I have been associated with the John Crosland School for over 3 years. After reading these comments I am both angry and saddened. I am angry because much of what is said is a personal attack on the leadership of this school. I am saddened because a parent feels as though there child has not progressed while attending this school. As an outside observer, who is now an employee, I can assure you that JCS has the best LD teachers in the world! (My Opinion) Every person in the school wants nothing but the best for the students from Dr. Preston down. Not every student progresses at the same rate. Obviously you believe that enough time has passed and your child should be way ahead of where they are now. Unfortunately this doesn’t happen with all children. It can take some a little longer than others but you can’t give up. The staff here won’t give up and neither should you. What I would like to ask is has you child progressed any? Are they Happy? JCS is not perfect nor is any school. You as a parent need to make decisions for your child’s education and future. If JCS is not the best for them then find the place that will meet their needs and move own. Personal attacks and negative comments are not the way to get your child’s needs met. We all know that education is the key to a more productive life. So I wish you the best and you child the best.
The administration team is beyond amazing. They support us, encourage us, and most of all respect us. If you walk into the lower school, you will frequently see the head of Lower school in the classroom teaching or supporting a teacher. So, I ask you to think about this when was the last time you saw a CEO of a company shadowing a salesmen or even the principal of a school in a classroom for more than just an observation? Our Head of Lower school might not have a masters but she has 20 years of experience in education working from the bottom to the top which is much more valuable than any master’s degree in my eyes. Dr. Preston is out spreading the word of this amazing educational institution. If he sat at a desk all day, he wouldn’t be able to spread the word and help get more students and donors that allow us to expand. When he is in the school I can promise you he is all business. When was the last time you saw a head of school walking the halls every morning, getting kids out of the car in the morning, or writing hand written thank you notes to teachers? I ask that you don’t judge what you don’t know. To the upset parent I want you to think about something, if you were in a teacher where obtaining a masters would cost you 40,000- 60,000 dollars causing you to go into debt and no incentive was given would you sign up for a masters? That is what every public school educator has to think about. Turnover at any school can be skewed. People leave for personal reasons, so you can easily say that 7 teachers left last year but you don’t know why they left. Perhaps they left to have a child, take care of a loved one, or they had to move. Have you ever stopped to think that perhaps teachers leave because it is cheaper for a parent with two children to stay home then to spend their entire monthly paycheck on daycare? It isn’t our business as to why people leave but I can guarantee you any teacher in this building is lucky to be here.
As you can see everyone is entitled to their own opinions and we all know that opinions can be determined based on our experiences and our current mood. As a teacher at John Crosland I wish to share my opinion of the school. Crosland is more than just a school it is a community. We are a community that accepts students regardless of their baggage. We love our students as if they were our own. The school sets high standards for each student and our goal each day to is instill the knowledge and power into our students so they know anything is possible.
Our students are tested throughout the year and groups change best on the students need. We look for growth but we understand that growth looks different for every child. Growth Is more than a number, growth is if the child is no longer afraid to come to school, a child reading with confidence for the first time, a child who says “I’m so smart”. We can’t compare to public schools and it’s a beautiful thing. If you want the weekly testing, your child meeting every standard every day, and keeping up with the pacing guide then public school is the best place. My experience in public schools has allowed me to see and understand how truly life changing John Crosland can be both for a student and a parent. You aren’t told you won’t be going to college if you don’t do well on the EOG’s, you aren’t given test after test just because the state requires you to do so, and you aren’t forced to fit into one of the 3 bubbles (low, grade level, and above grade level) but most of all you aren’t expected to follow a “pacing guide” and learn a new concept in 2 days. Crosland meets the student where they are and we push them every single day to achieve their best.
It's a great place to work. I get to go to work everyday surrounded by some of the greates kids ever. The parents are supportive and highly active in collaborating with teachers and administrators in a unified effort to help the kids reach their goals. It truly is the best place in the world to work. The facility is nice and spacious. Much of the staff have advanced degrees. And most importantly, the kids seem really happy. So many parents have told me heartfelt stories over the years of how the school has changed their entire life and the direction of their child's life. I love my job.
Crosland has some of the most creative teachers I've ever seen. They really take the time to get to know the students and they treat them like individuals. I really love how they celebrate learning. It's also a "No Bully Zone". That's important. Too many of the students have experienced bullying at previous schools.
The John Crosland School is an amazing place that has helped my son not only succeed academically, but also in the area of self-confidence. He is excited about school and has made many "real friends". The teachers and administrators are attentive to the families and pay special attention to each student. The individualized approach to education is what prompted my family to make the switch a few years ago and we are so glad we did! The John Crosland School is a life saver and my son is living proof that their approach to education for those affected by learning disabilities truly works!
We had the greatest of hopes when we enrolled our child at this school. We were extremely disappointed to find out that many teachers, including the reading specialists do not hold a certification in Orton Gillingham (the learning method the school advertised and marketed to parents.) Neither the Head of the Lower or Upper School hold a Master's degree in education. There are no standards in place for measuring progress, no discussions regarding goal setting and no individualized education as they claim. Teachers are not required to read the student's educational testing reports and the administration admitted that they felt this was not necessary. For a school that claims to encourage parent involvement, parents are left in the dark. Communication and organization are horrible. Teacher turnover rate is sky high (7 left last year= @ 30% of teachers). Report cards come home with high marks despite lack of progress and requests for the data used to determine the grades are ignored by the administration. Parents recently learned that the Head of School, who is rarely on campus, owns a non-profit educational consulting business along with one of his John Crosland employees. He also has been working for the University of Phoenix for the past 6 years and is listed as a full time Fellow. This is a clear conflict of interest. At $22,000+ per year, parents deserve to have their money spent wisely for the betterment of their child's education. The Board of Directors needs to take parent concerns seriously and do the right thing. Our children deserve better. If I were a benefactor of this school, I would demand answers and a full investigation. The family of John Crosland deserves to have his legacy honored not squandered.