Coming from a former student (Who is now at Oak Manor and wishing to go back to Howard), I can say that this school is pretty great. although, yes, the kids of teachers don't get in trouble as often and it somewhat DOES rely on social groups, the staff was very fun, hardworking, and helpful. I'll admit that my second grade experience wasn't the best, but that's just because of my opinion of the teacher. Third grade was awesome as long as you got Mr.Todd as your homeroom teacher, Fourth was a bit... rough. I liked my Homeroom but the switching teacher was very condescending and talked down to us quite a bit. I absolutely loved fifth grade, Mrs. Bowser was the best teacher I've ever had and I hope your child gets to be in her fifth grade class. I learned A LOT from this school both academically and behaviorally and I wish that I could go back at least to visit my old teachers and friends in the lower grades. Also, bullying rarely occurs at this school, so there's no need to be worried about that! But back to the "Social Groups" thing. It is sadly kind of true, if you're not in one of the five main cliques you're pretty much unappreciated.
An Oak Manor student who wants to go back to Howard.
From the day my child began school at Ellis, I have felt that he is in good hands. Academically, he is challenged at his level. His teachers are knowledgeable about the standards and keep parents informed on how we can assist at home. His needs are met emotionally as the entire staff is friendly and caring. Other children in his class, grade or bus are good role models. He also has medical needs that I have found are always handled appropriately with the teachers and secretaries. Volunteers are welcomed and encouraged at this school. I look forward to seeing my son thrive here.
I wouldn't recommend this school to any parent. My child attended this school from K thru 5th grade. I had nothing but problems with the administration. The Reading/Language Arts curriculum was a joke for grade levels 2nd -5th. My child s 2nd and 5th grade teachers were subpar. My child transferred schools at the end of the 1st marking period this year. I took me making 2 phone calls after I waited a month to receive a report card. The school's disciplinary rubric is followed and enforced "unofficially" based on what social circle the parents belong to. This is also true of how your child will be treated. Don't walk away from choosing this school. RUN!
My child has a neurological brain disorder. I requested an IEP multiple times over several years and was denied. My child finally got the IEP accomidations after 3 years. The school has a zero tolerance policy for bullying. My child was bullied repeatedly. The bullies were never punished, because one of the bullies was the child of a teacher. I have had several parents tell me similar stories. If the bully is a child of one of the local teachers the rules don't apply to these children. I personally witnessed inappropriate behavior by "a teacher's kid" and the supervising teacher did nothing. So it is a great school if you are a teacher's kid, your child can handle being bullied, and your child doesn't have special needs. The special needs resource teachers are wonderful at this school! They are the key to my child finally getting the education needed to succeed.
My son just completed his first year at Howard, and I cannot express in a few words just how great this school really is! His teacher also just completed his first year of teaching, and he is the reason for my son's success. With a great group of teachers and a very understanding principal, I now know why this school is a Blue Ribbon school.
The staff become more like family, its an atmospere you can only expect to see and feel after you walk through the doors. This school doesnt look like much on the outside, but what you find on the inside, is truly a life changing experience for students! (and parents).