I hate to rain on anyone's parade, but really think about what you want for your child before sending them here. I have found my kid, now in grade 5 Spanish Immersion Gifted, has no time for anything but homework after school since the beginning of 4th grade, although I am constantly told my child is slower and unorganized and the work shouldn't take the 2-3 hours per night that it does. If you are ok with that amount of work, then send your children here. (I am pleased with the Spanish Immersion program tho....my child is bilingual now because of it) From what I know this is the best public school choice in the county, but it's hard to see my child so stressed out and with no time to be a kid. I wish my kid had time to focus on other things or just have down time or be a kid after school, but I guess that is what this school system with its standards and FCAT has wrought. Piles of work with no room for creativity, thought, expression and wonder.....ie childhood. :-(
I want to start off by saying this is our 2nd year at Ridgecrest with my son and my daughter will be joining us next year. I am a member of the PTA and I love being involved here at Ridgecrest. We have a very dedicated staff and the teachers are the Best of the best. We also have the gifted program here and it is amazing what they do with the students. We have many different programs here that we offer for the students and their families. Last year was very exciting and we are really looking forward to what this year has to bring.
Ridegecrest elemantary has been a blessing for the families in our community. I am a Program Assistant for the Neighborhood Family Center in Largo which works with many children who attend Ridgecrest. The parents, staff, vounteers and children who all participate in the schools activities have done a wonderful job working together to make sure the children are ready and able for school. We work together also as part of a 360 program to help those who are struggling or need so need some tutoring. I am grateful to be part of such an outstanding team.
As a parent and a teacher, I have had the pleasure of educating children at this school for over 6 years. My two children are a part of both the gifted and regular education program. Ridgecrest has a great sense of unity and the community truly comes together for all children.
I LOVE this school's gifted program! Students work above grade level in reading and use the Everyday Math series which is considerable above grade level for Florida. Teachers are helpful and challenge gifted learners to meet their potential. Several enrichment activities are also available: Scratch Club, Chess Club, Mad Science, National Honor Society, and Band are a few offered.
Love, Love, Love this school. Oldest child is now in fourth grade. Every teacher he has had over the last four years has been amazing. Getting a fabulous education in a nurturing environment!
Engaging and challenging. The teachers are extremely qualified and want the children to reach their highest potential. The gifted magnet program is developmentally age appropriate. Don't let anyone scare you, that has not experienced this school first hand, tell you your child might have too much work. Not true. No school can compare to the fantastic education received here. It is a wonderful, safe, and unique school.
My children are in the magnet-full time gifted program at Ridgecrest. I have been very pleased with the leadership from Mr. Moss, his willingness to try new things and reach out to the community for help. The front office staff is always cheerful and willing to help. The teachers seem to really enjoy teaching at Ridgecrest and this year, I think everyone can feel a since of pride in our school. We've had great experiences with the teachers we've had over the years and I'm very pleased with the education my children are receiving. I think more parents would be involved if they knew where they where to help. The communication is getting better each year. I feel very lucky to have my children at Ridgecrest!
We just LOOOOOOVVVVEE this school. Our son just switched from a Charter school into the Spanish immersion program at Ridgecrest and we feel that we have finally found what we had been looking for. The program is challenging and the teachers are amazing. Now our daughter is on the waiting list for 2nd Grade also in the Spanish program. Ridgecrest gifted program really is incredible.
Many of the reviews I read on this school are older. Our son is in the gifted program here. We transferred him from a charter school three weeks into 1st grade. An extremely difficult decision...we made the right one. He is engaged, challenged, and has probably learned more in the two months he has been here, then he would have in an entire school year at his old school. An excellent school.
My son has been a student at Ridgecrest since kindergarten and he is graduating as a 5th grader this week. I have been extremely happy with the structured educational setting, the challenging curriculum and the positive learning environment. I would be remiss if I did not acknowledge and applaud the professionalism and personal attention the teachers, staff ,and administration give to all the students. The principal, Mrs. Benkert, has shown an exceptional sensitivity to the diverse student population. I have witnessed negative criticism because of the open-arms and open-heart acceptance of Mrs. Benkert and the high bar she sets for her teachers, staff and faculty to ensure all students are treated with respect and dignity. Such negativity is unfounded and unwarranted. At a time when the constraints, rules and regulations placed by government are strangling the limited resources, time and effectiveness of our schools, Mrs. Benkert, and Ridgecrest's teachers, staff and administration are to be commended for continuing to hold fast to the core of what teaching means. KUDOS to each and everyone one of you. Sincerely, Pamela Warren
I agree to you 100% . It is true for the gifted students and families as well .
MEAN STAFF front desk lady's are mean and snarl at parents one brunette thinner lady nice but that blond heavy set woman is flat mean to the kids and the parents loved telling her I was taking my kids out of that school! School only cares for the Gifted kids. My special needs daughter went here the teacher had never had a child like her it was just wrong my 1st grader got picked on and beat up. This school is in a rough area so if your kids are not gifted find a upper scale school. If your child is special needs then RUN FAST!!!!!!!!
Horrible school for the traditional children. The principal simply does not address the traditional students needs at all!. This school is strictly for the gifted. I pulled my child.
Both of my children attend Ridgecrest. I interviewed 7 schools before my oldest started. I don't know where I would have my kids if not here. No matter what private school, there is none better in Pinellas County. I get everything my child needs, enjoy the most culturally diverse school in the county and have a private school setting with parents that are involved all in a public setting. The biggest downfall is that even the advanced programs in middle school don't do these kids justice after this program!
Our daughter attended the gifted program at Ridgecrest and is currently in High School. I can remember interviewing the teacher before we elected to have her attend Ridgecrest saying its like a free private education at a public school. She was right! I strongly recommend parents consider Ridgecrest if their son or daughter has the opportunity.
my son was in the traditional ED. we withdrew him and put him back in private school. needs more parent involvement, more avenues and support for teachers when it comes to discipline and treatment of hyperactive kids. sadly, some children do feel treated less well then the gifted classes. 2nd class.
I think Ridgecrest is a great school. Yes it can be a long ride for children. There are many parents that car pool which can make the ride shorter. The best thing about Ridgecrest are the teachers, all of them gifted or regular ed. They truly love their kids. The kid share PE time and lunch time. Which is great for the children to be able to have friends from every aspect of life. The area is very safe. My children have been there for 4 years and they love it. If I had to make the choice over I would pick Ridgecrest over any other school. The gifted program has lots of homework the 1st year because the kids are not use to it. After that it is easy. Children thrive when challenged. Being among their peers and not being smartest anymore.
The gifted program is great, and the teachers are certainly wonderful. Staff was efficient if not always friendly. On the downside, homework load is high, and coupled with a long bus ride (up to over an hour each way) you may find yourself with a child without much time for a childhood and a school thats just too far to be truely involved in. Also, the polarization between the poorer 'normal' kids and the more affluent 'gifted' children is somewhat creepy. Watch your balance, and think of your whole child. A great choice is you live close enough to make it part of your life.
Good school for Gifted. Horrible school for general education students. I had children in both gifted and general education at this school. It was like two different schools. Principal favors the gifted parents and students for sure.
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