As a parent and a sub for this school, I have the unique knowledge of both sides. The teachers and staff LOVE these kids and it shows often as they go the extra mile. The teachers communicate well and if you feel like you or your child are not being heard, you are encouraged to speak up. Communication goes both ways! In regard to how the school is run, many students are not given much instruction OR discipline at home. The teachers and staff follow strict guidelines of appropriate behavior for students and if the students do not follow those rules then action is taken. They do not allow students who misbehave to take other students off of their learning path. The students are much happier to have guidelines to keep everyone accountable. This also creates students (and citizens) who are respectful in school AND outside of school. The school has great Special Area programs! From P.E. and Library to Art and Music, the students go somewhere new every day. They participate in Field Days, Art competitions, Music Showcases and the AR program. Txhere are plays put on in grades K thru 3rd. Most grade levels have two field trips, one in the fall and one in the spring. The school's grade speaks for itself. Not one school in Columbia County can boast that they have been an 'A' school for 8 years in a row. It's tough to get an 'A', it's tougher to keep an 'A', it's the toughest to maintain it for EIGHT years running!
Since this school opened, I have had the opportunity to be both a parent of three students who attended Westside Elementary and a student teacher. Most recently I have been a student teacher at this school. Through both experiences, I have found Westside to have excellent teachers who care about their students. They have a strong principal who cares and is actively involved while striving for excellence. To me, this school is the best of the best.
As I said in my first review last year of Westside. The faculty & staff truely go the extra mile to make yourself & more importantly your childs experience & education a personable one. They are very student/parent involved! They strive to do "Whatever It Takes" when it comes to the education of their students! I am proud to say my daughter is a third year student at Westside Elementary! Miss Penney in the front office RoCkS!! We love her as well as the rest of the staff @ WES!
I am a parent of a 2nd grader that attends Westside Elementary School. I love the teachers and the staff. Everyone there is really inviting and nice. The administration is a bit too rigid for elementary school kids, but the rest compensates for that. We moved to the area from out of state and have been very please with our daughters teacher (Mrs. Watson). She made our daughter feel welcome from the get go. We bought a house across town, but our daughter wouldn't let us move schools until over the summer because she didn't want to leave Mrs. Watson and her class. Overall Westside has been a great welcoming school for us.
I must say as a new mother and single mother I was really scared for my daughter to go to school.But WES really made me feel comfortable and the security is great...these days it is scary to not know what is going on with your child, and with Westside i feel safe secure and I know my daughter is getting a great education.The way they let me know what is going on day to day is great.She loves her teacher (Mrs. Morris) .My first first PTC was so informative. Its nice to know our kids are truly cared for and being well educated.I was not taught hardly any of the things my daughter is being taught in kindergarten. Thank you WES!!!
My nephews,nieces and my daughter have all went to this school. I love the school because they do let the parents get involved. The only concern I have is that the AR reading is so important that the math and others are put to the wayside. Our public schools are so worried about passing the FCAT that some of the important stuff is missed. Most of the teachers really love these children. The office staff is extremely wonderful. I cannot blame the Westside for my child, but I can blame the public schools for the lack of discipline and teaching of all subjects.
My son went to Epiphany for Kindergarten. We paid tuition for him to sit in the principal's office. For first grade he started going to Westside. He has been on the A/B honor roll ever since. He has also tested well above his grade level for the fcats. The teachers are great and make the kids want to learn by making it fun for them. From our experience they allow the kids to learn at their own rate. You don't see the kids being bored because they are waiting for the rest of the class to catch up, and you don't see a lot of kids struggling to keep up so they loose hope. The teachers are there for the kids and they are all so friendly. I love this school and would not have my son go any where else.