Tegucigalpa, Honduras Real School Experiences

Personal Experiences from Tegucigalpa, Honduras

Tegucigalpa, Honduras 07/17/19

American School of Tegucigalpa

School Website

https://amschool.org


Background Information:

1. Are you the parent of a child(ren) attending this school? A teacher at the school? Or both?

Parent.

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2. What grade or grades do/did your children attend at the school? During what year(s) did they attend the school?

2018-2019 - Grades 2 and 4 (2 kids)
Will attend for another 2-3 years (2019 - 2022)

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3. What was your reason for living in the city where the school is located (e.g., government, military, corporate, NGO, retired)?

Government

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4. Are other schools available to expatriates in this city? Why did you choose this particular school?

There are other available schools. We selected this one due to its location, after-school activities w/ busing, special services (enrichment classes for advanced child and counseling services for child with anxiety), and similarity with previous schools my children have attended. We also wanted to provide our children an opportunity to immerse in a school with Honduran children.

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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?

We completed the whole process except for testing, in-person in one visit. The testing was extensive for our oldest (Gr. 4), but did ensure that she was appropriately placed in reading and math groups within her class.

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2. How would you rate the school's support and welcome/integration of new students and their families, and why?

The school does host some "back to school" type events, but many took place during the day which was difficult for two working parents. Most of the integration took place naturally through the classes themselves and the Whats App groups associated with each class.

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Administration & School Procedures:

1. How is the overall communication between teachers and parents, and the administration and parents? How is communication facilitated?

There are MANY different means used by the school and teachers to communicate information. There is a newsletter that arrives by email from the school and individual emails when needed. Each elementary class has a website where all information and assignments are posted weekly by the teachers. Some teachers also use ClassDojo to share information and photos.

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2. Aside from school fees, are there required expenses such as uniforms, laptops/tablets, musical instruments, or field trips that parents are expected to cover? What are the approximate costs?

Uniforms are required. Students are also required to provide supplies for the year (list provided and you can buy individually or through the school book store). Elementary students need daily access to a laptop or a tablet at home to complete homework assignments on various learning apps. Some minor expenses in elementary for local field trips.

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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?

We have one child who tested into enrichment courses (reading and math) and one child receiving counseling services for anxiety.

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2. Is there before and/or after-school daycare available? What are the costs?

There are no before school activities. There is a wide range of after-school activities that cost about US$100/trimester (music, arts, athletics, languages). Children of U.S. embassy families can use an after-school activity bus for transport home which is HUGE in households with two working parents.

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3. Does the school have a library? How large is it? How updated are the books? Can students borrow books to read at home?

Elementary library is very good with updated titles. The elementary library recently extended hours on Fridays so that parents can go check out books for the weekend.

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4. What are the technology requirements for students? Do they need their own laptops/ipads? How is technology integrated into the classroom and homework?

Elementary students will need access every day to a tablet or laptop to complete homework assignments.

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5. How are information technology resources at the school. Are they up-to-date? Is there a computer lab?

IT resources are very up to date.

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6. Describe the physical education resources at the school. Is there a gym? A swimming pool? Are there playing fields or tennis courts available?

Elementary kids have PE twice a week and "houses" once a week which usually involves physical activities. There are covered courts, a full gym, and a very large turf field. No tennis courts or pool.

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7. What is the approximate teacher-to-student ratio in the grades that your child attended?

All classes have a 20 student max in elementary school and each class has one teacher and one teacher's assistant.

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8. Are students generally challenged appropriately by the curriculum? Please describe any particular strengths or weaknesses in this area. Do you have any thoughts how the curriculum is applied and implemented at this school?

Our kids are very different but were both appropriately challenged. Teachers individualize assignments based on students abilities. Gifted students are pulled out for enrichment classes in reading and math when they qualify.

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9. Is the amount and type of homework generally appropriate for the age and grade of the students?

We felt homework was appropriate but perhaps too much of it was online.

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10. What fine arts electives are available (music, drama, visual arts)?

Elementary kids have music and art standard and can choose additional after-school electives in these areas if interested.

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11. Are the teachers at the school required to speak English as a first language--or at least fluently?

English language capabilities are INCREDIBLY strong with all teachers and staff.

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12. What services are available for gifted/advanced students at the school? Please describe your experience with these services, if applicable.

Our 4th grader tested into enrichment classes in reading and math. The school uses MAP testing to place students in these classes along with a recommendation from the classroom teacher.

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13. What services are available for students with learning disabilities at this school? Please describe your experience with these services, if applicable.

Our second grader saw the elementary counselor regularly for anxiety. The school was incredible working with our therapist (not associated with the school) to design appropriate accommodations for our son that allowed him to fully participate in a completely normal classroom setting.

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14. What extra-curricular activities (including sports) are available at this school? Have your children participated in these activities? What activities do you feel are missing at the school?

There is a wide range of activities available after school and on weekends. My kids participated in drama, athletics, and karate.

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Social & Emotional Well-Being:

1. Do expatriate students socialize with local students at the school? Are both groups successfully integrated into the school culture?

The school is probably about 96% Honduran nationals but our kids have had no problem socializing in the school. While our kids have more "American" friends, they also have local friends that they play with on weekends. The school is very good about ensuring that English is the only language spoken, so our non-Spanish speaking kids had no problem. The level of English for Honduran students is INCREDIBLY high so language has not been a barrier.

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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.

While we heard rumors before arriving about bullying, we had ZERO experiences with this and have not heard of any bullying in the elementary grades since we've been at the school.

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Overall Impressions:

1. What letter grade (ranging from A, excellent, to F, fail) would you assign to this school based on your overall experience? Would you choose it again?

A! We'd chose AST again and plan to spend 4 years at the school.

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2. Please describe some of your child's/children's highlights and challenges during their time at this school.

The highlight for both kids was the quick integration this past year.

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3. Please tell us anything else you think prospective parents and students should know about this school. Thanks for your contribution!

See the school for yourself, talk to parents who have students at the school, and ground truth "information" you receive from people who do not have kids at the school.

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Tegucigalpa, Honduras 09/25/18

American School of Tegucigalpa

School Website

http://amschool.org


Background Information:

1. Are you the parent of a child(ren) attending this school? A teacher at the school? Or both?

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2. What grade or grades do/did your children attend at the school? During what year(s) did they attend the school?

5th through 7th grade

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3. What was your reason for living in the city where the school is located (e.g., government, military, corporate, NGO, retired)?

Relocation

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4. Are other schools available to expatriates in this city? Why did you choose this particular school?

Yes other schools are available. We found AST to be the best school in town. It is a large school with lots of opportunities for the kids.

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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?

Yes, everything is very clear and they have an amazing admissions coordinator

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2. How would you rate the school's support and welcome/integration of new students and their families, and why?

10/10.
They are very inclusive with new kids. Families are warmly welcomed to new families. Kids were very welcoming too.

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Administration & School Procedures:

1. How is the overall communication between teachers and parents, and the administration and parents? How is communication facilitated?

10/10
We received weekly emails from teachers and middle school director.

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2. Aside from school fees, are there required expenses such as uniforms, laptops/tablets, musical instruments, or field trips that parents are expected to cover? What are the approximate costs?

No - the school is great in this aspect, they give kids tablets and also provide musical instruments.
We have to get uniforms but they have material and seamstresses to help you get those ordered and fitted as soon as possible.

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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?

Yes, they have dedicated counselors at school and they have a great counseling program and are very familiar with univerities worldwide. Graduating students have gone to universities throughout the US and Europe.

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2. Does the school have a library? How large is it? How updated are the books? Can students borrow books to read at home?

AST has the best library in town. Students can borrow books and even Embassy families who do not have their kids at AST can go and create an account and borrow books.

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3. What are the technology requirements for students? Do they need their own laptops/ipads? How is technology integrated into the classroom and homework?

School provides chromebooks and a lot of classwork and homework is done online.

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4. How are information technology resources at the school. Are they up-to-date? Is there a computer lab?

Yes, computer labs for different sections of the school.

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5. Describe the physical education resources at the school. Is there a gym? A swimming pool? Are there playing fields or tennis courts available?

AST has one of the best school campuses. We have a gym, soccer field, basketball courts, and a track field.

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6. What is the approximate teacher-to-student ratio in the grades that your child attended?

20-1

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7. 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?

Yes they have an IB program. Students who don't want to do the IB program can get the work towards a regular HS diploma.

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8. Are students generally challenged appropriately by the curriculum? Please describe any particular strengths or weaknesses in this area. Do you have any thoughts how the curriculum is applied and implemented at this school?

Yes they are and some of the teachers provide more advanced work to make it more challenging. Also they have specialized help for kids that need extra help in school.

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9. Is the amount and type of homework generally appropriate for the age and grade of the students?

Yes

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10. What fine arts electives are available (music, drama, visual arts)?

AST just opened an amazing performing arts center, which is probably the best auditorium in town; lots of space for classes.
They have music, drama, band, yearbook.

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11. Are the teachers at the school required to speak English as a first language--or at least fluently?

Yes the locally employed teachers speak fluent English.

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12. What services are available for students with learning disabilities at this school? Please describe your experience with these services, if applicable.

They have special services for kids with learning disabilities,. I've never used them but know they have a team of specialists to help children.

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13. What services are provided for speakers of English as a second language at this school? Please describe your experience with these services, if applicable.

They have classes for speakers of Spanish as a second language.

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14. What extra-curricular activities (including sports) are available at this school? Have your children participated in these activities? What activities do you feel are missing at the school?

Track, soccer, bastketball, volleyball, chess, cheerleading, drama, band, MUN, GIN, Operation smile.
They have a great variety of extra-curricular activities for kids to choose from.

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Social & Emotional Well-Being:

1. Do expatriate students socialize with local students at the school? Are both groups successfully integrated into the school culture?

Yes they do as much as they want to. I have seen first-hand that many expatriate students do not want to integrate.
I have also seen many kids who have successfuly integrated completely into the school and have absolutely loved their experience.
The school population is divided into "houses" which allows the kids to get to know other kids besides their classmates.

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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.

My kid never had a problem, he made friends with local kids as soon as we go there, and he is still in touch with his classmates and friends from AST.

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Overall Impressions:

1. What letter grade (ranging from A, excellent, to F, fail) would you assign to this school based on your overall experience? Would you choose it again?

A ... yes we would love to go back so we can be with our kid's classmates.

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2. Please tell us anything else you think prospective parents and students should know about this school. Thanks for your contribution!

AST is an awesome school, one of the best if not the best choice of school in Tegucigalpa.
Once an eagle....always an eagle !

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Tegucigalpa, Honduras 05/14/18

Discovery School

School Website

http://www.discoveryschool.edu.hn/


Background Information:

1. Are you the parent of a child(ren) attending this school? A teacher at the school? Or both?

Parent

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2. What grade or grades do/did your children attend at the school? During what year(s) did they attend the school?

Started in the 5th grade now about to finish 6th grade moving to 7th next year

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3. What was your reason for living in the city where the school is located (e.g., government, military, corporate, NGO, retired)?

DOS

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4. Are other schools available to expatriates in this city? Why did you choose this particular school?

The post has other schools but Discovery school was very international and had a very open-door policy for parents and very welcoming. No bullying and fantastic small classes.

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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?

Email or via blog also parents in grade have what's app chat

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2. How would you rate the school's support and welcome/integration of new students and their families, and why?

Fantastic... My son met his classmates and teachers before he arrived via video chat so they were expecting him when we arrived and that was awesome since we were going for 4 years in Virginia before our move.

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Administration & School Procedures:

1. How is the overall communication between teachers and parents, and the administration and parents? How is communication facilitated?

Email and what's app chats and letters sent home. They also have a blog

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2. Aside from school fees, are there required expenses such as uniforms, laptops/tablets, musical instruments, or field trips that parents are expected to cover? What are the approximate costs?

No uniforms at Discovery as they celebrate a child's individual choice to wear clothes appropriate for school.

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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?

Yes and the school offers AP courses

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2. Is there before and/or after-school daycare available? What are the costs?

Yes and depending what after-school activities you choose. Example: ballet and karate is free but bricks for kids which is Lego building is not that can run about $25 for a month.

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3. Does the school have a library? How large is it? How updated are the books? Can students borrow books to read at home?

Yes and yes... It's a good size library

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4. What are the technology requirements for students? Do they need their own laptops/ipads? How is technology integrated into the classroom and homework?

Depending on the grade; there is also a computer and technology room.

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5. How are information technology resources at the school. Are they up-to-date? Is there a computer lab?

Yes...

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6. Describe the physical education resources at the school. Is there a gym? A swimming pool? Are there playing fields or tennis courts available?

They have a basketball court and a soccer field for smaller children and playground.

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7. What is the approximate teacher-to-student ratio in the grades that your child attended?

In the 5th grade it was 11 children per class with a total of 23 for 5th grade for 2 classrooms.

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8. 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?

Yes and if a student is a gifted child, s/he will be placed in a higher grade for some classes during the school day.

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9. Are students generally challenged appropriately by the curriculum? Please describe any particular strengths or weaknesses in this area. Do you have any thoughts how the curriculum is applied and implemented at this school?

Yes...

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10. Is the amount and type of homework generally appropriate for the age and grade of the students?

Yes... Unlike some other schools here where children are doing homework for hours.

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11. What fine arts electives are available (music, drama, visual arts)?

Music yes - jazz band and choir in Discovery has won many awards

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12. Are the teachers at the school required to speak English as a first language--or at least fluently?

Yes and they also have Spanish classes. If you are a beginner, they have a special class for those learning.

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13. What services are available for gifted/advanced students at the school? Please describe your experience with these services, if applicable.

From what I have seen, if a child is ahead of the class on that particular class, s/he will send the student to the next grade level for that class. This was the case for one of my son's classmates last year.

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14. What services are available for students with learning disabilities at this school? Please describe your experience with these services, if applicable.

We do have a special needs child in the 2nd grade and she is doing very well at the school.

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15. What services are available for students with physical disabilities at this school? Please describe your experience with these services, if applicable.

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16. What services are provided for speakers of English as a second language at this school? Please describe your experience with these services, if applicable.

They have ESOL classes

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Social & Emotional Well-Being:

1. Do expatriate students socialize with local students at the school? Are both groups successfully integrated into the school culture?

Yes and very close friendships

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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.

None... The Discovery school is a very inclusive school

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Overall Impressions:

1. What letter grade (ranging from A, excellent, to F, fail) would you assign to this school based on your overall experience? Would you choose it again?

A

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2. Please tell us anything else you think prospective parents and students should know about this school. Thanks for your contribution!

It's a small school with a huge heart. The school prides itself to being a very inclusive school were all is welcome regardless if you know English or Spanish. This school is more international than any other school here. Parents go out together and get to know one another. I have met a lot of wonderful families outside our embassy circle with whom we will stay friends beyond being posted here.

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Tegucigalpa, Honduras 03/01/17

Del Campo

School Website

http://www.delcampo.education/


Background Information:

1. Are you the parent of a child(ren) attending this school? A teacher at the school? Or both?

parent

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2. What grade or grades do/did your children attend at the school? During what year(s) did they attend the school?

K

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3. What was your reason for living in the city where the school is located (e.g., government, military, corporate, NGO, retired)?

government

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4. Are other schools available to expatriates in this city? Why did you choose this particular school?

looking for a school that did not have bullying, small with a good community yet was mature enough to assist children who needed more personalized learning

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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?

yes

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2. How would you rate the school's support and welcome/integration of new students and their families, and why?

adequate - we started a few weeks after the school year had begun

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Administration & School Procedures:

1. How is the overall communication between teachers and parents, and the administration and parents? How is communication facilitated?

good. email or text

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2. Aside from school fees, are there required expenses such as uniforms, laptops/tablets, musical instruments, or field trips that parents are expected to cover? What are the approximate costs?

uniform

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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?

yes I believe so

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2. Is there before and/or after-school daycare available? What are the costs?

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3. Does the school have a library? How large is it? How updated are the books? Can students borrow books to read at home?

yes

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4. How are information technology resources at the school. Are they up-to-date? Is there a computer lab?

yes

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5. Describe the physical education resources at the school. Is there a gym? A swimming pool? Are there playing fields or tennis courts available?

good newer playgrounds

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6. What is the approximate teacher-to-student ratio in the grades that your child attended?

class was larger than I would have liked in K, but teacher had an assistant and managed the children very well

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7. 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?

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8. Are students generally challenged appropriately by the curriculum? Please describe any particular strengths or weaknesses in this area. Do you have any thoughts how the curriculum is applied and implemented at this school?

I believe so

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9. Is the amount and type of homework generally appropriate for the age and grade of the students?

yes, there was homework in K - practicing handwriting and vocab

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10. What fine arts electives are available (music, drama, visual arts)?

All

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11. Are the teachers at the school required to speak English as a first language--or at least fluently?

yes

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12. What services are available for students with learning disabilities at this school? Please describe your experience with these services, if applicable.

there is a school within the school with specialized learning opportunities. I heard very good things

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Social & Emotional Well-Being:

1. Do expatriate students socialize with local students at the school? Are both groups successfully integrated into the school culture?

yes! The kids at the school were so friendly and welcoming. My child made many good friends and learned a lot of Spanish!

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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.

No!

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Overall Impressions:

1. What letter grade (ranging from A, excellent, to F, fail) would you assign to this school based on your overall experience? Would you choose it again?

A. We still think about the teachers we had there and what a good experience it was for our child.

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Tegucigalpa, Honduras 06/23/16

Happy Faces

School Website


Background Information:

1. Are you the parent of a child(ren) attending this school? A teacher at the school? Or both?

Parent.

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2. What grade or grades do/did your children attend at the school? During what year(s) did they attend the school?

Pre-school.

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3. What was your reason for living in the city where the school is located (e.g., government, military, corporate, NGO, retired)?

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4. Are other schools available to expatriates in this city? Why did you choose this particular school?

The school seemed by far better equipped than others and SEEMED to be exceptional academically.

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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?

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2. How would you rate the school's support and welcome/integration of new students and their families, and why?

We never felt integrated as parents, although my son was very happy (initially). At school events, none of the local parents would even speak with us. My child was never invited to Honduran children's birthdays.

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Administration & School Procedures:

1. How is the overall communication between teachers and parents, and the administration and parents? How is communication facilitated?

Communication was good. I felt comfortable walking into the class and asking the teacher questions directly.

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2. Aside from school fees, are there required expenses such as uniforms, laptops/tablets, musical instruments, or field trips that parents are expected to cover? What are the approximate costs?

No. The school was very inexpensive compared with US options.

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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?

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2. Is there before and/or after-school daycare available? What are the costs?

Yes. And it was reasonable.

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3. Does the school have a library? How large is it? How updated are the books? Can students borrow books to read at home?

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4. How are information technology resources at the school. Are they up-to-date? Is there a computer lab?

There is a lab for pre-schoolers, which is impressive.

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5. Describe the physical education resources at the school. Is there a gym? A swimming pool? Are there playing fields or tennis courts available?

No, but there are many outdoor options for exercise including a mini soccer field.

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6. What is the approximate teacher-to-student ratio in the grades that your child attended?

10/1.

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7. 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?

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8. Are students generally challenged appropriately by the curriculum? Please describe any particular strengths or weaknesses in this area. Do you have any thoughts how the curriculum is applied and implemented at this school?

Yes, they are. But, my child was diagnosed as having SIGNIFICANT developmental delays while on home leave in the US that his two teachers (over two years) did not pick up on. I assume it's because although they are very kind and nuturing, they are not always professionally trained.

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9. Is the amount and type of homework generally appropriate for the age and grade of the students?

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10. What fine arts electives are available (music, drama, visual arts)?

Art, tai kwon do, cooking and dance.

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11. Are the teachers at the school required to speak English as a first language--or at least fluently?

Yes, it's bi-lingual.

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12. What services are available for gifted/advanced students at the school? Please describe your experience with these services, if applicable.

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13. What services are available for students with learning disabilities at this school? Please describe your experience with these services, if applicable.

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14. What services are available for students with physical disabilities at this school? Please describe your experience with these services, if applicable.

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15. What services are provided for speakers of English as a second language at this school? Please describe your experience with these services, if applicable.

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16. What extra-curricular activities (including sports) are available at this school? Have your children participated in these activities? What activities do you feel are missing at the school?

See above.

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Social & Emotional Well-Being:

1. Do expatriate students socialize with local students at the school? Are both groups successfully integrated into the school culture?

Integration is limited.

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Overall Impressions:

1. What letter grade (ranging from A, excellent, to F, fail) would you assign to this school based on your overall experience? Would you choose it again?

D. Would not choose it again.



My son's developmental delay was NOT caught, even after two years.



It appears that my son was abused, possibly sexually, at the school. Nothing was done about it. Subsequently, my child was diagnosed with acute trauma from the incident. We still do not know exactly what happened. From what I observed, security is lax at Happy Faces, so anything could have happened. (Last year, a gardener left his machete on the grounds. Some children found it and attempted to us it - accidentally cutting a child in the process.)

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2. Please tell us anything else you think prospective parents and students should know about this school. Thanks for your contribution!

Even though on the surface the school looks and seems exceptional, when you scratch the surface, you see that they are sub-par with US schools and standards.

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Tegucigalpa, Honduras 08/12/15

American School of Tegucigalpa

School Website

http://amschool.org/


Background Information:

1. Are you the parent of a child(ren) attending this school? A teacher at the school? Or both?

Parent

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2. What grade or grades do/did your children attend at the school? During what year(s) did they attend the school?

4, 6, 11

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3. During what years were you affiliated with this school?

2014-2015

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4. What was your reason for living in the city where the school is located (e.g., government, military, corporate, NGO, retired)?

government

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5. Are other schools available to expatriates in this city? Why did you choose this particular school?

Largest and most centrally located of the international schools, appeared to have many after school activities, appeared to have large expat community.

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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?

C

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2. How would you rate the school's support and welcome/integration of new students and their families, and why?

C
They act welcoming, but when problems arise, their attitude is that you are lucky to be attending at AST.

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Administration & School Procedures:

1. Describe the general climate of the grade level that you teach or your child attends:

4th grade student had some issues with bullying
6th grade student had problems with bullying
11th grade student had no problems with bullying, but had problems with sexual harassment. The principal was willing to help deal with the issues.

Outside school, the kids mostly get together and drink. A lot. Even parties that are held during the day revolve around drinking. Parents are fine with this and provide the alcohol. In our experience, students' misbehavior is tolerated with very few consequences.
Re: bullying, the administration did very little, in fact, in some cases they blamed the victim for causing the bullying.

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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:

D
Local families are favored.

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3. How is the overall communication between teachers and parents, and the administration and parents? How is communication facilitated?

D
I have not heard from any teachers at all. They would probably meet with me if I requested.

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4. Aside from school fees, are there required expenses such as uniforms, laptops/tablets, musical instruments, or field trips that parents are expected to cover? What are the approximate costs?

Uniforms have to be purchesed.

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5. Services for gifted students who need academic challenge and students with learning difficulties:

I am not aware of any.

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6. Availability and variety of after-school activities for various ages:

B
For high school level, there are many clubs and activities.

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7. Maintenance of appropriately high standards for all students:

D
misbehavior is tolerated

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8. Homework assigned (quality, quantity):

C
Lots of homework.

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9. Administration-parent communication:

D
They will communicate if I contact them.

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10. Teacher-student communication:

C
Teachers for the most part seem helpful.

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11. 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?

Yes.
To fill the schedule, kids may take a class they have taken before (foreign language, for example, that they have studied before at higher level.)

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12. Does your child receive any special-needs assistance or instruction at this school? If yes, what types? Who provides services and where:

No

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13. Does the school offer a wide variety of elective or non-core classes such as art, music, and drama?

No
There is no drama class or club. There is a band, I am not aware of art program.

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14. Please describe any classes or programs that you believe are missing:

Drama club.

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15. Are there academic requirements such as trips or other activities that cost money in addition to school fees?

I don't know.
Seniors go on a class trip, that is not school sponsored, so they pay out of pocket, as it is mainly an opportunity to party.

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16. Have your children participated in the activities offered? If no, please indicate why:

Yes

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17. Does the school provide appropriate assistance to new students?

In my experience, when a student struggles to fit in (purposely left out, made fun of, even gets beat up, especially in the middle school level) the school does not intervene or provide solutions, although they say that they do.

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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?

F
I am not aware of any.

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2. Does the school have a library? How large is it? How updated are the books? Can students borrow books to read at home?

D
OK library for the region.

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3. How are information technology resources at the school. Are they up-to-date? Is there a computer lab?

F
Not aware of it. Locals seem to be communicated via group texts.

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4. Describe the physical education resources at the school. Is there a gym? A swimming pool? Are there playing fields or tennis courts available?

C
They have PE classes. They have after school sports. Coaches prefer the local students, but expat kids get to play.

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5. What is the approximate teacher-to-student ratio in the grades that your child attended?

1/20+

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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?

A
IB program

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7. Is the amount and type of homework generally appropriate for the age and grade of the students?

Yes

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8. What fine arts electives are available (music, drama, visual arts)?

No art or drama electives that I am aware of. No drama club, for example, no drama productions. They have a band that travels, I haven't heard them play so I don't know how it is.

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9. Are the teachers at the school required to speak English as a first language--or at least fluently?

Yes, except music, art, pe.

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10. What services are available for gifted/advanced students at the school? Please describe your experience with these services, if applicable.

No

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11. What extra-curricular activities (including sports) are available at this school? Have your children participated in these activities? What activities do you feel are missing at the school?

Yes
FBLA, service club, etc.

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Social & Emotional Well-Being:

1. Do expatriate students socialize with local students at the school? Are both groups successfully integrated into the school culture?

High school level, yes. The socializing does, however, involve a lot of drinking.

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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.

Yes, as mentioned above.

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Overall Impressions:

1. What is the greatest strength of this school?

It is a big school, the location is good.

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2. Greatest challenge?

Bullying in elementary and middle school; alcohol use in high school.

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3. Would you choose this school again? Why?

No.
Bullying and alcohol use by the students.

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Tegucigalpa, Honduras 09/07/14

American School

School Website


Background Information:

1. Are you the parent of a child(ren) attending this school? A teacher at the school? Or both?

Parent.

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2. What grade or grades do/did your children attend at the school? During what year(s) did they attend the school?

7th through 9th grades.

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3. During what years were you affiliated with this school?

2010-2014.

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4. What was your reason for living in the city where the school is located (e.g., government, military, corporate, NGO, retired)?

U.S. Government.

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5. Are other schools available to expatriates in this city? Why did you choose this particular school?

Close and used by most of the Mission.

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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?

I believe so.

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Administration & School Procedures:

1. Describe the general climate of the grade level that you teach or your child attends:

Ok but lots of rich children who arrive with their own drivers. Also 9th grade parties get crashed by older kids who bring alcohol. Local parents do nothing about this; some parents or their drivers provide the booze. The school head will not address this or caution/inform parents about this problem.

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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:

Not really, rich locals get cut more slack.

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3. How is the overall communication between teachers and parents, and the administration and parents? How is communication facilitated?

OK.

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4. Services for gifted students who need academic challenge and students with learning difficulties:

AP/IB. Not much for the LD.

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5. Availability and variety of after-school activities for various ages:

A good amount.

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6. Maintenance of appropriately high standards for all students:

More or less.

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7. Homework assigned (quality, quantity):

The usual.

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8. Administration-parent communication:

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9. Does the gifted and talented program meet the needs of students? Please explain:

Yes.

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10. Does the school offer a wide variety of elective or non-core classes such as art, music, and drama?

Yes.

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11. Are there academic requirements such as trips or other activities that cost money in addition to school fees?

No.

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12. Have your children participated in the activities offered? If no, please indicate why:

Yes.

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13. Does the school provide appropriate assistance to new students?

Yes.

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14. Please describe any problem areas or challenges in social interaction at the school:

See above about older boys going to parties with alcohol.

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Academics & Resources:

1. Does the school have a library? How large is it? How updated are the books? Can students borrow books to read at home?

Good.

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2. How are information technology resources at the school. Are they up-to-date? Is there a computer lab?

Very good.

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3. Describe the physical education resources at the school. Is there a gym? A swimming pool? Are there playing fields or tennis courts available?

Good.

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4. 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?

Yes!

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5. Is the amount and type of homework generally appropriate for the age and grade of the students?

Yes.

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6. What fine arts electives are available (music, drama, visual arts)?

A few.

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7. Are the teachers at the school required to speak English as a first language--or at least fluently?

No, which is strange.

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8. What extra-curricular activities (including sports) are available at this school? Have your children participated in these activities? What activities do you feel are missing at the school?

They have a few.

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Social & Emotional Well-Being:

1. Do expatriate students socialize with local students at the school? Are both groups successfully integrated into the school culture?

It depends.

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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.

My son felt excluded but my daughter did not.

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Overall Impressions:

1. What is the greatest strength of this school?

It has money for a good infrastructure.

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2. Would you choose this school again? Why?

Possibly not. I didn't like my child hanging around with rich kids and then expecting the same kind of expensive things and trips.

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Tegucigalpa, Honduras 08/26/13

Discovery School

School Website

http://www.discoveryschool.edu.hn


Background Information:

1. Are you the parent of a child(ren) attending this school? A teacher at the school? Or both?

Parent.

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2. What grade or grades do/did your children attend at the school? During what year(s) did they attend the school?

Nursery - Kindergarten.

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3. During what years were you affiliated with this school?

2011-2014.

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4. What was your reason for living in the city where the school is located (e.g., government, military, corporate, NGO, retired)?

U.S. Government.

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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?

A

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2. How would you rate the school's support and welcome/integration of new students and their families, and why?

A -- Again, Discovery is a very welcoming environment to new students. The high ratio of expat students mean there is a fair amount of turnover each year and so they are used to having new students.

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Administration & School Procedures:

1. Describe the general climate of the grade level that you teach or your child attends:

The Discovery School is a wonderful, warm, truly international school in Tegucigalpa. Class sizes range from 10-14 students and there is a strong focus on arts and academnics. While there are tons of benefits to this smaller school, its size does limit its ability to offer a strong after-school activities program and sports are not an emphasis. There are plenty of fabulous acitivities for kids outside of school, but you have to be able to transport them.

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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 -- Expats comprise of close to 40% of Discovery School as opposed to 1% of the other main schools in Tegucigalpa. There is a strong emphasis on community for both students and parents and so we have really enjoyed friendships with both expat and Honduran families.

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3. How is the overall communication between teachers and parents, and the administration and parents? How is communication facilitated?

A -- This probably depends on the teachers, but I have had 3 and have had good communication with all. The school utilizes blogs to share weekly needs/plans/announcements. My teachers have been easily accessible and responsive by email,phone and text.

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4. Services for gifted students who need academic challenge and students with learning difficulties:

B-- there is no special program for either to my knowledge, but the small class sizes allow for differentiation in the classroom.

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5. Availability and variety of after-school activities for various ages:

C-- As mentioned above, this is an area the school is constantly trying to improve. In 2013, they have outsourced a sports program that meets twice a week and covers skill sets for all sports as opposed to focusing on one sport. This has been very popular with elementary and younger kids.

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6. Maintenance of appropriately high standards for all students:

A -- The school has adopted the common curriculum utilized by most states.

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7. Homework assigned (quality, quantity):

A -- My kids are young but most families seem happy with the appropriateness of this. The school feels strongly that hours of homework is not the answer to educating kids well and parents that I know seem content with the general workload.

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8. Administration-parent communication:

A/B -- I think the school does a decent job and this but there always seems to be places where things could be more organized. I'd venture to say that every American parent feels that way about the schools in Honduras.

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9. Teacher-student communication:

A -- This is very strong.

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10. Are there academic requirements such as trips or other activities that cost money in addition to school fees?

Some field trips, but none that are expensive.

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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?

I have not had a lot of experience with this, but there is a guidance counselor and an active program through her. High school class sizes are small, but all 9 of the graduation Seniors from last year are attending good colleges in the U.S. and Honduras.

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2. Does the school have a library? How large is it? How updated are the books? Can students borrow books to read at home?

A -- Wonderful library for such a small school.

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3. How are information technology resources at the school. Are they up-to-date? Is there a computer lab?

B/C -- The school does have a computer lab and technology classes, but this is an area that could be improved. Classrooms have computers and teachers utilize ipads.

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4. Describe the physical education resources at the school. Is there a gym? A swimming pool? Are there playing fields or tennis courts available?

C-- this is definitely not the school's strength. It does not have the quality of facilities that the other bigger schools have. I believe they do a good job with what they have, but again this is not their strength.

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5. What is the approximate teacher-to-student ratio in the grades that your child attended?

A -- My daughter's kindergarten class has 10 students with one teacher and one assistant. It is wonderful. Especially at the very young ages, I appreciate how the small class sizes allow the teachers to focus on social interaction between the students, fostering kindess, encouragement and forgiving one another.

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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?

B -- There is no IB program, but there are currently 6 AP courses offered.

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7. What fine arts electives are available (music, drama, visual arts)?

A-- Kids have required music and art classes beginning in the nursery classes. Given its size, the school is able to stand out in the arts much easier than in sports. In the summer of 2014, the Discovery School Choir has been invited to perform at Carnegie Hall. Every Spring, there is a red carpet event highlighting the artistic, literary and musical achievements of students.

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8. Are the teachers at the school required to speak English as a first language--or at least fluently?

Yes.

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Social & Emotional Well-Being:

1. Do expatriate students socialize with local students at the school? Are both groups successfully integrated into the school culture?

Yes.

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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.

No.

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Overall Impressions:

1. What is the greatest strength of this school?

The size of the school and its diverse make-up of local and expat kids are what makes this school unique. While the size is a tremendous strength for elementary and younger kids, the small class sizes and lack of variety in extra-curriculars can make the school less interesting for older kids. But the diversity makes it such a welcoming place for new families.

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2. Greatest challenge?

Size can also be its greatest challenge with regard to offering after school activities and sports.

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3. Would you choose this school again? Why?

Absolutely!! I believe that the other schools in Tegucigalpa have greater strengths in terms of facilities and variety of offerings of electives and after-school activities, but Discovery is the easiest environment for expat kids to adjust to and the small class sizes and warm environment are a no-brainer for families with young kids.

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Tegucigalpa, Honduras 08/07/13

Discovery School

School Website

http://www.discoveryschool.edu.hn/


Background Information:

1. Are you the parent of a child(ren) attending this school? A teacher at the school? Or both?

Parent.

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2. What grade or grades do/did your children attend at the school? During what year(s) did they attend the school?

2nd and 3rd.

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3. During what years were you affiliated with this school?

2010-2012.

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4. What was your reason for living in the city where the school is located (e.g., government, military, corporate, NGO, retired)?

U.S. Embassy.

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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?

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2. How would you rate the school's support and welcome/integration of new students and their families, and why?

A. Excellent. We were given a tour of the school, the teacher gave me her personal email address and phone number and went out of her way to introduce me to other parents so that play dates could be arranged.

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Administration & School Procedures:

1. Describe the general climate of the grade level that you teach or your child attends:

We had a terrific experience here. Both the 2nd and 3rd grade teachers were excellent.

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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. We never felt like we were treated unfairly, conversely, we never felt as though we were receiving special treatment.

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3. How is the overall communication between teachers and parents, and the administration and parents? How is communication facilitated?

A. His primary teachers were both excellent at communication, they were there whenever I needed anything.

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4. Services for gifted students who need academic challenge and students with learning difficulties:

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5. Availability and variety of after-school activities for various ages:

B+. There was a long list, more for older kids than younger but certainly had opportunities available.

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6. Maintenance of appropriately high standards for all students:

A. Children were held to very high standards in both my child's classes.

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7. Homework assigned (quality, quantity):

A. Excellent. I don't agree with sending the kids home with too much and my child never had more than 30 minutes per night.

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8. Administration-parent communication:

A. Debra Giles was always available and quick to respond to any concern.

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9. Teacher-student communication:

A. Seemed to be fine, my child never complained.

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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?

I did not find this to be the case.

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11. Does your child receive any special-needs assistance or instruction at this school? If yes, what types? Who provides services and where:

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12. Do you believe the special-needs assistance is appropriate and fills your needs? Explain:

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13. Does the gifted and talented program meet the needs of students? Please explain:

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14. Does the school offer a wide variety of elective or non-core classes such as art, music, and drama?

Not sure. For the lower grades, it's adequate.

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15. Please describe any classes or programs that you believe are missing:

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16. Are there academic requirements such as trips or other activities that cost money in addition to school fees?

Not required but yes, there are many field trips throughout the year and they are at an additional (though nominal) cost.

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17. What activities do you feel are missing?

The school is too small to have teams such as soccer, basketball, etc.

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18. Have your children participated in the activities offered? If no, please indicate why:

Yes.

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19. Does the school provide appropriate assistance to new students?

Yes.

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20. Please describe any problem areas or challenges in social interaction at the school:

Did not see any.

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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?

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2. Does the school have a library? How large is it? How updated are the books? Can students borrow books to read at home?

A. Library is brand new with a large range of material.

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3. How are information technology resources at the school. Are they up-to-date? Is there a computer lab?

B. This was the only weak point for us. While there was a computer class, it did not seem that my child learned much there.

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4. Describe the physical education resources at the school. Is there a gym? A swimming pool? Are there playing fields or tennis courts available?

A. Normal 2nd and 3rd grade PE.

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5. What is the approximate teacher-to-student ratio in the grades that your child attended?

A. Very small. 2nd grade class had 13 and 3rd grade had 19 kids, each with 2 teachers.

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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?

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7. Is the amount and type of homework generally appropriate for the age and grade of the students?

Yes.

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8. What fine arts electives are available (music, drama, visual arts)?

B+. Small school so not much beyond music and art but that wasn't a huge concern for us at that grade level.

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9. Are the teachers at the school required to speak English as a first language--or at least fluently?

YES! One reviewer says no but this is 100% not the case. All the teachers speak English.

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10. What services are available for gifted/advanced students at the school? Please describe your experience with these services, if applicable.

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11. What extra-curricular activities (including sports) are available at this school? Have your children participated in these activities? What activities do you feel are missing at the school?

No.

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Social & Emotional Well-Being:

1. Do expatriate students socialize with local students at the school? Are both groups successfully integrated into the school culture?

We did, but it depends on whether or not their parents are open to it. The local parents we interacted with were friendly and welcoming.

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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.

No.

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Overall Impressions:

1. What is the greatest strength of this school?

Its size and communication with the staff.

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2. Would you choose this school again? Why?

YES.

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Tegucigalpa, Honduras 04/29/13

Discovery School

School Website

http://www.discoveryschool.edu.hn/


Background Information:

1. Are you the parent of a child(ren) attending this school? A teacher at the school? Or both?

Parent.

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2. What grade or grades do/did your children attend at the school? During what year(s) did they attend the school?

Nursery/Pre-K.

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3. During what years were you affiliated with this school?

2011-2012.

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4. What was your reason for living in the city where the school is located (e.g., government, military, corporate, NGO, retired)?

U.S. Embassy.

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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?

Acceptable.

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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.

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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.

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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.

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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.

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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.

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5. Availability and variety of after-school activities for various ages:

Slim to none.

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6. Maintenance of appropriately high standards for all students:

No.

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7. Homework assigned (quality, quantity):

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8. Administration-parent communication:

I communicated numerous times with the current director and was completely unsatisfied.

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9. Teacher-student communication:

Acceptable.

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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?

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11. Does your child receive any special-needs assistance or instruction at this school? If yes, what types? Who provides services and where:

No.

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12. Do you believe the special-needs assistance is appropriate and fills your needs? Explain:

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13. Does the gifted and talented program meet the needs of students? Please explain:

I don't think so.

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14. Does the school offer a wide variety of elective or non-core classes such as art, music, and drama?

Just basic.

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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."

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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?

Poor.

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2. Does the school have a library? How large is it? How updated are the books? Can students borrow books to read at home?

Adequate.

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3. How are information technology resources at the school. Are they up-to-date? Is there a computer lab?

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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.

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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.

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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?

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7. Is the amount and type of homework generally appropriate for the age and grade of the students?

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8. What fine arts electives are available (music, drama, visual arts)?

D - Many of the classes are taught entirely in Spanish.

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9. Are the teachers at the school required to speak English as a first language--or at least fluently?

Nope, not all.

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10. What services are available for gifted/advanced students at the school? Please describe your experience with these services, if applicable.

No.

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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.

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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.

Yes.

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Overall Impressions:

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.

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2. Would you choose this school again? Why?

NO!

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