What a joke! Can't keep a Principal for their life and now another one, GREAT! Ran as fast as I could- Lasted one year and in Feb. found out that my sons Chinese teacher isn't even CERTIFIED! Yikes- Good luck. The reason this schools gets the rating it does is because of the demographics of the school, no culture just plain white bread.
Where to start... I absolutely love the concept, vision and curriculum of DLS. Teachers care, kids are learning and thriving in both languages. Parents are a little too much involved...everyone with their opinion on how things should run. Unfortunately I think that takes time and effort away from the admin to focus on more important things. I feel admin is always too busy dealing with parents, never see them in the classrooms with the kids. But the school is amazing, the teachers are great and we are very happy that we chose Dls for our kids.
Some parents freak out about this school because it is academically rigorous, focused and "not what they experienced growing up." But, once I got over the unfamiliarity of my children learning in a foreign language, I could see what's so wonderful about this school. I am so impressed with everything my children are learning; and I have every confidence that our early investment in immersion will pay enormous dividends in cultural appreciation and academic prowess down the road. I only wish there could be more schools like DLS.
We are SO PLEASED with DLS! We have had our kids enrolled at DLS since inception. They are now in 4th and 5th grade Mandarin. Both of our girls are thriving in both English and Mandarin. We have been so impressed by the new principal, Dr. Sara Amodio. She is very responsive and is passionate about giving the kids a great learning foundation!
I understand that everyone has their own experiences with the DLS administration, but I must say that I have been very happy with the follow up that my concerns received earlier this year: my kindergartener was being bullied by a peer in her classroom. When I emailed the principal about it, she replied within an hour, and followed that up with a phone call later that afternoon. She was appropriately concerned and explained to me what was being done to ameliorate the problem. She also encouraged me to contact her again any time in the future with any other concerns I might have. Since this conversation, my daughter has reported no more problems with this peer.
We fully embrace full immersion education for our children and the teachers we have had have been great. The art, gym and music programs are fantastic. Unfortunately, the current administration does not have strong leadership skills, does not know how to delegate tasks or support teachers from different cultures. Instead of having a conversation with parents, the principal's technique is to yell at them or ignore them when they have an issue or concern. We are happy with what happens in the classroom but not what happens outside of it.
I am a parent of a first grade Mandarin student and am thankful every day that my son has the opportunity to attend DLS. Both our kindergarten and first grade teachers have been wonderful - academically strong, nurturing, supportive and everything that I would look for in a teacher. The bond among the students is strong, and the school does a wonderful job of encouraging students to think and act like global citizens. The specials teachers are incredible and the quality of instruction in Art, PE and Music has far exceeded my expectations. The new principal has made great strides in open communication and organization. Most importantly, my son is sad every time there is a day off school as he loves it that much. That, to me, is a testiment to the culture, the teachers, and the overall ambience of the school. Thanks to the work of the dedicated parents, the skilled staff and the involvement of the students/families the school will only continue to get better and better.
This is our 2nd year at DLS & we couldn't be happier! Our child is conversationally 'fluent' in speaking Mandarin, can read age appropriate books & is learning to write characters. The Singapore math model that is used is excellent, as are the science & social studies curriculums. Her teachers are kind, loving & truly care about their students. Differentiation occurs in the class, so small groups w/i 1 class are getting more individualized instruction. Class sizes range from 23 to 30, w/ 2 full time teachers in each class at all times. The PE & art teachers are amazing! The parent body is very involved, including a great & active PTA. Our excellent new principal has hit the ground running this year & has made some great changes. She is very supportive & truly has the school's best interest in mind. I do feel like people have to remember that DLS is just in it's 3rd year & yes, it does have some growing pains. But the administration is very aware of the issues & is tackling problems & making improvements everyday. There are many ways for parents to be involved too, even if you don't speak the target language. I highly recommend DLS & look forward to sending my 2nd child there.
We have two kids at DLS, in first and fourth grade Spanish. We are truly amazed at how quickly they picked up a second language. They're both reading and speaking fluently in Spanish. We love all the extras-- music, PE, art, as well as many after-school enrichment classes offered by the teachers. We also love the diversity in the student population-- much more diverse than our neighborhood school. Teachers are animated, creative, and caring, and great at meeting the needs of all students in each class, including the highly gifted kids as well as the kids with IEPs. There are many opportunities for parents to volunteer in and out of the classroom and parent support is greatly appreciated. Every year the school gets stronger, and the new principal has made many positive changes since starting last summer, including great communication between administration and parents. We hope the school can move to a larger facility soon so we can grow into a full ECE-8th grade.
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