June 25, 2015
In some ways THS is a reasonable large public high school. I am impressed with the guidance counselor that I have found to be very wise and helpful. AP courses definitely have the best teachers and my kids have enjoyed them. The math department is inadequate, however, and I have also had the experience of a teacher promising a particular class depending on grades and then going back on the promise. None of my kids have had excellent, or even good, math teachers. In one of the classes this year 75% of the class failed the final. When I called the school they said that wasn't true, despite the fact that the class had been berated by the administration already. There are four HUGE problems, apart from academics, in the school-the first: discipline. For the teachers to report someone, it is very unwieldy, so teachers don't report, either cheating, lying or vaping with e-cigarettes. Vaping is rampant in school, in front of teachers. In classes, this means that the teachers don't reprimand students even if they are being disruptive. No one gets sent out of classes as far as I can tell. Second: diversity, as people below said, is very problematic. There are no training programs; no one seems to mind who says what to whom and the atmosphere can be quite toxic. Three: the band. The school invests a lot of time, money and energy into the band at the expense of other things. Band kids get favored and are let off assignments when they are too busy. If they spent more time on training the math teachers and less on band, I think it would be very useful. Talking of money-we haven't had a full time district coordinator of curriculum for a while. The town spent $90,000 on someone to oversee the parks and golf course, however! This is the wrong emphasis. The Board of Education does not solicit feedback from the parents and neither does the school. Four: the school is very crowded and claustrophobic when classes transition. My daughter is constantly getting shoved and pulled with her backpack.
- submitted by a parent