North Star Charter School is the best school I have ever encountered. My daughter has been attending this school since 2nd grade. The teachers here are caring and are so involved. They are easy to talk to and keep parents posted every day. My daughter has excelled here academically as we'll as socially. The teachers and parents have a tight nit relationship and I have never seen such hard work and caring from both the faculty and parents to keep this great school running for my child to continue receiving the best education. I feel that the Meridian school district should stop trying to take away great schools that have such support. There are so many horrible public schools that will receive all of the districts support when instead should close or be redirected. North Star should remain open so that children who cannot attend a private school still have the opportunity to receive a top notch education. Thank you North Star Charter for the best education and caring that you have given my daughter. I will continue to give all my support to this school!
My child has attended a private school, two in district schools and North Star last year. NSCS is as good if not better than the private school. We love this school. The second grade teachers are wonderful. I hope they stay open and would be heart broken if they have to close, it would be a great loss to the community.
We have one son who has attended North Star Charter School, Elementary, through 2nd & 3rd grades, and one son who was in the coveted kindergarten class. Excellent on all accounts!! Some of the best academics in the state. Teachers who successfully handle all ability levels with enthusiasm, organization, and creativity, and will graciously and promptly communicate with parents to address concerns. The school promotes high standards of character and citizenship also, and both of my sons have made friendships with families I can trust. A respected school in this area.
NSCS is an amazing school with an accelerated curriculum and highly dedicated teachers and parents. Before coming to NSCS my child attended a local Meridian School where he was bullied by students and the teacher. He was not academically challenged and was constantly bored. We have been so blessed to be a part of NSCS the last two years where my children now both go. My children have thrived and are constantly being met where they are academically and being pushed to higher standards. We have not had any issues with bulling. The kids at NSCS are class acts. Stop by sometime and I guarantee a child will hold open a door for you or stop in the hall to let you by. The teachers are the best of the best. We have experienced Kindergarten, 2nd and 3rd grades at this school and have been completely amazed every time. These teachers work so hard to give every child a chance not only to succeed but to go above and beyond what they thought was their potential. They do not let these kids settle for average, they want them to be exceptional. The teachers love being there and it shows. I love this amazing school and pray it is around forever!
North Star PUBLIC Charter.. if paying attention to the education in IDAHO.. The govenor has voted DOWN every opportunity to assist any Charter school with all these financial problems. Private funding at high interest with uncorroperative state officials and lendors is the main issue at NSCS. Yes, some teachers have turned over the last few years.This has not been to the schools best interest. We had 6th grade and high school math teachers that WOULD look at a student, and know if they needed extra assistance that day. Not now. The principal is great, although overeducated (inj wrong areas ) parents are constantly creating hostility over issues he has no power over. The Board members need cleaned up from its Community voted members, and there needs more proactive decisions and accountability directly to the board members, not the staff and principal. Yes there are budget cuts . If you chose a charter school, Don't act like a public school parent and expect everone to do your thinking and work for you. Be proactive in your students education. My child is safe at this school. I will never worry about guns and violence. Now to get rid of cell phones on campus entirely.
We love this school - my daughter started in Kindergarten and is currently in first grade. The teachers she's had have given her a love of learning that I hope she'll never outgrow, and her learning curve has been great- she's very bright, but they never stop challenging her, and she never stops loving it. She and I will both be devastated if the school fails financially; I'm hopeful they'll find a way to stay open.
The Washington Post Great Schools Challenge index score is the number of college-level tests given at a school in 2011 divided by the number of graduates that year. Also noted are the percentage of students who come from families that qualify for lunch subsidies (Subs. lunch) and the percentage of graduates who passed at least one college-level test during their high school career, called equity and excellence, (E&E). I don't believe North Star had a school lunch subsidy that year and a small junior and senior class that could skew the percentages. The score does not make it the number one school in Idaho only the number one as based on that criteria. A lot of parents whose kids left North Star because of the issues with the middle school are finding their kids having to catch up at their new high school even though they received high marks at North Star.
The school is alright, it isn't as rigorous as they preach and teachers are only human. After pay cuts, so many changes in administration and major class size changes they are tired. Who can blame them, they signed up for one thing and got another. My HS student likes the small school environment but doesn't like the lack of electives and hates the idea of having the SAME teacher for three years in several subjects. The choices are slim and if you have a few teachers that aren't great, you are stuck with them. There are definitely some weaknesses in the HS curriculum because of budget probably but also because you have teachers that won't listen and engage in a conversation that just MAYBE they aren't as great as they think and should look at what other schools do MUCH better. Science and math the REAL weak link in the HS program. The classes are overcrowded in most grades and test scores are dropping each year. Taughting the IB when kids aren't passing the test is a little over the top. I would guess more kids will pass as the graduation numbers grow, but all they are selling isn't necessarily all that is being done. Good small environment but not great for rigor.
Washington Post ranked this school #1 in the state of Idaho and #82 in the nation! This is a great school! The students, teachers, curriculum and enviorment are outstanding. I couldn't ask for a better school for my children.
I don't know much about the middle and secondary level but the elementary level is terrific. Teachers do have a challenge to teach class sizes that avg around 32-36 students so you must be willing as a parent to keep current with how your child is progressing as it would be impossible for even a super hero to be on top of that. The K-5 is amazing. The main benefits to be specific are that teachers create a fun, fast paced, upbeat, positive learning environment. They are supported and respected by the current (2011-12) administration. They engage students from the top, not the middle, of curricular challenge. If you DO have any "incidents" with your child, they are quick to notify you and appropriate with their professional responses. I've only heard of one incident where the teacher was quite unprofessional in their response to a parent. The teacher was backed up and the parent was given the shaft, but that was one incident. Most families are fairly conservartive. The teachers in the elementary mix fun and humor, challenge and rigor with a touch of personalization and it's a winning combo. The office staff warms up once the crazy first few weeks of school is behind them.
WOW! Amazing ranking: If your looking at how this school rates Nationally, they are in the the top 100 United States schools...I believe they rank 80 which is much higher than Boise Schools and Meridian Schools. The class sizes are small, especially in the High School IB Program which gives students the opportunity to have amazing access to the teacher and education opportunities not found in larger classes. An example is the Science Anatomy and Physiology class learned suturing as well as performed autopsies for a local goat rancher that had unexplained kid (goat) death.
I'm sorry to burst everyone's bubble, but the middle school and high school is a mess. There are VERY limited electives. Class size is sometimes 40 students. Yes, everyone knows everyone and that's nice... but lack of books and materials seriously impact the students abilities to keep up with their advanced coursework. Many times my student was told to come after school to have access to classroom books (4 total) to be able to study. I could go in and on. Meanwhile, the elementary harbor program is great!
As a high student who has attended North Star since its opening in 2003, I have a lot of experience at the school. The principal (as of the 2011-2012 school year) is amazing, the teachers are great and its an all around great environment. When I hear my friends at different schools talk about what goes on in other larger public schools, I am so glad I go to North Star. The small-school environment isn't for everyone, but it's nice that all the teachers and students know each other and are involved. As far as academics go, your get out what you put in. Just look at our test scores, and you'll see we are far above average. If you work hard- you will learn, if you slack off and cheat, you can get a 4.0, but you won't be learning. Again, North Star isn't for everyone, but if you don't like big public schools, you should definitely look into attending North Star.
We love this school. A bit much on the homework side. We find our kids very engaged in school and love to go.
I love this school. I am a student at North Star and have been for two years. At first we had a principal that was not the best and budget woes. Now our principal is amazing. We still have issues with money. But with this economy, what school doesn't? The teachers are amazing and supportive. I am writing essays and reading literature as a freshman that my mom didn't start doing until college. The math program is excellent. I love the science program. I always feel like the school is pushing me to the next level. The musical electives are great with well qualified teachers teaching them. The electives creates a real sense of community. I love to go watch the basketball games, they are really fun. Overall I can`t say enough great things about this school.
As to the persons post that said that their students are beyond students from public schools, that is not true. My high school student is way more challenged at their local public high school this year. We were a North Star family for years until we finally made the switch this past year. We have one sophomore and one in elementary. The sophomore was a very strong student at North Star, 4.0. This student is still a very strong student, 4.0, but has had to work much harder at the public school to keep the 4.0. Also the public school is preparing their students for college in ways that North Star can't. I am not going to talk bad about North Star because we still love so many of the teachers who work there, but I will say that it was not all it was talked up to be. I will also say that we know many families who have made the switch and hands down they are saying the same things. The elementary at North Star is fabulous. Maybe the MS is better than regular public MS since we don't have any experiences to base an assessment on, but the high school falls very short. I didn't feel like i could rate the principal since we haven't been there with the new one.
North Star will have a great high school if they are serious about bringing in Chemistry and Physics back into their curriculum. The maths and language programs are truly outstanding, but not so for high school science. As I know, they have only Biology in high school and another that supposedly covers chemistry. With the ever increasing technology in our environment, how would the high-schoolers have a basic understanding of the gadgets around us? Hopefully, the new principal will be proactive on this issue and will lay a clear plan for different careers while adding Physics.
It's amazing to me to see all the bad posts on here about North Star. My Kids have been in ALL the local schools. Star Elem, Galileo, and North Star. Out of all these schools, North Star out shines by far! I have a high schooler attending North Star and he thrives! Very outgoing child that loves the different opportunities he can have by attending a smaller High School. As far as the problems that the other posters have said about the high school-its brand new... of course there will be bumps and adjustments along the way... with any school. IB program is fantastic and has better opportunities for our children in the future. My Middle Schooler and elementary schoolers are thriving as well. They are grade levels above the public school. I appreciate them at least trying to hold to a code of conduct and dress code. If I knew years ago what I know now, I would have put them in sooner! Good Luck.!
This school has nothing but financial and faculty problems since 2009, what origanaly started out as an IB/business school is becoming more like a Spanish language school. They emphasize Spanish and English courses and neglect every other subject.
This is my son's 2nd yr at NSCS, but not until a couple of months ago we finally saw the light at the end of the tunnel with him catching up. The school has a very advanced program and for the kids to be succesful, parent involvement is a must. So far his 3rd and 4th grade teachers had and have been very supportive. It's true the school needs a lot of fiancial help, what I don't understand is why a lot of parents get upset when the school is asking for extra school supplies or any other form of donations. The school is not like a regular one, it doesn't get 100% government funded and that's why we need to help, so our children can keep getting this great education by great teachers.
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The Community Rating is the school’s average rating from its community members (e.g., parents, students, and school staff). The highest possible rating is five stars; the lowest is one star.
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