Harry Dewey Fundamental Elementary operates under a very special mission statement that staff, parents, and community members worked together on in the Spring of 2012. It reads: Valuing community and academic excellence, the mission of Harry Dewey Fundamental Elementary School is to inspire and educate each child to be a vibrant part of a community of life-long learners who embrace stewardship of their world, and develop creative problem-solving skills and confidence through a focus on the whole child mind, body, heart that includes innovative instruction, strong character development and essential family participation in a safe, supportive environment. We promise to live by this creed and do everything in our power to make sure we focus on the whole child - mind, body, heart at all times. Should you have any questions or concerns, please don't hesitate to contact us. We're happy to work with you.
January 25, 2013
This is a safe place to share your honest opinions of a school, whether good or bad.
I would have given an "average" grade for academics and "good" for opportunities such as field trips (of which there are a good number), but the overall experience at this facility leaves such a bad taste in our mouths that I can only give two stars. The parent-based culture at this school is entirely out of control. There is a group of moms that basically run the entire school (some of whom work there or volunteer all day and/or are friends with staff), often cajoling the teachers into doing what they want and socially engineering classroom/extracurricular activities to benefit their children at the expense of others, as well as working to exclude and snub parents that they don't deem as "worthy". The older teachers are retiring or just plain giving up at an alarming rate, leaving a younger set of common core cheerleaders who are at the mercy of the parental sorority, though those teachers are too often willing participants in the meddling. The office is entirely aware of all of this and does little about it because it benefits their children personally. As some other reviews state, we have definitely seen a downhill slide in the place since we started and rather than fret about it anymore we will be transferring out soon. I'm sure it's a great place if you're part of the "in crowd" but for a school that continually preaches such messages as anti-bullying, inclusion and parental involvement it's amazing how much exclusion and bullying is done....by the adults.
Between the start of both of my kids experience from kindergarten through about mid second grade was great. After that, it's been going downhill. The last two years with my oldest have been quite an eye opener. Kids definitely fall through the cracks as far as the learning process goes-overwhelmed teachers, and the principal doesn't seem to follow through or take action with incidents and/or consequences per the "Bully Matrix" as stated on the school or districts website.
There are a few moms and dads that spend a ton of time at school, always helping/volunteering. Heading class projects, going on field trips, class room help. Thank you parents! Maybe if they said No once in awhile though-maybe other parents would step up.
Sometimes there isn't enough time given to complete. Most families have both parents working all day, add in an extracurricular activity and it doesn't leave much time to get the things you may need for projects.
The students that need extra assistance seem to become more overwhelmed then display grit and determination, and to see that in a child is pretty sad when our teachers are there and supposed to help them, mind body heart right?
I feel like the teachers look right through the students that struggle. My child is in the resource program and this is the third year, while the resource teachers are concerned and very helpful the classroom teachers are not.
My son is an ADHD student and he was treated poorly throughout his time at this school. While the academics are okay, the school preaches character education and yet does not treat their students with respect unless they are well behaved kids without the issues my son has. He was bullied and nothing was done about it. The parents volunteering as lunch duties to monitor the playground have no idea how to handle conflict with students either. They favor their own children and kids they know well and disregard others. This school does not teach students conflict resolution. Instead, it teaches students that when they have problems, if they aren't a favorite of the adults in the school, they don't matter. Sad.
As a former student volunteer and now parent it's plain to see how the class of teachers has plummeted. A good chunk of capable teachers left Dewey, retired or left this earth entirely and left not so capable teachers. The administration is better than it was.
My son has ADHD, and was labeled/ostracized at two other elementary schools. Harry Dewey, in contrast, includes and celebrates every child. He loves going to school now, and has made a circle of friends. His teacher finds creative ways to showcase students' strengths and autonomy, while still incorporating required curriculum. I couldn't be more pleased with Harry Dewey, and the changes I have seen in my son- perfect attendance, homework completion, excellent report cards, joy & confidence. Many thanks to you, Harry Dewey & Christine Teachout.
I believe that the school should and must be more accommodating to the needs of the special need students. To hear that this is not happening breaks my heart. We all must do our part to be there for them and the school has a most important role in this. As far as the playground being rough, this must stop! I have one child at Dewey and another that has gone on to the IB programs. The foundation at Dewey must always be the child first and foremost.