I do not suggest that you send your child to this school. James E. Shepard is not a true IB school and the students are not fully prepared when they enter high school. Shepard has become a Title I school and the students are still not being helped. The parents are not provided the proper information about the programs that are offered at the school. Shepard has a high turnover with the teachers and most of the dedicated teachers have left the school. This school has a high number of permanent substitute teachers along with a high number of uncertified teachers. The children are constantly being policed by the administration and the principal attempts to run the school with an iron fist. He has absolutely no compassion for the students because he's unable to relate to the students. Mrs.Boone was the principal at Shepard when my son started. She knew all of her student's names. Mrs.Boone attempted to relate to all of her students and she genuinely cared about the wellbeing of her students. Mrs.Boone was replaced last year with a principal who has absolutely no compassion for the students at Shepard. Durham Public Schools will need to go and revamp the school from top to bottom in order for there to be a significant change at Shepard. Don't be fooled by a big smile and smooth talk. I suggest that you talk to some parents who has a children attending Shepard before you send your child there. Research this school to the fullest and make the best decision with all the information you gather.
My granddaughter has attended James E Shepard for 2 yrs now. Each year just gets worse. She is exposed to sexual acts during class in the 7th grade!! She is bullied on the bus and has had to fight boys several times. Teachers do not give her make up work for being sick. Students run this school. Sad, Sad day in our society; They just changed principles hopefully things will change. We are considering home schooling now for all of our grandchildren, elementary is not much better in Durham County School Systems.
My daughter is scarred from all the bullying. She is constantly groped by the boys and harassed by the girls. Administrators and teachers just don't care despite complaints. Kids run the classes and teachers just sit and collect paychecks. Science and math classes are a joke. My kid texts me during class as she has so much "free/study time". IF you can afford private school, do it. I wish I could.
I would like to thank the 8th grader for her courage to leave that comment. I am a parent of a 7th grade boy and what she is saying is true. So true that I want to change his school for his 8th grade year. Me and my husband are very much involved( my husband is a high school teacher). We discipline and encourage. He comes from a good life and we know his friends and their parents. This is why I can truly confirm what she says. I have nothing against the school but parents we must tighten up on our kids. We know their character and disrespect does not come from just the less fortunate kids.
I am currently a 8th grader here at Shepard IB middle school. I have spent about 3 school years in Shepard. I initially hesitated in writing this review because quite a bit of people rated Shepard so highly, but I feel that students and parents should know what Shepard really is currently in 2012. I DO NOT recommend students of high academic capabilities to attend Shepard. It is full of disrespectful, immature, and intolerent students. Everyday I see kids disrespecting teachers and cursing in class OUT LOUD! And the teachers can't do anything because these children don't listen! Take it from someone with 3 years of experience attending Shepard. I wish I could go back in time and change things. The ONLY positive thing about Shepard is its teachers. The staff at Shepard, (only the 8th grade ones) are very competent and high maintenenced. However if your child might crack under peer pressure and pressure to fit in by the students, DO NOT go to Shepard. If you think I am just trolling and hatin' on Shepard, then I will tell you this. I am an Asian student born in beijing, and have lived in Boston, and Wahsington DC before coming to Durham. I also have a grade point average of over 93%.
Shepherd has great insight into the future for our youth of today and tomorrow. I look forward to them investing more into their teachers, as the principal invest more into so that they likewise will be able to pour into our students who is the center of our press for promoting this school. The encouragement, the structure and the discipline is paramount throughout the school.
The teachers seem to be very connected to the students and eager for them to succeed. My daughter is on the quiet side, and it can take time for her to adjust to new situations. In spite of that, she settled in at Shepard quickly, and seems to be thriving there.