My kids both started at Galileo in kindergarten and the oldest is now in 6th grade, so we've been part of the school community for 7 years now. Overall, it is an excellent school. The teachers truly care about the kids, the academics are strong, the PTA is very involved and adds extracurriculars like chess and jump rope group. The administration is friendly and willing to work with parents if issues arise. The small, capped class sizes are a bonus too. My only complaint would be the academics in kindergarten and first grade. From second grade on up, it just gets better every year. The middle school is unmatched. So if you can tough it out in the early years (K-1), it is absolutely worth staying. Galileo does have a wait list. (Though it is public, it's a magnet and they are allowed to cap enrollment.) Your best bet to get in is in kindergarten. The lottery starts early (Jan or Feb) for the school year beginning in August.
My whole family loves Galileo! Our boys started when the school first opened. My boys are science-minded and love the engineering program. My oldest, now a high school senior, entered high school highly prepared to succeed and wanting to challenge himself with honors, AP, and concurrent credit classes. He even said high school was easier than Galileo. He has always had a soft spot for the school and still visits with the teachers, and did his Eagle Scout project for the school. My youngest is now an 8th grader. He has a heavy load of homework and is sometimes frustrated with the workload, but wouldn't want to go to any other school because of his love of the engineering classes. He also loves "Flight Club" where he can fly his remote control airplane in the gym on the lunch hour. The classes are small and all the kids know each other. It may not be for every student, but if your kids love science and are willing to challenge themselves, I highly recommend Galileo.
Galileo STEM Academy (science, technology, engineering and math) is like a private school, but it's public. It is an amazing K-8 school where great teaching, technology, and high parental involvement all come together to create an excellent learning environment. Kids start engineering classes in kindergarten and continue through 8th grade. The PTA is active and works well with the school teachers to improve the school. The school is only 6 years old so the classrooms have built in technology including smart boards, document cameras etc. The school has been wonderful for my two boys who have been there since kindergarten.
My son started here as a kindergartener three years ago. As my husband and I sat at the first parent night and listened to his prospective teacher describe what was to be accomplished by the students at the end of the year, we realized that our son had completed that work 2 years prior at montessori. Since then, we have seen is progress and test scores go down and his interest in learning deteriorate. We have tried working with the staff and administration over the past two years to keep him challenged but the response has often been non-productive, punitive discipline in an effort to work to what even they recognize is his potential. Our son is a curious, bright kid but, as with lots of 7-year-old boys, is not cut out to sit at a desk and do rote paperwork or learn science through "Magic School Bus" movies. Although he loves the engineering program, we are pulling him this week and moving him to a more challenging, private school that encourages a passion for lifelong learning through hands-on experience, an individual approach to the child and parent-school teamwork.
This is a great school for the right type of student/family. The student success comes partly from increased parental involvement and highly motivated students. I am not a fan of the 'investigations' math that is taught here as our fifth grader cannot do simple calculations by this method. The teachers and staff have all been excellent. If your child is not strongly self motivated in academics this may not be the best choice.
We LOVE Galileo!! We have been at Galileo since it opened 5 years ago. There is not a day that goes by that I am not grateful for the amazing opportunities available to my kids! Mrs. McCullough, the principal, has created a phenomenal team of teachers and staff. These incredible teachers have helped out students earn top scores routinely in the district and in the state! Since Kindergarten my kids have enjoyed engineering as a weekly "special" along with music, PE, computers, and library. Due to the amazing involvement of parents, Galileo offers a variety of activities such as PTA Reflections, Jump Rope group, intramural sports, and more. Galileo has the largest Chess group in the state of Idaho. For me, it is worth the 5 mile drive from Meridian to drive my kids to school everyday. LOVE Galileo!!
My daughter attends Galileo. My daughter has great friends. There is no bullying, it is 100% not accepted! No one is allowed to swear. The kids do not dress like gangsters, their pants fit and they look like nice kids. She has exceeded amazingly from where she was at her old school. I am very inpressed and satisfied with all my daughters scores. One thing that I absolutely LOVE is that there are not as many kids to each class,so everyone feels more involved. My daughters class tops out with 22 students. The learning process is visual, hands on and audio. It meets all needs for the learning process! They have the best staff. The staff takes time to make sure everyone is understanding. Mrs. Bentley, Mrs. Haggard, Mrs Marshall, Mr. A, Mr. Sandvan, Mrs. Knight, Mr. Fullwood, Mr. Howard, Mrs Halley, are just some names that come to mind for excellence!!!!!!! The parents are very much involved. The PTA is wonderful. I am considering joining next year. . The Principal is amazing. I would really recommend this school to anyone! I HIGHLY recommend this school!!! I am divorced, and my ex-husband will even drive 2 times a week from Nampa just to bring her to school! Thank you!
This is the first year for all my four children. Wow !! Awsome staff and Principal, they realy care! They beleive in " educating the whole child ". My kids love school again, even my 8th grader. A great example of what happens when you have a great staff and lots of involved parents, it takes both.