My daughter graduated from Challenge Early College High School. I am grateful for their excellent teachers and staff. The counselors and teachers not only assigned, taught and graded lessons, they MENTORED and encouraged students. I noticed genuine camaraderie among the students, and community spirit. Teachers were not adversaries, they were role models! Also, the teachers were experienced and seasoned educators. I am so grateful for Challenge Early College High School. PS--my kid didn't have to take an IQ test to get in, either! I think the PTO might have benefitted from wider parent participation, but the important stuff didn't fall through the cracks.
My child and I both LOVE this school. The comradie between the approximately 400 students attending this school is outstanding. Because of the awesome advisory program, which meets daily, students from all grades become acquainted with one another. I feel my child is completely safe at this school, as well as having a full-time security officer, the kids all have each others back. If a student is not doing well, they receive help from the teachers. All classes have tutorials available. The teachers are very high quality and genuinely caring and the small class-size is a big plus. The principal, Mr. Fuentes, takes a great amount of well-deserved pride in his school. My child came to Challenge from a small, parochial school background and it has been a great transition. The curriculum is challenging, as all classes are either pre-AP or AP for freshmen, but the kids are given every opportunity to excel between the awesome teachers and after-hours tutorials, if needed. I love the family atmosphere at this school. It's like attending a private high school without the outrageous tuition payments! Excellent job, couldn't be better.
One of the best things about the Challenge community is it's lack of tolerance for injustice toward other students. 'Challenge is no place for hate,' we brag. This is especially true for the school's lesbian/gay/bisexual community, with events such as Ally Week and Day of Silence, put on by the school's Gay-Straight Alliance club, being popular among the school's students. We look out for eachother, because there's no reason a person shouldn't feel safe at Challenge.
I love Challenge because of the unique people and the small school culture. Also, it is a great academic opportunity because it we, as students, have the chance to graduate high school with our associate's degree, at $25 per semester-long course. honestly, how many students can say they did that? how many schools push for great academics while allowing their students to be such individuals, and while promoting such a strong sense of family / community?
There are so many things I love about this school. The staff knows everyone and are willing to help kids with their school problems as well as any other problems they may have. The kids themselves are all extremely friendly. If you come in as a loner who stays off by yourself and avoids interacting, you will end up with one kid after another coming and talking to you, trying to get you to hang out with them and their friends. When I was going there all the geeks were the biggest guys and the jocks were the littlest guys, so there was never any room for bullying. In addition I don't think any of the kids would tolerate bullying. If a kid is having trouble in a class they can go receive tutoring from an old teacher or even a teacher they don't have. There are so many more wonderful things about this school, but I don't have time to tell any more than a nutshell of them, so if anyone would like to discover the rest of the magic that CECHS holds, they will have to visit it themselves.
When my son interviewed for this school, I don't think he was certain about attending. We went on an information gathering trip. I believe he heard and saw things that appealed to him as a kid entering the completely different world of high school. What he heard he liked. At the introductory meeting, there were kids who currently attended the school. They answered all of the prospective students questions about life at the school. As a parent, I loved the fact that he could take community college courses, stay for an additional year, and graduate with a high school diploma and an associates degree from the community college . . . at no cost to me. This was a great opportunity for him to get a jump on higher education while still in school. My son is a gifted writer and the performing arts high school in our city did not offer a creative writing curriculum. Challenge emphasizes written communications. Not only has he been able to expand his writing, but as part of the Thespian Society, he has had the opportunity to act, direct, and write stage plays. With the help of Challenge, he is well on his way to having a successful career in the film industry. He has found his passion and the school has helped him nurture it.
This school provides nothing but opportunities for kids to suceed! Students from all backgrounds have found a place that they can find a common ground; whether it be on the soccer teams, theatre arts program, or studying for their college classes - which by the way are free. The staff is like a family to the students and teach the students at the highest levels. It's just a great place