This is a safe place to share your honest opinions of a school, whether good or bad.
German American School of Portland5
Posted April 09, 2015
- a parent
I love the idea of my children having a bilingual education, even though I don't speak a bit of German. I wondered about how it would work, whether they would actually learn German, and if they did, how would the properly learn to read and write in English, etc. Sure enough, my elementary school child is now a voracious reader in both languages, and my kindergartener is well on his way. Both are challenged academically, physically, and have developed wonderful friendships. The small class sizes are awesome, and the teachers are top notch. The administration truly cares about the children's educational and developmental growth and supports the teachers' efforts and creativity. Plus, the other parents are really nice and down to earth, which, at least to me, is really important. Another plus- the afterschool program is totally awesome.
If I had to pay the 15K tuition a year out of my own pocket, I would not send my child to this school. It is poorly managed by a principal who likes to vacation during the school year (and takes his kids out of school for this, too). Teachers seem overworked and underpaid, carpets in the classrooms are old and filthy and in spite of the high tuition fees, kids have to bring their own food which they get to heat up in microwave ovens during lunch breaks. Oh, and you have to pay an extra $700 or so per year for milk... So unless you have a real need for your child to speak, read and write German (like going back to Germany after an expat assignment), it's definitely not worth the money you have to spend. Plus on top of paying all that money, you are obliged to volunteer for the school.
GSP is a great school and our daughter loves going to there. The teachers and staff are friendly, creative and professional which creates a wonderful learning environment for our daughter. GSP offers a well rounded and challenging curriculum that includes Music, Art, PE, German, English, Math and Science.
When I first entered GSP almost 10 (yes, ten!) years ago - I immediately fell for the school, and my first thought was: "I would love to have a child so he/ she can attend this wonderful school!" Now I am the happy mother of a GSP first grader who has attended the school since preschool, and we all still appreciate the unique opportunity for bilingual and bicultural education this school offers, along with a few other perks like the extensive library including thousands of German books, the music room with five pianos/ keyboards and other instruments or the huge sports room which allows for much needed exercise throughout the day even when it is pouring outside. The quality of teachers and other staff is just the icing and cherry on a beautifully layered cake, the blending of both American and German curriculum makes the school's program a most thorough and well-balanced educational experience. A lot of planning and outstanding efforts go into providing diverse opportunities for learning and practicing important concepts through different methods, so students with different learning styles and various talents are encouraged to pursue the best that they can be. We love GSP!
Our daughter is in pre-k and has been at GSP since last year. We only have great things to say about the school. Great teachers, outstanding curriculum, great culture and environment and most importantly our daughter loves the school, the teachers and her friends! She loves going to school and wishes she could go on the weekends. She is fluent in Spanish and English and now she is becoming fluent in German. The great activities that they do including art, gym class, music class and the Second Step program have made her grow and think in a unique way. The two main reasons why we decided for GSP were discipline and curriculum and we have been very impressed with these two areas. Finally, we are very happy with the low student/teacher ratio. She gets more attention and participation which helps her learn and experience more.
We have 2 kids at GSP and are very happy with the quality of education and sense of community at GSP. Our children are getting an excellent education, learning 2 languages simultaneously and still have alot of fun! We highly recommend GSP
Mom: "What do you like best about GSP?" 5 year old daughter: "The teachers. They work very hard all year long and so does everyone else." The school is amazingly organized, well ran and great introduction to German language and culture. A truly great language school. Before and after care are also very good.
This school is more than just a school with great academics. For many of us it is our second home. Parents and students find lasting friendships that enrich our horizons. My son enjoys music and art class as much as spending time in the lab exploring scientific concepts and being a big buddy to a kindergarten student. As a mom I value an education philosophy that cares about my son's personality as much as his academic success.
When visiting GSP for the first time (4 years ago!), we immediately felt welcome. The school is made up of a community of involved, dedicated and interested families and staff. We have been so impressed with our daughter's growth (intellectually and socially) since her start here in pre-K. This is a wonderful school, and well worth the investment we've made.