School Details

Turtle Rock Elementary School

5151 Amalfi Drive, Irvine, CA 92603
(949) 936-6250
10

(out of 10)

Public Grades K-6 831 students 23 students/teacher (CA avg is 21)

Test Scores by grade

92%
82%
56%
92%
84%
65%

California Standards Test (CST)

In 2011-2012 California used the California Standards Tests (CSTs) to test students in English language arts in grades 2 through 11; math in grades 2 through 7; science in grades 5, 8 and 10; and history-social science in grades 8 and 11. Middle and high school students also took subject-specific CSTs in math and science, depending on the course in which they were enrolled. The CSTs are standards-based tests, which means they measure how well students are mastering specific skills defined for each grade by the state of California. The goal is for all students to score at or above proficient on the tests.
  • This school in 2013
  • Irvine Unified School District average
  • California state average

% scale represents number of student who met or exceeded standards

85%
77%
46%
94%
88%
66%

California Standards Test (CST)

In 2011-2012 California used the California Standards Tests (CSTs) to test students in English language arts in grades 2 through 11; math in grades 2 through 7; science in grades 5, 8 and 10; and history-social science in grades 8 and 11. Middle and high school students also took subject-specific CSTs in math and science, depending on the course in which they were enrolled. The CSTs are standards-based tests, which means they measure how well students are mastering specific skills defined for each grade by the state of California. The goal is for all students to score at or above proficient on the tests.
  • This school in 2013
  • Irvine Unified School District average
  • California state average

% scale represents number of student who met or exceeded standards

90%
88%
65%
90%
89%
72%

California Standards Test (CST)

In 2011-2012 California used the California Standards Tests (CSTs) to test students in English language arts in grades 2 through 11; math in grades 2 through 7; science in grades 5, 8 and 10; and history-social science in grades 8 and 11. Middle and high school students also took subject-specific CSTs in math and science, depending on the course in which they were enrolled. The CSTs are standards-based tests, which means they measure how well students are mastering specific skills defined for each grade by the state of California. The goal is for all students to score at or above proficient on the tests.
  • This school in 2013
  • Irvine Unified School District average
  • California state average

% scale represents number of student who met or exceeded standards

92%
86%
60%
94%
87%
65%
93%
88%
57%

California Standards Test (CST)

In 2011-2012 California used the California Standards Tests (CSTs) to test students in English language arts in grades 2 through 11; math in grades 2 through 7; science in grades 5, 8 and 10; and history-social science in grades 8 and 11. Middle and high school students also took subject-specific CSTs in math and science, depending on the course in which they were enrolled. The CSTs are standards-based tests, which means they measure how well students are mastering specific skills defined for each grade by the state of California. The goal is for all students to score at or above proficient on the tests.
  • This school in 2013
  • Irvine Unified School District average
  • California state average

% scale represents number of student who met or exceeded standards

93%
87%
60%
93%
85%
55%

California Standards Test (CST)

In 2011-2012 California used the California Standards Tests (CSTs) to test students in English language arts in grades 2 through 11; math in grades 2 through 7; science in grades 5, 8 and 10; and history-social science in grades 8 and 11. Middle and high school students also took subject-specific CSTs in math and science, depending on the course in which they were enrolled. The CSTs are standards-based tests, which means they measure how well students are mastering specific skills defined for each grade by the state of California. The goal is for all students to score at or above proficient on the tests.
  • This school in 2013
  • Irvine Unified School District average
  • California state average

% scale represents number of student who met or exceeded standards

About this school

Turtle Rock Elementary School is a public middle school in Irvine. The principal of Turtle Rock Elementary School is Karen Catabijan and can be contacted at karencatabijan@iusd.org. 831 children attend Turtle Rock Elementary School and identify as Asian; White, non-Hispanic; and Black, non-Hispanic. 21% of the Turtle Rock Elementary School students are "limited in English proficiency." 13% of the 831 students here have subsidized lunches. The student to teacher ratio at Turtle Rock Elementary School is 23:1. Tarbut V'Torah Community Day School is one of the nearest middle schools.

Extracurricular activities

Arts

  • Band
  • Chorus
  • Computer arts
  • Drawing painting
  • Orchestra
  • Theater drama

Languages Taught

  • Korean

Sports

  • Basketball
  • P.E. classes
  • Soccer

Student Ethnicities

Ethnicity School District
Asian 48% 41%
White, non-Hispanic 28% 38%
Black, non-Hispanic 2% 2%
Unspecified 11% 7%
Multiracial 11% %
Hispanic 11% 8%
Filipino 0.9% 3%
Native American or Native Alaskan 0.2% 0.6%
Asian/Pacific Islander 0.2% %
Pacific Islander 0.2% 0.4%
Native Hawaiian or Other Pacific Islander 0.1% 28104%

Student Subgroups

Subgroup School District
Students eligible for free or reduced-price lunch program 13% 6%
Limited English proficiency 21% 13%

Community ratings & reviews

  • (1 year ago)

    Great school! It is very competetive but kids do well without getting stressed out too much. Teachers do not encourage kids too be too competetive but many parents are uci proffesers and want there kids to do study all night even when they are in 3rd grade. The teachers are some of the best teachers in california most with degrees from schools including UCLA stanford and ivy league schools. The houses are expensive but it is a great neighborhood to be in Turtle Rock broadmoor particularly. I have lived here for 12 years and my kids are in 7th grade and they love the schools here. I hope my review is helpful! -Stephenie Chen

  • (1 year ago)

    Initially our family concern for the twins was finding a school location that was safe and also finding a school that offered the finest public education within the area. From a grandmother's perspective I am first of all very pleased to see the twins enjoying school so much. The teachers seem to be extremely dedicated. I am impressed by the emphasis and reward system related to moral values. With regard to improvement I do see the boy twin struggling with mathmatics and reading though I realize this may relate to his ability to comprehend. Handwriting skills seem to be somewhat lacking certainly when compared to when I went to school in Ohio many years ago. On the other hand I see the twins learning other things in first and second grade that I didn't learn until years later. Overall I believe the twins are receiving an excellent education for which I am very grateful. Thank you.

  • (1 year ago)

    Turtle Rock Elementary is great in terms of parent involvement teacher excellence communication and academics but it has gotten too crowded. 930 kids is too much for this small school. We've been so pleased with the curriculum and the support of the terrific principal and staff but something's got to give with the class sizes. These rooms were not built for 35 children. I do hope something can be done to alleviate this problem because this school truly rocks in every other way.

  • (2 years ago)

    It is our son's second year at TR and we are very happy about the school and more than everything happy to see how our son enjoys going to school . He is not a native speaker and the 2nd grade teacher Miss Kliger has been a fantastic help and he finished the year with many outstanding results and achievements.

  • (2 years ago)

    Turtle Rock is an excellent preparatory school not only academic-wise but also is great at building excellent character. My son just graduated from 6th grade; since he was just a small boy in Kindergarten I saw him mature to the wonderful young man he is today all under the constant care and supervision of his teachers. The school provides a fun-learning environment to help balance out the high academic standards given by the teachers. Every single day my son came home with a big smile on his face and was excited to inform me about that day s exciting adventures and learning experiences in his classes labs the great PE-program and the brilliant music curriculum. His teacher made their courses more interesting with things like PowerPoint Presentations Oral Book Interviews and Current-Events. When I asked him who his favorite teacher was he stated I love all of my teachers . His third grade teacher wrote a touching note to all of her 6th grade graduates. He will never forget the caring principal and loving teachers and will carry the memory with him forever. I am in no doubt that TRE is the first stepping stone of many to a successful career and beyond.

  • (2 years ago)

    My son has been in Turtle Rock for 4 years since kindergarten and he had wonderful learning and growing experience with his teachers and friends at TR. He is eager to go to school everyday and never complaints about stress and competition. The Principal is a passionate educator who is easy to approach with any questions or concerns. My son once asked her if she can go to the final of his city championship baseball game and she indeed showed up. I can tell that she sincerely cares about the education of each individual student. My son s teachers are very kind to students and they are very capable of motivating and inspiring students during the learning process. His 2nd grade teacher is always cheerful and makes parents volunteers feel appreciated. Her design of class activities creates a positive atmosphere that every student is a superstar. I highly appreciate the enthusiasm and energy of TR s teachers staff and parents.

  • (2 years ago)

    Amazing school in a top rated school district. My daughter just completed sixth grade and is totally prepared for middle school and beyond. I can't say enough about the teachers student body and involved parents. TR is a large school but with a very close-knit small school feeling.

  • (2 years ago)

    If you want your child to have a stress-free happy childhood please do he or she a favor -- don't go to this school. If you want your child to be hard working and academically successful this school might be the choice. Kids at this young age are already overly competitive and petty as in those accelerated classes and they do as one reviewer said take a lot of behind school programs. I heard the principal just delivered an excellent speech for the graduation ceremony asking students to "rejoice for other students' accomplishments" "be compassionate" and a few other inspiring points. Frankly I was surprised when someone told me about the speech because this is certainly not the culture of the school I know of. I hope the principal will use her own speech to guide the school from now on. Usually we only hear the bragging about the high CST and API scores during the back-to-school night. My rating for this school is arbitrary reflecting my personal feelings towards the school --everybody including parents is trying very hard to succeed but loses sight of bigger pictures in life -- to be happy and compassionate.

  • (2 years ago)

    We transferred our daughter to Turtle Rock school last fall and were very much satisfied with our decision the moment we got there. The polite and quirky yet cheerful principal immediately welcomed us and gave a thorough walk-through of the fabulous school. Later we met our child's teacher who was warm and sociable and then guided us through the curriculum system which looked like would be a fun educational experience for our daughter. My wife and I absolutely agree that we are fortunate to have our child enrolled in this school fore it is an excellent source for competition education and fun all at once and has a great environment for children. Overall Turtle Rock Elementary is sure to not disappoint you and I hope you decide to let your child join the fun soon!!

  • (2 years ago)

    We transferred our son to TR Elementary last September. We are all very happy with the decision we made! His home room teacher is very kind and warm and keeps him challenged with higher level of work. As a result my son has high sense of accomplishment and is happy with his school. We are very fortunate to have a supportive brilliant cheerful and hard-working Principle at our school. She is always there whenever there s an activity in school greeting everyone with cheerful smiles. Overall TR elementary has the right atmosphere for childern who desire to strive and for parents who are supportive of the school philosophy.

  • (3 years ago)

    Turtle Rock may be an excellent school for children who thrive on competition enjoy filling in worksheets and were tutored extensively before starting kindergarten. Some of the students in lower grades here spell and multiply better than some of the students that entered the classes at the high schools where I taught. Because the teachers have to cover an immense amount of material in kindergarten there is little time for students to learn to print (as opposed to write letters that they could print before starting kindergarten) or reflect upon anything. Consequently the fast-paced regimented style does not suit everyone including my child who is now in kindergarten. For a child to thrive or maybe even survive kindergarten at TR he/she needs to recognize and be able to print all the letters of the alphabet before starting kindergarten here. It also really helps to know how to read BEFORE entering TR's kindergarten!

  • (3 years ago)

    Really formal school that does not care about kids. It gains its popularity when the previous principal was in charge. Currently parents feel deeply unsatisfied with the school. The atmosphere in school is over competitive with lots of unhealthy restrictions. It concentrates not on kindness team work support and respect to academic skills or talents but on grades rumors "popularity". Kids does not learn proper values in their relationships between themselves and between kids and adults.

  • (3 years ago)

    We were very disappointed with this school and principal. There is very stressful atmosphere at school. All kids taking a lot of behind school programs in this "run for grades" race. Children who's parents cannot donate as much as others are ignored. Principal is very aggressive woman and not polite at all. It is very hard to follow on anything with her and she doesn't listen your opinion screams at children make children feel guilty and disrespectful. There is no any challenge for children gate program is just extra work at home. Waist of time and big stress!!!! It was very stressful year and finally we found other school.

  • (4 years ago)

    I am a happy parent with a 4th grade and a 1st grade in this school. I think this school has very highly qualified and genuinely caring teachers. I have never sent my kids to any tutoring program yet my elder daughter goes to APASS in this school. She is just self-driven and the school provides the right challenge for her. I think these teachers encourage kids to excel they also value each individual kid. My younger daughter's first grade teacher found her and a few other kids need to catch up with their reading skills and she voluntarily formed an early morning reading program to teach these kids to read. This class is totally voluntary and the teacher provided her exceptional service and her own time for us for free. My daughter s reading skill has improved a lot so far. My younger daughter likes taking a nap during the lecture time. Her teacher sent us several notes requesting us to put my daughter to sleep before 8pm and she constantly says that it is OK if my daughter can not finisher homework before 8pm. She cares more about my daughter having enough sleep than her homework. I can not express enough appreciation for these diligent and caring teachers.

  • (4 years ago)

    CAUTION ON GOING TO THIS SCHOOL. We moved here from Portland and I wouldn't recommend going to this school. I sat in the school and the class was full of kids overly focused on their grades and highly functional at math and science beyond their years. It's standards are above and beyond an average public school. We came from an outstanding Portland Public Elementary school--Forest Park and this school gives assignments where the 5th graders have to create their own presentation in PowerPoint and deliver it to the class. If your kid likes sports this school doesn't have a balanced peer group for that. According to our teacher most of the kids ' take Kumon play the piano and are not athletic'. We are looking for a different school next year. I am not a Dragon Mom and can't raise a future physicist.

  • (4 years ago)

    I am a parent of a 4th and 5th grader at TR. Many reviews reflect the diversity of PARENTS more than what is going on at the school. Complains that TR does not allow kids to be kids comes from some of the white parents. While complains that the school is not challenging enough comes from the Asian parents. I personally believe that TR gets it just about right for our kids. Yes they have some boring homework that parents complain is "teaching to the test." They also have a large dose of projects many of which they have a choice of topic. My children have given presentations on topics ranging from quantitative-easing to Meg Whitman's nanny-gate issues during the election. DIVERSITY Statistics have very broad categories like "Asian" but you should know there is no one country what dominates the school. Asian includes Chinese Korean Indian and Iranian in nearly equal doses. I am a white parent and I am thrilled that my children go to such an incredibly diverse school with so many caring and competent teachers. You will have a hard time finding a better school if you have bright hard working kids. If your children struggle academically TR may not be the right place for you

  • (4 years ago)

    BE CAREFUL PARENTS - This school targets few kids and pressure their parent to sign them for ESPECIAL EDUCATION PROGRAM just to get some STATE FUNDING. School arrange a nurse to watch your child behavior and make up a false story of your child. School gather few teachers and arrange few meeting. Most of these teacher don't even know you child. These are few techniques school uses to trap your kid for state funding. PARENTS IF YOU BELIEVE YOUR KID IS NORMAL PLEASE DON'T GET TRAPPED INTO THIS ESPECIAL EDUCATION SCHEME.

  • (4 years ago)

    Turtle Rock is an excellent school. We joined the school in Feb 2009 and have found the curriculum to be challenging and stimulating. Most of the staff are dedicated teachers who bring out the best in the students. The principal is friendly and approachable. The parental involvement at this school is huge fostering a great sense of community. We are very pleased with Turtle Rock. Awesome school!

  • (4 years ago)

    Knowing the high API score of this school if parents want kids to have more fun it would be better to send them to other good Irvine schools. Turtle Rock has nice and positive culture that the students can be proud of being part of the school. Teachers are doing a great job reinforcing what they teach in the class by having the students do the homework so that they will retain what they learned in the class. My daughter is in the APAAS class and she has changed very positively. I think this school stays on top because of its positive culture and teachers know how to motivate the students to better themselves. I am very glad to move my child here.

  • (4 years ago)

    I disappointed with this school. The learning process is not on the appropriate level. Teachers care more about score tests than about teaching process. All kids have tutors in other places and have a great skills but there is no any challenge for them in this school.It is just waist of time.

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Overall score

(based on 64 ratings & reviews)

  • Teacher quality
  • Principal leadership
  • Parent involvement

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