National Teachers Academy (NTA) - CPS South of 18th

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South Loop Mom South Loop Mom
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National Teachers Academy (NTA) - CPS South of 18th

What are Sloop neighbors' impressions of NTA, the Chicago Public School K-8 that is zoned south of 18th? It is the large building surrounded by fields on Cermak & State.
Southloopguy Southloopguy
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Re: National Teachers Academy (NTA) - CPS South of 18th

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South Loop Mom South Loop Mom
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Re: National Teachers Academy (NTA) - CPS South of 18th

@Southloopguy: Why.... Have you toured? Do you know families that send their kids to NTA? Thx.

On Apr 6, 2014, at 2:52 PM, "Southloopguy [via The Sloopin Message Board]" <[hidden email]> wrote:

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cmc cmc
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In reply to this post by South Loop Mom
I don't know anyone that sends their kids there as I'm in the zone for the South Loop school.  

Did you look up the school on greatschools?  Here's the link:
http://www.greatschools.org/illinois/chicago/5995-National-Teachers-Elementary-Academy/

The test scores and greatschools score are not very impressive.  However the parent reviews are mostly good.  

If you are looking at schools I know a lot of happy parents at Old St. Mary's and a few at Daystar.  FXW is another popular choice.  All religious schools though.
FarSouthLoop FarSouthLoop
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Re: National Teachers Academy (NTA) - CPS South of 18th

In reply to this post by South Loop Mom
South Loop Elementary is phasing out their Regional Gifted Center program and National Teachers is phasing it in.  As it stands for 2014-15 South Loop will have the gifted students for grades 4-8 and NTA K-3.  In 5 years South Loop will be only a neighborhood school and NTA will be both a neighborhood and RGC.  Look for NTA's status to continue to improve as the higher level students boost the schools documented performance but as it is with any school the overall success of will depend on involved parents.  South Loop had the same issue in the beginning and it took many families in the neighborhood to hold hands, jump in and support the school and each other.
FarSouthLoop FarSouthLoop
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Re: National Teachers Academy (NTA) - CPS South of 18th

thanks for the link cmc, here's a cut and paste of the first 3 reviews on great schools and makes the same point that I did...


Posted yesterday

Our child is in the Regional Gifted Center at NTA. We were reluctant to accept the spot given the school's test scores and somewhat unknown reputation. As we near the end of the school year, we are happy with the NTA Community and plan to send our younger kids to the neighborhood program. Highlights: - Strong core group of active parents in the Parent Advisory Committee. The PAC is proactive and meets regularly. - Positive, responsive leadership. Teachers seem to like the Principal and VP. - Dedicated, hard-working teachers & good student:teacher ratio - Orderly and disciplined environment, but very welcoming - On the cutting edge of technology learning - Beautiful facilities - Good separation of older/younger kids - Extras for all kids: swimming, art, music, PE, Technology, and Spanish - Organized, meaningful field trips (Children's Museum, Cultural Center, a play, etc) - Parents welcome in the classroom - Not overcrowded It is a very solid school with great potential in both the RGC and neighborhood programs. Take a tour.
—Submitted by a parent


Posted March 22, 2014

My child is in the gifted program, Kindergarten. We could not be happier with her teacher and the staff at this school. Caring staff, Principal who listens, holds himself accountable and wants to build the school to something great. Homework is appropriate for age, the kids are challenged and have fun. Nice parents at the school, parent participation could be increased and I hope it does increase. Clean environment, children's work displayed so that they can be proud of what they're doing. Differentiation for kids in classrooms!
—Submitted by a parent

Posted November 9, 2013

My child is in the gifted program, 1st grade, and so far so good! The curriculum is challenging and I like my child teacher. I also love the principal because he is approachable. Plenty of activities, and a swimming pool for the kids to use. I can say without questions, that my daughter will be here until graduation fron the 8th grade.
—Submitted by a parent
South Loop Mom South Loop Mom
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Re: National Teachers Academy (NTA) - CPS South of 18th

Thanks for posting cmc and Far South Loop. I am OP and do have a child at NTA - I posted on Great Schools too. We are really happy with NTA but none of our friends/neighbors send their kids there. None have toured either. I agree with a PP that it is the next South Loop Elementary, but thankfully the NTA facilities are poised to absorb the growth. If you are South of 18th, I recommend you call for a tour. I am 100% Type A and discerning - I truly think this is a good, safe school. Post if you have any questions about NTA - happy to answer.
KAEMMH KAEMMH
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Re: National Teachers Academy (NTA) - CPS South of 18th

In reply to this post by South Loop Mom
I'm linking you to a current parent at NTA
Brian Brian
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Re: National Teachers Academy (NTA) - CPS South of 18th

In reply to this post by cmc
My oldest will be starting K in the gifted program at NTA in the fall.  I've toured the school 3 times and think the facility compares favorably in regards to CPS.  It's pretty hard for me to be completely objective as I went to public school in a different state and in a suburban area where the communities spent far more than they should have on school facilities - yet didn't get any value for that money spent as far as student outcomes were concerned.

I think that the low test scores at NTA are mostly due to participation in the CPS options lottery - the neighborhood cannot provide enough students and they have to get them somewhere...  The kids are learning well in the classrooms (as they do across the entire city) but they regress so much over the summer that they can't keep up.  It's a lack of participation or access to summer programs that we wealthier parents take for granted.  However, some members of PDNA have been trying to get CPS to merge South Loop and NTA districts into a single dual-campus school.  South Loop is so incredibly overcrowded that it is hard to believe this hasn't happened yet.  With the city now going ahead with the Wells-Wentworth Connector and all of the residential development that this will open up it is difficult to imagine a scenario that doesn't see NTA filled with local students within 5-7 years.  At that point you are going to see test scores on par with South Loop - in other words, very high.
Steven Steven
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Re: National Teachers Academy (NTA) - CPS South of 18th

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South Loop Mom South Loop Mom
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Re: National Teachers Academy (NTA) - CPS South of 18th

Steven - odd response. Many public schools are great and provide wonderful educational opportunities. Of course Catholic schools can be excellent as well. However, if you are sad about kids going to public near old projects, maybe you could start a fund to give a scholarship to a child in need to attend the same Catholic schools your kids attended K-College? I'm sure you would have a wonderful impact on a family and it would be very welcome.
solo2003 solo2003
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Re: National Teachers Academy (NTA) - CPS South of 18th

In reply to this post by South Loop Mom
The school is a total disaster.  The principal is clueless.  They are eliminating the music program next year.

Students in the upper grades routinely come to school high.  Fights regularly break out on the 4th floor.  Many of the teachers at the school don't even feel safe coming to work.  Most of this is a result of the students that are bused in from the upper grades, and the total lack of administrative control.  There is a reason this is an AUSL turn-around school.  Unfortunately, AUSL is as much of the problem as anything else.

You couldn't pay me any amount to send my kid there.
rememberthebreath rememberthebreath
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Re: National Teachers Academy (NTA) - CPS South of 18th

In reply to this post by Steven
Steven, what public housing are you referring to? The Ickes Homes were closed in 2010.  And Catholic schools don't necessarily mean better education. Michigan State did some research on this very topic.

"A national study led by a Michigan State University economist suggests Catholic schools are not superior to public schools after all.
Math scores for Catholic students dropped between kindergarten and eighth grade, while math scores for public school students increased slightly. In addition, Catholic students saw no significant increase in reading scores or better behavioral outcomes between kindergarten and eighth grade.

“Across many outcomes, both academic and behavioral, we don’t find anything that seems to point to a real benefit of Catholic schools over public schools,” said Todd Elder, MSU associate professor of economics."
- See more at: http://msutoday.msu.edu/news/2013/study-catholic-schools-not-superior-to-public-schools/#sthash.XR175O9L.dpuf
solo2003 solo2003
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Re: National Teachers Academy (NTA) - CPS South of 18th

In reply to this post by South Loop Mom
I'd agree with Southloopguy.  I know a few teachers at the school personally.  If you ever tour there, you'll notice that they keep you away from the upper grade students.  The administration there is a complete $hit-show.  Principal lacks a spine.  AUSL administration is the puppet master.