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Public charter
Sebastopol, CA
Students enrolled: 426

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3840 Twig Avenue
Sebastopol, CA 95472

School website
(707) 823-5361
(707) 823-0478
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Map of Gravenstein Elementary School address.
August 07, 2014
This school is amazing. There are tons of options in the greater Sebastopol area, but I feel confident in saying this is the best. I sat in at 3 of the 'best' schools in west county and none compared. Though my children are in the Enrich program I have friends in the traditional program who are equally satisfied. All of the teachers are passionate about the kids and the focus on the arts and sciences has my kids coming home inspired and enthusiastic every day. The search for the right school for your child can be overwhelming, my only advice is to take the time to look around. When you come to Gravenstein you'll see the difference. Just notice how engaged the children are.

- submitted by a parent
August 04, 2014
I transferred both of my children into this school last year from a school in Rincon Valley and have not regretted the decision. I have one child in the Enrich program and one in the traditional (my second child has learning disabilities and cannot keep up with the Enrich program). The Enrich program is truly amazing- enrichment field trips every month, year round Art, Music, Spanish and just a ton of little extras that make learning fun. Yes, there is a donation to the program, but it s worth it. Supposedly it s optional, but I felt pretty harassed when I missed a payment. School is now fun. The Enrich parents are very involved, but the traditional has less parent involvement. The core curriculum is strong, but without all the extras. Both the traditional and Enrich teachers were excellent. It s only when you compare the traditional program to the Enrich program that the traditional seems a little lacking. This school has very high academic expectations. The administration has been very accommodating of my child s disabilities. The before and aftercare program is EXCELLENT! I am happy I made to move to Gravenstein elementary.

- submitted by a parent
May 07, 2014
We live here in west county and when we started looking at schools for my son we were overwhelmed. There are a lot of good schools but when it came down to it nothing offered what Gravenstein does. I was reticent regarding the Enrich program. I was worried that there would be this have/have not mentality. That is not what I have experienced. Everyone seems happy with the choices they made/make for the children's education. Our child is in the Enrich and he loves it. Science, art, drama, music, Spanish, the list goes on. Where else can you find this in public education. I am happy to have my child at a school and in a program where all of his peer's parents are strongly invested in their children's education. As they say if you give your child an education you give them the world. Though other west county schools are fine and may have more of a 'Sebastopol' feel (which I'm partial to) I would have always felt like I shorted my child by not allowing his education to be truly well rounded. This school nourishes a love of learning and promote an environment where being smart is cool. I hope I'm helping some of you out when trying to decide for your family.

- submitted by a parent
October 08, 2013
My child, currently in 4th grade Enrich, has attended Gravenstein since K. We have had a great variety of teachers who have not only addressed the academics but who have instilled self confidence, living in the moment, supporting each other as a classroom community, teaching planning and organization and an overall love of learning. The staff that provides for enrichment, such as music, art, drama, spanish, dance and physical ed, are great and my child looks forward to those days. The office staff have addressed our needs if/when they arose and Gravenstein has fit what our family needs well.

- submitted by a parent
September 27, 2013
I'm not real crazy about my son's 3rd grade teacher this semester (who is new to the school), but I have been consistently pleased with the overall quality of the school in general. My main complaint is that the principal does not seem terribly involved in school matters and does not address concerns about teachers with the parents very effectively. We are fortunate that we can afford the ENRICH program classes, but my understanding from parents in non-ENRICH classes is that this is an even bigger problem for them.

- submitted by a parent
September 06, 2013
I had two kids at Gravenstein. They were in the traditional program. Unless you are in the ENRICH program, don't bother going here. The Secretary is SO rude and the principal is not much better (unless you are an enRICH parent). I am so happy I moved my kids!!

- submitted by a parent
July 04, 2013
I am a parent of two students at Gravenstein School. Both are in the Enrich program. This is a fabulous school. The teachers are enthusiastic and really care about their students. The curriculum keeps students motivated and learning as much as they can handle without stressing them out. The Enrich! program extras are outstanding. The kids are happy and love learning. Linda LaMarre cares and is a hands on principal. What more could you ask for?

- submitted by a parent
April 08, 2013
I am a parent of students in ENRICH! on both campuses. I love it! The exposure to the arts is fantastic!

- submitted by a parent
April 02, 2013
I left a message to find out about the school and Enrich program. I cannot believe that the principal called me back at 5:45pm. She gave me a clear description of the school and program. She stayed on the phone with me for as long as needed. To find a principal that dedicated is amazing. We are at a private school paying $18,500 a year for 2 children. My current school doesn't offer 1/2 of what this school does. We are applying today! I take one star off, because the secretary is SO rude. I went in, and she didn't even turn and look at me. She just asked to help, without ever facing me. Fire her, and hire one like the principal.

- submitted by a parent
February 23, 2012
My daughter transferred to the ENRICH program at Gravenstein in the 4th grade since her neighborhood school did not have a GATE program. I was highly involved in her first school and was skeptical that Gravenstein would live up the principals promises. After 1-1/2 years I am happy to share that my daughter is as thrilled with the school as are we. Yes, we happily donate $250 a month to pay for small class sizes, Spanish, Art, Music, Band, Poetry, and multiple field trips including several overnighters. Because the children have so many enrichment activities there is not the "Drill and Kill" she experienced in the past. There is also a greater emphasis on science which she loves. As far as the principal is concerned, I must admit I had some initials doubts as I was close to the principal at the previous school. For various reasons I have had several conversations with Linda LaMarre and every time I have been left with the impression that I was heard and understood and, more importantly, that my child was understood and supported. Efforts are continuously made to address the needs of the children (not just my own) as they arise. I highly recommend this school!

- submitted by a parent
January 09, 2012
I have to say that I read all the reviews before enrolling my 2nd grader into their Enrich! program. I loved the positive reviews and found them to be true. The next year, after enrolling my Kindergartner, I found the negative reviews to be true too. The principal/superintendent is only looking out for money. I am greatly disappointed with not being given help when needed the most.

- submitted by a parent
August 19, 2011
We are thrilled with the education and experiences that our children are receiving at Gravenstein Elementary. They are challenged, motivated, and loving school! The teaching staff is dedicated to providing an engaging yet rigorous curriculum, infused with the arts, all the time ensuring that all of the standards are addressed. The principal/superintendent works tirelessly to provide the best educational environment for the students. She manages the budget in such a way that the school is thriving despite budget cuts, and has carefully selected a staff that truly loves what they do and who do it well! This school is truly outstanding in every way and far superior to the private school we had previously sent our children to. It is no wonder that families from all over the county commute to attend Gravenstein! We give it an A+

- submitted by a parent
August 12, 2011
Be aware that the magnet program has a (mandatory) donation of $250/per month per student. They tell you that it is a GATE program, but if you look at the numbers of students there- you know that they all can't be GATE. The traditional program is dying. Be aware of this if you move into the district. Your tax dollars are going to be supporting mostly kids out of the district coming in from Rohnert Park and Santa Rosa. Bad design to have the principal also the superintendent. She is both the judge and the jury. There really is a two tiered system of education at Gravenstien. Those that can afford the magnet program and those that can't Administration is difficult to work with at best.

- submitted by a parent
no rating October 09, 2010
The teachers are all enthusiastic, bright and love the kids. The curriculum is diverse and includes lots of field trips, it's the best!

- submitted by a parent
April 03, 2010
Wow, everything you read negative about the pricipal just backed up what I was going to say. My son is a 4th gr and we have been going since pre school. They take all the great teacher and put them into the reach program. This principals motives are purely driven by money. I have been lyed to by her, I have brought dangerous issues to her attn. and she smiles them off as if she cares and doesn't do anything to handle them. My son was choked 2 times by another child until he was taking every kid out in the class before they finally handled it!!! Seems as if we all have to leave our own school dist. before things will change.

- submitted by a parent
March 17, 2010
Kindergarten and 1st were great here. After that everything went downhill. Seems that this school is more about funding and teaching students for the tests in order for the school to get better ratings. Completely disappointed with this school now and as for the principal, good luck talking to that lady. You would have better luck talking to a tree. Very dismissive, condescending, and seems not to care about whats best for the children, just what looks good on paper and her bottom line. Terrible.

- submitted by a parent
October 22, 2009
If all you want is for your child to be taught to score well on a star test, this is your school. I left and took my child to the REACH program at Brook Have in the Sebastopl Union district. These are the folks who started the original program and this is the type of education I expected from Hillcrest. They could not deliver. We are all happy now at Brook Haven.

- submitted by a parent
August 01, 2009
This review submitted without content.

- submitted by a parent
July 31, 2009
Great school so long as your child is fortunate enough to be in a class without disruptive students. Serious discipline issues. The biggest issues stem from the principle of this school. Trying to talk to her is like speaking to a wall. She cares more about gov. funding than the education and well being of a child. She does nothing to help the teachers deal with the disruptive students.. if anything she undermines the teachers authority by going against a teachers punishment.

- submitted by a parent
June 10, 2009
I sat in several schools before choosing this one for our twins, who just finished kindergarten. I think that all public schools have problems inherent to the system, but that the parent supported REACH program addresses these issues more effectively than any other public school program I have seen, and we've looked in two counties. (We relocated primarily for better schools.) Every staff member I have dealt with seems to genuinely care about the kids, including the office staff mentioned in another review. We are extremely happy with this school, and we intend to keep our children in this district.

- submitted by a parent
April 01, 2009
We also are new to the school and REACH program. My Kindergarten child comes home every day filled with stories of science experiments, art projects, library outings and music classes. She loves it and is engaged in many different ways by the program. Yes, it costs money as what doesn't in this age of budget cutbacks. But we are happy to pay to attain all these wonderful curricular extras for our child.

- submitted by a parent
March 19, 2009
This review submitted without content.

- submitted by a parent
no rating July 30, 2008
I really liked this school when my child first started out here in Kinder, but I have found myself dissapointed with this school and staff.There is no diversity at this school. My child's teacher and the pricipal here had horrible communication for things I should have been notified about. They are in need of better, more expierenced and enthusiastic teachers who enjoy kids and teaching. Music and Art are great but, in class time is spent teaching strictly to the test without any flexibility for different learning styles. Reach program separates some kids from others socially and also ask for a fairly large 'donation' per child. My child will not return to this school.

- submitted by a parent
no rating June 25, 2008
Lots of pomp and cirumstance for numbers but little follow through with disciplinary issues and implementing parent feedback regarding unethical teachers. Teaches to the test, nothing more.

- submitted by a parent
June 10, 2008
Excellent REACH creative arts program.

- submitted by a parent
May 02, 2006
This review submitted without content.

- submitted by a parent
March 08, 2006
This school has a great staff and the principal is very friendly and easy to communicate with. My son attended kindergarten there and had a wonderful experience. The coursework stimulated his desire to learn and the teacher was very hands on with her students. She had complete control of the class of 20 or so students and moved them from activity to activity with a minimum of fuss. They also seem to get better academic results with disadvantaged students than the other Sebastopol schools.

- submitted by a parent
February 07, 2006
Very good quality programs at Gravenstein Elementary school. I am very happy to move my daughter from a different school to this school. She was in first grade last year and I move her at the begining of February of 2005. I made a very good decission. The Kindergarding teacher (Ms. K. Kerselus) is great, my daughter learned so much with her last year. I also think Ms. Sally Redfern, her first grade teacher is a very good teacher. She is always available to parents for any questions or concerns and my daughter is learning a lot with her. My daughter is reading now thanks to all these great teachers and structure of this school . I am very happy with this school and my daughter is too. I was looking to enroll my daughter in a private catholic school, but now that she is at Gravenstain I changed my mind.

- submitted by a parent

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Last modified: October 28, 2014

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Gravenstein Elementary School
3840 Twig Avenue, Sebastopol, CA  95472
(707) 823-5361
Last modified Gravenstein Elementary School is a Charter school that serves grades K-5. It has received a GreatSchools rating of 9 out of 10 based on academic quality.
Gravenstein Elementary School Rating: 4 out of 5 based on 28 reviews. Top