S.S. asks from Daytona Beach, FL on December 12, 2009
my school zone is switching up all of the school zones next year and one of the schools in one of the proposed plans for my daughter (who will be going into 1st grade) i definitely do not want her going to. the grades for this school are not as good as the other proposed school and also they go an extra hour. as it is when she gets home, she is always very hyper and sometimes very emotional. in my area, we do have some private schools, but they all teach on the old Beca System, which is behind a bit on the new teaching system. we also have a charter school in the area that is new. they are trying to achieve an all "green" school. they have their own garden that the children help in, they have p.e., art, music, and yoga. they also say they have gifted, ese, etc. my question is, does anyone have experience with charter schools, and what are they? how do charter schools differ from other public schools, being that they are run by the public school system? i am going to schedule a time to go and visit the school to check it out but any imput would be welcome also.
C.R. answers from Miami on December 13, 2009
Hi there SS!
I can totally understand your worry about your daughter's school. I taught at a charter school for 4 years and had my son there with me. My son had a great experience there and so did I as a parent and teacher! Charter schools are a great alternative in that they are like a public school in that they receive funds from the government (only half of what public schools do) and they are like a private school in that they don't have to deal with too much district "red tape". I would strongly suggest you register your daughter into a charter school or into their lottery system.
1 mom found this helpful
V. answers from Melbourne on December 13, 2009
I would just schedule a time to go in and tour the charter school. Each one is different. They have more flexibility in the kind of curriculum and system they use. For example I know 2 local charters that use a montessori curriculum, one of those schools uses healthy foods , strives to be green, and work towards education for the whole child, another I know of doesn't really use a specific curriculum. They do get govt money but not a lot, and they do have to follow some public school regs just not as much as public schools. I don't think the post concerning the Imagine school is correct. Imagine schools are all over the nation, and they may be based in Virginia but they have had several Imagine schools in Florida. So I don't see that it should be a problem now. Their main thing is that they rate their schools on several areas unlike some schools that just use test scores to rate their schools.
L.C. answers from Lakeland on December 13, 2009
Truthfully it sounds great....most charter schools are highly rated as well as cater to either academics, arts, etc...what is the charter school and where is it located? You can more than likely read "reviews" online either through the school districts website or google search it for reviews(which is how I decided on my daughters preschool) Good Luck! L.
K.B. answers from Tampa on December 13, 2009
If the school you are considered is the Imagine School, I just heard that they were having some problems because they are supposed to be based in Florida and they are actually based in Virginia or something like that. Not sure what they are doing to work this out.
G.L. answers from Orlando on December 15, 2009
My son goes to a Charter school is Florida. I'm very happy so far and in some ways it is similar to the private school he previously attended. I like that the reading level at his school varies by each child's ability. For example, he's in Kindergarten. The kids in his class are on 4 different reading levels (remedial/prek, Kindergarten, 1st and 2nd). He's not attended a public school yet, so I'm not certain, but don't think a public school has this same flexibility (but I could be wrong). There were a couple of charter schools in my area that received horrible grades, so I do know charter schools can vary dramatically and I would check the reviews like a prior responder said and would probably not go to one until it's at least one to two years old. Good luck!
H.R. answers from Orlando on December 17, 2009
My children go to the charter school in the Villages. I know that every charter school is different- You need to see how their charter is set up. For example, the school in the Villages has a charter in the workplace. This means that all children who attend the school have parents who either work directly for the Villages, for a company on Villages property or for a contractor that services the Villages directly.
The charter school is basically a public school that has private funding. They adhere to the county school system rules. They do have ESE, speech, ot, etc. They also have art, pe, music, spanish. My experience with the school has been excellent. The classes are smaller & the teachers are very focused on all the students needs. I would definitely recommend checking out the charter school in your area. I hope this information helps.
J.M. answers from Tampa on December 13, 2009
My oldest daughter is going to a Charter school. This is her 3rd year there. We really like the school. She is tested throughout the year many times. She is advanced in reading, writing, math, science, etc. They keep challenging her to strive to higher learning. Our youngest daughter will attend the Charter school next year. Good luck finding the school that fits your child.