I have an active boy, and while the first year was hard for him, the second year was great. I think it very much depends on the teacher and the skill set they have to deal with an active boy. The first teacher was frustrated; her style was less structured and it didn't work well, but the following year, his new teacher let him know the boundaries so he could be reminded to work to stay within them. It is all about a really good teacher-child match. I can't say enough about Blakely's staff; their warm caring is evident. I liked Mr Jones's vibe better, so I understand where some parents are coming from. It does appear that the principal has fewer comfort zones, but you can't have it all. His staff more than make up for it!
Horrible for active boys. Its not acceptable to have energy and not be able to sit still. As the principal informed us that we can not have that behavior here, because these are microsoft employees children attending here. If the child's parents are of the right status, your child will do fine there. Principal Andy is all about the status quo., not for equal education for all.
Our daughter had a fine time at Blakely, however not a good school for boys. The below post is extremely surprising being we had the exact opposite experience with our son. If this post is truly from a parent, I would love to know what teacher at Blakely understands the difference between behavior and character. If you are a status quo girl that quitely follows all the rules and gets the work completed in time for WASL testing (like my older daughter) it is a fine school - however, in the 7 yrs we have been there we find the principal is inactive in communiating conflicts to parents and the counselor is unprofessional, does not follow up on plans and resorts to the ADHD/medicate solution for boys (often). Great extra reading help and activites such as Greek Play, music program and Outdoor Ed.
Our son is doing well at Blakely, despite some challenges. I am impressed with his teacher's ability to separate his behavior from his character - she is patient and warm while being pragmatic. We feel the school is willing to do what it takes to help him succeed. Great principal and counselor. We are happy with Blakely.
Blakely has provided a strong sense of community for my son. The teachers seem invested and involved. However, my son is advanced academically, and there is not much motivation to meet his needs - though the staff are concerned with making sure he is not pressured academically, which is great, they are not concerned with what will happen when he gets bored, which I see as a more pressing threat. Blakely appears committed to meeting the needs of kids with learning challenges, but I am not so sure about their committment to meeting the needs of their gifted/talented students.
In regard to the post below. Blakely does have a science fair. They used to do one every other year, but they have had one for the past three years in a row. I've had a child go through all 5 years of Blakely and a current first grader. It's been a great school, we love it.
I had both my children at this school last year (2003-2004) and I was not impressed. The school offers no extracurricular activities such as a Science Fair, Family Reading Night, Ice Cream Social, etc. My 4th grader spent much of the year focusing on the WASL test and though the school does have high marks in this area, I believe there is much more to learn than simply passing this test with great scores. In fact, the teacher emphasized the importance of the test so much through discussions in the classroom that my child couldn't sleep for two nights during the test week due to anxiety. My other child needed extra help in one academic area which I discussed at length with the teacher. Unfortunately, my child never received any significant help in the classroom to back up the work I did with them at home. I'm deeply disappointed.