This is a horrible school. We had a second grade child with some reading issues, had requested for them to test our child, in October, to see if he had any reading disabilities and the teacher said he was just a lazy reader. We asked several time throughout the school year for our son to be tested. It came down to me telling the teacher that I had spoken to a social worker and the social worker said, by law, that the school personnel needs to test him if we ask. The teacher, then, forwarded our request the reading specialists. They set up a meeting in June a with me to talk about my child's reading issue. I was thinking, "great, about time." It was a hoax. I was told that they were going to hold him back in the second grade and reassess him in November. I had my son tested through the military channels after telling them the school refused to test him. Within 10 minutes the child psychologist said "I'm painfully aware that your son is dyslexic and that Lyles-Crouch FAILED your child!" In less than four months at a new school, my child is doing great! We're military and move a lot & this has been the worst school they have attended.
LCTA has been wonderful for my children. The principal is amazing-firm and no-nonsense. I see this as a good thing. She is respected by the teachers and I think she knows all the children by name. The TAG program is amazing--I can't say enough about the quality of the TAG teacher. We have had many teachers over the years. Two of the four best teachers we ever encountered taught at LCTA (two at GWMS). These are truly excellent teachers. Most are very good, with an occasional, less-than-stellar teacher, but this is normal. It's a National School of Character: emphasis on good character as well as academics. Classes are small. Weekly music and art for all grades. The perception of a school depends on expectations and personality types. I do not expect my children's needs to be put above all the other students. However, there are good matches and bad matches. LCTA may not work well for some students, but the reviews here are not reflective of the fraction in the school. LCTA continues to provide an excellent education for my children. (To previous comments: One of mine is NOT a "quiet little girl who's uniform is tucked in just right"--she loved LCTA! & One star because of UNIFORMS?)
The only reason I'm giving it a 2 is because some of the teachers do work very hard. Those who do are usually trying to lay low and do their best as to not upset the apple cart. There is a group of teachers who bully students, teachers, and have the principal running scared (she knows which teachers are causing problems but is too scared to do anything about it.... she has had similar issues with these very teachers). The comment about the 3rd grade teacher yelling down the hall........ I've witnessed it myself as have several tutors at the school. Nothing is said because it is understood this teacher can and will continue to do as she pleases without any consequences. This very teacher blatantly refuses to follow IEPs and doesn't allow accommodations. The new superintendent would be well served by asking staff, in person and one on one, if they have had issues here. Most teachers are scared and those who aren't are shut up with threats.
It is interesting to see that several years after leaving this school, the issues remain the same. The same principal is there, and she's still a bully. A rigid, cookie cutter approach to learning that squashes childrens' spirit and imaginations remains. Parents of children with special needs share horror stories of their experiences at the school yet ACPS has done nothing.
This school has a very ridged vibe. Some of the teachers are lovely and do the best they can but if you don't have a quiet little girl who's uniform is tucked in just right, you probably won't be happy with this school. They do not adhere to 504s, one third grade teacher can be heard screaming at the children from down the hall, and the principal is rude. If you choose this school, make sure you have lots of spare time to stand around with PTA moms in your yoga pants gossiping and discussing petty items like what kinds of muffins to serve.. Parents have their children tutored to score high on the tests that get them in to the "talented and gifted" program while the truly gifted children are often labeled as misfits.
The only reason you have kids wear uniforms is to crush their spirits. Nothing else this school does matters as long as uniforms are required I will give the lowest ratings possible.
We are new to the school, and so far it looks great. Our kindergarten teacher is wonderful and smart. Her energy is exactly what we need. Proud to have kids here.
My children have received an excellent education at Lyles Crouch. The quality of instruction given by the teachers as well as the incredible involvement of the community make this a really wonderful place for my children to learn and grow. They are happy and I am happy.
This is a ridged, rules-oriented, highly-average school with a negative and tension filled vibe. This is no place for a child who needs any form of individual attention. This is schoo-in-the-box and for any child that does not fit in the box, they are disregarded. The teachers appear to be worn out, sarcastic, rude and arrogant. Our child, who was once happy, charming, pleasant and funny is so unhappy with this school we are planning to move. Don't fall for the Charter School jingle and academy vernacular -- this is a school that is failing (check the ratings) and the only thing keeping it "up there" is the parents who constantly chat about how great it is, in order to convince themselves everything is fine. Don't fall for the hype. Run.
LCTA is a great school. The principal runs a tight ship and the academics are excellent - as good or better than a private school (I have kids in both public and private). The school focuses on the basics: what kids need to succeed academically, spending less time on the PC aspects that have creeped into the school system and don't improve educational outcomes. We have had excellent teachers who work hard and go the extra mile with their students; teachers who don't perform do not return. The community is also very involved with the school and the PTA is excellent. As to the comments on bullying: my son was bullied, but both his teachers and the principal got involved and wouldn't tolerate it; the same was not true in private school where the bullies were given a pass by the administration. I would strongly recommend LCTA to anyone, and i have!
Kudos to the PTA for doing the work and submitting the application for the Character Counts award and winning. Because of the high quality of work represented in your State and National Schools of Character application, the Virginia state selection panel has chosen Lyles-Crouch Traditional Academy as the 2012 Virginia School of Character. CEP s objective is for all schools to reach the achievable goal of becoming an NSOC. The award really has nothing to do with what happens in school on a daily basis. In fact, the principal is considered by many parents to be a bully. LCTA PTA is undoubtedly second to none but they alone can not change the teachers who are teaching and the principal who dictates. Despite all of it's awards (by application) Great Schools rates LCTA a 5?
I have two children at LCTA, and I have to say that my experience has been very different than the two comments below. I've found the teachers and administration to be very responsive and proactive about bullying and any sort of aggression---in four years at LCTA, neither of my children has ever witnessed so much as a single fight. Over the course of our years at LCTA, we've had 8 different teachers, and have had a good experience with all of them--I believe my children are receiving an excellent education from teachers who truly care about them and their development. LCTA also benefits from the Core Knowledge curriculum and the Character Counts program. In fact, LCTA is a finalist for a national Character Counts award. The Core Knowledge program is giving the children a foundation for critical thinking, something that is lacking at most public schools. I feel very lucky to be able to send my kids to a school where they are happy socially and thriving academically.
I agree. If you have a verbal girl with no academic challenges, this is the place for you. If you have a boy, check the test scores. Even in the stereotypical areas that boys are usually strong in (math and science) the scores are lower than girls. If you have a boy who is not quick on the draw academically, I wouldn't risk it. If you have a boy who has energy? Forget it. My kids too had bad experiences at LC. The teachers seem one dimensional and not interested in students who don't fit their teaching style. When you have jaded teachers who dislike the administration all the cheer leading becomes pointless.The current principal is riding on the coat tails of the previous principal who turned this school around. Do your son a favor and find a school where teachers look at the whole child, work with his strengths and are happy in their chosen profession. Do your kids a favor move into an elementary school in Alexandria/Fairfax County or go private. Stats tell the truth if you know what to look for. Don't be fooled by the smaller than average class sizes and uniforms or the huge head of the principal. Look at Great Schools rating for all ACPS schools.
My two children have had negative experiences at Lyles-Crouch. It can be a very rough environment and the administration is largely non-responsive when there is serious bullying and aggressive contact. The teachers don't seem very happy and spend a lot of energy on classroom management. The parents are certainly very active and do a great deal for the school. I could not recommend this school if you want your child to be in a nurturing environment with teachers who are focused on the whole child.
I love the core education approach. I also love that the school is a uniformed school. The school also has a ton of after school activities including, my daughter's favorite, chess. I also love the playground and the veggie garden.
I have one child at LCTA. The principal is excellent and because of her leadership, the curriculum is first-rate (Core Knowledge). My child's teachers have challenged her intellectually and show her love as well. Parental involvement is high and due to their (our) hard work, there are lots of extracurricular activities for the children to choose from. A wonderful school.
My son started kindergarten at Lyles Crouch this year. He loves it and we love it and my younger son can't wait to start. Anytime I have gone to the school I have seen happy children engaged in organized activities. I see the principal every morning as the children come in to the school and she greets them all by name. My son's teacher is kind and has a great line of communication with parents. I couldn't be happier.
We moved our kids from a very good local private school because of the great sense of community at this school. Parents, faculty, and administrators are engaged and share a common vision. We initially sent our kids to private school because 8 years ago the school was aturnaround project--improving but with some distance to cover. We went on a tour last year and were so impressed by the culture, resources, faculty and parent/community involvement that we made the switch. It was not made without trepidation--we also loved the schol they were in--but we have no regrets...and a little more cash.
This is a gem of a school! I continue to marvel at the level of community support from families that attend the school to individuals that devote their time to tutor students to businesses that partner with the school to provide extracurricular activities. I find the PTA very friendly and open to new members and their ideas. I admire all that they have accomplished in the past few years. My children love their teachers and feel safe at school - which is so important to me because happy children are enthusiastic learners. I also love the character development emphasis. The students have monthly community service projects and learn about good character traits which helps to reinforce what I am trying to instill at home. I could go on and on... Ultimately, we feel very lucky to have such a sweet place for our children to learn and grow.
Lyles-Crouch is a fantastic neighborhood public school and my two children are thriving - principal's honor roll students. The after-school programs are fantastic but depend on parents to continue, which may be the source of a previous gripe about volunteer time. The most successful schools are those with high parent participation and we want the best for our kids, so we help out in whatever way we can. Lyles-Crouch offers parents many opportunities, big and small, to do just that. The school is tied for smallest of the cities' elementary schools and does not have on-site programs for children with extreme learning difficulties, but does quite well with kids with lower levels of learning issues. All students in the diverse population are nurtured and valued by the faculty and staff and our fantastic principal knows all the students' names, families and personal issues. She is a gem and we are lucky.
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