Our superintendent has changed recently (it's now 2014). I have seen great kids and some great kindnesses done at MW middle and high schools. The drama department is excellent, the arts are excellent, the counselors are responsive when child is air-headed and forgets when things are supposed to be done for their future college education. This school is small -- intimate. Yes, people know what's going on in the community. Parents with greater involvement in their children's education and school activities are more warmly received. Antidote? Get more involved. Your children will receive YOU more warmly too. Excellent, passionate teachers, willing to go out of their way to help your child succeed. But not if they're screwing around until the last minute, I'll guess. My children have thrived here, even if it's not some imagined Nirvana. Sports teams are inclusive. Intimate schools mean everybody can participate in something or in everything. Yes, awkward kids can bloom because they're given a chance. Chubby kids can lose weight on the swim team and on the soccer team. Nerdy kids blossom on the stage. And they don't have to be wealthy to participate in everything, because this is an inclusive, warmhearted school. Knock it if you will, but my husband is also a graduate and we chose to raise our children here, because Whitman Wildcats Rock!
- Posted by Parent, 03/14/14
This is an absolutely horrible school for many reasons and until the administration and school board change I would not recommend sending children to this school if a parent wants at least a fair and balanced education for their child.
The superintendent of this school makes arbitrary decisions regarding teacher tenure, and is biased. I have seen 4 good teachers in the last 2 years denied tenure for made up reasons, even though their observations an performance reviews from the principal were exceptional. These particular teachers also have degrees from exceptional colleges. It is obvious that mediocrity among staff is rewarded and excellence is punished with unfair employment practices. The admninistration plays favorites and the staff is well aware that to survive the tenure process you need to follow a set of unwritten rules. These practices give power to the administration and have taken away the power from teachers to deliver good education.
The Marcus Whitman school board is ineffective as well and the children of board members are given preferential treatment, even if severe disciplinary action should be taken because of major school and moral code violations.
Student rights are not protected as they should be. Recently, an alleged abusive father was given copy of an anonymous confidential report to Child Protective Services by the superintendent. The father was made aware of the teacher's name who filed the report and the allegations made against him because the superintendent handed a copy of what the student reported to the teacher, to the father before Child Protective Services had the opportunity to investigate. The alleged abuser was able to discredit his child's allegations. This is unbelievable! It is not within a superintendent's pervue to take matters into their own hands like this! A student has rights to confidentiality and protection from abuse. There are processes in place to follow when abuse is reported, for the superintendent to act in such a way violates a student's civil rights. Why would anyone in a position of power to protect students give preferential treatment to a child abuser? The superintendent and the alleged abuser are close friends and this is known throughout the community.
- Posted by Teacher, 03/30/10
Poor teacher communications. Had a foster child here needing a watchful eye, she was allowed to roam halls and not do what she was supposed to. My own child was allowed to do community service at her friend’s grandparent’s house instead of a charitable place. Most teachers did not reply as requested to my wife’s email to guide the foster child. Also when a vote happens, teacher know it, and they may publicize it minimally, if your not paying close attention you will not know it, therefore the teacher votes weight very heavy on results. Very political school. Teacher behavior is sub-standard!
- Posted by Parent, 01/28/10
This school has some good teachers and faculty. But most do not communicate well and play favorites. Some great kids go here but too many are allowed to slip between the cracks. Parental involvement is very frustrating if your not "buddies" with the teachers or faculty. Most of the rest of the state prepare students for they're SAT's this school leaves it up to the student. Ive seen smart kids take the SAT three or more times just to pass it.
- Posted by Parent, 01/28/10