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Old 06-13-2007, 05:41 PM
 
Location: Alexandria, VA
1,078 posts, read 3,437,744 times
Reputation: 486

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I teach, I think I can figure out what to ask.
I posted this here because that is waht is board is for...to get opinions from people who live or have lived in the area.
It amazes me as well, no one has responded who has any information.
MBG
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Old 06-13-2007, 11:43 PM
 
Location: TX
145 posts, read 568,782 times
Reputation: 95
LOVES2READ--Where did you read about the districts who have first dibs because I never saw any of that on the Academy website. So, you're saying that you know for a fact that Northwest ISD residents have first dibs, and then Keller residents, because again, they told me they go straight down the waiting list when there is a slot available. I actually do know two families that attend there. And, BTW, my child is number 125 on the wait list and that's just for his grade level. So the odds of getting in if you aren't a Westlake resident are pretty slim. We wanted our child to attend for the IB curriculum.
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Old 06-14-2007, 05:25 AM
 
27,447 posts, read 44,934,740 times
Reputation: 14041
that info did not come off their web page ---they don't list their heirachy for deciding who is accepted--at least I did not see it...

I got that info about Keller ISD from Star-Telegram article about Westlake Academy a month or so ago--don't remember the specific language/text --but Westlake has certain ISDs whose students get "preferred" status over other ISDs--like Keller over Weatherford (I guess because of location)...
think this link is to the article I remember----

Trustees to ask for change in boundaries (broken link)

there is more current article which says that change probably was not adopted

Missed Deadline Could Mean Students' Removal (http://www.encyclopedia.com/doc/1Y1-106721449.html - broken link)

so I don't know how it stands now...

Last edited by loves2read; 06-14-2007 at 05:34 AM..
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Old 06-14-2007, 09:07 AM
 
Location: TX
145 posts, read 568,782 times
Reputation: 95
Thank you for the links, loves2read. When we went for the monthly group tour and application last fall, they never mentioned that students of certain districts would have preference or not even be eligible because of the way the charter was written. It's surprising and disappointing that the administration does not know the important details of their own charter. I think I actually know a student there that is going to be affected by that TEA deadline extension denial, too.
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Old 06-14-2007, 02:00 PM
 
Location: Alexandria, VA
1,078 posts, read 3,437,744 times
Reputation: 486
Quote:
Originally Posted by loves2read View Post
that info did not come off their web page ---they don't list their heirachy for deciding who is accepted--at least I did not see it...

I got that info about Keller ISD from Star-Telegram article about Westlake Academy a month or so ago--don't remember the specific language/text --but Westlake has certain ISDs whose students get "preferred" status over other ISDs--like Keller over Weatherford (I guess because of location)...
think this link is to the article I remember----

Trustees to ask for change in boundaries (broken link)

there is more current article which says that change probably was not adopted

Missed Deadline Could Mean Students' Removal (http://www.encyclopedia.com/doc/1Y1-106721449.html - broken link)

so I don't know how it stands now...
The bottom site gave me a pack of spyware
So I could not read the article...
Shoot...
Thank you anyway Loves2Read...darn!
MBG
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Old 06-14-2007, 09:08 PM
 
27,447 posts, read 44,934,740 times
Reputation: 14041
May 24--WESTLAKE -- Westlake Academy administrators missed an important deadline that means eight students might lose their coveted spots at the exclusive charter school, where nearly 1,000 students are on a waiting list with little chance for admission.

The students lived outside the public school's geographic boundaries but were erroneously admitted to the academy in previous years. School officials missed a Feb. 1 deadline to ask the state to change the boundaries so that these students could stay, and on Friday, the state denied the school's request for a deadline extension.

Moderator cut: copyrighted material


Star-Telegram.com | 05/24/2007 | Missed deadline could mean students' removal (broken link)

Last edited by AustinTraveler; 06-14-2007 at 09:13 PM.. Reason: Please just post a snippet plus the website.
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Old 07-17-2007, 05:34 PM
 
1 posts, read 4,830 times
Reputation: 10
Default Response to Westlake ?

Hello:

I have some experience with the school and can tell you that the entry system you have described is not entirely accurate. The WL residents are given first admittance to the school and then all the other surrounding school districts are admitted according to a waiting list. There is not a preference for NWISD students.

As far as the IB teachings, I find the school to be controlled completely by the IB org and they do not provide special education for the children as they are required to by law. And yes, you will get the best picture possible from the staff without ANY mention of any trouble or improvements that need to be addressed. Maybe that is the way most school officials would be.

If I had the chance to homeschool my child, I would not place them in a school - for any reason.

As far as the campus, it is the best any child could hope for and the kids that go to the school are some of the most intelligent and kind children I have been with...

The other interesting thing is the charter school is owned by the Town of Westlake and that makes the funding and school board really tied in to the town.

Hope some of this helps.
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Old 07-17-2007, 07:46 PM
 
27,447 posts, read 44,934,740 times
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Yes--the town voted to persue the charter request--think it is the only IB school chartered by a town, not a school district, in the US maybe the entire IB program...

The school was chartered as an IB school and while that is the curricula the school is designed to follow I doubt that the IB Organization controls it--each school designs and submits a curricula designed to adhere to and reflect the IB philosophy--there is not one specific, identical IB format for each school...I know because I know the people who designed the IB English curriculum for Bell HS in the HEB District.....part of what Bell's English dept does is different than Trinity's in the same district and the IB org does not control either one...there was flexibility for what and how material could be taught and tested...

At Westlake, there is a director on site and ass't principals, teachers, other administrative personnel like counselors hired by Westlake, not by the IB organization...

the IB organization is a world-wide educational entity--the schools which employ an IB curriculum in HEB were visited by IB staffers and once their programs were certified as meeting IB standards--they were left alone...they send the students' taped oral exams off to be scored and their written finals--but IB personnel are not involved in the day to day teaching of IB curriculum They maybe make a site visit every couple of years for a couple of days...

I don't know the status of what stillskeptical mentioned regarding "special education" or special needs students at Westlake--I would think that depending on what a child's individual capabilities are that some modifications that might be necessary could not be done--I don't believe that all IB material could be modified for all students with learning disabilities or behavior problems because IB is extremely demanding, fast-paced, and depends greatly on a student's ability for self-directed learning and completion of written or otherwise creatied work products

if too many modifications are required that would essentially dilute the curricula's requirements and standards, then basically it would not be an IB program...IB is not for everyone---whereas the normal state requirments offer two options--college or general plan and modifications are more easily integrated into those.

My experience has been that each school makes a modification plan for every special needs student which takes into account the class's requirements, state testing requirements, the student's capabilities, and the goals/outcome for the student...plan is reviewed at least once a year, sometimes more often is there is a reason--with the student, parents, diagnostician, at least one teacher and an administrator taking part....some special needs students can succeed with heavy course of honors classes, some get a blend, and some take all general classes--it just depends on the student's capabilities, the course's requirements, and the judgement of the adminstrators as to what modifications are ok to develop skills and lay groundwork for courses that come after...
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Old 07-24-2007, 04:02 PM
 
1 posts, read 4,814 times
Reputation: 11
Default Clarifications about Westlake Academy

There is some misinformation on this forum regarding the admissions criteria. I am a resident and intimately familiar with the school. Westlake Academy is owned by the Town of Westlake. It is an open-enrollment charter school and is one of very few in the US owned by a town, not an ISD. The town falls within three school districts -- Northwest ISD, Keller ISD and Carroll ISD. People who buy a home within the town will be within whatever school district that applies and will have the option of sending their children to school within that district or Westlake Academy (or private school, as many of the people in the town have opted to do). There were some kids admitted in the first year's lottery who were outside of the boundaries established by the charter. This is what is referenced in the articles posted. The Town is debating how to handle that situation since the TEA wants them removed from the school. That issue is not over yet. If you move into Westlake, you can put your kids into the school at any time. If you go through the lottery, it is evaluated on a yearly basis. If a space is vacated during the year, I believe they will offer that space to the next child on the list.

Any spaces which are not filled by Westlake residents are open to students in those school districts by a lottery system. There is no preferential treatment in the lottery for one school district versus another (in fact we have very few homes in the NW ISD, mostly the houses are in Carroll or Keller), other than that Westlake residents do not have to go through the lottery. There is a waiting list, primarily for the lower grades. Many students in the upper grades have pulled out of the school because of its small size and lack of programs/activities that older kids want.

Although many people believe the school is a private school, due to the quality of the buildings and the fact that the kids wear uniforms, it is not. They do not charge tuition and are limited financially to funds from the state and discretionary contributions from families.

Whomever commented that the IB has a very strong influence on the school is correct. You should think strongly about whether IB is the best fit for your child and whether a very small school with limited activities works for them too. Also, the comment made by someone that the Town council members also serve as the school board is correct, as mandated by the charter.

Inaccuracies include the statement that there was limited interest the first couple of years. The lottery turn out was huge the first year and many of those on the waiting list have been there from the start. (Currently only about a third of the student body is Westlake residents). Also, the statement that the school is new and there is not enough history is inaccurate. It has completed four years and there is a lot of history on which you can base your decision. You should talk with the school about your child's special needs.
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Old 07-24-2007, 04:10 PM
 
27,447 posts, read 44,934,740 times
Reputation: 14041
Westlaker--some of my comments were ones you listed as inaccurate--sorry for that--did not happen deliberately--I though I was giving correct information I read in newspaper articles about Westlake Academy...
glad to have someone with first hand knowledge referee and provide accurate information...
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