Amazing Environment with High Academic Standards and well rounded Arts/Drama/Music Programs.
Our family has been very impressed with RLS overall. I feel I can provide an honest overview and comparison as I have had children in private school and other choice schools in this same area. We transferred our daughter to RLS in 3rd grade form another highly ranked choice school in CB. I was not extremely pleased with her 3rd grade teacher but guess what? He no longer teaches there anymore. That's right if teachers are not the best then don't stay here. Trust me this is good thing. Most of the teachers at RLS are amazing and so are the staff. The principal runs a tight ship and yes he could smile a little more (this elementary school not college) but I am sure he has a great deal of pressure and demands riding on his shoulders. I have noticed one thing about the Choice schools in brevard county (both elementary and Jr/HS) they are under tremendous scrutiny by everyone: the parents, the county, the state, and the community. The county is constantly threatening to cut special funding and programs to these schools and shut them down. Talk about stress. These school are under more pressure to prove their worth and benefit to the community and educational system on a regular basis. I am a highly academic, analytical, type A personality and I would not let my child attend RLS if I thought she was going to get a mediocre education. She is learning STEAM and it is intergrated into every component of her day from art, dance, music, mathematics, language arts, and science. Like I said, every school has their good and bad. RLS has way more good from what I have observed. The 5th grade teachers are amazing. The principal is great, he just seems to be very stressed the past 2 years and I can't blame him. The county has tried to shut down Choice schools for no good reason. The took away corridor bussing which was critical to getting students to the school. The principal has to deal with the all politics at the county level. I blame the Brevard County School system for not giving schools and teachers the tools they need to succeed. Our school rankings are dropping in Brevard County and it's the counties fault. We even got a 1/2 cent tax increase to help alleviate the financial pressures on the education system and the county is mismanaging this money.
Some might think it's too much homework. I think it's just right. I want my kids to be challenged. If the school doesn't give enough homework then I will. We need to challenge our kids so they can be competitive in a global society.
Well I think RLS promotes all these values and characteristics. They have towne hall meetings where they promote and encourage honesty, integrity, and fairness. I do think parents need to also encourage this at home. My daughter is so honest that a teacher reported she had a 96 on a test and my daughter in fact had a 92 and asked the teacher to fix her grade to reflect the 92!
Our daughter attended Stevenson for fifth and sixth grades after spending four years at her assigned (based on our street address) school. She wasn't being challenged at her assigned school but when she started attending Stevenson the workload increase easily 2x. I think this kind of experience could lead the student and or parent to feel overwhelmed and therefore start asking for help from the school and give negative reviews if their student's situation doesn't change. I could be wrong but my personal opinion is that those giving low markings to Stevenson fall in this camp. So first of all be aware of the increase in workload. However if you or your child are results driven and care about FCAT scores as well as GPA, then this school maybe ideally suited for you the parent (who would be required to provide volunteer hours) or your child (who would have to work twice as hard if not more than a regular school). Based on statistics, if your child is an FCAT 3 category, the school is not for your child. But if your child is FCAT 4/5 student and also willing to work to assignments and projects that go well beyond his or her assigned school, then this school maybe for your child
Funny how the negative reviews that tell it exactly how it is at Stevenson, disappear!!!! Disturbing. Do not subject YOUR child to this degrading, unfriendly atmosphere. Almost all the great teachers leave and go elsewhere...what does that tell you?
I am very shocked by the negative remarks on this page about RLS. I am a grandmother with two grandsons who attend this school. I have had over 400 volunteer hours each year they have attended, and I am there for part of every day, so I know a good bit about what goes on here. THERE IS NO CLOSED DOOR POLICY. Yes, you do have to go through the front office to get in. That's a security issue trying to keep the bad guys out, not families! Volunteers are wanted, welcome and recruited! If you sincerely care about the quality of education your child receives and you want to be a part of it, then this is the place to be.This school consistently ranks in the top 50 elementary schools in the state of Florida. Impressive in a state with several thousand elementary schools Children at RLS wear uniforms and sign a behavior contract. There are very few discipline issues and the overall attitude of respect between staff and students creates a positive learning environment.
Took my children out of RLS after 2 and a half years. Both children were happy to go. Strangely unbalanced environment. The school and administration seemed too focused on buzzwords and anything that could get attention for the school. Way too focused on testing! Stifling, unfriendly feeling for an art school. Many teachers have left, all teachers there are overstressed. Very involved families and good students. But after my husband was spoken down to by administration yet another time, we made the choice to leave. We now go to Tropical and our kids are thriving in our calmer neighborhood school.
PART 2/2 If your child is shy, and you want her to be more social, these teachers are so understanding. I used to be the shyest kid. I would barely talk. But my teachers pushed me gently and little by little, I became more out-going. I landed a lead role in the school play! We have plays. These aren't your "1 week put together plays" These take months of planning. The script is written, music selection picked, and complicated dances. And don't be disappointed if you don't get a part, or don't get in a dance. It doesn't mean you're not talented enough. The teachers don't pick favorites. Now are you gonna listen to a student, or someone who doesn't go here?
I, too, like several other parents have stated, am so happy that my daughter attends R L Stevenson Elementary School. It is a fantastic school. My daughter has attended since 3rd grade and is currently completing her 6th grade and final year at Stevenson. I am so sad that she will be leaving Stevenson. The previous writer that stated this is not an Arts school, has clearly not been to Stevenson. My daughter has Theater Arts, Drama, Orchestra, Music and Dance every week. In the past she has had traditional art classes and digital art classes. She has been in numerous productions the school has produced. Currently the entire 6th grade class is completing a Capstone project in Animation. This school is all about providing a superior education while offering numerous arts (dance, music, art, drama) classes. The teachers and administration are warm, inviting and extremely professional. The thing I love most about Stevenson is that it teaches each child to expectation, not the medium standard. What a gift that is to our children. My daughter has surpassed the challenge and now far exceeds the norm....YEAH Stevenson!!!