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Briar Woods/Eagle Ridge

Discussion in 'Broadlands Community Issues' started by sandaddy, May 11, 2012.

  1. sandaddy

    sandaddy New Member

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    It's a good idea. I've talked to the guidance counselor and left a message for an assistant principle - who never returned the call. I guess I'm ambivalent about what that will accomplish b/c the issue isn't any particular problem with how they deal with my child, or ways to improve my child's performance. It's just that the instruction stinks overall. So what do you do: go in and tell the teacher they stink? It's not like tweaking one or two things will make things better. It goes to how the teacher's teach and who the administration hires. So I'd be there years trying to fix all that.

    But I'll still try to talk with the school and see what can be done.
     
  2. wahoogeek

    wahoogeek New Member

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    That is our first-hand experience going from ERMS to high school. The first semester of freshman year was quite a struggle with the rigors of high school academics (perhaps it was due to the number of advanced classes our kid is taking but he took the advanced classes at ERMS too).

    We have a 6th grader at ERMS now and we are seeing a decline in the required amount of work since our oldest left and what appears to be grade inflation with the new administration. We have also heard a rumor that the incoming 5th graders will all be targeted for the "honors" courses, only those with serious academic issues are to be directed towards the academic classes. Maybe I'm reading too much into this, but it does seem like there is an emphasis on metrics over substance. I for one, would rather my middle-schooler be pushed hard with significant homework and outside the classroom studying so they can be better prepared to handle courses in high school (where their GPA does matter, it does NOT matter in middle school except for certain math and foreign language courses).
     
  3. Mafaca Jones

    Mafaca Jones New Member

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    As far as homework at ER goes...the days are set up in “blocks” – whereas – the teachers do not teach for the entire “block” of time – they teach and then allow students to do the “homework” or read or study – etc....at least that's what my straight A, hardly any homework, 7th grader tells me. Couple the blocks with "Resource" and the students have ample time to get a lot of their work done whilst in school.
     
  4. loudgrowler

    loudgrowler New Member

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    I guess you cannot please everyone and there are likely good/bad teachers and aspects of all schools.

    We had both Mrs. K and Mrs. B as ERMS Principals and really did not have any issues with either one. I guess the kids thought Mrs. K was “cooler” than Mrs. B as she is more strict, but being from a military family, we appreciate a bit of discipline and keeping kids in line. I mean why did the kids need to have iPods at school anyway? We had a good experience at ERMS with both Principals and felt well informed during the three years.

    I guess I’d say one negative comment we do have about ERMS now that our child has moved on to BWHS is that ERMS in NO WAY prepared her for all the homework that she has at BWHS this year as a Freshman. She did take all Honors classes at Eagle Ridge and received straight As and did make good use of her resource time, but really did not have much homework while attending Eagle Ridge. She is currently taking all Honors Courses as well as PreAP History at Briar Woods. I guess this could vary depending on a students courseload, but it is hard to believe students would have little or no homework from BWHS? Our daughter does a sport most nights per week and then is up late every night with quite a bit of homework. It is sometimes pretty crazy actually. Perhaps some of them give too much “busy work”? Not sure. So far she has found the teachers to be mostly good with just a couple minor complaints. So far hanging in there with straight As (4.3), but between sports and homework she has VERY little time for anything else.

    So far, we have been impressed with the facility, the organization, the athletics program, etc... of Briar Woods and the Principal of BWHS seems to be a good one? We know there are inevitably things that go on in all high schools but so far there have not been any big issues or concerns.

    One concern with Briar Woods (or perhaps Loudoun County)...would anyone know why for example, PreAP History at BWHS apparently is using a pretty challenging (college level?) book and has quite a load of homework esp if you get one specific teacher, but then have heard other schools (Stone Bridge and Broad Run) are using the Briar Woods Academic level History book for their PreAP courses? Shouldn’t the schools/requirements be uniform throughout the county?

    Thanks and good luck!
     
  5. latka

    latka Active Member

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    Absolutley love Briar Woods! Think it's a great school.
     
  6. CJA

    CJA New Member

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    My daughter is in 7th grade at ERMS and she does have homework pretty much every night and weekends. We have been happy with ERMS so far. The only issue I have is that they are allowed to retake tests for a higher grade in pretty much every class. I have heard that once they are in High School this isn't done and I think that maybe with a few exceptions your grade is your grade and maybe they would study a little harder for the next test versus knowing if they don't do so well they can just retake it.
     
  7. MEM

    MEM New Member

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    I disagree with the whole retake policy at ERMS. Life isn't a bunch of do-overs. If you get a C you don't qualify for the retake so the C stands, but if you get a D, you get the retake and whatever you get the second time around is your grade. Not an average, the second grade is your grade. I don't see how this is fair to the kid that studied the first time. I understand some kids have learning issues, but some kids don't try. My daughter missed class for a medical appointment so she gets a C on a test and is stuck with that because she doesn't qualify for the retake. Not happy with this policy at all.
     
  8. latka

    latka Active Member

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    This policy will be county wide soon.
     
  9. erica

    erica New Member

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    Hi Sandaddy and others on this thread,

    As an outgoing PTA board member at ERMS, I suggest that you contact Mrs. Beichler directly with any concerns you may have about the school or curriculum. She is eager to communicate with parents/families and regularly attends PTA meetings.

    Another option is to contact a PTA board member and/or the parent liaison, Ms. Rolin-- part of their service is to answer questions families may have and serve as a conduit to the school.

    (Even if you don't wish to become an ERMS PTA member, you can sign up to receive the PTA newsletter and there's also an ERMS PTA page on Facebook that's worth following to keep informed.)

    Most often there are logical and/or research-based decisions as to why administration has certain policies, or they are mandated by the state or district. I'm confident that Mrs. B would be happy to share this information with you.

    Erica G. :)
    Mom of 8th grader and rising 6th grader at ERMS
     
  10. KTdid

    KTdid Well-Known Member

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    Testing is a diagnostic tool only. Retesting has been around for a long time but it should be applied across the board for all students to include the high achievers. They too want the highest possible grade. The tests should also have a different format to disallow rote memory.

    In one class (if memory serves me right), the teacher handed out a study guide almost identical to the test, but randomly formatted. One would surmise this is a giveaway, so if a student fails they either didn't put the study effort in, or, they cannot take tests which happens to many students when they feel pressured or stressed.

    I think the entire process reinforces bad study habits. Why should I study hard when I know I can retake the exam over and over until I pass.

    As MEM said in a earlier post, "life isn't a bunch of do overs."
     
  11. tiny

    tiny New Member

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    No do overs....so your child will only take the SAT one time?
     
  12. nadir

    nadir New Member

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    Many admissions committees average scores, so while scores achieved on a good day will certainly help your average, scores from a bad sitting will never go away.
     
  13. MEM

    MEM New Member

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    My point is, if there is going to be a policy to allow someone to retake a test and replace the grade, then everyone should be afforded this opportunity. Some kids are not happy with C's. As it stands now, if a kid doesn't think they are going to do well on a test, they might as well blow the whole thing and get the retake.
     
  14. loudgrowler

    loudgrowler New Member

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    Interesting. I hope the retake is not the same test when they take it the 2nd time? Is it? That could be a scary strategy esp if no time to study on a particular day, to go in and get a peek at the test content and just fail it on purpose and then come back next time to get a good grade and the F is just erased and not averaged?

    In general, I am not in agreement with this type of policy, but I would agree with MEM that some kids are not happy with C's and they should also be given the chance to retake if desired if that opportunity is given to others who receive D's and F's.
     
  15. Peas&Carrots

    Peas&Carrots New Member

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    Be sure to check with the colleges/universities on their specific process (if they are forthcoming). Some will combine the best score from each test section from all the scores you submit and use that as your overall 'score.' Not just the average of all the scores. Your bad scores will never come into play.
     
  16. nadir

    nadir New Member

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    Exactly. I am a field representative for an admissions office that does take the best score from each section, even if they were earned in different sittings. I believe the school I represent, however, is one of the few that employs this practice.
     
  17. tigercpa

    tigercpa New Member

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    We get the same from our kids..."I wanna stay home, all we do is watch movies..."
     
  18. shim

    shim shim

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    Just asked my all honors BWHS student what he did today in school. In Spanish class he watched Mission Impossible and Monsters Inc., in English. Really, Ed Star??
     
  19. shim

    shim shim

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    Just received this text from my BWHS sophmore: "We're watching Modern Family in English can I pleeezze come home?"
     
  20. frm

    frm New Member

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    I think it's important to note that the students at BWHS are involved over these last few weeks with AP exams and SOL tests. I know my son has had multiple classes that he has missed because of exams. Once the seniors finish, my son will have multiple classes of only 4-7 students left. All this makes it difficult for the teachers. I realize that showing movies isn't ideal - but other than this time of year, there is a lot of learning that goes on at Briar Woods. Briar Woods students graduate and do very well at college with the foundation they received at Briar Woods. This thread makes it look like the teachers do nothing but show movies all day all year long. This is not the case.
     

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