WUES is a public school, which means it's big (as a matter of fact, a little overcrowded) and VERY impersonal. I have kids there right now and let me tell you how rude and cold most of the staff and most of the teachers are to the parents, unless you are a PTO officer. Don't be fooled by its rankings. Those ratings are based off standard test scores. Given it's in one of the wealthiest neighborhoods in Texas, the caliber of the student body is high to begin with, so I believe even if the teachers didn't teach anything, these mostly privileges kids would have done wel anyway. The school is a big bureaucracy and they really don't care about the people who send kids there, unless again if you are a PTO officer or, presumably, a generous donor. Teaching quality is inconsistent, as are the grade curricula. Many (most?) kids get outside tutoring - and their families can well afford it. I should have sent my kids to private schools - in fact I'm looking to transfer them out. If you can afford it, go private school and don't send your kids here to become standardized test guinea pigs - unless you are the PTO/PTA parent type.
I have had two children go through WUES over the last 8 years. It has been great for my kids. I agree that there is a certain rigidity in the program, but these kids leave and are prepared for any school they will attend. I believe there is a lot of value in that! We have had many great teachers and the school does an amazing job of attempting to create a solid match for students and teachers, based on descriptions that parents provide. Some kids need more structure while some need more nurturing. There is an active PTO with many parent volunteer opportunities. When HISD cut art and music funding, the PTO crested a far superior art program! Overall, I am very grateful to WUES for helping us to educate and socialize our children. Thank you!
Strong academic foundation and tough discipline on kids prepare them well for middle school. No school around, private or public, except TC Rogers/ROE can touch WU kids' test scores, and switching classes from 3rd/4th grade onwards gets them ready for block scheduling.
Though the school is located in the wealthiest neighborhood, it is shocking to find out WUES does not have music and art classes! It is ironic and pathetic to see that those "affluent" parents did not realize the importance of music and arts from the early children even though the PTO has around $400K retained earnings!! Shocking, shocking, shocking!
Most administrators in the school are rigid, bureaucratic, ignorant and absurd arrogant without knowing their limitations and how behind this school is comparing to other really good schools.
The teachers' email address cannot be found on the school website. Parents have to send in the notes to the teachers and wait for the teachers' call. Playing phone tags are quite often which is extremely inefficient.
For any new students, there are no evaluation of the students' level so that proper placement is to be done. Even if the students have totally mastered the knowledge from the prior study, the student will still be placed in the regular class. The school refuses to at least evaluate the student to ensure him/her is properly challenged. Horrible!!!
The sad truth again illustrates that the economic affluence does not necessarily translate to the cultural enrichment.
A significant portion of the homework are non value added. Students spend a lot of time decorating the pages of the homework rather than spending time learning the knowledge itself.
No school bus is provided. The school starts at 7:45 am and the kids will not have lunch until after 1:25 pm!!! The kids will be sent out for recess even when the temperature is over 110 and the humidity is over 85%!
A kindergartner is given 45 minutes of homework per night. The best part was getting the letter instructing the parents to spend an additional 30 minutes per night (one hour and fifteen minutes total) working on spelling bee quizzes. This is for a kindergartner. NEA and the National PTA recommend no homework be given for this age group and even state that there is data to support the notion that homework this early is detrimental to development.