Over the past year the school has gone through many changes that have not been for the best. the administration has been unable to effectively handle and minimize problems which has lead to at least 6 families leaving mid year within a few weeks. In addition to poor communication and lack of honesty from the school the academics have fallen below what one would expect from Flagstaff. Unable to replace teachers with experienced teachers. Many other schools in the area are getting much better results and have many additional resources available- no longer a top choice in the area.
Flagstaff Academy does a few subjects well, such as the core knowledge, science lab, and Spanish. The math and spelling tests are too easy. There is no difference between levels of the ability groups. Also, there is practically no homework, which is fine if your child is not planning to go into AP or IB in high school. I would recommend this school for those children that either hate school or struggle with certain skills because there is nurturing for them. It's probably not a great fit for everyone though.
We fell in love with Flagstaff from the moment we first visited. There's such a positive energy about this school which is apparent from the moment you enter. The students are smiling, the teachers are engaged, and the administration is happy to make time to chat. The teaching staff, in particular, is amazing. Last year our daughter was in second grade and it was a rare week when we didn't get at least 2 or 3 updates on how things were going in the classroom, and our child's teacher was always responsive to any questions or concerns. The teachers care deeply about their kids, and this is reflected in the attention and emphasis put on appropriate ability grouping -- the school works to make sure your child is in the most effective learning environment for their situation. The focus academically is on science and technology, yet the elementary school also has one of the best art teachers in the district and a strong core knowledge program that integrates math, science, and social studies across the curriculum. I recommend Flagstaff strongly and without reservation.
I have one kid here and one at another school, and being in that situation highlights the differences for me. Flagstaff treats the kids like people, meaning if the child needs a drink he gets one, if he needs a snack (which children often do!!) he gets to have one. Just like an adult would. Not so at the other school, it's more about teacher convenience there (I would love to see if there are snacks hidden in those teachers' desks). The kids at Flagstaff have a longer day than the non-charter, which means there's more time for subjects like science (GREAT program, by the way) and technology (also awesome!). This is the great strength of Flagstaff. I've seen the complaints by unhappy parents (below) but I think they would find the same changes taking place in any St. Vrain school due to the common core mandate, rather than a specific problem with Flagstaff. I would agree that I want more time to talk to the teachers than I get, though. That bothers me. And a better understanding of where my child stands with respect to where he should be. I dislike the feeling that the teachers are avoiding answering those questions.
There are so many problems at Flagstaff Academy. My biggest concern is the over emphasis on test scores. Each child takes 4 standardized tests per year! The math instruction is horrible. Kids are forced to watch a silly video for the first part of the lesson. Then they practice their test taking skills. They don't learn any math and end up confused. A+ students are now getting Ds and are hating school. Parents aren't allowed to talk to teachers so they just form tutoring groups among themselves. Also the administration is too weak to fix any of the problems.
The older children who have missed the curriculum and admistration changes are not being effected by what's happening at this school and will never understand it. You are getting the educaiton that we ALL SIGNED UP FOR! 5th grade and below are not getting the same education. The parents are very upset and the administration does not seem to care. They told us "this is not the same school that it use to be." Well that is odvious. I cannot recomment this school until they get there act together. Just do what is right for the children and everything will get back on track! Shocking that the adults at this school cannot figure this out!
I can't speak to politics. I don't get involved in that way. I do however, get extremely involved in ensuring my children get the best education possible.. I know at Flagstaff that I am welcome and encouraged to be there as much as my schedule will allow. I have put in 1500 - over 2000 volunteer hours in the last nine years. During that time I have observed skinned knees, tears of sadness and tears of joy. My three boys run the gambit from mischievous boy who cares more about socializing than homework, , to the shy genius, to an earnest hard worker that takes forever to finish his work because of his dyslexia and other challenges. All three have been treated fairly with attention to their individual needs whether typical, gifted, or quote "special". Two of my boys have moved on to HS and are doing exceedingly well. Last night they each received four academic awards. One of them is #1 in his class, and is sitting for 6 AP tests this month including Calculus and AP Physics Calc based. He will be considered for the full-ride Boettcher scholarship next year. None of that would be possible without the outstanding education and foundation received from Flagstaff Academy.
My children have been at this school for a few years now, and we can't imagine being anywhere else! They're excited to come to school every day. The teachers here take the time to develop relationships with their students, and the teachers are always responsive! It's fun to volunteer in the school, and it's the best way to see how warm and welcoming the staff is, and how excited the children are. What other school has a greenhouse, a science lab, a librarian that teaches research skills and how to navigate online databases for information? This school attracts the students of families in the high tech fields for a reason - it's an academically rigorous school that believes science and technology matter in our future. The best thing? Our school is so much more than 'how well do we take tests?' My children matter as whole individuals. I recommend this school to my friends all the time - there's just not a better school in the area. I'm constantly blown away by the projects they come home with, and all the things that goes on at the school.
I no longer have children have Flagstaff as of this year and I am amazed that things could seemingly be worse now then there were a year ago. I thought the principal who left in May of 2013 who is now at a St. Vrain school (which he is from what I hear systematically destroying with his ineptitude) was most of the problem. How sad to see and hear that things have not improved.
Flagstaff is a fantastic school going thru some change. Our kindergarten student could not have gotten a better start this year, is reading ahead of grade level, loves the teachers, has been corrected but not bashed when making a mistake, etc. The science, social studies, journalism, art is woven into other lessons. A psych person helps with kids who need to learn how to "read" others better or develop social skills - which frankly have a lot more to do with success in life than standardized test scores. The administration is fair and reacts quickly to questions or concerns. The office staff is upbeat and welcoming. Teachers respond to emails within a day. I recommend Flagstaff to any parent who cares about high quality, demanding education that is individualized - aimed at where the child is at and improving upon that skill level.
I have had kids at Flagstaff since the first year. I currently have children in 8th, 6th, 3rd and 1st grade. My kids absolutely love this school. I know that while they are getting an excellent education they are also getting the best teachers in the area. Over the last 9 years we have always had wonder teachers who care about my children and their progress. I recommend this school to all surrounding areas. This school as been a blessing in so many ways. We are proud to be Dragons!!
My oldest child graduated from Flagstaff Academy last year and is currently a freshman at a highly-ranked high-school. She is taking AP and honors courses and is thriving due to the strong academic background received at Flagstaff. Her teachers have commented on the quality of her writing and have said that Flagstaff students are always prepared for the rigors of high school. As for the issues of Principal leadership, the school is definitely in a transition phase. Many of the other comments that question the quality of the leadership feel unfair (and a bit reactionary). With the rapid growth of the school and the added responsibilities of administrators in Charter Schools, the school has undertaken a nearly year-long search for both a new principal and the newly-created position of Executive Director. As a parent I feel as if this year of transition has gone about as well as it could while the school sought out the best people for these positions. Parent involvement is encouraged as much as ever. Teachers are quick to respond to e-mails and are willing to meet. Parents are encouraged to run for the board, speak at board meetings, volunteer in class and through the PTO.
The school is degrading compared to what it was 5 years ago. Leadership is really bad now - care about their career only.
My son has experienced a high turnover of teachers. Why won't the board listen to the parents? The principal and the board are inept!
Why did our school principal abruptly quit in April? Why did our business manager quit two days before school started with no explanation? Why are board members on the payroll? Why did our elementary principal take two months off then get a pay raise? Why is our school squandering away reserve funds? Why does the board refuse to reduce class sizes, hire enough special education teachers? Why won't they fix the academic problems? What the heck is going on? Where is the school district?
I agreed with the previous poster completely! Flagstaff is really going downhill....My husband wanted to send my kids to Twin Peak and I insisted on Flagstaff, I really regret my decision now, and I know alot of parents are feeling the same things that is why the Gala tickets are not doing well this year, as what I was told. Good luck new potential parents, hopefully when your kids are in, the school is in a better position, better staffs.
Flagstaff is an amazing place for student learning. They provide a rigorous program that is not for everyone, but they treat every child like an individual. These teachers go above and beyond for kids every day. Even though the Board needs to learn how to be a board, the director and MS principal make this the kindest and safest school anywhere. This school is very forward looking and my kids are super prepared for high school and, I think, college. Great teachers, great leadership, great future - what a great school - good luck trying to get in! Everyone knows that Flagstaff is great so it is super hard to get into this amazing school.
I'm sorry to see so many negative reviews. I love this school, and found it to be a supportive environment for my child. I work hand in hand with my child's teachers, and the administration has supported me, as well as the staff. I'm in the school often, and see the wonderful things the students do every day. They love the school! The staff is always smiling, and most of the parents welcoming. It is a transition year, with the loss of our previous principal, however, the teachers are still amazing, the curriculum still above other schools, and the community still wonderful.
I have to agree with the previous posts. My kids have been in Flagstaff for six years. In the last two years the school has taken a nose dive. The communication from the school is terrible. It seems the teachers are having a hard time with new math curriculum. All of my kids will be in tutoring this coming summer to catch them up to where they should be. The teachers are talented and passionate but they have their hands tied. They can only do what a bad curriculum allows them to do. My kids have not had a problem with bullying but I do know there is a lot going on and the victim of the bullying always becomes the bad guy. There is a group of rough kids that never get into trouble and they ruin it for the rest of their peers every year. My biggest concern is that the staff cares more about implementing silly dress code rules than what is going on between the students. My student was once called out of class by an aide who was walking by and noticed his jacket was out of dress code and made him take it off while the teacher was still instructing the class. It's very disappointing to give a review like this. I feel very let down and my children will not be returning next year.
I agree with the previous posters. Flagstaff Academy used to be one of the best schools in the area. The teachers were so creative and made learning fun. Since the school was taken over by a small group of arrogant parents, it has changed into an insane asylum for juvenile delinquent males addicted to video games. The girls are so stressed out by all the chaos. The staff is miserable and it shows. If you are a prospective parent, check out the playground at lunchtime. That should scare you enough to look for another school.
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