WRHS retains overpaid, mediocre teachers and staff, and a new principal with little experience making over 100k. Taxes provide 26k per pupil, but the result is low SAT scores. Support includes a top heavy district office who is being sued, with no accountability or ethics. This district is interested in buildings and grounds, not student achievement. A new school board that changes leadership will ultimately turn this negative climate, to one that is committed to education. Ego, politics and misrepresentation continue to plague this school and district. A rose with many prickles. More than a disappointment, an educational travesty.
I rated this school unsatisfactory because it should be doing so much better given its level of per pupil funding (huge--around $25,000). Instead of being one of the best in the country, it is barely mediocre. Parents considering this school should look at graduation rates (mediocre), the abysmally small percentage of students that take the SAT, SAT scores that are lower than Idaho state average, etc. Then ask around. In other words, do your homework, don't just read the district public relations junk. Extremely poor district leadership (friends promote friends) is to blame. Good teachers struggle and are demoralized. Hopefully the school board (which is in transition) will ask teachers for their input. With great leadership, this district could be great.
Actually, I know the person who wrote the November 28 comment and she is not an administrator. She is a parent who has lived in the valley for over 20 years and knows the school and the community well. I would have to agree that the teachers are very good and most certainly have their priorities straight -- caring about their students. I am not going to argue about the administration as that, all to often, is really about politics, not education. I do have to agree, however, that the nosiest (and wealthiest) of the public seem to get their way and their way is to create a system which caters to the top 20% of the students, supporting the bottom 20% (special needs) and giving minimal consideration to the great majority (60%) of the students. As to the January 30 comment regarding the "sporty students": I have never been in a school district where being "sporty" meant LESS. I am a parent and do not presently have a student in the high school, but I do have two former students who received a very good education, have done very well in the post-high school education and careers and always speak highly of the school and several of their teachers.
WRHS has excellent teachers and meets the needs of most average students, especially sporty ones. I rated it low because of the administration. They do not treat parents as partners. The parents that care the most speak up the most ( I do not myself have the time, but I feel grateful for their time and energy) and they DO represent those that are too busy or trusting. In addition, the administration is way too defensive, and suffers from a lack of serving leaders. The comment posted on November 28th sounds like it came from an administrator: A WRSD administator is resistant to his constituents, paranoid, entrenched and self-congratulatory. The administration spends much energy and money on non-student/curriculum centered priorities (buildings, security systems, retro-fitting heating systems in old buildings, hiring more administrators rather than teaching staff, etc) With as much money as this district has, we should actually be AMAZING.
An O.K. school in national comparison with some excellent teachers. Losing ground and settling for third and fourth choices as far as hiring new staff to replace retiring staff, as it is so expensive to live in the valley. Needs to focus not just on the bottom percentage of students, but needs to help those who are high achieving as well. Some counseling and scheduling policies are geared to assisting the lowest common denominator leaving those who excel to fend for themselves.