Not at all. This school has shown severe incompetency in handling children with different educational needs. It took over a year for them to establish an IEP for my child and the IEP meetings amount to little more than talking at the parent rather than listening an collaborating. My husband thought I was exaggerating until he was on a conference call with us for an IEP meeting and discovered that yes, they do talk over you and do belittle you and your ideas. Their idea of special education services is assuming we know nothing, pressuring us to put our children on pills with dangerous side-effects, put the child off the regular bus and on the special education bus, and send the child to PACE after they discover that isolating the child all day doesn't seem to solve the autism-related behavioral issues. "It takes time for these behaviors to develop, so it takes time for them to be fixed," says the "specialist" who gave up after two months. "He wouldn't be different if he were in an autism classroom." Sickening. These people should not be working in a school setting, let alone with special needs children.
This school has exhibited very minimal competency in handling children with special needs. It's very difficult on 2e students who have both special education needs and gifted education needs. Compounding this issue is the number of non-English speaking students, slowing down course instruction, leaving advanced students bored with having to repeat the same material or spend too much time on one topic area. There is little communication between parents and teachers in terms of what is being taught in the classroom. They used to send a weekly newsletter home, but we have not seen it sent home with out child in weeks. Class webpages have not been updated in months. The school is also quick to get social services involved. I had CPS calling me at work when my child went to school with a scratch on his face that he got from the playground. I had to watch him like a hawk at the community playground after that because I feared the school calling CPS on me again if he got another scrape. Boys cannot be boys anymore? Getting a scratch while playing outside means I'm a neglectful parent? They need to calm down and not try to ruin someone's family over what amounts to literally nothing. This school is incredibly unorganized and inefficient. I am in the process of transferring my child to another school. Do not send your child here.
Vice principal says punching a child in the face is not assault, but suspends another child for "finger guns." School does little in terms of stopping bullies from picking on special needs children. They call the child names and encourage him to say bad words in languages he doesn't know, just to watch him get in trouble. The child gets in trouble, but the kids who egg him on don't.
Teachers are there for a paycheck and nothing more. As soon as the last school bus pulls out, the building is a ghost town. They have no concept of how to be authoritative, and any behavior issue, big or small, the parent is called and expected to fix anything that happened in the classroom. For instance, recent progress report says that my child is often "wandering around the classroom during independent work" and that I should address this with him. Yet she has never tried to re-direct him because she is too busy with the kids who need extra help at the end of the day to do so. (This is from her mouth).
There are no text books, and I have no idea what or how my children are learning. I've had numerous meetings with the teachers and administration requesting additional information and to be informed of their assignments, to which I'm told I don't need to know because it's all individual work. Then, when an assignment isn't completed, they contact me to "encourage" my kids to get their work done. School started end of August and it was early October before I was informed that my one child hadn't turned something in. When I asked for clarification on the assignment (since he was just sent home with a piece of paper and a concept map) I was again, told that he knew and understood the assignment and that I didn't need to know what was expected of him.
Overall this school is terrible. Their test scores are below par, they are over crowded, understaffed and expanding the student base before hiring additional teachers and staff. The communication (or lack there of) with the staff and admin has gotten so bad, I've had to hire a lawyer to be my mediator and ensure that my children have an advocate for them, as the school no longer listens to me. (And I'm not just a PITA parent, I volunteer 10+ hours a week there).
Administration communicates poorly with teachers, and there is a strong tendency to overreaction among the staff that includes having a social worker follow up with a parent after a kindergartener's single accident and other events that have made national news. (A news search of the school and principal's name should turn it up.) My child has developed an attitude problem and severe study and concentration issues since starting here, and staff repeatedly try to lay blame with home instead of school environment. It's enough to make a parent consider homeschooling, and we are moving partly to be in another school district.