I love this school. My kids are currently enrolled here & have been there for several years. So far we've had only one teacher that was just okay & the rest were fabulous. They go above & beyond to make learning fun and the principal even works to make sure he knows every child's name (with 600+ students - that's impressive). The PTA is very active & helps the school run smoothly. The fact that the principal works well with the PTA also makes for a better school in my opinion. Yes, the class sizes are between 20-24 but that is a state set standard - not a school standard. Yes, about 10% of the parents participate in the PTA but we are living in a world where I think that's the norm & the parents that do chip in, do it with a smile. The diversity at Rising Star can't be beat & for me makes this school even better. I really can't say enough about Rising Star. Is this school perfect? No. But the staff, principal & PTA are always working to improve each year and I think the school pride is one of the best around. Our school motto is: "Together we shine!" & we do! :)
Just like many schools, this school has it's positive and negative points. Some teachers shine while others are lackluster. There is an active PTA, but membership is low and the same people are asked to have significant positions year after year because they're good, but also because the parents who choose to participate are limited. The school has a decent amount of diversity which is great from the perspective of exposure to lots of ethnic backgrounds, cultures, etc., but in many cases (in my limited experience with a Kindergartner this year), it seems like these families depend more on their own communities as opposed to joining in the school community. My child has enjoyed his Kindergarten experience, and I am generally happy with the school. I am especially a fan of the art and music teachers. Also, from participating in the classroom from time to time, I wholeheartedly appreciate the participation of paras and other special needs staff and the work they do.
I had 3 kids go through Rising Star and all three had wonderful experiences. One needed extra help with reading and the learning center teacher was incredible! He learned study skills that helped through out his school years.
My daughter is in Kindergarten at Rising Star. When she was in preschool I let the test scores sway me at first. We were going to switch her to another school. I am blessed that the other school was not accepting transfers. I have never been more pleased with a school, its teachers, its students and the principal as I am with Rising star. All they care about is making your child the best they can be emotional, socially and educationally. I could not have asked for a better place for my child to attend.
The 4 rating for this school is laughable. This is a typical Johnson county gradeschool with excellent resources, class sizes and a good mix of socio-economic groups. Probably the reason for the 4 is that the 1 ratings for Hispanic and multi-ethnic because there are several immigrant families with kids there that are just coming on-line to english...note how the score goes up by grade. To me this is indicative that the school develops the students.
Rising Star is a great school. It is extremely diverse - racially, economic, and socially- for most of your Shawnee schools. The principal, Mr. Lash is starting his second year, but he is extremely accessible and has the background to really get involved with all the kids. What I love, is that the teachers are open and involved. I have friends with children who attend several of the other schools around here and there are limits on everything from how many room parents are allowed per classroom, to walking your kid to their classroom in the morning. Rising Star is very open and if you are willing to volunteer they are happy to have you. I have two children who currently attend and I believe they are getting a very substantial education.