Each Hawley teacher that my kids have had was chosen well. and we have been pleased with our experience. Our kids were challenged, and their social/emotional needs were met by the teacher engaging us and pointing out specific things at home. I love the principal, Joanne Peters, and hope she does not retire until my kids have moved on. Good computer skills are passed on, and overall, the learning is top notch at Hawley, a gem in town.
It's a great school if you're looking for a babysitter. They are so far behind with academics (math especially) it's just sad. Management loves ambiguity and strongly believes in the saying "information is power". As such, they will not share any information with you (even if it has to do with your own child future). Procrastination is the key to any possible uncomfortable situation that require straight answers. On the positive note, the staff is nice.
I attended this school for five years, and I must say that although the school itself wasn't that bad, it wasn't amazing either. But it was decent enough. The thing that I really had a problem with were some of the teachers--they tended to treat their students older than they were (this happened in kindergarten and first grade for me.) My sister currently goes to this school, and the ONLY teacher she actually liked was her first grade one. However, there are many other teachers who are WONDERFUL and willing to adapt to your child's needs. Academics are great--Newtown has wonderful public schools. And I must say that Hawley does get students ready for Reed Intermediate School, no doubt about it. The only year I didn't like was 4th grade. In fact, towards the end I just left and got homeschooled, then went to Reed the next year. Overall, Hawley is a fairly good experience for most and will offer what both parents and students need. I'd say that if your child has a learning need though, you should definitely talk to guidance about class placement. Certain teachers are better for certain kids. And oh, the school is beautiful with it's lovely classic design, juuuust sayin :)
I love this school so far, my son is actually repeating Kindergarten this year, he was in kindergarten in another 'local school' in my neighborhood he has 'special needs' so I decided to have him repeat kindergarten because of his age and his abilitys. I had a less then stellar experience in the 'other' non zoned to me local school (with the exception of the special ed teacher in the other school she was wondeful) the 'regular' Kindergarten teacher needs to retire in the other non zoned school she was less then concerned about my child and could care less about him or his needs. In Hawley school I have had such a vastly different experience, his kindergarten teacher is so loving and patient and just an all around lovely woman who seems to get my child, the special ed teacher is great also. Even the lunch lady is lovely and pleasant, the school seems to really strive to keep the school a family with the parents very involved with everything, even the pricipal is involved and knows my son by name and who he is. I Love this school and he just started and I am so happy I didn't keep him in the other school he was in. So I vote for Hawley school because its not only teaching kids but it really thinks of them as family!
I attended Hawley school and so have my boys and now my daughter. It is an excellent school. Not behind the times and very nurturing. The office staff is concerned for all the children and will do anything for them in a pinch. Like deliver the birthday treats. The parent involvement is amazing, there are lots of opportunities for parents to help and volunteer and the teachers welcome us. The art and music teachers are amazing and go above and beyond what is required of them. We love Hawley school.
Hawley Elem. was my husband's school. Now it is my two daughters, and soon to be my youngest son's school. My daughters, prior to attending Hawley Elem.were students at the Housatonic Valley Waldorf School (private). My girls transitioned very well because the majority of parents care so much about being an active part of their childrens' educations and every teacher or staff member in the school sincerely care for all families here. The atmosphere at the school is very warm and comfortable!My daughters' teachers have been examplery educators with many diverse years of experience in the teaching profession. Principal JoAnne Peters is the most amazing and giving individual, that it is just not right that she be called a 'principal'. Yes, I am old school; as my children say, 'You are a relic mom. Your even too old to be a fossil'. Well, this relic is privileged to be at Hawley!!
As a parent who has moved with their children more than once. I find this school to be very behind the times. My first impression of the front office staff was not a good one. They were not very welcoming. Many of the teachers are 'old timers' with old ways of teaching. They seem more concerned with 'be quiet and sit down' Than fostering a learning environment. Also very few teachers have E-mail for parent communication purposes. I find this disgraceful in this day and age. I'm thankful this school is only K-4.
As a parent of four children who have unfortunately been students at Hawley I have found the academic program to be well behind others in the local area. There is a lack of creativity and allowance for innovation in thinking. Old standards which have long been proven obsolete and irrelevant in todays world are still staunchly upheld at this school. Very little credence is given to the intelligence, skill, knowledge or ability level of parents. Since this is the prevailing attitude, little parental involvement is reciprocated.