The teachers are really strong. Principal is very present, although there will be a new principal in Sept 2014. If you have a child that is truly gifted, I would recommend the Bellevue school district instead. Parents in LWSD push their kids in the gifted program, sending them to test prep programs so they can get in to the program. The gifted program called Quest fills up with these children rather than children who are innately highly capable. The program is very small for a district this large. Alcott also has a mix of students at various capabilities and strong support services (e.g. OT, Para Ed.)
Pros: -The kids generally come from well mannered, well educated families so it creates a nice atmosphere Cons: 1) Your child will learn nothing if they are in 1/2 day Kindergarten here. Seriously. Okay, maybe a few songs, etc... 2) Grades in music are based on perceived level of interest/facial expressions. LOL! 3) Test scores for Alcott are skewed high because of the Quest program there and not actual level of instruction by teachers. 4) Quest program is harder to get into than 95% of other G/T programs in the country and around the world. My child was both at G/T student here in the states and abroad. Unfortunately LWSD requires 99% in all test scores and encourages test prep. Most districts (like Bellevue) do not want kids to test prep but rather test out their natural abilities. LWSD requires testing to be done 1 year before entrance into Quest unless they are in 1st grade and then they can get in next semester if they qualify. Bellevue tests the summer before the G/T school year. As a result, my child sits around and reads entire books while at school and finishes his homework at school so I never see him do it. Wish, for my kid's sake, we lived in Bellevue.
Wonderful place to learn and thrive! Great environment. the staff, teachers and the leadership of the Principal make the difference! Lots of After school activities, outstanding PTSA effort. The gifted program QUEST is an excellent/challenging program!