We had such high hopes for this school based on friends who had children attend in the past. Unfortunately, our experience was far from what we expected. New principal has zero patience for children with any level of AS/ADHD behaviors...even though they advertise as a school for these kids. Our child was dismissed because he cried too loud. Crying was due to his frustration level being maxed out by an inflexible teacher and principal who threatened to take away things that were most valued. Not open to setting up a plan or strategies to teaching coping skills. Dismissed any suggestions put forth by professionals or former IEP/FIE. Staff is so disconnected. Teacher did not even reach out to child to see if okay or say goodbye. Comments in meetings are, "it's not like he has severe dyslexia like the student next to him". No respect for child as principal discussed the dismissal right in front of child and shamed him. No respect for parents who came to school hoping for a safe haven and discovered that they were setting child up for not being supported and essentially pushed into meltdowns. To top it all sent s letter with refunded tuition since they dismissed us which stated they technically did not have to refund us anything and were doing us a favor. More students have been dismissed since we were and prospective students have also been pushed into crying meltdowns due to inflexible teachers/administration who then state that child needs to go to "therapeutic" school. Parents, please do your due diligence on this school. Ask questions, see the curriculum, observe the teachers and administrators make sure there are strategies for typical as/ADHD behaviors. Most of the teachers are not SPED certified nor trained to work with AS/ADHD children. We are so sad that our experience was so awful. Fortunately for us going back to public school has been a huge success and we have our happy child back.
My son started in August 2014 in the 5th grade at GLA. My son is gifted, dyslexic and dysgraphic and we had come to the realization that it was an immense challenge to stimulate and nourish a gifted mind while accommodating for its challenges. GLA is doing both and makes it seem effortless. The classes are small and highly individualized. My son is in a class of six. The teacher has an individualized learning plan for each child which will cover the gaps if any and place him at his level in each subject. I find communication and accommodations have been a breeze. They truly do have your child s interests at heart and it is such a relief to know they re right there with you, not against you. I love the learning: it takes place in school. It s not about tests but all about teaching skills. Learning is fun and interesting there. Homework is ONLY review of work done in class. I 5th grade has about 40-45mn top which includes 20mn reading. I love that they have recess, 30mn daily and also PE daily. Also, there are no bells. It s a stress free school. When I pick him up from school, he always has had a good day. I now say, a day at GLA is always a good one!
Great lakes Academy is an Amazing school! My son loves going to school for the first time! The staff and the teachers are welcoming and very professional. Wish I had Known about this school before. Great Lakes Academy Feels Like HOME.
My son has high functioning autism and is a junior at Great Lakes Academy. I cannot say enough good things about the school. Upon coming to GLA he was extremely depressed and had very low self-esteem. I remember at the start of freshman year going to a new parent coffee and having the administrators talk about how we should not worry, that our kids were in good hands. It brought tears to my eyes thinking that they were there to help. Freshman year he was quiet and did not interact as much as the faculty and staff hoped he would. They worked with him and accepted him as he was and where he was. They challenged him but knew where to back off. When he came back to school for his sophomore year he was like a different person. All of a sudden he was interacting and much more comfortable. The school does so much for the students not only giving them an excellent education but social skills that will help them for the rest of their lives. I still often worry about my son s future but I never worry about him when he is at school. I trust all the faculty and administrators to do what is best for him and I will always be a staunch supporter of Great Lakes Academy.
Great Lakes has been a wonderful school for my 8th grade daughter who has ADHD. She really struggled in public school with focusing in class and couldn't pass the STAAR test. She transferred to Great Lakes in the middle of 7th grade and I wish she had enrolled sooner. The environment is caring, challenging, nurturing and a place where she can learn and succeed. The teachers really care about the kids and I have seen a significant improvement in my daughters self esteem and ability to learn.
With the use of technology (Chromebooks, Google classroom, Symbaloo, Quizlet,... ), I must say that we never had so much fun assisting our son with his homework. The math games were really fun. My son and I had a competition, who would get the answer the quickest. I never thought doing math homework could be so much fun. The Quizlet is awesome! Our son was so happy when he beat his teacher's score at the Social Studies Vocabulary. It's so refreshing to see our son having so much fun doing his homework! Everyone at GLA goes above and beyond to make learning fun for our kids. We're so fortunate to have access to such a great school. Kudos GLA!
Great Lakes Academy utilizes small class sizes (maximum 10 students) and well trained teachers who understand our students learning differences. They use various teaching methods and individualize for their students. There is a great sense of community and it's been wonderful to be able to interact with other like-minded parents. My child's experience was so positive and he has done extremely well upon his graduation. I give all of the credit to this amazing school.
I've been impressed by the personal attention my daughter has received and that they focus on those that fit their mission rather than increasing enrollment. I could not be happier with the way that they have really attempted and succeeded in caring for her and her education.
If we had to sum up Great Lakes Academy in one word, it would be AMAZING! We have 2 boys at GLA, a 7th grader and a 3rd grader. GLA has changed the way our boys view school. They both sturggled so much with school in the past and now they love going to school! We love the fact that GLA celebrates each student's differences in a fun, loving, safe environment. If you are looking for an awesome school where learning differences are celebrated, this is the school for you:)
I could write a book about all I love about this school. But a short version: if your child is struggling &you dream of a place where they will be treated with respect &be with their peers &form true friendships with other kind children then you must visit Great Lakes. From my first visit at the school I felt a peace inside myself where there had been so much worry. My son went from dreading &fearing school to loving it. He went from no friends to many friends. He is invited to birthday parties &no one is mean to him on the playground. His teacher understands him &knows if he zones out he isn t being bad, she knows how to help him focus in a kind way. Class sizes are so small that the kids truly learn each lesson, nothing is skimmed over. My son loves that he will be at GLA through 12th grade. I love this school. Our kids are special &beautiful, to find a school that understands that, from admin to principal to each teacher is such a gift. I have gone from dropping my son off, shoulders slumped at public school with a stressful, sad feeling in my stomach to dropping off a very happy boy at Great Lakes & leaving with a peace that I never knew was possible.