This is a safe place to share your honest opinions of a school, whether good or bad.
Guajome Park Academy Charter4
Posted September 15, 2014
- a parent
This is our second year at Guajome. My son just started 6th grade and really enjoys the middle school setting. My daughter started 5th grade coming from private school and loves her classmates and Mrs. MacVarish. Overall we are very satisfied. They do need a grass area for the kids to play on. Most areas are concrete.
This is our third year at Guajome and we are very happy here. My daughter has found good friends and most teachers are wonderful! They have no tolerance for bullying. The academics are wonderful here and they even have an IB-Program now. The school has been expanded to K-12, with elementary (K-5) wearing school uniform.
The previous review perfectly encapsulates the horrific student-to-student interactions that take place at Guajome Park Academy. Guajome is the stereotypical "clique" high school, on par with The Breakfast Club, only with less integration. Popular students at GPA understand the world on a purely impersonal and selfish level, taking only their feelings and actions into account without caring for the feelings of others. The outcasts do not deserved to be treated this way. I have been at Guajome Park Academy for five grades, 6-10 and am currently in my sophomore year. Between sixth and seventh grade I was severely bullied for my less-than-gregarious personality. After bursting out of my shell and attempting to make friends, I found myself still rejected for my above-average intelligence and loving, caring attitude I exhibited for everyone I met, regardless of their personality. I went ignored and I found myself friendless. No matter how hard I tried to get their attention, they constantly ignored me or ridicule me if I attempt to initiate a conversation. No one should have to go through something like that. Everyone is entitled to a chance at friendship: at Guajome, you won't get it.
This school is, honestly, one of the worst schools out there. The kids are so mean and they categorize you into different groups just by the way you dress or the way you look or what music you listen to. SOME of the teachers are good. BUT, a lot of the teachers assign way too much homework/projects at one time. I find myself, on a regular basis, doing homework at 1:00am or later. Then, I do not get enough sleep to stay awake during class the next day. I also get bullied a lot. Both verbally and physically. I find myself under great stress and depression by going to this school. Do NOT send your children to this school. It will only make life difficult for them.
My daughter is always a straight "A" student but for a new teacher to give her an "F" due to a one day late homework which she wasn't able to submit because she was pulled out early for a dental reason and was requested to be excused in unacceptable. Her test and other homeworks are perfectly fine. They even sent a letter for conference if the student is not doing well but then the teacher crossed out the option "does not need conference". For all I know if you gave a student an "F" would you at least call and talk to the parents about it? We emailed the teacher but never responded. They blame the system, well fix it. We were told that teachers are not going to remind students about their homework and are responsible in looking at the parent/student portal. Well guess what the parent/portal doesn't seem to be updated coz it shows my daughter is missing some homework even though she doesn't. She is new to the school and I'm not happy on what's going on.
This is the first year for my kids at Guajome and so far so good! We absolutely love how the class sizes are much smaller in ratio than a regular union school. I am simply amazed how organized the staff is, and I feel SO MUCH better dropping off our children to a school that doesn't have police cars in front everyday or security yelling at the kids. Its school not jail! The staff is always unbelievably welcoming to parents and students, that makes a world of a difference when the staff actually likes their job and environment this reflects onto the students. One of the major issues that we had with the previous school was the teachers either did not update the homework website or never returned emails or calls. I have emailed three teachers from Guajome this year in the morning and they all got back to me that same day within a few hours. Guajome is a K-12 school and does not provide bussing but I must say whoever created the traffic plan is a genius! It amazes me how fast I get in and get out of the school, with that many students going there.
I've been going to GPA and it is amazing! I'm in 6th grade and the charter experience is awesome. They have a large area of performing arts and they have approximately 1,500 students from grades 6-12 (the profile is a typo, it's 6-12, not 4-12). Instead of science or history/social studies, they have humanities and technology. There is math/algebra, English, and then either Spanish or German in the same period of Physical Education. The teachers are nice but they do demand you to follow the rules. Detention is not as common as other schools, but that's because they keep everyone in such a straight and orderly fashion. They take control and this school is just...beyond exceptional. The campus is very large, with two stories. My friend since first or second grade is a dancer and is very pleased with their performing arts section. My friend since last grade is very mathematically talented and is proud to be challenged. Luckily, or fortunately, whichever you prefer, they don't slow down for just one student, they keep everyone at a certain pace. They only have one elective choice for each grade, but it doesn't matter, because the teachers know how to teach you quickly and well.
I'm an alumnus to this school and I can honestly say I don't wish to have gone to any other school. This school is everything one looks for. All students know each other due to the small population relative to other schools. Those that say this school doesn't prepare you for anything in life, they are completely wrong. The resources are available to those that want to utilize them. Obviously if they decide they don't want to learn then they won't learn. They have IB and AP available; that really shapes up a student for college and are good to take. Everything is available and the teachers are great; most of them are, at least. This school definitely, not only meets, but exceeds the level at which neighboring schools are at. The staff truly care about the students and that is a heart-warming aspect. Of course, though, students need to take advantage of these opportunities.
Terrible teachers, terrible leaning environment. This WILL NOT prepare you/your child for college/ the real world. Academics are extremely lackluster and so are sports. Honestly just go somewhere else. The middle school portion is good but the high school portion is not. If you are a student and attend GPA be prepare to not have a real high school experience. Just stop by the campus and ask some of the students that have been going there for a while about the school. And if you want a good laugh ask seniors how good of a teacher Ms.Fallman is. Honestly half the teachers shouldn't be teaching. Half the time in class i find that we are doing absolutely nothing. If you missed a month of school you could probably get caught back up within a few days. There is THAT little going on in the classroom.