I was a little worried about HMS given that it's close to areas where I wouldn't want to walk at night. But, wow, was I surprised. The school has friendly, knowledgeable, progressional staff who helped my above average student to push boundaries and achieve his potential. And WOW, (gotta say this) the arts (music, choir and drama) program at HMS is OUTSTANDING. My son is now in 10th grade, but he still returns to HMS occasionally to say hello to his former teachers. What does that tell you about his memories of the school? For motivated students with involved parents, HMS is the place to be.
I used to go to HMS, and I had the best experience there! The arts program was amazing (they took us on field trips, the teachers were great, etc), the classes and class choices were great, etc. I really loved HMS and am going to miss it so much.
Herndon Middle School was a joke. The staff and administrators were "too cozy" with the students who provoked me and didn't take my reports seriously, rather blaming my parents and me. I was explosive and they gave me a ludicrous behavior plan that soon backfired because I was in the Quiet Room every day.
This school is fine, but fine isn't good enough. Some teachers are really strong on favoritism and some have a serious lack of organization.
My son had,a tough transition to middle school. By half way through 8th grade, thing got much worse for him. Up to this point the support of the administration and staff were exceptional, but during our testing, diagnosis and implementation of a 504 plan, exceptional was no longer a could enough word. We had the most amazing support from teachers who put up with a lot of different challenges until we had a strategy in place. The administration and guidance departments bent over backwards to help us with anything we needed. Everyone has shown such kindness and genuine caring for our son. I cannot praise the wonderful people who work at this school enough. Loking forward to two more years with my second child.
I have worked at HMS for 8 years. I have been a participant in the reforms HMS has undergone over the last 5 yrs. I have seen good progress in both school climate and std. performance. There are several dissatisfied parent reviews here, but this is truly the vocal minority writing out of frustration. To answer some of these concerns: bullying- there has been a strong anti-bullying campaign at HMS for the last 2 years; I have never witnessed nor had a student report any incidence of serious bullying. Rogue ideas- I have recently completed UVA's endorsement program in Admin. and Supervision; all of the reform programs and policies at HMS are completely research based, and are exactly the kinds of reforms being taught at UVA. Research is inconclusive whether HW benefits student achievement, but it generally says there is no relation. Teams- we got rid of teams because we found their intended purpose (a team of 4 core teachers to talk about the same student) was not beneficial, and now std. schedules are not limited. There is now greater communication across ALL teachers, rather than limited to a core 4 team. HMS is a very good school and I would have NO prob. sending my child to HMS.
Herndon Middle School is full of teachers that truly care and are invested in the success of students. The teachers here want to do the best for the kids and their futures. The phrase "there are too many cooks in the kitchen" is applicable to HMS. There are a lot of people that are to a fault and have great ideas. When all of these ideas are expected to be implimented in a matter of days the number of cooks in the kitchen interferes with the success of the dinner, or students in this case. Teachers are spread thin by the number of initiatives taking place and are working as hard has they can in order to meet the needs of the students and please the parents in the community.
This school has a terrible BULLYING PROBLEM and staff that does not take it seriously or handle issues well. VERY DISAPPOINTING AND UTTERLY LACKING ADMINISTRATION-- particularly the principal. The combination of poor administration and their "management issues" with some of their incapable teaching staff has created an UNSAFE environment for students. Teachers who are not even aware of what is going on in their own classrooms. The Principal is one of the worst I've ever encountered - condescending and ineffective. We are shocked at how this school has such total disregard for parental and student concerns. Our experience at the school has given us a total lack of confidence in the school, the administration and some of the teachers. We are pulling our son from this school to send him to a better ranked middle school that has a ZERO tolerance policy for bullying. So sad to hear kids talk about being scared at school and being picked on and beaten up so much so they can't focus on their studies fully. What has happened to Herndon??? Totally agree with the parent that said this school and the administration has the ability to flip their straight A student like a pancake.
We dislike this school immensely and we have only been here 3 weeks. If it can go wrong, it has for my kids. From teachers that don't teach and expect the kids to teach themselves, to misinformation CONSTANTLY being given out to weekly fire drills yanking the kids out of class to teachers that don't seem to understand that not all kids are forceful to be first and some simply have manners to know to wait their turn but those are the kids that get screwed for doing so!...If I could give ZERO stars I would. Thoroughly disgusted with this school.
This school needs a change in administration! The rouge ideas that come from this building amaze me. Who would ever say that Homework is not a viable part of education? The kids have to do homework in ES and HS. Poor staff, I can only imagine what they must have to go though, the ones I have talked to dont believe in this policy, but are helpless to change it. Also, unless your child is in honors, the classes are a discipline disaster! Oh...and WHAT happened to the Team concept? It's gone from this Middle School.
If you are a student/parent who dislikes this school, I can understand where you are coming from. There are many problems in this school just like any other normal middle school would have, including lack of motivation. However, if you want your child/yourself to turn out great, there are many opportunities to do so by taking higher level math courses and music classes. Perhaps the best feature of Herndon Middle is the fact that they have their own 'marching' band that plays along side HHS's band. The band program is one of the few things I believe make this school worthwhile.
I detest this school. It's the worst my child has attended. The staff seem nice in person but all my children do is tell me how awful it is and the only thing I admire about this school is the 7th grade counslers.
They have an amazing staff. Great Band and honors program. Parents needs to get more involved with their kids education/school if you want your kids to succeed.
There are some great teachers here who love to teach, and I've been lucky to have some, but there are others who are awful and 95% of the students hate. Unfortunetly there are some teams where the majority of teachers are unsatisfactory.
Schools can no easily rid themselves of teachers, admin and support staff they know are bad. Herndon has some great, absolutely dedicated staff and some terrible staff like every other school. Age of a teacher is not an automatic reflection of how well they teach, enthusiasm etc. There are absolutely terrible young teachers who think they know it all and there are teachers who should have retired long ago and some who just don't belong in a classroom or setting around youth. As parents, we are responsible for instilling work ethics and moral values in our kids. Herndon Middle provides an environment for every student to thrive if parents follow through on their responsibilities.
We've been extremely pleased with HMS. My son's teachers go out of their way to engage their students and help them really learn. My son is taking all advanced classes and loves school! Communication is great with all but one teacher and the principal is outstanding. As I've talked to other parents of 7th graders I've found their kids are having similar experiences. Excellent school with terrific, engaging teachers.
This is the worst school in Fairfax County! I have had to deal with some serious lack of ethics, respect and accountability with the administration. The teachers are mediocre at best. I abhor this school and will never allow another child attend.
This school has some great teachers who are professional and sincerely care about what they do and the students they teach. Unfortunately, the same can not be said about the administration and staff in the main office or the special education department. The majority of us parents recognize how difficult an environment this is for the teachers. There are some parents as noted in these reviews (feb. 2006 and 2005 is the same unreasonable parent) that make unreasonable demands on staff due to the fact that they do not hold their child accountable for his/her own actions. Continuous interrruptions and nonstop attention-demanding phone calls and unannounced visits from parents like this create an unhealthy atmosphere for our students and the teachers.
I am very disappointed in HMS. The communication between teachers, guidance counselor(s) and administration appears to be non-existent. I have to make several calls to different staff members to get questions answered. My child has an IEP - double the frustration when dealing with HMS staff. I feel like they have already 'written' my child off as a casualty - no one seems to care with the exception of 2-3 teachers. I agree with parent involvement and have always been active in my child's education, but you have to really stay on top of the HMS staff or your child will be 'lost'.
I was very disappointed with the quality of teachers my son had. Kids are sterotyped based on their race and culture. My son passed but I had to micro manage the teachers and the guidance counselor. The new guidance counselor never met my son but willing to give me her assessment of him. HMS has some good teachers, my sons math teacher and gym teacher demonstrated what teaching is all about. You have no idea how your child is doing until reports cards are given which is a little. I was very disappointed.The principal was very responsive everytime I reached out to him.
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