Our daughter attended HLA from K-5th grade. She was one of the first graduates who attended the school from the beginning until the end. During the entire experience, I knew HLA was wonderful. Our daughter loved going to school and had a genuine interest in learning. The skills and habits she was really harnessing there, however, weren't truly apparent until she entered the sixth grade. We were concerned about her going from such a small school where she knew everyone to a huge school that was a little more mainstream. She's in the Cambridge program which is for advanced students and has really thrived there. She has the most amazing work habits and she is intrinsically motivated. In addition, she is organized, respectful, and interested. Aside from that, she continues to choose healthy friends and healthy foods. We are now sending our middle child there with confidence. We love this place:)
We love Healthy Learning Academy!!! This school has it all. Small class sizes; wonderful principal and staff; monthly family nights and parent involvement; teaching the curriculum and not to the test (and yet the students all pass usually well above the state average); daily yoga, p.e., and recess!!! They have morning meetings where they sing and focus on character development. They teach children healthy living, they work in the garden and cook in the kitchen, and drink from their water bottles. It is an AMAZING school and we feel so blessed to have found it.
This is a small school. My children get a lot of individualized attention. The principal is very proactive, and stays on top of what goes on. I have been so impressed with the teachers, they truly seem to have a passion for what they do. We feel so grateful to have found this little gem.
My deepest sympathy truly goes to the challenges your family faces with your sick little one. I would like to share my experience at HLA with my child's retention. My 1st grader had been struggling with math throughout the year; was at grade level but struggled and was insecure, despite receiving extra help from Mrs. Little (the teacher's asst). One evening I received a call from the principal who suggested, in an utmost courteous manner, retaining my child. She left the decision in our hands and our hands only since he was testing at grade level, although barely. Because I knew how he struggled, felt ashamed and imcompetent, I was on board with no questions asked. It was my thought and still is that it would be better to go ahead and address the issue while he was still young, rather than down the road when it would likely be more distrupting to his self esteem. He repeated the 1st grade the following year with great success and confidence. He took the FCAT this year and received 3 and 4s but more importantly, feels good about himself. I never felt pressured to retain him by the principal and in fact was made to feel very supported even if my decision had been to not retain him.
The principal of this school wanted to retain my kindergartner, she showed me my sons writing journal & a drawing. I was shown NO test scores, or work in any other subjects. She then told me my son was developmentally delayed, which she is not qualified to do, and had little to support her statement. Not to mention if that were the case she should have ordered testing on him during the school year. She then used my 4 yr old son that has leukemia as an excuse to retain my son, citing that if we put my son in to 1st grade & something were to happen to my 4yr old, we wouldn't be able to meet my older sons educational needs. She has not complied with our requests to see proof of testing done on my son to suggest a delay...because there was none done. Since this has happened to us, I have learned from other parents of ways that this school is ran, and had I known what I know now, I NEVER would have sent my child there.
We love HLA. I was so afraid to send my child to school. I was concerned about my sweet little child getting exposed to children that have grown up in less than perfect family environments and picking up bad behavior, or being subject to bad behavior. The families at HLA are so involved and caring and have similar child rearing practices as my wife and I do. As a selfish parent, I am grateful when I see the discipline problem children pulled out by their parents. Who needs them in our peaceful school?
We LOVE HLA!! We love the teachers, the curriculum, & the families who send their children to school here. It is mandatory that each family volunteer a certain number of hours each year, but that just goes to show that your child will be in school with children who's families actually care about their education. HLA communicates with parents regularly via email & letters home, so you always know what's going on & what the kids are learning. Their philosophy is much more holistic - they look at your child as a whole, as opposed to diagnosing every problem as ADHD. I will say that HLA isn't for everyone... if you make demands that they should change the way they do things - then you're probably not HLA material. The way they teach / run the school is fantastic & works for so many, they're not going to change everything for one person. Don t get me wrong, they are very accommodating & have an excellent resource teacher that gives students extra help when needed. But I have seen situations where either the parents or child did not fit the mold, or started making demands that strayed from HLA s mission statement. We have been extremely happy & look forward another year at HLA!
The staff and Principal at this school are the most dedicated group of educatiors I have seen at a school. They have every child's best interest at heart and will do everything within their powers to ensure that each child is receiving the maximum benefit from their education at HLA. The curriculum is top-notch, covering all Sunshine State Standards, while intergrating movement, music and hands-on activities throughout the day. Parent involvement is high and students love actually look forward to attending school each and every day!
Absolutely fabulous! I cannot say enough about this school. My kids are given close attention by the faculty and their individual needs are addressed. One is a very active child and the focus on health and exercise has been an excellent way to keep him both engaged and excited to for school. As a result, he has been able to stay focused longer and his reading skills have improved dramatically. I tell everyone I know to bring their children to Healthy Learning Academy.
We've been at Healthy Learning Academy for three years and now have a second child who started kindergarten here this year. The teachers and administrators of the school have been caring and considerate, in addition to being excellent educators. They offer a strong curriculum that challenges students, mentally and physically. My children come home excited to show and tell me new things (yoga poses, Spanish words, math facts, and songs) they are learning at school. The teachers encourage learning at all levels by providing extra challenges for students who need more or one-on-one time for students who need additional academic support. The volunteerism at the school is also superb! Each time I have volunteered in class, there have been other parents or grandparents volunteering in school as well. And as a parent, you are ALWAYS welcome to observe or assist your child's class. This is one of the initial reasons we chose this school over our zoned public school. We also love that our kids start off the day with exercise and are encouraged to choose healthy foods -- and even make them in class with ingredients grown in the school's garden!
I sent my kindergarten son to this school for one month and removed him. We had a terrible experience with this school. There was no positive reinforcement, punishment that would include 10 laps around the field that would occur the DAY AFTER the behavior, and a my son kept asking to not be "forced" to go there. I enrolled him in an "A" rated elementary school and he (and I) have never been happier.
My son is a first grader at Healthy Learning Academy in Gainesville and I am so pleased that we are part of the HLA family. The women who run this school and teach at this school do it because they love this school's philosophy, love to teach and love our kids. They all truly have our kids' best interests at heart. My son is excelling in his studies and he loves being at school. He has made some wonderful friends. It's a joy to be welcomed into the school and classroom to volunteer and be part of my son's school day. We love having the healthy perspective at school, making health, yoga, PE and healthy foods a normal everyday part of life. With several friends at other public schools in town, it's nice to see that HLA's curriculum is even with and/or above that of the other schools. Good choice!
I have a child in first grade at HLA. This is his 2nd year at HLA. We could not be more pleased! I agree with everything in the last post and would like to add that the Principle is an amazing person who dedicates her life to the school, the children and the families. She is always willing to listen, hear suggestions and do everything in her power to make this a good experience. In a world where education is undervalued, I feel lucky to have found this safe haven for my child!
I removed my son today from this school. I was drawn to it's small classes and healthy concept. I had no idea what it meant to be Title 1 it seemed like a private school education for free. Later I was shocked to find out the entire class has to learn a program for children with reading disabilities. If your child is above average or average they need to mark them lower then lift the severity of the grading as the year progresses showing "improvement" to keep funding. If your child is special needs, attention deficit, or dyslexic I am sure you will love this school. If you seek a standard education and your child is average or above do not risk their school records here. They teach a heavy phonics system for reading disabilities. Ask questions, don't assume!
The Healthy Learning Academy has one of the most comprehensive and dynamic approaches to learning that I have ever seen. This school provides an intimate and nurturing learning environment and rigorously challenges the children to advance and discover concepts through an amazing range of devices. They focus on the well-being of the whole child. They include physical fitness, emotional stability', and do not lose ground academically. The other benefit of their approach is the engagement of the PARENTS in the educational process though volunteering their time. An engaged parent leads to a confident and intelligent child.
Healthy Learning Academy has such a wonderful program! They really focus on well-rounded learning and development for ALL of the children who attend the school. There is a lot of attention to the relation between physical, mental, and emotional health. The children in this school are challenged, but they are given all of the tools they need for success. My nephew is in first grade and has been attending since he began kindergarten. Other children I am close to who attend other schools are studing far less advanced curriculum, and yet still not comprehending as well. The one-on-one time is amazing. The children have yoga, PE, and recess every day, still get field trips, and don't get 'drilled' for the state-mandated testing - but still score as well as(and far above, in many cases) other schools.
If you are looking for a smaller more hands on environment for your child, this is it! My daughter loves this school. She gets yoga, PE and recess, thank goodness, and an environment where she can learn at her own pace. The faculty is so nice and caring. This is a great way to start a child into school. She's so excited to learn and that is the most important thing to me. What a bonus and oh so smart that the school promotes healthy eating habits as well.
Personally, as a parent with a daughter currently attending HLA, I must give HLA very, very high ratings in every regard. The quality of the teachers is superior. The ratio of teacher and student is just right. The first and second grade students are taught by the principal of the school and are taught well. All students seem to learn and learn well. Personal time and attention is given to each and every child. I am thoroughly satisfied and pleased with HLA and its staff.
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