I have 2 kids at Waterford: one in the Gifted program, one in a 504 Plan (and retained in 3rd Grade). So far I am very happy with the teachers, my child is NOT medicated and has been doing great with a lot of support and encouragement. Good and bad teachers, like anything else, can be found anywhere, anytime regrettably...
Absolutely horrendous! I was told by the asst. principal they would not work with me until I put my 5 year old on medication. The PTA is a joke. My son's teacher was more concerned with getting him out of her class than teaching him. I had to fight to get him tested for gifted after a year of telling her he was bored. The was no differentiated curriculum, in fact, she taught the whole class to the lowest, slowest student. She made a point of telling a number of parents they needed to medicate their children so she could 'handle them'. When I did get a 504 plan, she refused to enact it because 'it was too much work for her to have him sit up front'. The principal was never there and passed problems off to the asst principal who was over her head. We have pulled him from that school. in hopes of repairing the damage down to my sons education. Stay far away!! They get good FCAT scores by pushing lower preforming students into homeschooling.
Waterford Elementary is pretty terrible. Part of their failures are not their fault. Rapidly changing demographics of the east Orlando area have led to a more 'diverse' population and cultures that do not value education nor discipline. The growth of the area apartments nearby full of transients and single-parent households have greatly contributed to the downfall of this once highly regarded school. The other part of their failures lie solely with the school. 'Teachers' fresh out of UCF that don't understand children nor how to teach. On the flipside, teachers with long tenure and union protection that know they can't be fired no matter what they do. Administrators that play favorites and do nothing when bullying and classroom incidents are reported. The lunchroom at this school is like an urban jungle (its every kid for themselves with no supervision). So glad that I moved my child out of this negative environment. Do your child a favor and consider another school (outside of Orlando if you can).
Worst public school. If you can get your child into a different school you should really consider. Spelling gets tossed out after second grade and they believe that it is ok b/c they can use spell checks.
Mr. Lindlau is the best thing that has happened to this school in 15 years.
My son received speech services from 2009 to 2011 at Waterford Elementary. His speech pathologist was wonderful! Loved her. However, the front office staff were unfriendly and didn't even greet you. They acted as if they were doing you a favor. Also while waiting for my sons sessions to be completed I overheard on at least three occasions two different teachers ridculing and belittling other kids...Needless to say I sent my child to private school.
This school is great. The principal is awesome. He is very open and I have seen his interaction with the students. It is great. His fith grade teacher is super. My son enjoys going to school and is challenged and the meet his educational requirements.
My children have been at Waterford for the past 5 years and I could not be happier. We have had amazing teachers and administration. The principal knows all 800 children by name. He is very involved and responds immediately to any questions I have. The school has created classes for children that are excelling to challenge them in new ways. My oldest child was well prepared for middle school. I and my children have been very happy.
I Have my son in third grade at Waterford lakes elementary, and I have to say, my disappointment goes above and beyond. His teacher not only does the bare minimum but also has not interest in listening or working with the parents. Also the so call Principal of the school has no intention of helping the kids, when I approach him with concerns about my son education like the lack of spelling, his answer was, that kids don't need to learn spelling anymore since there are computer programs that fix spelling errors. My question is now, are they going to stop teaching math, because there is a magic little box called calculator that does math for you. Answer like that coming from a principal I've never expect. This School lacks of a good principal that does not play favoritism and is in for the children. I am highly disappointed with this school and the rating that has to me is not real. I am not saying all teachers there are bad, but the principal and the 3rd grade teacher that my son has are awful, and I know every other mother from that school had told me she is consider to be the worst teacher in the school. Not worth taking your kids here with that kind of principal.
My daughter is in first grade at Waterford. My experience with Waterford thus far has been great. They do faulter a bit in communication but nothing to write home about. For example, it would be nice to know about Friday's meet the teacher event sonner that 3-4 days prior. One thing all parents must understand is that this is Florida and we are not known for our fantastic public education system. In any system, YOUR PARENTAL INVOLVEMENT IS KEY TO YOUR CHILD'S SUCCESS. You will come across "bad" teachers in every school, it is your job as a parent to work with your children after school each day. Waterford has been an "A" rated school for several consecutive years and I am getting exactly what I expected from them which is a solid elementary school base. Before kindergarten, I searched and researched private schools in the area. Based on my assessment of these schools and conversations I had with several other Waterford parents, the quality of education provided at Waterford makes it futile to spend thousands of dollars to send your kids to school elsewhere, unless of course a faith-based education is your preference.
I am fairly torn on this school, but then again, I might just be rating something they cannot help. Let's face it, Florida is the worst state in the country for education. Everyone is going to have a bad teacher from time to time, I get that, and that person will be forgotten about in time. There are some teachers who are absolutely called to teach, and some who are just "instructors" and the extracirricular portions of being a "teacher" aren't there. This school lacks a sincere communication ability. It is very "Stepford Wives" in their approach. You are dealing with a team of people that will refuse to accept that an outsider may have a better idea than they do, but its expected when you're dealing with a substantial population of suburbanite yuppies. The schooling is great, but I don't know how we can grade that, when teachers are practically reading standard booklets and learning platforms like robots. I feel sorry for the teachers in FL. Unfortunately, their stepford wives/brainwashed approach doesn't allow for much "discussion". When they say the want to "work with the parent" They mean "we want you to do what we say not offer suggestions" Problem solving is a weak spot here.
My daughter has been at Waterford Elementary since Kindergarten; she is now in the 5th grade there. Waterford is a really great school and are truly caring for their students!
My son second teacher in the beginning of the year was very attentive and checked their homework. However since the beginning of January the teacher has not shown interest anymore in teaching.I believe the amount of students in a class could sometimes be overwhelming.But,not an excuse for teachers not to get more involved with kids Academics.It seems like they are there just to collect their paycheck. I don't see my son's teacher trying to help those kids which are having problems and are at risk of failing.The Principal needs to get more involved with teachers and families not just at PTA meetings.This school also lacks a lot of extracurricular activities and sportsmanship and in my consideration this school has too many young teachers and a lot of them truly don't care about spending extra time to teach or help those kids with needs.
We came to Waterford in the middle of the 2006-2007 school year. We came from the #1 magnet school in America. We were concerned about finding a school that would be able to meet our expectations. Waterford Elementary did that and so much more. Our daughter joined class after the new year and hit the ground running. She had such wonderful teachers and is happier than she's ever been in school. The focus on academics is wonderful as is the focus on making good grades, which is something that is not easy to find these days. My knowledge of the administration is limited but the one area I did recognize and appreciate is the communication between the school and the families is superb! This is the key element (in my opinion) that makes a good school great. This is something even the #1 magnet school in America is lacking!
I have 3 children at this school currently and I am very pleased. Dr. Cunningham is always accessible to parents. She has done an incredible job keeping this school an 'A' based on some of the demographic changes this school has seen in recent years. The teachers at Waterford are amazing and my kids I truly feel my kids are receiving a top notch education.
I think overall, this school is above average, however, I think too much emphasis is placed on the FCAT, and preparing only for that. I personally would like to see more homework come home, with assignments both in and out of class that encourage students to be more creative and imaginative. I find 'I' have to fill in the gaps myself with my child at home, drawing from material I have to seek out. I also would like to see 'summer packets' come home with Every grade level, that keeps the kids busy all summer long, so that they don't forget most of what they learned in the previous year. Maybe reward them somehow when they return to school with the packet completed. It seems they have to waste more time in the new year with 'refresher assignments', when they could be moving on more.
Waterford is a great school but needs more extracurricular activity options for kids below 5th grade.
I think Waterford is one of the best schools in Orange County. The student to teacher ratio this year is excellent. I have two children that go to Waterford and the class size is 15 for both. This ratio will really help the kids learn and it will offer some one-on-one time for the kids as well. I think the principal, Dr. Cunningham, does a tremendous job. I find her to be accessible, caring, and genuinely concerned about the children. She has a tough job and she is balancing so many delicate issues. I would rate the academic program as a 4/5. I see many volunteers at the school. You have to be persistent and fill out all of the paperwork.
I have mixed feelings about the school. As for the office staff, Elda is the best, she really cares. My daughter, now in Discovery, and my son, still at this school have always gone to this school. The major complaint is the lack of teacher empathy towards the students. I agree with the previous review about the negative influence of some kids from the neighboring complex and the lack of communication with the principal. This year, his last, , finally, my son got a great teacher. His second grade teacher, Ms. Egendorfer, was also the best. I also agree that kids are not given the recess necessary and are 'punished' or rewarded with it. Kids do need a break just as we do. Not having one might worsen the situation by making them tired and act up.
Wonderful enviroment, excellent teachers. One fantastic school. I wouldn't have my children in any other East Orange school.
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