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Nina Bjornstal

Melvin G Syre Elementary School10

Shoreline, WA | King County


October 27, 2014

Syre is a wonderful school located in the heart of Richmond Beach. My children attend, and there is not another school in the district I'd rather have them be at. The staff is dedicated and caring towards not only the students, but to their colleagues. Expectations and clear consequences are frequently articulated to students. Staff retention is extremely high - many have been at the school for well over 10 years. The school family is like no other - parents, teachers and students truly feel a sense of connection and togetherness, with the primary focus of all involved being that of what's best for the children, and working together towards a common goal. I feel so fortunate to be part of such an amazing school community!

Submitted by a parent

August 31, 2014

Sadly, we as teachers are told by admin to basically teach to the test at Syre. Although we do well on standardized tests, by and large, the kids who attend Syre are missing out on what it means to truly have a passion for learning and education. Pressure to do well on tests is high, teacher burn-out is high, bullying is high, kids are bored. There are other schools in the area with lower overall scores, but the teachers and students are fired up about learning and they have it right! Syre is disappointing on many levels from the inside out, but if you want your so-called "10" school ( where we basically tell them how to answer to get those high scores) you'll do fine here.

Submitted by a teacher

October 18, 2013

Syre is a wonderful school because of the great staff, the highly involved families, and the dedicated PTA. Without the tremendous support of all the parents who volunteer their time to not only help teachers & students in the classroom, but those that volunteer hours and hours of time to help RAISE FUNDS FOR WONDERFUL PROGRAMS THAT ALL STUDENTS BENEFIT FROM - Syre would not be the great school it is today. The ancillary staff is warm, friendly and welcoming, making for a very pleasant environment when visiting the school. Our new principal has brought positive energy, motivation, and enthusiasm that were previously lacking in prior administrators. Syre is one of the best schools around - but if you don't have a sincere appreciation & sense of gratitude for the wonderful community of teachers and staff, and all of the parents who are there to help YOUR students - then this may not be the school for you!

Submitted by a parent

October 18, 2013

There is a clear advantage for children of parents who are heavily involved. The preferred "class" of children get the teachers their parents want making it extremely unfair. Also younger siblings often are "grandfathered in" with the same teachers as their older siblings. The PTA clearly runs the school with the large amount of funds they raise to help the school. This might appeal to some families. For us - no way!

Submitted by a parent

March 29, 2011

This is a good school. my only contention is that there is a clear advantage for the kids whose parents are highly involved, and this seems a little unfair to me as a parent. If you want your child to excel academically and socially be prepared to be a super volunteer. another small complaint is that there are a fair amount of teachers whose kids are also students, and this just increases the tight-knit community. but the quality of the education is very good and there are some outstanding teachers.

Submitted by a parent

April 27, 2010

With our child in second grade, I feel my review can finally be of some use to others. So far, we have had extraordinary teachers who are so dedicated that it is an inspiration. The classroom order is tremendous, and the students are motivated to work for themselves, their peers and the teacher in a very healthy way. As noted, parent involvement is very high, which creates great group cohesion. I am looking forward to the rest of our school experience as a part of a community that wants all kids to do well.

Submitted by a parent

September 16, 2009

I went there for three years as a child, and loved it there. And now my son gets to go. :D I love how they really work with the children there.

Submitted by a parent

December 15, 2008

This has proven to be a pretty decent school. Teachers are good and the parents are very, very involved. Regarding a previous post: There is a new principal now, and he is very hands-on and focused on the kids.

Submitted by a parent

June 13, 2005

Beginning in Kindergarten, children are instructed in computer skills, music and P.E. weekly. These classes are taught by specialists in the field. In the primary grades the children learn how to put together a PowerPoint presentation and later work on laptops. This is a wonderful school in a close-knit community of two-parent homes. Most families have one parent at home at least part time. Parent voluntarism at the school is almost to the point of ridiculous! I'm a former teacher and the amount of parent hovering and involvement would have driven me crazy as a teacher. However, it makes for a stable group of kids, for the most part. The school hosts a district program for severely emotionally disturbed children on campus, called the Brite Program. These kids are mainstreamed in classrooms and on the playground, with additional supervision.

Submitted by a parent

April 6, 2005

Great school, especially for primary elementary education. Very strong in reading. Community support is huge here. PTA is very strong, lots of volunteers. Principal tends to side with staff instead of parents.

Submitted by a parent

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