This is a safe place to share your honest opinions of a school, whether good or bad.
Westgate Charter School5
Posted September 30, 2014
- a parent
My son just started at this school this fall and loves it. He is in middle school and is very bright however due to problems with bullying at his last school, he began to hate school and it was tough to get him to go. Since he started at Westgate he is eager to go to school on a daily basis and feels comfortable learning in this atmosphere. He has really turned back around from the support the teachers at this school has offered and their supportive philosophy.
I am very happy with the education my children are getting at Westgate. My children, at the elementary and middle school levels, are both growing in ways I never imagined. The conversations we have in the car each day after school are thrilling to me as a parent. We really talk about their learning. I wouldn't trade this school for the world. It's the right fit for my family. Teachers are great. Administration is available. The community is supportive. I am so grateful.
I love Westgate! My children have pretty much attended every different kind of school, ranging from traditional to non-traditional, and we have been over and over again discouraged by the "fit the mold" approach to education that many traditional schools enforce. We consider ourselves very blessed to have found Westgate, where creative and "different" learning styles are celebrated, rather than condemned. I have seen a night and day difference in all of my kids, when learning is fun and they are allowed to be kids. The teachers are very capable, gifted, positive, energetic individuals, and after parent-teacher conferences, I am encouraged that even when there are issues to discuss, they are presented with hope and a "how can we help the student?" attitude. I wish more schools followed this model. As a parent, it is such a pleasant surprise to get a positive review and encouraging notes about how my kids are progressing, rather than constantly bemoaning to me how they are failing and don't measure up. I am so grateful to Westgate and the fabulous teachers that work there!
Notice that all the 5 star reviews come at the same time, if not the same day? Don't be fooled. People are leaving this school in droves. Teachers are leaving this school in droves. Avoid this school if you want your school admin to listen to you. We did. Not only that, it's not a safe environment. Discipline is a problem. Classes are out of control, and parents can never be sure what they're being told is what is actually happening, nor what their children might be learning. It was a nightmare for us.
This school is great and there's been a great vibe this year from parents and students alike. The teachers can't be beat either. As a happy parent of an elementary school age kid, I'm thrilled by the progress my child is making and the attention given to each kid. And I've never met an insincere or unkind administrator there. The school may not be the right fit for all families, but I'm not sure why anyone would say it's unsafe!!?? That blows my mind. It's a safe, warm, nurturing and happy place, and my kid tells me how happy she is on a daily basis. Westgate deserves kudos for trying something different and succeeding at it.
The school is truly incredible. Like any place, it has its challenges. Westgate rises to the challenges and kicks their butts mostly due to the fantastic teachers. To say that the teachers are rock stars would be selling them short. Our kid has been at Westgate for two years, and I have been constantly impressed by the teachers' level of commitment to the kids' development, their competence, enthusiasm and flexibility. If your child needs a little extra attention in some area, they are on it. If your child just gets a subject and needs a whole different level of challenge, they are ready. The flexibility of the teachers' approach and willingness to adapt classes to let the kids lead the way in their own education, while ensuring that quality learning takes place is impressive. True professionals. And don't even get me started on the concept of working at school, and coming home ready to be at home, not to do hours of homework. Life is insane enough without hours of homework. This also lets kids develop a healthy concept of leaving work at work -- something I could be better at. Most importantly, our child LOVES school, loves learning and loves the teachers. Win.
Westgate Charter School is an outstanding out of the box school that focuses on the non-traditional learning styles many gifted children need to be successful. Our children absolutely love the staff and attention they receive making them want to learn more and more each day.
Last night I was driving back after curriculum night and decided to have a date night with my 2nd grade daughter enjoying our shared guilty pleasure: strip mall chinese. From the back seat she asked if she could read me some Jack Prelutsky poetry (um, yes please), and she bravely tackled crazy words like "burgeoning." Then at dinner she assessed whether the soup should be considered a solid or a liquid since it was thickened with corn starch, and decided since it did not keep its shape it was a liquid. Then she diagramed the motion of molecules in different states of matter on her napkin and discussed the process of condensation. Sometimes you don't need grades or MAPS or TCAPs to know how school is going. Thanks Westgate!!
What a nightmare school! We attended all the intro meetings (they require multiple ones) filled out a ridiculously long application (which we did not, in the end, turn in), did the tour, etc. We head heard about how poorly behaved kids can sap all the teacher attention, but we still wanted to go view for ourselves. We were appalled at the lack of safety measures and most of all at the rude attitude towards parents. If you have any concerns and would like to speak directly to the administration, they are simply not willing or available. And this attitude goes all the way to the top, the Director. Honestly, during every interaction I got the impression that they like students but hate dealing with parents in any capacity. We simply won't send our kid to a school where we feel the administration views parents as "necessary evils to be avoided."