The teachers seem inexperienced and unmotivated. They do the bare minimum. The principal comes off as fake, for lack of a better term, in a shifty way that unsettles me. Some impressive extracurriculars is the only redeeming factor of this otherwise depressing school. Thankful my youngest is on to middle school this year.
We moved to this area because of the schools and proximity to my work. So far, I am unimpressed with the teachers. The previous reviewers are right - you'd have to be a pretty actively involved parent for your kid to have a chance of succeeding. My child (a 4th grader) has been punished because we are not involved in the PTA. The teachers are pretty hands-off and do not communicate well about the progress of the students. Even when they do, it seems that some of "the issues" they come up with is mainly because of their own attitude towards the kids. I am hoping some improvement this year, after the disastrous 3rd grade with an incompetent teacher we've been assigned to. I think we should demand more from the school because of the property and otherwise taxes we pay!!
Considering houses sold in this school district could have 25% price premium, I really cannot rate this school above average. My kid used to attend school in Vienna and since she moved to here from 3rd grade, she lost interests going to school. She said "there is no true friend in CRS". I think the main reason is that parents are too competitive and this is not a fair play ground. If as a parent, you have time to be active in PTA, being a classroom parent, or lead some competition teams like Science Olympics, go for it and you will make sure your kids get awards, get good teacher assignment, etc. But if you are working parents like us and hope only your kids' own performance can single him or her out, good luck! We feel very unsecured and get side-kicked in various situations while our kid attends this school. We never worried about our child's education but now have trouble to make her feel happy to go to school although she has excellent academic performance. I feel two years of her childhood have been ruined and ripped off by surrounding kids and parents with good "policital connections".
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.