STAR Education

  www.starinc.org
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STAR Education Reviews

Updated Jun 26, 2014
All Employees Current Employees Only

2.6 16 reviews

20% Approve of the CEO

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Katya Bozzi

(5 ratings)

50% of employees recommend this company to a friend
16 Employee Reviews
Relevance Date Rating
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    • Culture & Values
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Comp & Benefits
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    1 person found this helpful  

    The kids are what make you stick around... Despite working few hours for little pay

    Anonymous Employee (Current Employee)

    ProsBeing given the opportunity to teach standards based material that is focused on fun. Classroom instruction is run formally, but you also get the chance to play and enjoy lots of much needed recreation with the kids. This job provides great experience if you are working towards becoming a certified teacher. The satisfaction you get from this job will come solely from the relationships you build with the children and families.

    ConsThis is not a job to keep long term. No possibility of a raise or increased hours. You are expected to write curriculum that often requires time outside of the work day; they say that you need to do curriculum on site but then don't provide the time to do it. Sites are often understaffed, causing stress and strain on the available staff. They hire mostly high school graduates / college students and it shows. Much of the staff lack common sense and/or simply don't care enough about the job, leaving most the work to those who do.

    Advice to Senior ManagementReward employees that are responsible and trustworthy with raises or bring back the head teacher position.

    No, I would not recommend this company to a friend – I'm optimistic about the outlook for this company

    • Culture & Values
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    • Senior Management
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    • Career Opportunities
    • Disapproves of CEO

    1 person found this helpful  

    Employee Retention and Happiness is not a Concern.

    Anonymous Employee (Current Employee)

    ProsBeing part of a large team that works hard to provide incredible learning opportunities for children. Teachers truly enjoy the teaching experience, are good at what they do, are fun to be around and work with. Events are fun, over-the-top, and are miraculously pulled together last minute. Programming is excellent and the forefront of the organization's mission. Everyone works very hard at their own projects, and swoops in to assist others as needed.

    ConsExecutive management is not truly interested in holding accountability, otherwise more structure would be in place. They claim to want to oversee everything, but don't pay attention when you try to consult with them. Money is mismanaged, its difficult to tell where funding goes once it comes in. The large events are never approached early enough, and outcomes are unknown until days beforehand. Fundraising is not a true concern, which is mind-boggling for a non-profit. In fact, "Development" as a department is not respected or trusted by the executive level, who is rapt with paranoia about letting others do their job. HR as a department is nearly non-existent, as there is ZERO confidentiality when discussing issues and no consistent method of handling situations. The CEO often accuses people randomly of stealing or child abuse before listening to details or talking to the people who might be involved. The employees who have stayed the longest are comfortable in positions that exhaust them and are treated to and spoken to as subordinates. Although job descriptions and responsibilities change frequently amongst employees, there is ZERO opportunity for real advancement... and as was recently announced "NO RAISES FOR ANYONE."

    Advice to Senior ManagementA complete overhaul of management procedures is desperately needed. Get therapy for Founders Syndrome.

    No, I would not recommend this company to a friend – I'm not optimistic about the outlook for this company

    • No Opinion of CEO

     

    Great mission, not so great upper management

    Anonymous Employee (Current Employee)

    ProsThe company spans most of southern California, so it makes a huge impact. The programs are well thought out, and the children are the main priority. Unique and passionate instructors and lessons, and its clear that everyone here is good at, and cares about their job.

    ConsEmployees are under-compensated, and under-stimulated, and often stressed out. Upper-management seems paranoid.

    Yes, I would recommend this company to a friend

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    • Culture & Values
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    • Disapproves of CEO

    2 people found this helpful  

    Really care about the Kids but serious mismanagement of company and poor compensation.

    Anonymous Employee (Current Employee) Culver City, CA (US)

    ProsThe people that you work with on a regular basis are extraordinary. Very flexible schedule and the company is All About the Kids.

    ConsThe upper management of this company is atrocious and is driving it into the ground. The CEO pays her two children for doing negligible work and distracting current employees. Many days they don't come in, when they do you wish they didn't. "No longer offering raises to any employees". There is very little room for upward movement in the company and once attained is extremely stressful. The accounting department has a couple bright spots but overall is overbearing and incompetent at their jobs. The people that run the company really have no idea how many of the employees feel about the environment or the amount of work that people actually do on a daily basis. Most people feel under appreciated and overworked.

    Advice to Senior ManagementNeed to completely change upper management and restructure power scheme within the company. CEO and family need to go.

    No, I would not recommend this company to a friend – I'm not optimistic about the outlook for this company

    • Culture & Values
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    • Senior Management
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    • Disapproves of CEO

    1 person found this helpful  

    Star education is an a nonprofit ran like a dictatorship

    Teach/Administrative (Current Employee) Culver City, CA (US)

    Proshelping children and a part time schedule

    ConsDo not receive raises and there isn't any real upward mobility. The CEO and CFO are every insulting when talking to staff. Not to mention the classroom management trainer is very rude and treats us all like children. The CFO and CEO want more and more from staff without any incentive. While the CEO's son and daughter make $100,000 and year and they barely doanything. Most people leave with in the 1st 2 years of work because of the unfair practices.

    Advice to Senior ManagementFigure out a way to treat your staff with respect and give raises.

    Yes, I would recommend this company to a friend

    • Culture & Values
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
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    • Career Opportunities
    • Disapproves of CEO

    2 people found this helpful  

    Disorganized and inefficient

    Anonymous Employee (Current Employee)

    ProsGreat people at this organization. Many people who are willing to sacrifice their time/energy to the enrichment of students. Lots of great students and kids, making the job bearable.

    ConsDisorganized, poorly managed, nepotism, does not reward employees, low pay, poor accounting practices, no room for advancement. The list of cons continues, but turnover is a great indicator of employee satisfaction.

    Advice to Senior ManagementClean house! Company needs a new Accounting Department, and to put the emphasis back on the students. Hire professionals who understand the product / service they're selling. Put egos aside to address actual student concerns.

    No, I would not recommend this company to a friend – I'm not optimistic about the outlook for this company

    • Culture & Values
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    • Senior Management
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    • Approves of CEO

     

    Wonderful and enriching work, inconsistent leadership

    Anonymous Employee (Former Employee)

    ProsEnriching work and work environment, great programs that reach a lot of kids especially in under served communities, great staff, fun work

    ConsInconsistent leadership and unorganized events

    Advice to Senior ManagementPlan events farther in advance to save money and be more organized, cause less stress

    Yes, I would recommend this company to a friend

    • Culture & Values
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    • Senior Management
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    • Career Opportunities
    • Approves of CEO

     

    STAR is all about the kids!

    Administration (Current Employee) Culver City, CA (US)

    ProsSTAR has been nothing but supportive to me since the moment they hired me. My first impression was WOW - the employees here are amazing! Everyone is so friendly, the departments are so innovative, and my co-workers are all brilliant. It is inspiring to learn from all of the people that have worked with STAR 20+ years (talk about an impressive retention rate!)

    It's important to understand that everything STAR does is for the kids. With that said, STAR's priority is to hire the best staff; if a staff member does exemplify behavior that will ensure a safe, enriching, and educational environment for the kids, he or she will not be asked to work beyond his or her 90 day probationary period. Staffing is always dependent on what is BEST for the KIDS. Parents are extremely appreciative of this diligence and have given STAR 5 stars on Yelp!

    The family that began STAR and continues to run the organization has made many sacrifices to make sure all employees have stable jobs and great health insurance. Very few jobs in the non-profit world can provide health insurance right now, and even less are giving out raises. All STAR administrators are working extremely hard behind the scenes to make constant improvements for everyone.

    Just like at any non-profit, all administrators (office staff, site directors, and department heads) are asked in their job description that they be part of our fundraising efforts. Fundraising and marketing are a team effort that is very rewarding. Part-time STAR teachers are not asked to fundraise, but they are encouraged by their Site Directors to volunteer at some of STAR's really fun community events. Volunteering at community events is a fun way to bond with staff and kids outside of the school environment.

    Management is very encouraging and makes sure every single employee feels like they are an important part of the "STAR family". STAR employees come from all backgrounds which make it a very diverse and interesting place to work. People on Glassdoor complain about cake (who complains about cake?!) when in reality the Executive Director pays for this personally because she believes in celebrating those who work hard and share her passion to give the kids what they deserve! Cake Wednesdays are a favorite for many among the staff.

    All in all, STAR has been an amazing, supportive, and uplifting work environment and I hope the handful of UNTRUE negative reviews on here don't skew anyone's opinion of such a wonderful place. The STAR program is so fantastic and has changed lives for many - just ask our kids, parents, schools and communities!

    ConsThe office can sometimes be loud and bustling. There are always new supplies coming in and going out to the schools, and often times there are trainings happening for new programs. Most STAR employees thrive in this fast and fun environment. But, if you like things very quiet and slow then this office is not for you!

    Advice to Senior ManagementBring back Cake Wednesdays! :)

    Yes, I would recommend this company to a friend – I'm optimistic about the outlook for this company

    • Culture & Values
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    • Career Opportunities
    • Disapproves of CEO

    3 people found this helpful  

    Questionable management ethics but well-meaning co-workers.

    Anonymous Employee (Former Employee)

    ProsMost people doing the day-to-day work are very nice and hard-working people. Everyone is doing their best to improve the lives of children through after school education. They have some cool programs for kids. Most employees are kind and great co-workers. There can be some flexibility with work hours within reason.

    ConsUnfortunately, this company is run more like a fraternity or sorority house and the top management (which is really just one person) bases many decisions on emotion and what feels like a strange popularity contest with the employees. Basically if you're in, you're in. But if you are not liked or you do or say anything that threatens the establishment, you're fair game for ridicule or justifiable firing. I've heard well-meaning, hard-working employees scolded like children in the open office environment. It is unprofessional, unfair and can create a "walking on eggshells" office environment.

    This management style leads to unfairness across the board and little accountability at any level. STAR is run by a mother and her two grown children. They are the kind of people who would rather buy you lunch or a birthday cake than actually give you a raise or genuine praise for a job well done. Anyone who questions the integrity of the company or suggests a better way to do things is either labeled a trouble-maker and demonized or simply gotten rid of and then bad-mouthed once they are gone. It can be a toxic environment.

    The company is technically a non-profit and management is always complaining in large group meetings that they are broke. But there are no real steps taken to change or improve the situation. The financial stress is placed back on the employees (as an explanation why no one gets raises) while management over-commits resources. There is health insurance for full-time employees but no retirement benefits of any kind. The majority of employees are not full time and treated as somewhat expendable. They are constantly interviewing for new people.

    The parking situation has already been mentioned and is truly atrocious. Some employees have to walk several blocks to find parking just to attend weekly mandatory meetings. But management has reserved parking spaces so they never really address it as the true problem it is. Many of the best people end up leaving for a more professional environment.

    Advice to Senior ManagementDevelop more professional management practices and adopt a conflict of interest policy that is also followed. Develop better transparency as a non-profit organization. Stop using guilt to motivate employees into unpaid volunteerism.

    No, I would not recommend this company to a friend

    • Culture & Values
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Career Opportunities

    2 people found this helpful  

    Best Education Non Profit in LA

    Department Head (Current Employee) Los Angeles, CA (US)

    ProsWorking for STAR and with STAR is a real treat. Their programs help improve the lives of children all over Los Angeles. The office atmosphere is very laid back and everyone is very friendly. All of the employees are helpful and engaging! I have learned tons about managing people and organizing events working for STAR.

    ConsThe parking at the offices is very limited and you must own a car to work for them as the schools are all over Los Angeles.

    Advice to Senior ManagementPlease buy more parking space!

    Yes, I would recommend this company to a friend – I'm optimistic about the outlook for this company

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