This is a safe place to share your honest opinions of a school, whether good or bad.
Normal Community High School5
Posted January 23, 2009
- a parent
Both of our sons attended NCHS. Our oldest was well prepared for college and will graduate on time this year from one of the 'Public Ivys. He said that NCHS prepared him much better for college and life than were many of his fellow college students. Our youngest will graduate from NCHS this spring. He has grown academically and socially during his tenure. He is receiving acceptances from selective colleges in part due to the reputation of NCHS. The teachers and staff take a personal interest in the students and take an interest in developing the whole person. The facilities are first rate. All students are encouraged to participate in the wide array of quality extracurriculars. The Unit 5 district is forward looking and does a fine job of balancing the needs of a growing student population with the financial burdens placed on its citizens.
Both of my sons attended the school, and I was a substitute teacher there. Having gone to a really bad school myself, I appeciate the wide range of classes offered and the fine quality of staff. I became familiar with the special education department and was extremely impressed. The staff is very close-knit and seem to care about the students. The good quality of schools in the district is one reason I live here.
I was once a student at NCHS (as it is affectionately known), and now I am an elder in the district. The facilities now are very modern, with advanced labs for chemistry, biology, physics, and other life sciences. The faculty in these courses are well trained and are the best in the region. This high school was ranked among the top in the state and is by far the best in McLean County. There are some financial problems in the unit (Unit 5), but this is true for public schools everywhere. The current principal Dr. Knuckols split up much of the staff to fit her needs and therefore the faculty possesses an elevating amount of frustration with her. Overall, this school prepared me extremely well and I currently attend an IVY league university. The resources are there at NCHS, so take advantage of them!
This school has some problems with a lot of things. I'll have to hand it to them that the new building is nice, but the district isn't the most intelligent, forgetting to furnish it or cover teacher's salaries. Anyway, beyond that it depends on the individual teacher. I'm not going to name anyone, but the social studies department is pretty good. The science department is rather weak, though managable. There's just been some trouble with Honors Biology. Language department varies greatly, the young teachers are really honestly bad teachers whereas the speech coach is great as is the ALC teacher(s). Music and sports are self supporting and strong, and extra-curricular activities are supported, but there's a charge if your child participates in some. $75 initially, a bit steep to me. The administration has some issues with organization and attitude towards people sometimes. I would avoid this school if at all possible.