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.
The school is very good. The teachers are nice and seem to care. I do not like the neighborhood the school is in. They need to clean the entire are up. Its almost scary.
Ridgecrest has so much to offer students. The staff is dedicated and the school is full of knowledge for the children. The principal is a wonderful person who truley cares about the students and staff. I think all schools should be like Ridgecrest.
Great school. My son has attended for three years and loves it. It's nice to have him with children who think like him.
The magnet program at this school for the gifted is a wonderful program and environment for kids who strive to excel and need to be challenged. The staff does an excellent job of providing unique learning opportunities to the students which are exciting and fresh. I would highly recommend this school.
The program is tailored for these kids with special abilities and needs. The teachers have a higher level of training than other general education schools. Don't worry about the neighborhood, school environment is great.
wonderful school for gifted students. Parent involvement is very high. Classes challenge even the gifted students.
Ridgecrest offers the only full time gifted program in the county. While I do see areas where improvement is needed and necessary, they do try to accommodate students and their needs. The teachers are somewhat accessible via phone and notes, though unfortunately not all use email. Whle my child is getting better accomodations then he would in a general program, I still feel that he is not fully challenged. The spanish progam is terrible. The first grade play was fantastic...
We are so fortunate to have such a wonderful school as Ridgecrest Elementary and Center for Gifted Studies in Pinellas county. My children have attended the gifted magnet program for almost 5 years now and the curriculmn and staff are both wonderful. Students are challenged daily learning problem solving techniques and advanced studies. The school has arterial busing and serves students from the entire county making Ridgecrest a wonderful opportunity for the gifted student seeking challenge in school academics.
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The Community Rating is the school’s average rating from its community members (e.g., parents, students, and school staff). The highest possible rating is five stars; the lowest is one star.
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