I find myself kind of frustrated with the way things are handled by the principle currently at the school. If there seems to be a problem with your child and you have the meetings, and you come up with a guidline of what could possibly be wrong, it gets tossed aside as you making excuses for your childs behavior, rather than trying to identify the problem. It is extremely frustrating that there is a lack of communication on the school/principle/teachers part. There is absolutely no way parents are allowed to suprise their kids in the classroom, even at the end of the day, because it is deemed too disruptive. This can be very frustrating when you have a parent in the military and they want to suprise their child as we have tried. The parking lot is not condusive to the number of students in the school and the timing of everything is way off. The teachers are nice but sometimes their expectations can be a little dramatic for the age group. Hopefully they can get everything straightened out, at least the parents are pretty nice.
I have experience with Grades K-3 with my 2 boys. The principal is one of the most caring people I have ever met, the teachers are high caliber, and the school community suceeds in fostering an atmosphere of acceptance of and kindness to others. They dealt effectively with the occasional kid who was experimenting with bullying behaviors. They excel at helping new kids find their way. This is one school where the Character Counts program is given more than just lip service and a poster on the wall. The math curriculum (Everyday Math) really gave my son a great foundation, but as my son's giftedness in math began to be exhibited, they struggled to provide him with a gifted program with enough challenge. They tried very hard though to meet his needs, they just need more curriculum materials for gifted kids. We really loved this school and miss it.
Wheeler has been great for my kids. One of them requires special ed resource for reading and he is doing much better because of the help he gets at school. He is made to feel like the rest of the kids, rather than a 'special ed kid' who is 'different'. My daughter is in kindergarten and is already reading. Almost all the kids in her class have 20+ sight words memorized and are on their way to being lifelong readers. Mr. DeFreece, the principal is awesome! He is very involved with the kids and is always available for parents. I can't say enough wonderful things about Wheeler. I feel very lucky to have my kids enrolled there.
Wheeler has some great teachers and an excellent curriculum, but gifted students are not accurately identified and offered the 'High Ability Learner' programs based on objective testing. My child scored 99% on a national test and was still denied HAL status. Another of my children was passed over for advanced placement for entering middle school, until I requested testing, which indeed showed HAL qualification. That child is doing fine now in AP. Another child was having behavioral difficulties in respecting parental authority. We requested help from the counselor. Subsequently the school went around us to an outside agency, which may have been politically motivated because of PTA issues.