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Do you love/hate your neighborhood middle school?

Original post made by parent, Green Acres, on Apr 14, 2012

Do you love your local middle school? Not so much?

Please share your experience!

What about the choice programs: Direct Instruction (at Terman), Connections (at JLS), and Spanish Immersion (at Jordan)?

I would most like to hear recent experiences and current opinions. Have the social environments improved in the middle school with all these district initiatives?


Comments (7)

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Posted by Mom
a resident of Jordan Middle School
on Apr 14, 2012 at 11:42 pm

I believe the Spanish immersion students are from Escondido Spanish Immersion. One cannot just jump into Spanish Immersion at Jordan. And they are more difficult to teach because they are fluent and don't want to learn grammar.

As far as social environments, you'll find mean girls at every middle school. Just look to the moms for the reason: either too lenient or they don't treat their daughters well.

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Posted by parent
a resident of Green Acres
on Apr 15, 2012 at 1:53 am

Hi "Mom",
I'm not sure I understand what you are saying. You do know there is a spanish immersion choice program contained at Jordan Middle School, right? Students who come from the elementary program can choose to continue into middle school and if they are at a different neighborhood school and make it into the program, they transfer to Jordan. Or, are you saying the Spanish immersion choice students at Jordan don't integrate well or that the program doesn't work well with the rest of the school?

I would really love some specific thoughts about the respective schools from parents who have experience with them. Thanks!

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Posted by Mom
a resident of Old Palo Alto
on Apr 15, 2012 at 9:28 am

Spanish Immersion at Jordan has a troubled history. The parents of kids in the program demanded that the then-teacher be fired, and the program was suspended for some time. If my child were contemplating joining the program now, I would want to talk to current parents to make sure the problems are solved.

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Posted by Mom
a resident of Jordan Middle School
on Apr 15, 2012 at 11:08 am

Parent in Green Acres: You are very condescending. You should look at the programs online before you post. Of course, I know there is a Spanish Immersion program at Jordan. If you had read the Jordan catalog, you would realize it isn't complete immersion and is only one class out of the day. Most children (if not all) come from Escondido (where they had total Spanish Immersion and are fluent). Are you thinking a student who is not fluent in Spanish can enroll in Spanish Immersion at Jordan? Dream on.

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Posted by parent
a resident of Green Acres
on Apr 15, 2012 at 6:28 pm

@Mom (Jordan),
I don't know what your chip is, but you are assuming a lot and arguing with yourself. I hope you will reread the question I originally asked. If you have complaints about Spanish Immersion, or Jordan, I have invited parents to voice their likes/dislikes about the programs, please state them (as opposed to overinterpreting what I have written and attacking me in this strange way). Your original post was not clear, which is why I asked you to clarify - there is nothing condescending about that.

I am looking for feedback about the schools themselves - I would love to hear your thoughts on Jordan as a school. I know a lot about the programs from the official standpoint, I want feedback from parent and student experience, I'm not sure how to make that more clear.

Elementary parents are now contemplating middle school, and visitation days happened before many of the choice applications were even a thought. I'm not personally interested in the Spanish immersion program, but I thought it would be nice if people voiced their opinions about all of the schools, positive and negative.

@Mom (Old Palo Alto)
Thanks for the advice!

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Posted by Anna
a resident of Community Center
on Apr 17, 2012 at 4:17 pm

In my opinion, all three public middle schools in Palo Alto are mediocre at best. My son's good study habits acquired in a private elementary school were gone within a month after he started Jordan, there wasn't much homework, the subjects were too easy, the foreign language instruction was inadequate, my son was bored with academics and focused on social life instead. He turned into a defiant teenager way too quickly. I recommend a private school for these three years. High schools in Palo Alto are a different story, they are quite good, there is a lot of choice.

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Posted by Wow
a resident of Palo Alto High School
on Apr 17, 2012 at 5:08 pm

Wow, Anna, your impression is way off. Some people can never be satisfied. Why didn't you send him to a private middle school? ". . . my son was bored with academics and focused on social life instead. He turned into a defiant teenager way too quickly." This isn't an issue of school being too easy but rather an issue of parenting. Maybe he was on too tight of a leash at the private elementary school and then partied when the leash was let looser at Jordan. BTW, social skills are an important part of child development, so it's not all a loss that he focused on that.

While there are some bad teachers, there are plenty who are great. And there is plenty of homework, some times too much.

Sorry, but further commenting on this topic has been closed.

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