third, fourth and fifth grades were very good. The teacher for 2nd grade didn't have an understanding that these children were just a step up from babies and didn't comprehend at the level she felt they should. Third grade teacher Mrs. Hovsepian was wonderful. She was challenging and made it easier when we got to Ms. Garcia's in 4th followed by Ms. Karapetian in 5th. My issue is with the administration. My son was bullied and his life was threatened by a child on school grounds. Mrs. Scanlin-Double said the situation would be resolved and that my child would be safe and she didn't follow through on her word. The child continued to bully. The school grounds are filthy, and my son witnessed a janitor mopping the tables with a mop used on the seats and ground. My child has attended school in two states before coming here and I found Kester to fall short of the recommendations I was given.

- submitted by a parent
September 02, 2014
Kester is definitely a 5 star school. Our daughter started as a kindergartner and grew throughout the year. Her kindergarten teacher was amazing as is the principal, Mrs. Double. She makes herself visible and available. The parents contribute their time as well. Our child has made some really great friends. We are looking forward to another great year. Welcome!

- submitted by a parent
September 01, 2014
I kids have been going to Kester Home School since 2006, and every school year my kids have gotten teachers that are just amazing. its no wonder that we have many teachers that are also parents of students that attend Kester. My sons will be ready for Middle School when they leave Kester

- submitted by a parent
August 28, 2014
We are absolutely thrilled with Kester!! Our daughter started at Kester last year as a kindergartner and had a wonderful experience. Her kindergarten teacher was amazing! In fact, we got to know the other kindergarten teachers as well and found them all to be really terrific. The principal, Mrs. Double is spectacular!!!! We feel so fortunate to have started Kester when we did because Mrs. Double has really shaped up the school. She is visible at the school everyday and is accessible to parents. The parent involvement is fantastic as well. The school benefits greatly by the dedication of the parent volunteers as well as the teachers, principal and students dedication to the school. The families at Kester are wonderful and our daughter has made some really terrific friends. Our daughter is now in 1st grade in the Kester Magnet program and is off to a great start with a truly incredible and dedicated teacher. We are looking forward to another fabulous year at Kester. I highly recommend Kester!!

- submitted by a parent
August 22, 2014
I changed my son in the middle of the class year. He was in TK. In his first week at Kester I saw a huge improvement in him. He was happy to go to school, enjoyed doing his homework and he was actually learning. He is now in Kindergarten and I couldn't be happier with my decision to change him schools. I look forward to the rest of the years as part of the Kester Family!

- submitted by a parent
April 28, 2014
This is an awesome school and it's due to the principal ,school staff,teachers and parents working together. Couldn't be happier

- submitted by a parent
October 06, 2013
Great teachers. Great parent involvement. Makes for a wonderful community that we are happy to be a part of.

- submitted by a parent
August 26, 2013
We are having a very good experience at Kester. Enrolled in the Magnet program and our children are flourishing with all of the "extras" that used to be part of just the regular program before budget cuts. The home school does its best to ensure students access many enriching activities and the school is a consistent high performer academically.

- submitted by a parent
August 22, 2013
This is my 5th year as a Kester Parent. I have gotten to know many teachers, parents, and students at both the Magnet and the Home School. I can honestly say that for a school this LARGE, you couldn't get a nicer small community feel. That is, if you involve yourself in your child's education, volunteer and help as much as you can, and make it a point to be PRESENT. It's very easy to complain, but in my experience, the one's that always do are RARELY willing to step up to the plate and bring forth a solution. So, that said, yes, there will be bad experiences. Some kids will be mean, some Cafeteria food will be bland, some Staff will be inadequate, and when it happens to your kid, it hurts. But that is going to happen AT EVERY SCHOOL! Bottom line, Kester is wonderful school. When you have teachers that CARE about their students' progress, parents that are PROPERLY RAISING their children, and students that TRY and DO their very best, you will always be happy with the results. Those who have all 3 factors going strong, will be the ones that give their school 5 stars. The others, will only complain about it. Kester School and Staff, you have my support and recommendation.

- submitted by a parent
August 16, 2013
Kester is a fantastic school. The teachers and administrators are top notch! The parent organization works very hard to continue to improve on and expand opportunities and experiences for the children each and every year. Our son loves the school. We are proud members and supporters of Kester. Keep up the great work!!

- submitted by a parent
August 12, 2013
Wonderful parent community, teachers and principal! Lovely campus. My son graduated from Kester and my daughter currently attends the school. We feel incredible fortunate that Kester is our neighborhood school!

- submitted by a parent
August 12, 2013
Our school is very involved with the community. The parents provide school supplies for each class room. We do fun raisers . Many parents do volunteering in and for the school. Our PTA leader does everything on her own time. Kids get together one day at the beach for the summer vacation those that can make it.

- submitted by a parent
July 29, 2013
What a joke. I don't know which group is worse, the unresponsive and negligent administration, the negligent staff, or the negligent parents. Our 2 kids are super bright since we're heavily involved with our children and engage with them constantly. We only take them to Kester because it's the lesser of 2 evils and because it's the law if they're not home-schooled. It's just a shame they aren't developing friendships that will last a lifetime since they're more compatible with their friends in other neighborhoods.

- submitted by a parent
June 11, 2013
So far, I have had horrible experiences with the school administrative staff, and my child hasn't even enrolled there yet. They're extremely unresponsive and gave me the run around for 2 months regarding an inquiry I had concerning an assessment I requested. I really hope this changes by the time the 2013-2014 school year starts.

- submitted by a parent
May 31, 2013
Our kids loved Kester. I agree with others that the school has some of the best teachers in the area. I would recommend networking with parents of older students to see who is the best for each year of study, then submit a request for that teacher. To give you some background, four years ago, the principal was replaced and everything took a turn for the worse. Some of it was due to reduced funding affecting all schools - but some of it was also due to mismanagement, like bad choices regarding which instructors to let go. Not only were the two librarians laid off, but all the money collected from the book fairs was transferred from PTA to KAMPA, and then used for other purposes instead of providing new books. We visited the school last month for their annual Music & Arts festival, and bumped into many of the fine teachers who are still there. From what I understand, they have hired yet another principal and are trying to get it back into position as one of the top elementary schools in the valley.

- submitted by a parent
April 18, 2013
4th year in a row we've been lucky to have amazing teachers year after year.I embrace the amount of homework the kids get (sorry I do not like the projects).I would agree with some parents regarding cleanliness of the schoo. But did they bring up their concerns or just posted on the website? When I saw a problem I informed the principle, and it was addressed. Furthermore, I've been checking for sustainability and there is no more issue. I can't volunteer my time but I donate to the PTA and items needed for the classroom.The challenge with lack of parental involvement is diversity of incomes, backgrounds,and education unlike in other schools that do not "share" zipcodes.If you can't help,donate time or $$ and don't complain.It's a great school and the teachers care.As parents we owe to our kids to work with the educators to further and enforce learning when at home. So don't blame the school or the teacher for your daughter or son not knowing the capital.Each one of us should be reaching out to see how we can support and help giving the state of the budget and funding for our children. Critizing is easy - doing something about it is not!

- submitted by a parent
April 09, 2013
Our experience with Kester has been stellar. Our kids have had fantastic teachers who love their positions and are so dedicated to sharing knowledge in fun and interesting ways. We have been fortunate to experience both the home school and Magnet program and see the children thrive in each. The new Principal is energetic and innovative and the school seems to be prospering from her enthusiasm. PTA and KAMPA do a great job, and could benefit from more volunteers. I think you d be hard-pressed to find a better LAUSD elementary school in our area.

- submitted by a parent
April 08, 2013
I work at this school and I know how disorganized and how it has hygiene issues. The faculty doesn't take their work seriously, we teachers only pay close attention to the kids whose mothers we know. I know, its pretty sad how the kids are not provided enough attention and if I were you, I would stay away from this school. I'm also moving to a different school soon and stay away from all the bad influence.

- submitted by a teacher
April 08, 2013
I think Kester Ave is a very good school. There are lots of opportunities to get involved with the community, but we still need more parents to step up.

- submitted by a parent
February 13, 2013
The school continues to meet my child's needs as a 4th grader. She loves her teacher because the teacher is caring. She can't wait to do PE on Thursday. She and her class enjoy the read aloud three times a week from a wonderful volunteer. She always looking forward to orchestra. What more can a mom ask for in a school?

- submitted by a parent
June 26, 2012
This school has been like a second home to me since Kindergartin. They have wonderful teachers who help you work at your fullest extent. i just graduated from this school and am very thankful that my first 6 years of education happened at Kester.

- submitted by a community member
June 22, 2012
I just culminated this wonderful school from the Magnet program. This school has taught me so much I have been going to this school since preschool and I love it. These teachers go over and beyond for their students. I am so happy with the whole school I will never forget it.

- submitted by a community member
May 16, 2012
I recently attended the school's fair/fundraiser and I was so impressed with the organization, the turn out and the diversity for the families. The school looked clean, the kids and families were having fun and I later heard from a neighbor that they raised over 15K that day for school improvement projects. To me, that says the PTA is doing an amazing job.

- submitted by a community member
April 26, 2012
It would be great to have teacher names so we know what to steer away from...

- submitted by a parent
March 13, 2012
I will have to say that my daughter's teacher is doing. She goes out of her way to help her students in whatever the problem might be. The principal I don't know what to think of her. I made a call to her and her answers were very short and no concern of what is going on. She just wants a paycheck if you ask me. There are other teachers that act more helpful and interested on the students that her. Very dissapointed at her. But what do we expect from a LAUSD school, right. If I could afford to send my child to a private school it would be a different story. Good luck to all of us parents whom we are trying to give our kids a great education

- submitted by a parent
February 28, 2012
The teachers coninue to make this school a gem in spite of the budget challenges. It could always use more parent volunteers, but the quality and commitment of the teachers enable the students to be very prepared for middle school. Don't overlook this school or pay too much attention to parental reviews below. If your child is enrolled here, please get involved. Every little bit helps.

- submitted by a parent
December 15, 2011
Kester only pays attention to students whose parenets that volenteer, even if your student excels in all subjects. They don't know why people can't volenteer. Maybbe some people don't have the time or the money. The staff only think about themselves and don't pay attention to the students. The principal barely is seen on campus. The fauculty is horrible. Only a very little amount of teachers notice your child. If you are thinking to send your child here, think again.

- submitted by a parent
November 17, 2011
Does this school teach to the test? I will answer by telling you that I asked my fourth grader the other day what the capital of his country was and he could not tell me.

- submitted by a parent
May 23, 2011
My child is finishing 1st Grade at Kester... she was there for Kindergarden as well and got to transfer to an overflow class which was a huge blessing because the teacher was amazing. Now finishing 1st Grade I can only say good things about the teacher. Yes the school is struggling with all the budget issues and it's hard for all of us but imagine being a teacher in today's world. I think if a teacher can come to work and do their best despite the craziness around them well then you have a great teacher. One who cares. I can only speak of my own personal experience.

- submitted by a parent
May 16, 2011
God bless the same 8 parents who are involved with the school and also the wonderful teachers. Unfortunately, we had to take our child out due to safety issues. The campus is filthy. The principal is weak. This school is overcrowded and young children are under-supervised. Go to the PTA meetings and you'll hear all about it (i.e. 200 kids being watched by 1 adult on the yard at lunchtime.) With the district cuts and the consequential loss of 7 Kester teachers, the school is expected to have up to 38 students per classroom for the 2011-2012 school year. This is a disgrace. No more LAUSD for us.

- submitted by a parent
April 27, 2011
Weekly testing is mandated by the school board and required. Both of my kids went through Kester Avenue School - one in the Magnet and one in regular Kester. I hear that the testing scores are high but welcome to the world of parents not getting involved. When my kids were there the same 8 women did all the fund-raising every year. Other people are happy to sit back and reap the rewards. There is no State money. If you want to improve your schools then get involved like we did and be part of the solution!

- submitted by a parent
March 31, 2011
I echo the sentiments of the person whose post begins "We've been very disappointed in Kester since..." I have a special needs child in 3rd grade also and the teacher is completely inflexible and honestly, seems to not care. It's incredibly disheartening. My child's IEP is inadequate and you have to jump through beaurocratic hoops to get it amended, or to get anyone to even listen to you. Needless to say, I'm looking at other schools.

- submitted by a parent
March 22, 2011
We've been very dissappointed in Kester since we find the teachers and administration very inflexible and unreceptive, especially if you have a child who needs a little extra help. I've had ten meetings this year, in my child's third grade year, about the exorbitant homework (he started the year 3 hours of homework a night), massive testing, one hour each Friday, larger tests every three weeks, then the quarterly tests. Where's the learning with so many unneccary tests? It's unfortunately a cookie cutter, sink-or-swim, rigorous academic schedule allowing for NO creativity. As a parent of a Special Needs kid, I find that most teachers do NOT care, and are only worried about their checklist of what they need to cover never mind that the class isn't getting it! But then again, the teachers themselves will tell you Open Court is awful, scripted, uncreative, and the math program adopted is WAY too advanced, a grade level about, leaving no basics to learn before more complex concepts are expected- which is an LAUSD thing, so we're looking into charter and private. Also, from 2011 school year, there will be 38 in fourth and up, 30 in K-3!

- submitted by a parent
March 13, 2011
We had high hopes when our child started at Kester Elementary 5 years ago. But over the years, we have seen the school for what it is, an average LAUSD school with a good gifted magnet center which raises the entire school's test scores. Our child is in the gifted magnet, and is also GATE, but is not intellectually challenged and the learning is too rote and uninspired. Sadly, the school is littered with trash, and teachers and administration do not hold kids accountable and teach them not to litter. Most of the staff has bad morale, the principal is officious and not an out-of-the-box thinker, and no one seems to know how to seriously fundraise in times that demand parent involvement. Maybe it's just the LAUSD budget crisis, but everyone here seems burnt-out, PTA, administration and teachers alike. A small faction of middle class PTA parents work hard to raise money for a majority population that is economically struggling, does not speak English and does not contribute to the school. It's sad, this school has seen better years, but is definitely in a slump in its parent involvement, teacher enthusiasm and academic achievements.

- submitted by a parent
October 06, 2010
Sounds like Kester Magnet is the one with the good reputation but that the regular school is lacking.

- submitted by a parent
October 06, 2010
My daughter has attended Kester for the last 4 years. Her 1st grade year I was not to thrilled with the teacher. However since than her teachers have been great. I was super impressed with her third grade teacher (Mrs. Bauman / GATE), actually all the third grade teachers. The group of them worked together making sure all the learning was similar between the grade level. This year my daughter is in magnet and really likes her teacher. Each morning I am greated and I feel my questions or concerns are validated.. I have also seen a change in the last two years since the principal has changed. I am an administrator at a private school and deal with many Elementary public schools and none compare to KESTER. More extra curicular activities are provided because of parent support and participation.

- submitted by a parent
September 30, 2010
I have yet to have a good teacher in this school. One particular teacher made my childs life unbearable, lots of tears, humiliation, nightmares. After moving to other grades this teacher felt the need to inform other teachers negatively about my child. Which affected my childs confidence and not want to attend school at all. Here's hoping this year will bring about a much needed change. Many parents i have spoken with also had very bad interactions with the same teacher with no help from the school. Unfortunately through experience the teachers we have had so far don't give much "positive" input apart from the teachers favorite students. Please teachers think about the lives you are dealing with each day. Have a heart!

- submitted by a parent
September 23, 2010
Kester Magnet is commitment to excellence, better education for the kids which essentially makes a better place to life all around :)

- submitted by a parent
August 28, 2010
We have been here since kindergarten and I am sorry to say that the school's leadership is lacking, parent involvement is limited to a small hardworking minority, the PTA does not understand fundamentals of fundraising, and teacher morale is very poor. The school's API score also dropped this year, and regardless is a false number as it includes the Gifted Magnet which raises overall test scores. I have one child in another LAUSD school that is truly flourishing, and the differences are profound. Kester does not inspire critical thinking in children, nor leadership or true creative skills. I have been disappointed in the Magnet program and feel it does not teach at the level of gifted children.

- submitted by a parent
June 26, 2010
We are moving to a better school. I volunteer here a lot and have seen how disorganized Kester can be. Time management is a huge issue for the administration. The school psychologist is a joke. Thank goodness for the PTA. There are some amazing teachers. But, there are some terrible ones too. Recess is under supervised. The Magnet program is what keeps their CST and API scores high.

- submitted by a parent
June 13, 2010
Excellent teachers, strong principal, supportive parents, great diversity of students, great school. We are so happy to be here.

- submitted by a parent
April 16, 2010
My daughter is in fourth grade here and it is a nice calm enviroment.

- submitted by a parent
March 22, 2010
This is our first year at Kester and we are oh so pleased. I love my son's teacher, she is so dedicated. I am so happy we have her and next year I hope we have a teacher as excellent as her. I volunteer at the school and contribute montary whenever possible, this indeed creates a community and keeps the school functioning. I have nothing, but positive things to say about Kester and I am glad that my son is learning so much. :)

- submitted by a parent
no rating December 16, 2009
This is our first year at Kester, and so far, it's exceeding my expectations. We've opened a beautiful new science lab this year. We have a wonderful, new P.E. coach thanks to our PTA. Our kids sing their brains out. They're computing arithmetic and reading more each day. They're learning the meaning of community and helping others with toy drives, can drives and creating art projects for victims in a nearby burn unit. I did the school tours last year, including private schools, but stuck to Kester because it's my home school. I'm glad I did. The teachers and staff work hard, the parents help and help and help and everyone cares.

- submitted by a parent
November 03, 2009
I love Kester for its quality of teachers, great diversity of students and tremendously supportive parents.

- submitted by a parent
no rating November 02, 2009
People at Kester want the students to get a great education and have fun while doing it. We see teachers, staff and parents all working towards this goal. We feel lucky to be in this school's neighborhood!

- submitted by a parent
no rating October 29, 2009
They have caring and amazing teachers, great parent involvement.

- submitted by a parent
no rating October 28, 2009
Fabulous teachers and staff. They care about our children's education.

- submitted by a parent
October 24, 2009
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- submitted by a parent
no rating October 13, 2009
We have very involved parents who are on board to help the staff make sure that student achievement is the number one priority at Kester! Kester is a very safe and nurturing enviornment that allows our students to enjoy learning and achieving.

- submitted by a community member
no rating October 05, 2009
Because we strive to have each class be the best educational experience for our children.

- submitted by a parent
no rating October 05, 2009
They offe so much to our children and the teachers really care.

- submitted by a parent
no rating September 28, 2009
Kester has a wonderful sense of community. The teachers are wonderful and everyone works well together. The PTA is a vibrant and active participant on a day-to-day basis. I am overjoyed that my daughter is a student at Kester!

- submitted by a parent
no rating September 28, 2009
Kester Avenue Elementary is like a small, private yet public school. Our kids are receiving a great education, scoring sky high in state tests while loving the experience of showing up every day. The teachers are first rate.

- submitted by a parent
no rating September 24, 2009
I love the dedication and love which the parents and staff put in on working towards making this school a great place for kids to get a quality education in a nurturing environment.

- submitted by a parent
no rating September 23, 2009
Because the teachers and the parents really care and are involved

- submitted by a community member
no rating September 22, 2009
It a great school/community with amazing teachers/families.

- submitted by a parent
September 20, 2009
We have an amazing team of parents, teachers and administrators working together to make Kester an AMAZING school to be a part of!!!!

- submitted by a parent
no rating September 20, 2009
Kester has a great magnet program and an excellent learning enviorment

- submitted by a parent
no rating September 19, 2009
The gifted magnet program is very well run, our child loves it.

- submitted by a parent
September 16, 2009
a great neighborhood school, with and intimate feel and lots of parent participation.

- submitted by a parent
September 16, 2009
Kester has been a very nurturing and wondeful environment for my son (now in 3rd grade) to learn. The staff, teachers, parents and kids all seem to contribute to creating a wonderul atmosphere. I've enjoyed volunteering with the PTA, and I truly believe that Kester is a great school - We consider ourselves lucky to be part of the Kester community.

- submitted by a parent
September 16, 2009
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- submitted by a parent
no rating September 16, 2009
Kester continues to get better and better. Test scores continue to improve, as does the quality of the teachers and the student body. The ground were recently painted and the campus is clean and beautifully maintained. My kids are now entering their 4th year at the school and have an outstanding experience each and every year.

- submitted by a parent
no rating September 16, 2009
Kester has a great community of involved parents and top notch teachers. I'm proud to send my son there.

- submitted by a parent
no rating September 16, 2009
Kester Elementary School offers a family oriented atmosphere where the staff and families work together to provide an environment that nurtures each student to excel in academics. We also have some programs unique to Kester such as the 'Take 5 for Fitness' which helps the teachers incorporate a 5 minute fitness program during class time which hopefully will helps them physically as well as focus mentally. Our yearly Kester World Music & Art Festival is a celebration of our diverse cultural community and also is a time to display the art and music talents of our students. We are only able to do these things because of the joint effort of many families who contribute their time and effort to help the entire Kester Elementary family. This is our 8th year at Kester and we areproud to be part of this school.

- submitted by a parent
September 16, 2009
Kester is an amazing community of parents, administrators, teachers and students who all work together to create magic in education. I feel so blessed to have been a part of the school for 13 years.

- submitted by a parent
September 11, 2009
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- submitted by a parent
September 09, 2009
We have been at Kester since Kindergarten. While I was nervous to attend our neighborhood school, I was extremely pleased with the level of education my son has received. He is performing well above grade level and his teachers have nurtured that. The PTA is very active and welcoming and encouraging of new members and new ideas. I agree with the previous review that it is up to each parent to get involved and make a difference.

- submitted by a parent
September 08, 2009
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- submitted by a student
no rating July 11, 2009
People reading the extracurricular list and selecting this school because of that will be sadly mistaken. There was no computer class for 2nd grade nor was Spanish offered. My child was an above average 1st grader and will now will be an average 3rd grader after attending this school. Reading is not supported above grade level.

- submitted by a parent
February 05, 2009
I have mixed feelings about Kester. While I think children will get a good education, we have not been entirely happy with the methods they use to achieve this. The amount of handouts they receive is over-the-top, and my child is bored to tears with them. There is far too much homework, which consists of more handouts. From what I have observed, there is little to no nurturing of individual creativity. My child has been told to only use flesh-toned crayons to draw people and that a person's eyes must be drawn anatomically correctly. As a creative person, I find this cookie cutter mentality almost unbearable. We're presently looking into some other schools in the hopes of finding a more hands on approach to learning and one where creativity is nurtured. Unfortunately, this curriculum is not only used at Kester. It's what you'll find in most public schools. On the upside, Kester is a clean and seemingly safe school. It seems to be well run and has a high level of parental involvement. If you are looking for a nice neighborhood school that teaches to the test, than you will most likely be happy with Kester. It's also important to note that the API score is a combination of both the home school and gifted magnet program. So while the API score is quite high, it is a bit misleading when you are considering the home school for your child.

- submitted by a parent
no rating January 26, 2009
i have the same opinion of the kester dad that this school is the best in all terms my two son attend highly gifted magnet and i being very happy for all the education they having before they just to have only one paper for homework and now some times i don't even have time to finish all the homework that they have everyday.these school is the best . better than any privated school

- submitted by a parent
January 22, 2009
I have the absolute opposite experience to the mother who posted yesterday about Kester's Magnet program. My son is in the magnet program and we've been very happy with the education he's receiving. My neighbor who posted below pulled her son out of private school when he was accepted into Kester's Magnet Program and she was extremely pleased as well. I'm sorry she had a bad experience but to say that the school is designed for parents who are not really interested in their children's education is simply ridiculous and calls into question everything else she's written. Kester is a wonderful elementary school. Check it out for yourself. Kester Dad

- submitted by a parent
January 21, 2009
My daughter attended Kester's Gifted Magnet program, and I took her out after just four months. Her teacher and the administration was shockingly inflexible in terms of providing her challenging coursework. As a matter of fact, they refused to deviate from the standard curriculum at all, which makes this a magnet in name only. My daughter was completely bored with the extraordinarily repetitive worksheets that were handed out, which were intended only to ensure the students do well on the standardized testing. Nurturing is nonexistent. This is a school that seems designed for disinterested parents to drop their kids off and assume they will be a getting a quality education. There are vastly superior Magnet programs in the L.A. Unified School District, and if you're considering sending your kid to one, this is a place to avoid.

- submitted by a parent
June 12, 2008
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- submitted by a parent
March 25, 2008
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- submitted by a student
February 09, 2008
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- submitted by a student
January 11, 2008
As a parent of a special needs child, getting quality education and one-on-one attention for my child was very important to me. Kester achieved that and more. Parent involvement is key and Kester really stressed that. The teachers are committed and really take your child's success seriously. The staff are very friendly and the extracurricular activities are plenty. We are considering entering our child in Kester's 'Magnet' program for next term.

- submitted by a parent
December 12, 2007
I love our neighborhood school. My daughter is in kindergarten and we are so happy she has such a wonderful teacher. The community of students, parents and teachers makes this school the jewel of this district. P.S. I can't believe my daughter is reading and writing after three months at Kester!

- submitted by a parent
December 11, 2007
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- submitted by a teacher
October 27, 2007
Kester is a great up and coming school with lots of parent involvement. The teachers are very supportive and it has a great principal.

- submitted by a parent
September 28, 2007
Kester is wonderful school. The teachers are amazing and there are programs to target all levels of learning. My son recently graduated and is incredibly advanced at his new school. The is an abundance of extracurricular activities and parent involvement I believe is one of the key aspects of this school.

- submitted by a parent
February 05, 2007
I am extremely enthused by Kester. My son is in the 1st grade and has attended since kinder. I loved his kinder teacher, I felt she was just right for him for the stage of life he was in. Now that he's in 1st grade and has a new teacher, I'm just as happy if not happier because she's great and pushes her students to achieve all that they can without making them feel intense pressure. My son loves his teacher and his school. I participate in class from time to time but that's nothing compared to what I see other parents do.

- submitted by a parent
no rating April 18, 2006
Kester is a fairly large school because there are two 'schools' on campus, the home school and magnet school. Despite the large size, when you attend Kester, it's like being a part of a family. The staff is very friendly, supportive and accessible. It is a beautiful campus designed by a famous architect.

- submitted by a teacher
March 03, 2006
My daughter is in third grade at Kester. I am feeling indifferent abouth this school. I do not feel as if my daughter is thriving at this school. They have very limited extracurricular activities and students are restricted to only playing with the students that atr in their class at recess time, and the yarg guards appear to have no conflict resolution skills.

- submitted by a parent
February 05, 2006
We had a very bad experience at this school. It seemed to be very rigid and into rules. My child got in trouble for standing in the wrong spot at recess, eating at the wrong table at lunch and standing on the grass. She felt insecure and scared each day because she didn't know what else she would do wrong. We finally left the school as we felt defenseless.

- submitted by a parent
no rating January 23, 2006
Recently moving our child from private school to public, we couldn't be happier. More importantly, our son is happy. The quality of education and empahsis on one on one attention, especially in 4th grade makes a huge difference. My son's teacher is loved by all her students and truly understands how to reach them.

- submitted by a parent
January 11, 2006
Kester has a great academic program for the magnet kids and for the home school. There are some beautiful few gardens around the campus that kids and parents can volunteer to help with. For the third year my husband has helped clean up and weed the Kindergarten play area. And some teachers want parental involvement but some don't. I respect their personal teaching style. But the school encourages parental involvement in school functions, not just in your child's class. My husband is also a volunteer reader. He comes in once a week to read to someone else's child. The school needs volunteer readers. You can also check to see if other teachers need a volunteer. Volunteering anywhere in the school is good for everyone and shows your child that you care about others. And why not help another parent whose schedule will not allow them to be a volunteer.

- submitted by a parent
December 03, 2005
We recently pulled our 4th grader out of private school to give our neighborhood Kester Elementary School a try. We have been so impressed with the quality of education and the expertice the staff has with educating gifted children. The whole school is as excited about their neighborhood school as you cen get. The level of parent involvement far exceeds what we encountered in private school. The music program is excelent and has a full orchestra. We couldn't be happier and our son is finally understood and is thriving in this environment.

- submitted by a parent
October 27, 2005
Although the school has a reputation for academic achievement--which it endlessly touts--Parental Involvement in the classroom is not encouraged. The great thing about letting parents help is the variety they bring to lessons. Unfortunately, bragging rights over high test scores (and the funding it brings) trumps the enrichment a Parent's presence can bring to their child's learning experience.

- submitted by a parent
October 12, 2005
This review submitted without content.


- submitted by a administrator
September 16, 2005
A school that our family is proud to be part of. We have two children attending and are excited by the level of parent participation. The teachers and staff willing to actively listen to concerns and the atmosphere is warm and inviting. All in all, it's a great neighborhood school.

- submitted by a parent
September 07, 2005
In every newsletter Kester Avenue enocourages parents to be involved in their childrens education by volunteering and welcomes observing in the classroom. However, there are many teachers that do not allow this. The beginning of every school year is chaotic. At this point I am wondering why we have continued to stay at this school. The communication between school and home leaves much to be desired.

- submitted by a parent
August 15, 2005
This review submitted without content.


- submitted by a parent
March 31, 2005
It would seem that I couldn't say too much about Kester since my children are only in Pre-K and Kindergarten. But that's not true. I have seen first hand how dedicated the teachers are to the children. And the older siblings of my children's classmates are fine examples of how well this school is doing. People always qualify Kester's API scope by saying that it is so high because they have the kids from the Magnet program being included. But I say Kester API scores are representative of what is being taught at the school all year long, not how well they prepare for the API. The teachers teach ALL year and NOT only what is on and in preparation of taking the test. This is so reminisent of when I went to school in the seventies. Many thanks to the teachers of Kester.

- submitted by a parent
March 31, 2005
My son is currently enrolled in the Kester Magnet Program. There is strong parent participation, a great Wonder of Reading library, and strong active teachers, prinicipal and front office. My son, who is currently in the second grade, is very happy, loves his teacher and his school.

- submitted by a parent
February 22, 2005
This review submitted without content.


- submitted by a parent
January 26, 2005
My 4 year old son began Pre-K at Kester in 2004 and we love it. His teacher is fabulous, the school seems highly organized and the parent involvement is high. What I find amazing about the teachers is how organized, resourceful and creative they are in the way that they teach. Kester is selective in a good way. The school is highly conscientious about everything from student expectations to child safety and school cleanliness. My only criticism would be school/parent communication which is challenging if you are a working parent. Other than that, the school is absolutely great.

- submitted by a parent
September 08, 2004
From what I understand, Kester Avenue has a terrific magnet and special needs program. The campus is lovely, the staff I've met have been wonderful and the parent involvement is top-notch.

- submitted by a parent
August 17, 2004
Terrific School. Excellent teachers & a wonderful gifted magnet. Strong principal. Quite diverse student body.

- submitted by a parent
August 16, 2004
They have an excellent magnet program, but there seems to be a big difference in the regular school.

- submitted by a parent
July 07, 2004
Considering that kids that go to this school have such a diverse cultural and financial background, the teachers and staff do an excellent job of teaching and maintaining discipline. The teachers I met in the last one year are polite, intelligent and very enthusiastic. The Principal is always present in every school function and takes time to speak to the kids and parents. Thank you Principal, teachers, staff and volunteers at Kester elementary school

- submitted by a parent
June 30, 2004
This review submitted without content.


- submitted by a parent
March 01, 2004
The teachers whom my child has had thus far have been terrific. One was voted a California teacher of the year, a quite high honor. The magnet program is terrific. I couldn't be more pleased with my child's academic achievements thus far.

- submitted by a parent
August 09, 2003
I feel blessed to have moved to this neighborhood. Kester has dynamic, involved teachers, staff and parents. I am about to send my youngest to their Pre-K program which is outstanding! This school has a strong academic focus and high standards. The teachers I have encountered believe in fostering creativity without sacrificing discipline. The campus is diverse but there is a strong sense of community here. Truly, it is as if I have the United Nations in my own backyard. LAUSD is gigantic and imposing but Kester is a breath of fresh air! Before you send your kid to a private school...try Kester!

- submitted by a parent
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Kester Avenue Elementary School
5353 Kester Avenue, Van Nuys, CA  91411
(818) 787-6751
Last modified Kester Avenue Elementary School is a Public school that serves grades K-5. It has received a GreatSchools rating of 9 out of 10 based on academic quality.
Kester Avenue Elementary School Rating: 4 out of 5 based on 106 reviews. Top