None of the tenured teachers are still there, huge turn over in the past 5 years. Teachers seem to come and go and currently there are a handful of veteran skilled teachers working with a host of undereducated newbies. Teachers are leaving for a reason, admiistration is horrible. Fairfax County is one of the best in the nation for public education, you will find great teachers all over the county, just not at Langley (anymore).
Langley has had a serious fall from grace. While it is still one of the best performing schools in the county that says nothing about the facility nor teachers. What makes the school is the academic environment creatred by the motivated students, there is real pressure to do your work and test well. However, the school has completely overlooked the average kid, not to mention special ed, and focuses solely on AP tests and the Ivy league bound. Not to mention that the school has "zero" of the past administration as Matt Ragone has systematically destroyed the front office by his lack of oversight and horrible hiring practices. There is "zero" school spirit, "zero" faculty comradery. It is by far the worst facility in the county with horrible air quality, technology and space in general. The renovations could not happen soon enough but this will not be enough to save this schools reputation. I actually have the option of sending my kids to Langley even though it is not is the district that I live in but have decided to send my kids to our "local" school beacuse I feel it is honestly better.
Langley has a false sense about it. Childen are very clickish. If you are not one of the pretty people whos parents have paved your way in life... count on your children being treated very poorly. Activities are reserved for the popular people and your kids will be excluded even if they try. The school brags about the high test scores... The real reason scores are so high is due to the upper class families who move into the district rather then the staff itself. Do yourself a huge favor and move your children into an institution where kindness & integrity reign over power and cruelty. Try Loudoun County. Great schools, all new, good staff, co-operative attitude. I moved out of the area to protect my children.
Langley and excellence seem to coincide. While not a flawless learning environment, Langley provides a challenging and intense atmosphere that I've found highly conducive towards learning. The teachers and administrative staff were helpful, and most cared for the students. However, as I read these comments, I'm appalled. I graduated in 2012, but I can't imagine the school to have changed too much in that time. Bullying was perhaps the greatest taboo for my class, especially when it came to those in the special needs program. To those who speak of the nonchalant administrative staff and uncaring teachers -- I simply cannot take it seriously. My counselors and teachers were fantastic, and they helped me regardless of personal circumstances. Langley is an environment suitable for any who wish to learn. Going in with notions of cliques and social status creates an atmosphere of inevitability; look for them and you shall find without fail. But that is true with just about anything. Langley is what you make of it. To prospective/continuing students: Talk to your teachers and counselors. Give them the respect you want them to give you, and then perhaps you'll find them helpful.
I have two daughters in great colleges, both Langley graduates. Langley is a tough academic environment and a challenging social environment that prepares students well for what they will encounter in college and the "real world." One of my daughters' roommates is from a "good" Richmond area school that is far less challenging, and she both struggling and shocked at how easily my daughter handles the academic load. If you want easy for your kids, this is not your school, but if you value quality faculty and top-drawer competition, you will appreciate Langley. All that said, the Principal is out of his element, a poor comparison to his predecessor who is overmatched by his faculty and lacks the poise necessary to deal with high expectation parents. If Fairfax County Schools wants to maintain Langley's rigor, it should consider a change at the top.
Langley High School: My kids have thrived at Langley. The athletics are competitive and the academics even better. The new administration cares about the kids and the teenages have responded. My oldest graduated from Langley in 2012. I have 2 others (class of 2015 and 2017). The spirit of the school is much better now, than 5 years ago. Bulling has been replaced with class spirit. The kids try and help each other and cheer at sporting events (not as much a popularity contest at games anymore). Lax, Softball, swimming have all been positive experiences for us. Parents need to keep their kids away from alcohol (with a zero tolerance policy) at home and schools. I find the private school parents allow drinking more frequently than Langley parents. If you want a dry high school experience you can get it. Focus on athletics and academics over popularity. Ground your kids with a moral compass and they will pick good friends - don't leave it to the school. LAngley is one of the top schools in the country (public or private). It is a model school for others to follow.
I'm an upcoming junior in the 13-14 year in Langley. I'm not from a wealthy family and contrary to the comments here, I've found that from my experience that one doesn't really get bullied here based purely on wealth. I'm not popular at all either, I have maybe 3 close friends. I haven't seen any actual serious intent-to-traumatize bullying ever happen. Yes, some kids do follow the "rich white spoiled kid" stereotype to a T but they are able to joke about it. Drugs and alcohol are widespread and from what I know aspirant drug dealers are particularly interested in peddling their wares in Langley due to the student body's abundant disposable wealth. Thankfully, no hard drugs (besides alcohol) are being circulated. As for the academics, the school offers many AP and Honors courses for the student. For the most part, the teachers are extremely well qualified and are great at explaining the subject/helping the student, but in stark contrast there are several teachers that simply do not belong in their career field of choice.
As a contractor with Langley and a former student (from the 70s!), I have had the chance to view it from the inside and outside. I have also had the chance to work in several other high schools in FCPS and LCPS. The quality expectations are very high, and kids usually rise to them; I think that the biggest problem kids face is not from other kids but from themselves pushing too hard. I have dealt with admins. at other schools who push kids for the school numbers, so this is not unique. I see parents highly involved. I walk past classes in session and see teachers working hard to engage students in learning. I know the principal has fans and enemies, but he has the students best interests at heart; he's great! I think that most all the problems listed here by others are at every high school, due to the pervasive problem--all highschoolers are teenagers--subject to throes of hormones and other dramas, over-introspection, and heightened insecurities. This happens at every high school; the haves and have-nots are not the issue here anymore than any other HS--it's the clash of insecurity, hope, and expectations. Welcome to life.
Social- Everyone is to be complaining that Langley is full of spoiled, rich, arrogant white kids who look down on poorer people and only care about popularity. That is unfair and exaggerated, while the rich factor does have a large influence, there are also a LOT of people who are really decent, you can't just stereotype everyone. And honestly, dealing with people like that is a skill for later in life. Academics- Very hard, and a greater grade disparity bc some have tiger parents or are major try-hards, also kids take harder course loads because then they get private tutors when they need help. Teachers- Can't compare schools, but can tell you this: that teachers only care about AP/HN kids is false. I've been in reg level classes before, and have seen some really good teachers. Percentagewise teachers like AP students bc the students generally value class, whereas in reg a lot of students will take advantage of them and screw off. Teachers like a student who values their class, be it reg, HN, or AP. People who say otherwise are probably just resentful. Question- How is it that 100% of students/parents are rich snobs, yet 95% of comments say they hate that atmosphere?
For those thinking of moving to great falls, if you are not rich or not asian, you will not belong. No one is suggesting go to private school in area, it would more of the same. Go to a normal fairfax school like madison or south lakes , your kids will thank you for it later.
I have to laugh at the people saying they will be sending their children to private school rather than to Langley. Their reasoning is apparently because they are unhappy with the wealth factor at Langley, but I'm wondering what they expect to find at a $40,000/yr. private school? It strikes me as extremely naive to assume that their child will have a better, more "down-to-earth" experience if only they attend a private school. If anything, the differences between the haves and have-nots will be all the more pronounced. Regardless of the wealth of many (but not all) of the Langley student body, there is a niche for everyone, or at least for those willing to involve themselves and find like-minded friends. My child is not an athlete, but has become very involved in other, more academic pursuits, and has a great group of friends as a result. Langley has its faults -- as do ALL high schools -- but I believe its strengths are more numerous. You will find cliques, rich kids, mean kids, etc. at any high school anywhere. At least at Langley there are no gangs and the education is top-notch.
One of the best things that was done at Langley was to decouple the AP history/english courses. Allows someone that has NOT been on the honors/ap track their whole student life to try an AP class without taking both. Fairfax county resources should not just be focused on the upper echelon of kids. The counselors all suggest to limit the number of AP classes. But in true Langley Spirit, other parents of the elite are pushing to stop this and require coupling the AP English and AP History classes, maintaining their exclusive status for their kids. No other high schools do this. It just never changes here. The condescending attitude of the parents is tough to take.
I am part of the 2015 class. Langley has been a lousy experience for me. Maybe Langley has excellent teachers for the top AP courses, which is a huge part of this school, but for the regular kids the teachers don't care about you. One of my current science courses is taught by a different teacher during his lunch break, after we had a substitute for 6 weeks. No one seems to care. We aren't the AP courses, which then they would have cared. We are supposed to learn from our science book on our own. But we take time away from the other AP classes so the teachers seem to resent us. The counselors don't help you unless you are the top kids.
Excellent -- the teachers are true educators who actually care about the students and their development. The school offers a very challenging and diverse selection of courses. There are many activities for the students - academic, athletic and service. The school leadership is truly committed to making the environment safe and productive and fun for the students. Parents are supportive of the school and the efforts that the students and administrators make. What a great place.
We have 2 kids at Langley and our kids hate Langley and have been asking us to move. We are thinking about having them attend another school for next year. Friends of ours have used the International Baccalaureate program at reston to get their daughter out of Langley due to the cliques. Others have gone to Bishop O'C after going freshman year here. Langley is driven by status and wealth. Largely driven by the parents of the families that live in this Great Falls area. The wealth, going to Europe for summer trips, going to Colorado for spring break, going to Caymans for winter break is just over the top. It really is a distorted environment. As example, take a drive by the parking lot some day, these are the kids cars, or drive thru the neighborhoods with the multi million dollar houses. And the kids have social cliques just as any high school, but at Langley the kids are hugely aware of wealth and status and push it with clothes, cars, vacations etc.. There are very few families with 2 working parents and struggling to save for college. It distorts the importance of money in life.
I am a part of the class of 2015 for this school and I have had more good and great teachers than bad ones. I admit every school has its good and bad teachers, students, and such. But Langley High School is seriously underrated. I mean, sure, we are known for certain snobs, we are known for having huge gaps between student performance. And while I do complain some times about certain teachers and peers, I realize that my college applications and my future is all decided by me. That is why unlike most of the student reviewers here, I am actually appreciative of the learning environment here. I am actually one of the lesser-class people when it comes to the fact that Langley is a "rich people's school" but I don't feel any sort of inferiority or pressure yet I'm not terribly anti-social. It's amazing how people have pointed out certain ethnic groups and blamed others for their own losses. I have done well and I have not done so well at times but once you know how to manage, you can do well here with the benefit of attending one of the historically highest ranked schools in the nation.
I think that Langley is a very diverse school and can be viewed different ways based on how a student decides to take it on. Sure there are annoying kids and some bad teachers that can get on your nerves, but overall it is a very safe environment (physically) and there are plenty of courses available and many good teachers. The courses are typically challenging, but not to the point at which it is impossible to get an A. Also many kids are very wealthy, but that really does not have a large effect on everything else (other than the sweet cars in the student parking lot). There are many good opportunities that students can take advantage of, which is not always seen in other schools.
Langley is an awful environment for most normal families. This school is filled with the rich. The environment will screw with your kid's minds. It is not a normal world and the bullying / mean factor is over the top. What makes it worse is the administration doesn't care about you unless you are in the AP classes and A students. You are the outsider if you are not the smart kid. I really want to leave and go to a different school, one in which having a 125 IQ is ok and not deficient, one where a house with only 4 bedrooms and 2 floors is ok, and not laughed at. It sucks it really does.
I am a Langley Senior, Clas of 2013. Take it from me, Langley can be the last place you may want to be. Positives: -Extremely hard classes offered- AP's honors... -Great boys lacrosse team -A few good teachers -Great English teachers...depending on who you get -Nice new (posh) turf field Negatives: -The school has mold. Yes, that is very true. -The school is full of egoistical white rich kids who don't accept different people. -Very (too hard) classes at times -Most teachers don't care for students that are not straight-A students -Most teachers refuse to work with non-A students -If you are special ed of any kind, you will be: 1) Bullied by the administration and students 2) Treated like a complete moron by the administration, teachers, students, ect. 3) Give the worst education possible and so much more! If you are gay: I'd go elsewhere for schooling. (Or don't let the homophobic comments by other students get to you & don't come out) Burn out rate: I heard this myth that high school is fun, but i don't think thats true. My Gwad, burn out rate is very high. Just look at all the stress! Another positive: College will be very easy.. But what will I do with all that time?!
I am going to agree with the June 6th poster. This is a weak administration. My child has a math teacher who is barely understandable and on top of that, can't teach. The administration blames it on the child, even if the child has a straight A average. In addition, when the online reviews of these teachers are pointed out, again, the administration blames it on the students. And when that doesn't work, they blame it on the parents. It's really disgraceful. I will be placing my child in private school; I feel badly for the parents who cannot.
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