We have two children in respective first grade classrooms. We continue to be so impressed by the teachers, the principal (Mark Armendariz), the curriculum and the school facilities (which are maintained in impeccable condition and have undergone significant improvements in the last year). We thank our luck stars every day that we reside in the Lincoln School District.
I had two children go through Lincoln, one graduated and we've moved the second to a private school. Academics are good, but I completely agree with other comments that if a child is on either side of the bell curve Lincoln is not the right place. Any north side school pulling from gentrified areas will be a good school like Lincoln. There is a great deal of test prep and standardized testing throughout the year. No extended day options. Traffic and congestion horrible for dropping off and picking up. The whole addition vs. boundary change thing is ruining this once tight community, tensions are high and it is too nasty for our taste. Walking to the University was not a great solution, though it did keep class sizes more reasonable. Personally I think redistricting of future families to one of the 3 nearby magnet schools was the answer. Principal has become less and less approachable in recent years. More classrooms would be good, though I have heard that new developments in the North Avenue and Clybourn area will be districted to Lincoln once the addition is built, maybe that is what justified the large addition.
I am limiting my review to the IG program only. We were admitted last year and my child went for 6th grade. We have since left since we got accepted to an academic center for 7th and 8th grade. I wish I had understood better how the whole thing would work with the children walking a few blocks away for part of their classes everyday. It was not so bad, but the weather in the winter made it difficult and they lost a lot of class time. The program seemed good, they definitely worked at a faster pace than our neighborhood school, but I thought the curriculum would focus more on in depth analysis of subjects, instead it was a lot of busy work and volume of work, and I really was not impressed in the science and technology areas. The school seems to be divided over the addition. If I had to do it over again I would have left my son where he was for 6th grade then gone to the academic center. I don't think it was all that valuable to switch to the IG program. I would recommend that any family who is thinking of going in for just middle school think twice until they get their space issues worked out.
As neighborhood schools in CPS goes this is as good as it gets. Well funded by parents and most students are coming from households where the parents have at least college, most advanced degrees. Overcrowded, primarily because they are now capturing more children in a very large, very dense neighborhood boundary, but still many out of district IMHO smaller school, k-8 700 students or under much preferable to school of 1100. Playground on roof okay, no basketball, swings etc. allowed. Space for unstructured, independent play on the playground before and aftr school will be missed. No before or after school care options and an 8:45 a.m. start make it difficult for working families. Education is fine, test results stellar..but you would expect great test scores given the raw material the teachers are working with and the extra funding from parents. It is too bad that a better solution to the overcrowding could not be found for the community. Would much prefer more neighborhood schools in LP where children can walk , there are so many magnets in the area.
Lincoln Elementary is a great school because its teachers are so dedicated. They go the extra mile to help Lincoln's students achieve. Many of them are parents themselves so they speak with experience, knowledge and empathy. Lincoln is awesome!
The principal has been doing a poor job communicating with parents. I got almost no feedback on my child's progress in the conference. I feel the teacher barely knows who my child is. Maybe because the class size is 32.
This is still a CPS school and adheres to the same CPS bureaucratic agenda that is expected of all CPS schools. So, in that sense, it is not special. IN other words, same overtesting, common core, NWEA BS that has been proven to be useless for children. It is only helpful to the ones making those tests. They are profiting off of our children. The parent involvement is high, enough that the school has now gotten approval to expand. There seems to be an elitist mentality here and the Principal I dont know enough to comment about. My child loves school, and I guess for CPS this is the best it is going to get. I do not think the teachers and Principal do a good job of collaborating with the parents. Parents know their children best. No one asked for a snapshot of my child's strengths and they have not identified my childs strengths. A good school/great teachers will do that. Dont expect it here. I just get the standard report card, and comparing to the norms. You will be find that at any school, even if you pay for it. But otherwise my child is just a "brick in the wall".
Question for parents at the school....is the October 5th post representative of the mindset of the families at the school? And this is coming from an upper middle class, right-leaning white male that is relocating his family to Chicago....wow.