I am originally from Massachusetts and moved to Marco island, FL to raise my children. Before moving, my son went to a VERY highly rated elementary school in a very affluent town school in Massachusetts. Tommie Barfield Elementary is a GREAT school. The teachers are fantastic, the curriculum is outstanding and my child loves it. The test scores are excellent & I cannot be happier. I do not understand anything less than 5 stars for this school, not to mention that Marco Island is a wonderful, safe place to raise a family.
TBE could be something amazing... If your child is above or below average, the school does not have the programs to help/promote your child's potential. Strict rules for parent interaction in the classroom - talk to other parents on Marco Island. The county needs to allocate more funds to give this school the additional programs it needs.
TBE is a great school. Most of the teachers are great. I feel that they care about the students as a whole. They do place a lot of emphasis on tests , such as FCATs , but this is a common problem in all the public schools.
Tommie Barfield has excellent teachers. Unfortunately, every year 2 or more teachers transfer to other schools because the intimidating and unfair leadership style of the principal. Some of the best teachers have left to go to other schools. Many teachers are afraid to complain to the school board because of retaliation from the administration. A handful of teachers who have left have complained to the superintendent, yet the same principal has been the for 10 years.
My opinion is that it is a great school depending on the teacher your childs gets. I have 2 children who attend and I have only been impressed by 2 teachers out of the other 3 because they were inexperienced, and not caring in the students as individuals. My childs teacher this year, however, is amazing. I speak with many of the parent because we are involved and most agree that this school expects "robot" children. They must fit a mold, very strict with all ages. My child gets approx 15 min recess and 20 min lunch. I do believe rules are VERY important and must be at the forefront but not in the manner they handle it. I am disappointed in this. I do believe the children learn a lot though and are ahead of that curve mores then other local schools. Also, I have had many issues with bullying of my child and it seems this school "brushes" it off as a "get over it, bullying happens" attitude. Some of the staff members in the office are also rude and short with parents. My siblings and I attended this school as well as my children so I feel that I have a pretty good strong evidence based opinion. I am looking forward to finding a better school at the end of the year.
I had all three of my kids go through TBE and I feel so very fortunate to have been able to send them to a great school. The principal now is Dr J. Westberry who runs a tight ship and years back we had Charles Fronz who was great also. Many, many good teachers.
My daughter was doing 'okay' upon entering school (kindergarten) but was not exceling and wasn't focused or interested. As we lucked out -- we found the teachers to be flexible yet focused; tolerant, individually accommodating universally which to me is almost impossible; daughter's enthusiasm for learning, reading, writing, etc., soared. On FCAT practice she would consistently get 43% to 72%. Now she consistently receives/earnes 84% to 100% (100% frequently). All grades have gone from high 60's to mid 70's and now consistently earnes high 90's and 100's. (O's and S+'s). The principal is amazing and is always 'there'. Thank you Tommie Barfield!!
Tommie Barfield is unbelieveable with wonderful and caring teachers who go above and beyond for their students. It makes for a fantastic learning environment! I would not have wanted my children to go anywhere else.