Tegucigalpa, Honduras Report of what it's like to live there - 04/29/13
Personal Experiences from Tegucigalpa, Honduras
School Name: Discovery School
1. Are you the parent of a child(ren) attending this school? A teacher at the school? Or both?
2. What grade or grades do/did your children attend at the school? During what year(s) did they attend the school?
3. During what years were you affiliated with this school?
4. What was your reason for living in the city where the school is located (e.g., government, military, corporate, NGO, retired)?
Admissions & Welcome:
1. Are the admissions and placement procedures clearly stated to prospective families, either on the school website or through other means of communication?
2. How would you rate the school's support and welcome/integration of new students and their families, and why?
B - They gave us a tour of the school.
Administration & School Procedures:
1. Describe the general climate of the grade level that you teach or your child attends:
My child attended a combined class for 3- and 4-year-old children. I felt that it was a poorly envisioned and poorly executed setting.
2. For the following attributes, down to the next blank box, grade your experience at the school on a scale of A (excellent) to F (unacceptable/terrible) and provide comments:<br><br>Overall fair and equitable treatment of all students and families:
A - They treated everyone equally poorly. Ridiculous rules, inflexibility, and a generally bad attitude.
3. How is the overall communication between teachers and parents, and the administration and parents? How is communication facilitated?
Acceptable - teachers will communicate with parents. Just be prepared to be unsatisfied with the answers and to have no recourse besides changing schools.
4. Services for gifted students who need academic challenge and students with learning difficulties:
C - I understand that there was some attention paid here in the past (i.e., moving a gifted boy to a higher grade for math), but this no longer occurs.
5. Availability and variety of after-school activities for various ages:
Slim to none.
6. Maintenance of appropriately high standards for all students:
7. Homework assigned (quality, quantity):
8. Administration-parent communication:
I communicated numerous times with the current director and was completely unsatisfied.
9. Teacher-student communication:
10. Academics, answer the following questions "yes" or "no" with an explanation if appropriate:<br><br>Are there any classes or subjects where students are not appropriately challenged?
11. Does your child receive any special-needs assistance or instruction at this school? If yes, what types? Who provides services and where:
12. Do you believe the special-needs assistance is appropriate and fills your needs? Explain:
13. Does the gifted and talented program meet the needs of students? Please explain:
I don't think so.
14. Does the school offer a wide variety of elective or non-core classes such as art, music, and drama?
15. Please describe any problem areas or challenges in social interaction at the school:
Teachers do not oversee many social interactions at school. For example, a child is bullied at the playground: "Why didn't you tell your teacher?" "She was busy talking on the phone." Parent asks teacher why the situation was not addressed. Reply: "Oh, the other child is just such a charmer, your child needs to toughen up."
Academics & Resources:
1. What personal or academic counseling resources are available at this school? Is there a dedicated college counselor at the school? Is he/she familiar with universities worldwide?
2. Does the school have a library? How large is it? How updated are the books? Can students borrow books to read at home?
3. How are information technology resources at the school. Are they up-to-date? Is there a computer lab?
4. Describe the physical education resources at the school. Is there a gym? A swimming pool? Are there playing fields or tennis courts available?
D - Not a very engaging program.
5. What is the approximate teacher-to-student ratio in the grades that your child attended?
Very small classes. I believe the Kindergarten is capped at 15 students per class.
6. Are Advanced Placement (AP) or International Baccalaureate (IB) courses available in upper grades? If this is an IB school, is the full diploma required of all students?
7. Is the amount and type of homework generally appropriate for the age and grade of the students?
8. What fine arts electives are available (music, drama, visual arts)?
D - Many of the classes are taught entirely in Spanish.
9. Are the teachers at the school required to speak English as a first language--or at least fluently?
Nope, not all.
10. What services are available for gifted/advanced students at the school? Please describe your experience with these services, if applicable.
Social & Emotional Well-Being:
1. Do expatriate students socialize with local students at the school? Are both groups successfully integrated into the school culture?
Just with expats.
2. Are there are any problems with exclusionary behavior, cliques, or bullying at this school? Please describe any problems your children may have experienced in this area.
1. What is the greatest strength of this school?
I believe that currently the majority of younger embassy kids go here. I also believe that this is changing very rapidly.
2. Would you choose this school again? Why?