The biggest majority of the teachers are pretty effective at KCSMA, but for those that are not, it is pretty bad. Overall, the Specials at the school are poor and honestly, a waste of time. I would rather have my kids go to school for half a day and let me find art, music, technology, and other classes to do outside of KCSMA than continue to have them waste their time in these classes. Art class is a joke and much of the time the kids have to sit on the floor in the art room and watch a movie. It is ridiculous that we have an Art room with very little Art being done in it.
For some students, I think they automatically develop it because they have to in order to survive the bullying that is allowed to take place by those connected with the principal or assistant principal
Again, these skills must be demonstrated by the administration on a daily basis before it can be developed in the students. Beware of the times they (principal & AP) put a smile on their face and act appropriately because someone from the outside comes into the school. As soon as those people turn their back or leave the building, the smiles disappear and they talk bad about them.
We are pleased that our children no longer attend KCSMA. Our family has been at KCSMA for the past 6 years and the decline of the school has been incredible. As others say on here, it USED to be a GREAT school. Everything negative you read on this website is true. It's not just one bad apple, as Admin tries to make everyone believe. BEWARE of the 5-star reviews! Most, of them are written by admin, board members, or one of the chosen parents that the principal or asst principal asks to write a great review for them. The state DOE or the federal govt needs to look into the financial practices and past mismanagement of funds by this administration. It is utterly ridiculous that the admin and Board are allowed to continue running this school and hold their jobs when it has been shown over and over that there is blatant MISUSE OF STATE FUNDS - the taxes paid by all in Cobb County. This school could be a great school if the principal and asst principal were removed and new, honest, caring and qualified replacements were brought in. It is sad that KCSMA has a beautiful building and so much potential but the only way it will get better is with a complete overhaul of Administration. Due to their lack of respect for the teachers and families, along with their inability to effectively lead, the teacher/staff turnover was over 40% this past year, and the number of families that will not be returning is incredible. Why is it that their Teacher of the Year for the past 2 years has left the school the following year? Admin will tell you it is because of lower pay than other county schools, but they refuse to listen to the real reasons everyone is leaving and make up excuses, or skew results to make it look better in the reports they give to Cobb County and the State. Even though we have left the school, someone at the state SERIOUSLY needs to look into this school and PERFORM A COMPLETE AUDIT OF STUDENT RECORDS AND FINANCIAL RECORDS for the past 3-4 years. The county and the state are doing a disservice to all who attend KCSMA and the taxpayers of Cobb County.
Teacher effectiveness varies significantly at KCSMA as I'm sure it does at every school. The teachers here are hampered by the fact that they do not have all of the resources they need to be effective. The lack of technology is astonishing for a school who says they are seeking STEM certification. Of course the STEM program is only being implemented in select classrooms and not school wide. The high rate of teacher turnover makes ongoing academic effectiveness difficult as well.
The amount of homework varies by grade level (as it should) but at the upper grades it borders on ridiculous. Upper grades say "we are preparing them for middle school" yet after having 2 children go all the way through to middle school and one in high school, they had more homework in 4th and 5th grade than they did in 8th and 9th grade. There is no reason for child that age to be up until midnight finishing assignments and go to bed in tears worried that they didn't get everything completed. When speaking with the teachers concerns are dismissed with a wave of the hand and the "preparing for middle school" excuse or blame placed on the student for "being lazy" or not "using their time wisely" when doing homework. IF it was one student that may be the case but not when it is a significant number of kids.
Compassion, caring and empathy all begin with respect and respect is not modeled consistently at this school. Parents who express any kind of concern or who ask questions about anything are treated as "troublemakers." There is a lack of consistency in discipline and expectations.
I have had 2 children progress all of the way through this school and a 3rd attending now. I've spent years waiting for things to "click" for the school but the last 3 years have shown a steady decline. I say this as a parent of 3 children who were never received anything but high marks in conduct and all of whom were/are A/B students. This is not a matter of my children being problem kids and me not being happy that their poor behavior is not overlooked. I am disappointed in the decline of differentiated instruction in the classroom, the level of disrespect parents are met with, the inability of the school to find solid financial footing, the decision to invest in a STEM program that does not serve every child but rather uses a "school within a school model" and more. I do not understand why a decision was made to enhance select classrooms when every classroom is not equipped with basic needs. Record keeping is a nightmare. My middle child has been in middle school for 2 years and KCSMA has still not sent the official records to the middle school. I have stood in the presence of the middle school counselor and listened as she put the phone on speaker and called KCSMA to request the records more than once. Each time KCSMA promises they will be sent and gives an excuse why they have not been received yet. This has been going on for 2 years. My child missed out on being placed in advanced content classes at the start of the school year because these records were not received. According to the middle school they are still awaiting records for children with 504 intervention plans in place - a document the middle school is legally obligated to comply with but that KCSMA has refused to provide copies of. Staff turnover is unacceptably high. Student turnover is just as bad. We have debated the last 2 years on if we want to return our youngest to the school and are only doing so because the feedback we've received on our home school is so negative. We have decided the negative we are familiar with is preferable to the negative we don't know. This was once a school with tremendous potential but they have not only failed to achieve that potential, they have slipped to a level where that potential does not show through any longer. It saddens me to say, but I no longer recommend KCSMA to other parents.