Chapel Hill Public Schools - recs, and green programs? - Mothering Forums

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Old 02-10-2012, 06:16 AM - Thread Starter
 
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We are moving to CH area and would love to put our daughter in the Waldorf school... But if for financial reasons we end up at a public school (which I hear are fantastic) can anyone recommend or discuss the elementary schools that may be doing some more green/outdoor programming etc.? There's a lot of that going on in our area, so I was hoping it was the same down there. I can look at test results and ratings all day, but I'd to hear from parents about their experiences before we decide what neighborhoods to focus on. Are the schools in the Waldorf school neighborhood any good??

Thank you!

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Old 02-12-2012, 03:06 PM
 
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There are two local public school systems in the Emerson Waldorf School area; Chapel Hill-Carrboro City Schools and Orange County Schools.I don't know many specifics about the public schools, but I can say that it does exist in some schools. Central Elementary in Hillsborough (Orange) has a gardening program that is the PE teacher's pet project (his wife has a Waldorf-inspired home preschool also in Hillsborough). Depending on where you move exactly, Durham County or Chatham County schools might also be in your area. The Triangle area of NC is kind of ... smushed together, for lack of a better term, so you might find something.

 

Also, there are charter schools in the area, such as Central Park School for Children, that I'm pretty sure incorporate programs like that.

 

PS: We are at EWS and LOVE it! They're awesome when it comes to financial aid and working with any problems you encounter seeking aid.


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Old 02-13-2012, 08:50 AM - Thread Starter
 
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Very helpful, thank you WednesdayO! 

We will definitely aim for EWS ... it looks amazing. But it's good to have a "vague" understanding of the school districts down there in case we just can't make it work. I guess I need to find some school district maps to figure it out. 

I see your location is Morrisville .. what's your commute to the school?!

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Old 02-13-2012, 04:45 PM
 
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We are in the area of Morrisville at Research Triangle Park (RTP) that's actually in Durham County instead of Wake County where most of Morrisville lies. We usually take the highway, and it's only about 20 minutes at regular speed (i.e. about 5mph over speed limit). It's less than our drive was to the Waldorf home nursery for DD's kindergarten year and the Waldorf-inspired home preschool the year before that!


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Old 02-17-2012, 08:28 AM - Thread Starter
 
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Ah ...  not bad :) 

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Old 02-25-2012, 10:44 AM
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by GreenRose View Post

We are moving to CH area and would love to put our daughter in the Waldorf school... But if for financial reasons we end up at a public school (which I hear are fantastic) can anyone recommend or discuss the elementary schools that may be doing some more green/outdoor programming etc.? There's a lot of that going on in our area, so I was hoping it was the same down there. I can look at test results and ratings all day, but I'd to hear from parents about their experiences before we decide what neighborhoods to focus on. Are the schools in the Waldorf school neighborhood any good??

Thank you!


Hi GreenRose,

 

We're new to the Chapel Hill Carrboro Public Schools this year, but not new to the area. Our kids were in a "green" crunchy private school (not Waldorf) prior to this year just because our older dd has some anxiety issues and we felt like a smaller environment would be better for her. 

 

I'm not sure exactly what you mean by "green/outdoor" programming and I'm not sure how old your daughter is. Our dd1 is in 5th grade this year and while the public school does not offer as much outdoor time as the private school did they do have a garden and have incubated eggs and have chickens at school, so I was pleasantly surprised with that. They have recess outside unless it's raining or severe weather. My 2nd grader was telling me they planted seeds (in the classroom, I think)—kale and broccoli. 

 

They are building a new elementary school to open in 2013, so the districts will change soon. I know at least one of the other ones our neighborhood used to be districted for has a nice garden, too. Our neighborhood is equidistant between 3 elementary schools so we float between them and we'll be very close to the new school, too. The current district maps are at: http://www2.chccs.k12.nc.us/education/components/docmgr/default.php?sectiondetailid=50676 , but that will change. We just got email from the school system about the redistricting and the Dual Language programs. It said redistricting will begin next Sept and more info on recommendations for the Dual Language programs will be forthcoming in March or April. I think they do a pretty good job of keeping the district website up to date so I'd keep an eye on that. 

 

If your child is older there's a nice charter middle/high school northwest of town (in another county) that has an emphasis on the environment and art. 

 

If you have preschool-aged kids there is a nice Forest Kindergarten (& preschool) in the area, too. 

 

There are also other private schools in the area with outdoor education programs. 

 


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Old 02-25-2012, 05:28 PM
 
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My kids are in the Chapel Hill school district on the eastern side of the county. They're in 1st grade and Pre-K. The school programming isn't particularly green but they do spend a lot of time outside and the building has some sort of green designation. LEED, maybe? I much prefer the Chapel Hill-Carrboro school district to Orange County Schools in the northern part of the county.

 

Beanma, do you have any thoughts about the dual language program at your kids' school? I've been thinking about it for my youngest. It wouldn't be a good fit for my older child, but might be for my DD.

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Old 02-25-2012, 07:32 PM
 
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Polliwog, my kids are traditional rather than dual language since we didn't get in there in K. I wouldn't have had my dd1 in dual language anyway with her anxiety issues, but I do think it seems to be a good program. The traditional and dual language programs are fairly separate. My kids say they only see the dual language kids in their grades at lunch and recess. They have been talking about making the whole school dual language since the programs are so separate and it's like two schools in one, but have tabled that idea until the new elementary school is built and the district has explored all options, I guess. Did you get that email? I think it mentioned something about the idea of magnets being explored which is the first I've heard of that, but I'm not heavily involved in the discussions. Overall I haven't heard a lot of complaints about the dual language program, but it's kind of separate for parents, too. I haven't been very active with the PTA or anything this year so I don't see the dual language parents very much to hear any complaints they might have. I do have friends with a K boy in dual language and they seem happy enough.


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Old 02-26-2012, 10:04 AM
 
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Thanks. I don't think I'd like the "school within a school" concept but I can't see much of a way around it unless the whole school was DL. I didn't get the e-mail but I did some reading on the district website. My DD isn't even eligible since Spanish isn't offered at our home school. Only Chinese is open to all children in the district.

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Old 02-26-2012, 10:57 AM
 
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Polliwog, I'll PM you the email. It really basically says what I paraphrased above, but they did mention magnets, so if they went that route your dd would be eligible then I guess. How old is she?

 

Wanted to add that I actually do like the two schools in one concept. It works for my dd1 since it gives her a smaller environment w/in a larger one, yet overall the whole school and even the traditional language classes are larger than the private school (which I like at this point since she's not around the same 5 girls all the time and has a chance to make new friends).


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Old 02-27-2012, 09:44 AM
 
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Here's a link to the CHCCS Sustainability Committee page.  If you select "Achievements" on the menu on the left, you can see some of the things going on at individual schools.  

 

http://www2.chccs.k12.nc.us/education/dept/dept.php?sectionid=7879

 

My oldest is only in K, so we haven't had a whole lot of time to figure out everything that's going on. So far we've been really pleased with the school though.  

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