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MetWest High School (Oakland, CA)

Berkeley Parents Network > Reviews > K-12 Schools > Oakland Public Schools > MetWest High School (Oakland, CA)



Nov 2013

Anyone have any experience with MetWest High School in Oakland? My son met a teacher, and now wants to transfer there for his senior year... Rachel


Dear Parent Interested in MetWest: The Big Picture Learning model, of which MetWest is an example, provides a terrific and very unique experience for kids who want a student-centered education. I am part of a community group trying to start a Big Picture School on the other side of the Bay (Menlo Park/Redwood City), the Sequoia Big Picture HS. I have visited MetWest and know that it is a shining example of what Big Picture Learning offers. These schools feature student-based learning with teacher-advisers, and twice-weekly mentored internships in the local community. BPL schools like MetWest work best for students who have an interest area or passion, and want to explore their interests (LTI - Learning Through Interest)in a supportive environment with project-based learning and authentic assessment. I would be glad to talk with you about MetWest! (I am a parent educator and education consultant) Charlene
Feb 2013

Re: Junior is failing at Berkeley High
We have an ADHD son who attends MetWest High School in Oakland. It is an Oakland public school but very different from any other Oakland school. It's mantra is ''real world learning.'' All students work at an internship of their choosing every Tuesday and Thursday. They attend school on M-W-Fri. It is a very small school - 2 classes per grade, each class no more than 20 students. Enlish and social studies are taught as an integrated block by an Advisor. The Advisor knows every kid and stays on top of each and every one of them. The Advisor stays with the same group of kids for two years. Reading and writing demands are heavy and were very worrisome to us because writing was our son's greatest weaknesses. He does have a private tutor who along with his motivation to be at this school - because he loves his internship - has greatly helped him develop as a writer. Each quarter, each student must demonstrate their learning through an exhibition, which is an oral presentation accompanied by some type of visual presentation, based on very specific guidelines. Parents are required to attend 2 of the 4 exhibitions each year. The next exhibitions are the week of March 4 - 8. You would be welcome to attend if you made arrangements in advance. They do have space for and are looking for more juniors. A number of kids left last year due to a very bad teacher, who is no longer there. The school is very much a college prep program and teaches the kids a lot about how to apply to college and for financial aid. The school's phone number is 510 451 5902. Check out these links: http://abclocal.go.com/kgo/story?section=news/education&id=7475688 OR http://thechoice.blogs.nytimes.com/2010/06/23/met-west/ OR http://oaklandlocal.com/article/oaklands-midwest-high-school-students-learn-through-internships Write back if you want more info and we can arrange to talk. momofjesse


May 2010

My daughter who struggles with ADD is having a very difficult time at Oakland School of the Arts and would have hard time in any regular high school. She would be much happier in Vocational training with a vet's office combined with individual tutoring. Hope to hear from anyone who has had experience with creating own independent home study combined with vocational training/mentoring? Any district and especially BUSD. Thanks! welcome any advice


You might look at MetWest High School. It combines high school with internships in a student's area of interest. My son didn't go there but I looked at it and was impressed. It's not a charter school. http://www.metwest.org anon
You might look into MetWest High School, it is an independent high school that is part of the OUSD. It is located on 10th street across the street from Laney College. At MetWest, students have internships that they go to every Tuesday and Thursday afternoon. They have relationships with places like Berkeley Humane Society, Children's Hospital and other nonprofits; I think if a student had a specific place to work in mind they could create a program.

Each student has to do a project that is related to their internship. There are academic classes as well, but much smaller than at a conventional high school -- for example, geometry was a ''big'' class with 24 students -- the whole school only has about 150 students. Much of the students' time is spent in an advisory group in which they study humanities and also work on their internship projects. Their advisor is their teacher, counselor, internship liaison, and at times, nanny and enforcer. The staff is amazing, so dedicated and resourceful, and they really walk the walk about getting students to follow through and be responsible. Our daughter has ADHD and she still struggles, but it is like night and day to last year when she was in a downward spiral at a conventional high school and we couldn't get anyone to pay attention. And even when they did, no one seemed to know what to do about it. MetWest Mom


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