Students enrolled 644
School leader Lisa Smith

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3070 Fairburn Rd SW
Atlanta, GA 30331

(404) 802-3300
(404) 349-6736
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Map of Deerwood Academy School address.

4 stars
Based on 34 ratings

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January 17, 2013
I would have to say that I am quite impressed with Deerwood Academt. I grew up a gifted and talented student in some of the best schools in NY (which are also ranked some of the best in the country.) I have to say that I was nervous raising a child in Atlanta because of all of the horrid reviews I had gotten about the school systems here. I was zoned for a different school, but found Deerwood online (because it had higher ratings.) Having my son transferred here was the best decision I could possibly have made. My son (even coming from a private Pre-K with a High Reach program and the ability to read already) is being challenged academically, is enamoured with his teacher, understands and can complete rigoroush homework assignments on his own, and LOVES to learn. I am a very involved parent, and I love what I have seen for myself. I have a great relationship with the entire school staff including his teacher (Dawn Wilson) and principal (Noletha High.) Very approachable and well qualified staff, tons of amazing extra curricular activities, and great functions that help tie the school communitey together. I have nothing negative to say. Bravo, Deerwood.

- submitted by a parent
September 27, 2012
Very pleased with Deerwood! My son attends kindergarten in Ms Edwards class. I receive parent communication daily, he is being challenged, he enjoys the school, and I see where the principal Ms. High is reaching out to the community for support. I have neices that attend another Atlanta Public School in Five Points and they always say that my son's school is more rigourous than their school. And I must say they attend an excellent school too (Mary Lin). I listen to children and research things on my own. And up until this point my son loves his school and I am quite pleased with the rapid progression I have seen in his academics within the last couple of months. GO DEERWOOD!

- submitted by a parent
September 27, 2012
I like my school because my teacher helps me and she does not yell at me and the class. She is nice and I like my specials class.

- submitted by a student
July 20, 2012
Deerwood is simply not the same. The magic is missing! Dr. Smith got on our nerves with all those rules and expectations but she ran an excellent school. This place is simply not the same. We need a Local School Council that can put someone with the same energy and beliefs in place. Too many good teachers left this year. I wonder why!

- submitted by a parent
June 19, 2012
As a parent of 3 going here for 4 years, I must agree that under the leadership of Lisa Smith, Principal, this was a premier school with quality programs and a sound instructional focus. This school was on its way to becoming one of the top schools in Atlanta. The new Deerwood does not compare! We (parents) did not think that the change in leadership would matter too much because everything ran like clockwork. We were wrong. I am amazed by the drastic changes that occurred in one year. Everything this year has been mediocre and lackluster. The teachers walked around disgruntled and intimidated by the new principal. Several complained about being written up for every least little thing. The instructional program was watered down, parents were uninvolved, and the student behavior was terrible. We did not even have a Local School Council to consult with this school year. My complaints fell on deaf ears. What used to be a school that people were breaking the doors down to get into because of its quality programs, has become just another watered down school in southwest atlanta (mediocre). I proudly withdrew my children at the end of the school year. We are going charter!

- submitted by a parent
March 23, 2012
I am a parent of two boys that are 9 years old and will be 8 years old in july..I am looking to move into a great area with my kids.I am looking for a great school for my boys to attend to get a great excellent education, As I read the reviews on this school, It seems like I am going to have a problems, which I don't want.My kids are already going through enough with drama at that school now and Im tired of it.All I want for them right now is a very good education with no bullying, and no problems from teachers, students, or principal..If I should have a problem..I would need to know that they are in safe, secure, hands of the school if I should have any problems..So I honestly need to know if Deerwood is the school for my kids to attend being though the reviews is stating that this school has changed from great to issues..So I honestly need a Honest parent to let me know if this is the school for my sons to attend, knowing they are going through such a hard time in the school they are in now? Can I get a honest yes or no no for this school.

- submitted by a parent
September 14, 2011
I am the parent of a student attending Deerwood Academy. I am myself an educator and find the instructional program in place to be challenging. My son is a third grader and has received a top notch education at Deerwood since Kindergarten. Contrary to the previous post, I am more than pleased with my son's educational experience and the dedication of the teachers. I greatly appreciate the new approach to leadership and will continue to support endeavors and new initiatives designed to boost the whole school experience.

- submitted by a parent
September 11, 2011
This is my child's fourth year at Deerwood Academy and I am appalled by how quickly the instructional program has gone down hill with the change in leadership. Every program or event has been disorganized. Teachers are allowed to be disrespectful toward parents and mean to children. For the last few years, I have listened to teachers complaining about how much they had to do under the demands of Dr. Lisa Smith. Like a fool, I bought into siding with them and often requested for her to give some relief with the expectations. I now see that it was necessary. This once great school is falling apart. The new superintendent needs to get on his knees and beg Dr. Smith to come back before it is too late. I am one of many discouraged parents. The first Coffee and Conversation was a joke. This is what happens when there is no parent or community input when hiring a new principal. So sad!

- submitted by a parent
no rating October 02, 2010
Great delivery of education and caring!!

- submitted by a parent
no rating September 26, 2010
It's a Great School with Great Leadership!!

- submitted by a parent
no rating September 25, 2010
I love Deerwood Academy because it is a nurturing environment for my children. For four years, my children have all experienced and educational experience unlike any other in the Atlanta Public School system. The vision of the leader is superb, and her passion for properly and effectively education children is felt from the moment you walk into the door. In addition, the teachers my children have received instruction from have been a joy to work with. They really are open to partnering with parents to ensure a great education for your child. I would have to also add that Deerwood has an open door policy, and is very open to parents volunteering and getting involved with the school.

- submitted by a parent
no rating March 23, 2010
Deerwood Academy needs its principal Lisa Smith back! I am alarmed by the drastic change in programs, expectations, and momentum. Many parents were concerned back in December 2009 about the change in leadership fearing that the change would be to the detriment of the school. Our fear has become reality. The school is simply not the same. They removed the visionary that had high expectations and worked her butt off to make a special school for children and slowly but surely the school is becoming another Fickett and Continental Colony-subpar programming. I am distraught with no options in SW Atlanta. We need our great leader back. We have suffered a great loss!

- submitted by a parent
February 26, 2010
This review submitted without content.


- submitted by a student
no rating October 15, 2009
My daughter attended deerwood academy three years ina row. I love deerwood academy. The teachers are very involved. The principal is dedicated.

- submitted by a parent
October 09, 2009
My child attended Deerwood Academy last year, and although we had challenges with bullying and such, I believe the principal was proactive in resolving the issue. The teachers are dedicated and have the vision to ensure all students get a quality education. With further support from the board of education, this school could easily up its rating and become one of the top elementary schools in APS.

- submitted by a parent
August 30, 2009
Love, Love, Love, this school. Ditto to the last parent's comments. I am thrilled that my son attends this school. I was sad to hear about the summer 2008 re-test but everyone knows that things are never the same as the regular school year. I was not surprised to hear that the Principal was not there. This would not have happened under her watch. I think all parents need to lock arms and make Deerwood the #1 school in the district (truth be told it is already there minus the scandal). There is no other school in the district like it. The teachers and Principal can't do it alone. My plan is to be even more involved this year. I am so happy that there will be new blood on the PTA. It really did not do a lot to support the school (Just a lot of talk and no action).

- submitted by a parent
August 27, 2009
I am proud to be a Deerwood parent. It took something as awful as the summer re-test for me to see just how much this school means to me and the community. Several parents met in the community to decide on what we would do to better support our school, the teachers, and the school principal. We love what the children are offered and we believe in the principal's vision. To any new parent, I believe that this is wonderful place for childrent to learn and grow. The staff is just as awsome as the leader. What an excellent Open House and school opening.

- submitted by a parent
July 16, 2009
This review submitted without content.


- submitted by a parent
July 12, 2009
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- submitted by a parent
April 20, 2009
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- submitted by a parent
November 28, 2008
Both of my children have attended Deerwood since its inception in 2004. One of my children have moved on to the 6th grade and is doing well socially and academically. Deerwood Academy has credits in her already being recognized has a student to represent in the honor band and chorus. The vision of the principal to support the children via the arts throughout the classroom and the clubs have impacted my daughter's first year in middle school, tremendously. Also, it will continue to enhance the growth of my other daughter who has 2 more years at Deerwood. I constantly praise Deerwood for its efforts of striving to become the first performing arts elementary school and developing the talents of our children outside of the classroom. The afterschool clubs include guitar and piano lesson, step team, stock market club, science club, etc. Deerwood is a wonderful school and deserves more parental support.

- submitted by a parent
October 12, 2008
This review submitted without content.


- submitted by a student
no rating October 01, 2008
My son has been attending this school since August and I love it. We moved from TN and the staff are so invested in the student's learning process. My son is in the 3rd grade and he is constantly writing papers and completing projects. The kids even have a computer lab and offer a plethora of clubs such as robotics. The principal seems to be a 'stickler' for academics and it shows in the students and teachers. I even got something in the mail yesterday about them taking a group of students to Paris, France!

- submitted by a parent
July 15, 2008
I had to share my experience with parents because it speaks to how great this school really is. I was angry about my son not passing a portion of the CRCT and having to attend summer school. I really felt as though the teacher and school failed my son. On the retest day, I spoke with the Principal at length about my son's progress. She not only helped me to see exactly what my son's strengths and weaknesses were but also gave me strategies to use at home. I have been trying these strategies for the last week and honestly they are working. Parents it is one thing to have an instructionally sound teacher but it is even more when the Principal knows her stuff. I told her that these strategies needed to be marketed! I am grateful for her help and patience with my venting.

- submitted by a parent
May 15, 2008
I was impressed by the students' confidence, manners, and engagement outside of the classroom. This really is a 'free' private school. I attended the volunteer breakfast and left bragging to other people about what the students are doing. I encourage other principals and teachers from schools in the area to come and see what this school does for children. The one flaw that I have to add is that some of the parents are very immature and inappropriate.

- submitted by a parent
April 08, 2008
I am proud to be a parent of two children that attend Deerwood Academy. Because we moved, this is actually our last year at Deerwood. The few years that my boys have attended have been wonderful. They have grown so much. One thing that I would like to share with any future parents of children is to trust the leader. She is phenomenal in what she does. She brings lots of opportunities to the students, she demands that the staff have high expectations for the children, and she rids the school of people who are not working on behalf of children. She is one tough cookie in an elegant kind of way. It took me a minute to learn her style. I can only hope that the new school that my children are going to will offer half as many opportunities. I will truly miss this school.

- submitted by a parent
April 02, 2008
This is my daughter's second year at Deerwood. I am amazed at what is offered to the students at this school. I cannot always volunteer because my job is very hectic as a nurse. I was able to make to the Visual Arts Demonstration of Learning tonight. The students were able to show what they had learned this quarter through the integration of art. I absolutely began to weep. I cannot believe what my daughter was able to tell me about the various ecosystems based on the art that the students completed. This is the most elaborate art exhibit that I have ever seen created by children. My God, this was unbelievable. This school should be showcased on the Oprah Winfrey Show for an innovative instructional program. I am blown away. I love the principal's vision for excellence and engagement. Great job Deerwood staff!

- submitted by a parent
March 27, 2008
My child can read!!!! O.K. I am sold. I enrolled my child into Deerwood last year. He was a struggling reader. I was sick about it. I tried everything from Kumon to Sylvan. The teacher that he was assigned to worked with me directly on how to support my son at home. I met with her every other Wednesday for a parent conference. I am the proud mother of a child that is not only reading but enjoys it. Thank you Mrs. Smith for knowing who to hire. Thank you Mrs. Nelms for being patient and true to my son.

- submitted by a parent
no rating February 26, 2008
I think that Deerwood is a great school. Mrs. Smith has a handle on the students and you can immediately tell that her interest in the children is genuine. The school is inviting and no parental concern is minimized.

- submitted by a parent
February 10, 2008
Finally, a school that makes sense. I have found a public school with a private school experience. I have never been more satisfied with an instructional program. The Principal, Mrs. Lisa Smith is doing a phenomenal job. Her expectations for student performance is evident. The teachers and students understand the high expectations and live up to them. What an excellent school!

- submitted by a parent
August 06, 2007
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- submitted by a parent
July 26, 2007
Honestly, I had my doubts about another school in this southwest area. The first year that Deerwood opened, I opted for my son to go to a private school. Unfortunately, he had a very difficult year. I started to hear great things about the public school that he was zoned for. I decided to enroll him into Deerwood Academy last year. I must say that for the last two years, I have been extremely impressed by the caliber of instruction and programs at this school. You can tell that the principal and staff have very high expectations for the children. I am still a little leery about some of the 'ridiculous behaving' parents but I gather that you have some 'nuts' in every school. Overall the school is an excellent place for children to learn. Great Job Deerwood Staff!

- submitted by a parent
July 07, 2007
Yeah! AYP three years in a row-Distinguished Status. The scores for 2007 are in and once again, the children have made great gains. The administration and teachers should be proud of the annual improvements. I am proud of our children.

- submitted by a parent
July 07, 2007
Deerwood Academy is definitely one of the top schools in Atlanta Public Schools. The instructional program is excellent, the facility is clean, the professional teaching staff is highly qualified. As a retired principal, I am proud that my grandchildren attend this school. Hats off to Mrs. Lisa Smith. Keep up the great work.

- submitted by a community member
July 05, 2007
My daughter has been attending Deerwood Academy since it opened. I am impressed with Dr. Smith's strength. What a great leader she is. Because of her leadership, we have the best teachers that offer a top notch instructional program. The school is new, the facility is beautiful and clean, the staff is young and energetic, best of all they are highly professional. Thank you Dr. Beverly Hall and School Board members for putting someone in place that the 'SWATS' definitely needed. My daughter is doing very well academically and loves to go to school. (P.S.-I am at the school all of the time and have never witnessed any fighting or bullying. The children are very well behaved).

- submitted by a community member
July 05, 2007
One of the most difficult decisions I made was to move my child from a private school to a public school. I can honestly say that my apprehension was laid to rest this school year. What a wonderful school and environment to learn. Mrs. Smith has done a phenomenal job in just three years. I must say that I am impressed with her professionalism, the high expectations that she has for teachers, the teacher motivation and attitude toward going the extra mile, and the extracurricular activities that are offered. I recommend Deerwood Academy with the highest regard. Thanks for a wonderful year for my child. Oh by the way parents, the test scores are steadily going up.

- submitted by a parent
June 02, 2007
Deerwood Academy is a great school that I recommend that the parents take their kids to. The teachers always their in after school when needed to help your child in the subject where they are fallen short on. Also they have activities an after school that your child enjoys doing so for me I give Deerwood a A.

- submitted by a parent
May 31, 2007
Our family relocated to Atlanta from Miami, Florida at the beginning of February 2007. My two older girls had a great transition and have assimilated very well! The teachers are motivated and engage them thoroughly in the learning experience. I find the principal to be a great role model, and she leads by example. We have not experienced bullying or out of control behavior. There are exciting extracurricular activities that my children have been participating in and look forward to starting back up next semester. Our youngest girl is looking forward to starting school there in the fall, particularly because of her older sisters' positive experience. The PTA is very active and continue to engage the interest of other parents as they advocate for the children. All in all, my family and I very much appreciate Deerwood Academy and the positive impact it is having on our children. Thank You,

- submitted by a teacher
May 22, 2007
My experience is that the children are out of control. The teachers cannot control the classrooms therefore they don't get much teaching done. My child experienced bulling from other children from the 2nd week of school and I reported this issues sometimes weekly and it was never really resolved.

- submitted by a parent
May 19, 2007
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- submitted by a parent
April 25, 2007
This review submitted without content.


- submitted by a parent
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Deerwood Academy School
3070 Fairburn Rd SW, Atlanta, GA  30331
(404) 802-3300
Last modified Deerwood Academy School is a Public school that serves grades PK-5. It has received a GreatSchools rating of 3 out of 10 based on academic quality.
Deerwood Academy School Rating: 4 out of 5 based on 41 reviews. Top