The teachers are very caring, professional and have been instrumental in helping our daughter excel in her classes such as math and science. I believe that another factor that has contributed to this has been the great friend she has been able to make at school that have provided a positive influence.
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.
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.
I completely agree that the principal and 8th grade assistant principal are condescending and totally out of touch with this community. Like many parents my children have had some great, hardworking teachers. They have also had some that need to retire. The administration's policies of homework not counting, no penalty for handing in work late, and giving every assignment 50% (even if nothing was turned in) is utterly ridiculous. Those poor teachers who actually want to hold our kids to real-world expectations, like every other middle and high school, must be banging their heads against the wall. I can only imagine the frustration with the complete lack of work ethics and responsibility this is teaching the kids.
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.