STAR Education

  www.starinc.org
  www.starinc.org

STAR Education Reviews

Updated November 12, 2014
Updated November 12, 2014
19 Reviews
2.4
19 Reviews
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Katya Bozzi
6 Ratings

Employee Reviews

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  1. 3 people found this helpful  

    Questionable management ethics but well-meaning co-workers.

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Former Employee - Anonymous Employee
    Former Employee - Anonymous Employee

    I worked at STAR Education full-time (more than an year)

    Pros

    Most 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.

    Cons

    Unfortunately, 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 ManagementAdvice

    Develop 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.

    Doesn't Recommend
    Disapproves of CEO
  2. 2 people found this helpful  

    Best Education Non Profit in LA

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Current Employee - Department Head in Los Angeles, CA
    Current Employee - Department Head in Los Angeles, CA

    I have been working at STAR Education full-time (more than 3 years)

    Pros

    Working 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.

    Cons

    The 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 ManagementAdvice

    Please buy more parking space!

    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
  3. 1 person found this helpful  

    I feel like I am contributing to something bigger than me, and helping to make other people's lives better.

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Current Employee - Anonymous Employee in Culver City, CA
    Current Employee - Anonymous Employee in Culver City, CA

    I have been working at STAR Education full-time (more than an year)

    Pros

    Every day is a new challenge. I invite the variety problem solving skills necessary to preform my job. I have learned a lot about myself, and what I am capable of because I work with a dedicated and diverse team of people who are willing to hold each other accountable, and tow the line.

    Cons

    Sometimes life is stressful, but it is always rewarding. However, the incentives for employees to stick around for the long term are not very enticing. There is a high turn over rate among the instructors that work for STAR, but not everyone is committed to education and being an youth mentor.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    Expectations are difficult to fill when you don't have the tools necessary to complete the task.

    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
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  5. 1 person found this helpful  

    A classic game of Ball and Shells.

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Former Employee - Anonymous Employee
    Former Employee - Anonymous Employee

    I worked at STAR Education full-time

    Pros

    People are very cool here. Always smiles on everyone's faces.

    Cons

    Since when must teachers double up as salesmen? Teachers should be relieved of the stresses of "making a sale" and focus more on the child. Teachers are pressured to sell/fill their seats and are ridiculed if quotas aren't met.

    Interesting fact to discover: How many people where hired from Craigslist? And how many of those people were hired based on their qualifications rather than Star's NEED to fill a spot.

    More often than not, the teachers are disinterested and unqualified. Do they even have a HS education? Very bad organization within the company.

    Much of this company is played like a game of Ball and Shell without the scary alley venue. A lot of things are move around quickly and secretly to meet state requirements for funding, licensing etc..

    Required volunteer time? You hire someone and then require them to donate a certain number of hours to volunteer for your company so you can fill your pockets and dilute the little pay you give employees?

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    Cash out...the ship is sinking.

    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook
  6. 2 people found this helpful  

    Get paid for a while and then leave.

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Current Employee - Site Director
    Current Employee - Site Director

    I have been working at STAR Education part-time (more than 3 years)

    Pros

    *Health benefits are good
    *Work on very interesting, strange projects.
    *Meet a lot of youthful, interesting people (very high turnaround)
    *Very high schedule flexibility (you can stay home whenever you need without pay, which is great if you have a kid who is often sick)

    Cons

    *You will be paid very little and never get a raise (in the last 4 years, there have been no raises. I know employees who have been here for 8 years with no raise).
    *You will be required to volunteer to work without pay so many hours per year.
    *You will be required to attend mandatory training where people do little more than talk about their childhood and bask in uncomfortable silences. This is not a joke, or an exaggeration.
    *You can be fired on a whim. This has happened in the past and continues to happen.
    *Employees have been verbally bashed by management after they've quit/left. THIS IS ILLEGAL.
    *Interruptions are common. The preferred method of getting ahold of someone is to scream their name at the top of your lungs until they come to your cube. If they aren't in the building, continue yelling - regardless of other people working.
    *Nepotism is rampant. I cannot go into detail without breaking glassdoor's terms of service.
    *Management sees you as expendable. In fact, the preferred method of motivation is: "We love our teachers. We love you so much, and you love us! But if you make even one tiny mistake, we'll fire you! We've done it before - we've fired teachers who we were really married to! And let me tell you something - if a kid says you did anything wrong - even if you didn't! - we'll fire you! We can't have that, and I'm sorry, you're gone."
    *Incompetence is rampant. People do not rise through the ranks because they're skillful. Expect to spend a lot of time picking up other people's messes.
    *Expect to not get paid, to get paid the wrong rate, or to 'lose hours' on your timesheet. Accounting also will never apologize, and will not answer more than one question per email. Nor will they pay any attention to your puny 'spelling' or 'grammar,' and any issues you have will get lost in translation.
    *There is very, very little parking at HQ. Try to spend most of your time on site.
    *The company shuts down and does not pay employees over winter break. You will have to use your vacation time for that.
    *If you are a teacher during the summer, you will be asked to work more than twice as many hours for half pay. And it's much, much more difficult.
    *There are so, SO many more reasons for you to not work here, each one more impossible than the last. I cannot list them all.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    Management's HR methods are not effective. Morale is in the toilet - and you'll never know, because your stance on complaints is "act happy or we'll fire you." Stop firing people for not saying "good morning." And please, PLEASE stop abusing the intercom. Boil your message down to a short sentence, say it, repeat it, and hang up.

    Doesn't Recommend
    Neutral Outlook
  7. 1 person found this helpful  

    Great Place to Work For the Most Part

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Career Opportunities
    Former Employee - Anonymous Employee in Los Angeles, CA
    Former Employee - Anonymous Employee in Los Angeles, CA

    I worked at STAR Education

    Pros

    Amazing place to work with great mission and wonderful people

    Cons

    Communication and planning; many things would get done sooner, smoother, and cheaper with greater attention to both.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    Overhaul the corporate structure and communication system

    Recommends
  8.  

    positive

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Career Opportunities
    Current Employee - Anonymous Employee
    Current Employee - Anonymous Employee

    I have been working at STAR Education

    Pros

    Opportunities, challenges, flexibility, team environment

    Cons

    I do not have anything to say

  9. 1 person found this helpful  

    Poor Business Ethics

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Career Opportunities
    Former Employee - Teacher in Culver City, CA
    Former Employee - Teacher in Culver City, CA

    I worked at STAR Education

    Pros

    It is a good opportunity for those looking for a career in teaching.

    Cons

    Poor business ethics such as hiring and management communication.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    When hiring someone find out if they are truly fit for the position. Do not hire them and 2 months later decide they are not competent in the position they are improving upon.

    Doesn't Recommend
  10.  

    good oppurtunity to get teaching/ child care experience but thats about it

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Career Opportunities
    Current Employee - Anonymous Employee
    Current Employee - Anonymous Employee

    I have been working at STAR Education

    Pros

    brings good experience working with children

    Cons

    poor work schedule and not enough resources given

    Recommends

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