A wonderful school with great teachers and very involved families. My daughter is thrilled to be in this school (and so are we)!
After reading the reviews here, I was ready to be wowed by Churchill when our daughter started there last September. Honestly, I was underwhelmed. But, like another reviewer said, I think this is largely the luck of the draw. My daughter's kindergarten teacher looked good on the surface, said all the right things, but in reality called in sick a lot and seem a little like a Stepford wife, when interacting with the students. I remember waiting in the parking lot one day, as she ushered the kids back inside from the playground. She looked so "checked out" and the kids look uninspired. There just isn't the kind of engagement there I expected. The kindergarten class spends a lot of time going here and there. They are kept to a tight schedule. My daughter would often tell me that they didn't give her time to eat her snack in this half day program. That really angered me because my daughter is a tiny thing and so active-- it has always been hard keeping weight on her. I don't know, I guess I got the sense that d/t the large class size, they were just trying to keep everybody moving, doing something, so the could "crowd control. "
Some very disappointing teachers, seems to be one per advanced academic team. Extracurriculars are very good, as are school programs like Outdoor Odyssey. Good parental involvement but be prepared for very snobby and cliquish people - not all, but a noticeable amount. This can be a distractor. Principal is jolly and the incoming Vice Principal seems excellent. Higher grades allow students teaching time with other grade-level teachers, grades 3 and below don't. Wish they did, particularly for the students with teachers that are subpar.
My kids are new to this school this year. I am impressed with the teaching staff and the kids have many opportunities both during school and afterschool. One of the afterschool opportunities is foreign language but I wish that particular thing could somehow find a spot in their schedules. Class size is a problem. Many classes are in the high 20's and some are at if not over 30. I know it's impossible to add more classes when there's not more classrooms but it seems that there must be a point where either more classrooms are made or students are not accepted. Perhaps the answer is to move the GT program elsewhere? I will probably be labeled as a heretic by the community for saying that but seriously, there are great teachers in the 'regular' classes as well. The kids will continue to do awesome even if the GT program moved
Great school but class sizes range in the high 20's, teacher turnover is increasing, and there is an over-emphasis on Gifted and Talented and special needs students to the disregard of others. Hard-working students with individual needs may become lost. Overcrowding has been aided by new outdoor learning module. Library is top-notch. A limited number of parents bear the burden of volunteering for most of the special activities. Quality of teaching ranges from elite to mediocre - the quality of education depends significantly on getting specific teachers. The principal is hard-working, dedicated and supportive of the faculty. High test results, always lauded, likely relate as much to the highly educated parents whose children attend CRS as they do to the overall quality of education.
Many, if not most, of the parents whose children attend Churchill Road could afford private school tuition. However, they recognize they needn't waste their money because this school has some of the best and most experienced teachers around. Its students are focused, intelligent, and come from highly educated families. We specifically selected a home in this neighborhood so our children could attend this school (and, eventually, Langley High School). Churchill Road is also a GT magnet school, so your child need not change schools if they make GT. Criticisms are few: I would prefer a greater focus on the arts (for example, orchestra does not start until fourth grade). Also, the school population has grown recently and there are a couple of trailers on the campus. However, if you want to ensure that your child gets a top notch public education, you will not be disappointed with Churchill Road.
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