This is a safe place to share your honest opinions of a school, whether good or bad.
Houston Middle School1
Posted February 23, 2015
- a parent
When we first moved here, everyone told us to send our child to private school. We are big believers in the public school system so we decided to try HMS. I am sorry to say that the experience has been horrible. If your child needs to be challenged, this schools is not the right choice. Also, be forewarned, the school starts at 7:00am. While the rest of the country is moving to later, age appropriate start times, HMS is behind the times. The first two periods of school are a waste for the students.
Most of the teachers are just not good, they don't set any positive example. Besides, quite often the lessons are filled with unrelated to the subject activities to say the least, at times plain goofing around internet by the teachers. Academic program is very poor. Most of the subjects are taught without using the textbook, in very unorganized and confusing fashion. The kids are told to use Internet as a resource, which is full of untrue and not appropriate information. Some extracurricular activities are all right. Bottom line: this school is way overrated.
I think this school deserves a current review. This is our third year at HMS, and we couldn't be more thrilled with our experience here. From academics, to arts, and after school opportunities, we have found helpful and caring staff at every turn. I believe getting involved has been a key to our son's success, having joined the xcountry and swim teams, plus jazz band and honor band and apex/honors classes. Compared to the other middle schools in the area, this is the ONLY school I would want my kids to go to. Teachers are engaged and responsive whenever you have questions, and they truly want their students to excel.
As an alum of this school (over a decade ago), I would like to bring to attention the fact that this was one of the most hierarchical schools I have attended. Under the radar bullying and name-calling occurred consistently, particularly if one did not belong/was an outsider, and no teacher stepped in to hold students accountable. Additionally, in my grammar class, teaching was mainly absent. Each day was spent working alone in our workbooks with minimal grammar instruction. The rest of class time was spent on "Brain Quest" games. I do want to give kudos to the parent volunteers, particularly volunteers who assisted with student clubs, such as Odyssey of the Mind. Parent volunteers at this school were dedicated and enthusiastic about education that occurred outside of the classroom. I do hope that the school environment (whether social or academic) has changed such that each student is cared for and taught with excellence as the school's reputation asserts.
Houston Middle School is probably the best public middle school in Shelby County, Tennessee. The teachers are interested in teaching and are very good with the students, the parents are very supportive of the faculty effort, and the students seem to really enjoy learning. Sadly, that is not the case in many of the public schools in the Memphis area.