Monday, June 2, 2014

Eighth Graders Reflect on BCS Experience

Eighth grade students at Bullis Charter School recently presented their Culmination Projects to a panel of community members and local elected officials who were invited to attend the event held at BCI.  

Students shared highlights from their education at BCS and reflected on past, current, and future goals.  

We are pleased to share this letter that one of the panelists sent to the Santa Clara County Board of Education after her experience listening to the presentations.

May 29, 2014

Dear Santa Clara County Board of Education,

I am a parent of a Bullis 7th grader and I recently spent time one-on-one with four 8th grade students at Bullis Charter School where I experienced their “culmination” presentations. It was simply amazing. I have worked with students of all ages as a volunteer for 15 years and have never seen students with such confidence and self awareness. Several students discussed areas in which they struggled academically. These students  took responsibility for not working diligently as they could in the past. Coming to Bullis each received the support and encouragement they needed to step up and master the subject despite their history. 

As another example, a student who had attended Almond school in Los Altos,  was always middle of  road so she didn’t get much attention from her teachers at Almond, but at Bullis she was encouraged to achieve her “personal best”. Each student spoke about their approach to improving their abilities regardless of having been at the bottom, at the top, or at the middle of their class before coming to Bullis. 

The students also spoke about their future career plans and their desire to make a difference in the world, not just plain ambition but a desire to move through life doing what they felt was important for their career satisfaction. This is something many of us spend years figuring out in our careers. To put some context around this, I have two kids who attended schools in the Los Altos Disctrict: Loyola school (K-6, K-4), Oak school (5-6), Blach intermediate (7-8), so I feel I have some ability to compare Bullis with the district schools. While my children have enjoyed the occasional great teacher what Bullis achieves is consistently top notch and remarkable. 

My son started at Bullis as a 7th grader this fall and I didn’t know what to expect but he still arrives home every day HAPPY to be in school. Challenged and working harder than he ever has, but happy. The atmosphere, true dedication to excellence, focus on the whole child is nothing short of remarkable. There are english learners in my son’s class, but they receive the attention they need. The dedicated teaching staff hold office hours after school, engages in interactive modes of teaching and find ways to help each child. I feel so fortunate to have tried Bullis Charter School. The level of education and focus is the best I have ever experienced after 12 years of classes in Los Altos schools.

While there is a never ending battle for facilities and fair treatment of Bullis school, let us not lose site of the quality of education and quality of citizenship that Bullis is bringing to our kids. That the teaching staff and leadership do this despite the bitter Los Altos School Board environment keeping their dedication and focus on the kids. I am grateful everyday that the charter school has worked hard to exist and provide these outstanding opportunities for our community. I am a long time supporter of public education and attended public school in the San Jose Unified district, public undergraduate school (UC Berkeley), and public graduate school (University of Arizona). 


Dr. Nina Bhatti