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2300 South Gardner Drive
Chandler, AZ 85286

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(480) 812-7600
(480) 883-4320
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Map of Robert and Danell Tarwater Elementary School address.

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April 18, 2013
Love this school! My son has attended K-3 and our daughter is started Kindergarten last year. Some of the negative comments on this school are warranted, not everyone is perfect and 100% all the time but overall we have had an outstanding experience at Tarwater. There is a large sense of community from the PTO and Dad's Club, the Teachers reinforce the concept of Parental Involvement (if you aren't willing to participate in your child's education, this is not the school for you) and there are many activities throughout the year for families to be involved at the school. I can't say enough good things about Mr. Hensley and his Administration, they run a tight ship and he is always out on the grounds talking to students and parents and making his presence known. I haven't had much interaction with the new Dean so I will not comment on her. Granted, this is the only school our children have attended so I don't have much to gauge it against except the comments of friends regarding their children's schools.

- submitted by a parent
April 04, 2013
Tarwater is a great school. I personally love all the events the school puts on. It is great to see so much parental involvement in this school. When we moved here from Oregon my child was over a month behind because Oregon schools don't start until after labor day. She caught up very quickly and the Principal Mr. Hensley knew her by name within the 1st week. Pretty impressive seeing how there are over 800 students at Tarwater. I am thankful we moved into the Tarwater district and wouldn't think about moving my children to another school. My biggest issue is the lack of parking for parents picking up their children. My other issue is with parents not following the traffic rules when picking their children up from school

- submitted by a parent
March 23, 2013
Tarwater has a great sense of community my son has been very happy here for the past 2 years. Mr Hensley takes an interest in every child and is often found walking the school grounds each morning interacting with the kids. Have also been very happy with my childs teachers both years.

- submitted by a parent
September 10, 2012
Our oldest daughter went to Jacobsen and we found it to be a really great school, but since our youngest has been attending Tarwater I would have to say it is even better. Her teachers challenge the kids and keep us in the loop about any concerns. The Principal, Mr. Hensley, is always involved with the kids and school pride is apparent around every corner.

- submitted by a parent
May 09, 2012
I am also so surprised by the negative ratings that I have read here. This is my first child going through the school and I have never seen such a strong sense of community. I personally love Tarwater an I couldn't have asked for a better place. The office staff has been extremely helpful towards me when my child has forgotten to take things to school. Her teacher is amazing; the principal is very involved and knows most kids by name. Even if he misprounces a name he apologizes to everyone at that moment. My daughter has really excelled here and is doing great.

- submitted by a parent
May 03, 2012
I can't imagine a better school for my family than Tarwater. My kids have been at Tarwater for 5 years now and they LOVE school. I truly believe that the wonderful, caring, structured atmosphere has allowed them to thrive and enjoy school every day. The prinicpal is fantastic and very involved. The school is busy with homework, events, activities, etc. but we pick and choose what we can go to and what we can help with so I don't fell overwhelemed they way some of the other parents reviews have mentioned. I highly recommend Tarwater!

- submitted by a parent
April 11, 2012
We moved from a Kyrene school and did not expect to be this happy at Tarwater. Teachers and parental involvement are what make Tarwater a success. I can't believe any of the poor reviews. I am sure at all schools you could have a bad experience? I love the open feel and how welcomed we have felt here. I work a lot so we can't do all the activities they have but I would much rather have too many things then too little. They do send home homework, but I feel it's appropriate.

- submitted by a parent
December 16, 2011
I gave the school 1 star because my kids are overwhelmed with home work and too many fundraising events and ceremonies. The last orchestra event I complained to the the principle about how the orchestra kids felt on orchestra day. The orchestra teacher praised 8 out of 10 kids that got on the deems list, principles list or high achievers lists by asking the majority to stand up in front of a large audience. The 2 sitting were very sad and embarrassed. The orchestra teacher praised the 8 kids on stage standing and mocked ( no joking) the remainder 2 o kids sitting by saying to the kids sitting- to be like the ones standing and 'you will not be sitting next year'. She does this every year to the 5th and 6th graders. 6 of the parents I know felt bad for the kids sitting. I complained to the principle by email and he never responded. The teachers work very hard and they do an excellent job. The office/ Administration need to be more considerate and do not expect anything left for your child in the office to reach your child because they are not very helpful in that respect and forget.

- submitted by a parent
July 21, 2011
This is a fantastic elementary school with excellent teachers. The principal is always on site and available. Very nicely run and high on the academics. We were very pleased that this was our neighborhood elementary!

- submitted by a parent
May 29, 2011
I am extremely happy with this school. The principal is always walking the groundsand is always available and attentive to any questions or concerns I may have. I taught in another AZ school and was leary of putting my child in a puplic school but I would highly recommend Tarwater to anyone. The teachers are courteous and straight forward. The only issue I have had, and this is a district wide issue, is the KRT for Pre-k students. I have a child that misses the cut off by 2 days, took the KRT and did not pass. The district informed us that our child is socially and emotionally ready to start kindergarten but didn't know her alphabet sounds. I was always told and fully believe that if they are emotionally and socially ready to begin school, the academics would come. Frankly, isn't that what kindergarten is for? You may have a child that is academically ready but can't sit still or behave in the classroom...this would pose more of a disruption in class and is a skill that can't be taught. Alphabet sounds can be taught. Just my two cents. All other areas have been excellent and I look forward to both of my children completing their elementary careers at Tarwater.

- submitted by a parent
March 10, 2011
I think this school is fun for the kids. The environment is friendly, and the teachers are very attentive. Some of them are outstanding. Academically I think they are about average for a public school in a neighborhood of pretty highly educated families, and there are pockets of excellence. My only problem is usually trying to keep up with all of the planned activities and forms to fill out- it seems I would have to take off work about once every two weeks to manage everything for my two kids, and I always feel like I'm the one being assigned homework! There are more fundraisers and picnics and festivals and trips and whole-school athletic events than I can keep track of. With two working parents, it gets unwieldy. Overall we have been drained but pretty happy, and the kids have been pretty happy too. Administration is a little inflexible and bureaucratic, but the teachers compensate for it.

- submitted by a parent
September 10, 2010
I noticed all the reviews are 4-5 stars and are good. My question is where are all the bad reviews? I know i wrote a bad review in the past and it never got posted on here. I also know of other parents writing bad reviews and none of them were posted, Why? I have had a terrible experience at Tarwater and i will say that this school does not deserve the rewards it is getting. I give this school and principal and staff and teacher quality none other then 1 star.

- submitted by a parent
July 07, 2010
This will be my daughters 3rd year and we've had the BEST experience with the Teachers and especially the Principlie Mr Hensley. He's been such a great role model. Encouraging the kids to do there best and better yet...he challenges the students which pushes them to do there BEST. Definetly a A+ school.

- submitted by a parent
February 08, 2010
Tarwater is a really good school.My kids have been going there for 4 years now and we've had one better teacher than the other. The teachers are great. We've never had a communication issue with anyone of them. The principa,l Mr. Hensley is a very involved , dynamaic,very charismatic personality and very open to ideas and suggestions.He is a good role model for the kids.We have obesrved the way he knows every kid by his or her name and how well he interacts with them. Its things like this that go a long way.

- submitted by a parent
November 08, 2009
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- submitted by a parent
May 12, 2009
I never give 5-stars on reviews. But I must make an exception for this school, because I've simply not seen one thing wrong with this it. They continually impress us with the level of education and attention to the other details. First, education... I was surprised at the jump in education level when we moved our son to this school from a Mesa, AZ school he was attending. Since then, I remain impressed with the quality of the teachers, and the real-world application of book knowledge that this school employs. I don't have the room in this review to explain detailed incidents, but I can attest to the fact that both the teachers and the principal, Mr. Hensley, really care for their students. I'm so glad we moved to the neighborhood we did so that we get to enjoy this school!

- submitted by a parent
no rating April 21, 2009
Tarwater has been an excellent education and social experience for my daughter. She moved from Tempe and I've seen so much growth in her this year. Mr. Hensley is a very active, caring Principal. His heart and passion is seen throughout the school, through the teachers, students and to the parents. I'm so proud of Tarwater's continued success (A+ by the AZ Educational Foundation, Excelling by the AZ Dept of Education, STARS school for Phys Ed, and the list goes on...)! I know MANY other parents that have moved from the area but still travel out of their way to take their kids to Tarwater. That speaks volumes!

- submitted by a parent
April 12, 2009
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- submitted by a parent
no rating January 01, 2009
This is our first year at Tarwater and so far it has been a pleasant experience. I appreciate and enjoy the spirit spread within the school. I am impressed with the communication from our teacher - I can have as much as I need/want. I am more impressed with Tarwater as I share experiences with friends who currently have children at three other Chandler elementary schools - when we compare, Tarwater is the school I am happy to have my child go to. The only downside is not specific to Tarwater but to the education system itself - I would like the schools to cater more to the advanced children with the same amount of effort as they put forth helping the children who need extra help staying up with the class.

- submitted by a parent
December 31, 2008
My child has been at Tarwater for 5 years now and has never had a teacher that was experienced in her grade level. 3 of these 5 teachers do not even work there any longer. I do not feel that my child has had the 'great' education that most other people say about Tarwater. I guess by reading the other reviews, I can now see that there really is a favoritism in this school. AS far as the PTO, they do try really hard but it has completely dwindled since we got there... This year seems however to be looking a little better as far as PTO.

- submitted by a parent
no rating December 30, 2008
Tarwater is an excellent overall school with plenty of community support and interaction. Principal Hensley and the experienced teaching staff are models for an outstanding Chandler District school. I'm confident that my children are gaining the experience and knowledge to becoming properly educated citizens.

- submitted by a parent
no rating October 08, 2008
My child attended Tarwater for 4 years and I believe the statement made by a parent regarding the teachers and communication is true. It is so important to have great communication especially when your child is struggling in certain areas academically. They will and can slip through the cracks. There is also a lot of favoritism. I saw this in first, second, and fourth grade within my child's classroom. i have finally decided to move her and it was the best decision I made. Not only are the teachers great in communication they are willing to be involved with tutors and care about the child's confidence in acedemics.

- submitted by a parent
August 04, 2008
'08 is my son's second year at Tarwater. We are fortunate to have such a wonderful, experienced teaching staff, most with 10+ years of experience. We couldn't ask for a better school in our neighborhood. Principal Hensley is very friendly and involved. He recongnizes nearly every student by name. And he even ate a fried worm- how cool is that?! And where was he on the first day of school?? He was greeting kids at the drop-off drive thru! Art Masterpiece is a fun, diverse program for the students & teachers. The staff is focused on involving every student and bringing out their individuality. They have excellent tutoring for students who need a lil extra help. The teachers are great at communicating. Tarwater Toros Rule!!

- submitted by a parent
May 16, 2008
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- submitted by a student
January 31, 2008
My child has attented Tarwater for 5 years. If your child fits into the 'perfect' mold of how a child should perform academically and socially you will likely be happy with this school. If your child presents with classroom or social challenges that do not fit into the special needs criteria, I am not sure that you will happy. I have found very few teachers willing to communicate with me regularly so I am able to 'Stay on top' of my child's learning. I have seen the teachers and principal show definate favoritism to the 'popular' kids crowd, rather than giving extra positive kudos to all kids who need them. There us a lot of time spent teaching toward 'testing' success on 'Standardized' testing, and not a lot of time spent teaching success in academics. Testing results do not show the big picture.

- submitted by a parent
June 15, 2007
I would rate Tarwater Elementary School an A+. It is an Excelling school in AZ for 3 years in a row and we are very fortunate and proud to have this school in our neighborhood. Great principal, teachers and staff! We love Tarwater Elementary! We could never ask for anything more because we have it all in Tarwater Elementary.

- submitted by a parent
April 30, 2007
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- submitted by a parent
April 21, 2007
I am very happy with Tarwater Elementary. The principle is great, very involved! The parent involvement is great and the opprotunities to be involved is good as well. Children have music, art, computer, and PE once a week. I wish they had PE more fequently. They have a running club (inthe winter) that is very well attended by all grade levels. We are very happy at Tarwater.

- submitted by a parent
January 29, 2006
The school appears to have the best intentions of every child.

- submitted by a parent
October 11, 2005
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- submitted by a parent
August 11, 2005
Tarwater offers after school tutoring programs for challenged students. I dont believe that they focus on sports as much as the do arts. The parent involvement is there. Noone seems to question the way Tarwater is ran because it gives a great impression.

- submitted by a parent
July 25, 2005
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- submitted by a parent
June 20, 2005
The quality of education at Tarwater is excellent. The principal runs a very organized institution, and makes a pleasant environment for both staff and students. I have been extremely pleased with all of my child's teachers. They have all created a pleasant and structured learning environment. They all encourage parent participation and involvement. The only minor complaint I have is that there are not enough afterschool sports for the children under 5th grade.

- submitted by a parent
June 13, 2005
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- submitted by a parent
June 03, 2005
Great special education programs.

- submitted by a parent
April 19, 2005
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- submitted by a parent
March 08, 2005
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- submitted by a parent
March 07, 2005
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- submitted by a parent
February 10, 2005
My two sons attend Tarwater Elementary. I have watched it grow into an excellent school. Jeff Hensley cares about his students and his staff. He has high standards and makes sure every child does not get left behind. Tarwater teachers back him and are wonderful. The Art Masterpiece program this year is also excelling. They have new directors and it has been great so far. Tarwater has plenty of extracurricular activities and as part of the PTO at Tarwater, we have excellent parent participation for all of our events. Tarwater is a top elemenatary school, no doubt about it.

- submitted by a parent
October 16, 2004
Tarwater Elem has been a very good school for my children. It gives the children a 'community feel' experience. On any given day you will find the principal greeting students as they arrive, calling most of them by their first name. The teachers 'care' about the students' overall welfare. I believe they do everything possible to help the children succeed in life. I have two children that have attended or are still attending Tarwater Elem. in the last three years and they are average to above average students. In both children's case, the teachers have been able to bring out the best in my children's abilities while helping them achieve the next level of their capabilities. The down side to the school district is in their lack of a weekly art program and in the lunches served. Overall, I don't sit at work and worry about them at school.

- submitted by a parent
no rating April 19, 2004
My child has gone to ANLC since they were 5 years old. It is a school where I feel that the children come first. Each child is encouraged to do their own personal best without being labeled as the smart or dumb kids.

- submitted by a parent
November 02, 2003
This is our first year at Tarwater and we are very pleased with the quality of the teachers as well as the involvement of the principal in all aspects of the school. It is obvious to us that the reason for the high scores at this school rest very much with the quality of instruction and leadership!

- submitted by a parent
September 07, 2003
Tarwater is an outstanding school! After 2 mediocre principals, we have finally found an excellent leader in Jeff Hensley. Overall, the teachers are very good, and always willing to communicate with parents.

- submitted by a parent
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Robert and Danell Tarwater Elementary School
2300 South Gardner Drive, Chandler, AZ  85286
(480) 812-7600
Last modified Robert and Danell Tarwater Elementary School is a Public school. It has received a GreatSchools rating of 8 out of 10 based on academic quality.
Robert and Danell Tarwater Elementary School Rating: 4 out of 5 based on 43 reviews. Top