Teachers at this school are very effective because they are able to specialize and individualize lesson plans to unique groups of learners. This school uses the "Tier" system to place students into classes. This model has worked very well for my daughter and has helped her to achieve higher standards than she would in a traditional structured classroom.
My daughter left her lunch at home one day and was extremely upset. I received a phone call from the principal at Hickory Hills during my work day to let me know how upset my daughter was about this incident. I was very impressed that even the principal at this school knew my daughter and cared enough to call me about what I would consider a "silly thing" but to my daughter it was important.
Hickory Hills Elementary provides a warm and caring environment for all students. Most of the staff know my child by her first name and treat her with respect and kindness. Teachers go out of the way to reach all levels of learners as well as provide individualized support. I would encourage parents who are "school shopping" to make an appointment with Hickory Hills for a personal tour. I did this when considering schools in the area. The principal met with me and answered all of my questions as well as showed me around the school. I was very skeptical of Hickory Hills at first based on some of the reviews, however, it has surpassed all of my expectations.
I work as a preschool teacher for a private school where I had my son attending. I took him out because he didn't seem to get the attention or education he needed, he was also picking up bad behaviors from other students. My husband and I moved him here and we were immediately happy. His teacher was always in communication with us and worked very hard to help us get our son back on the right track. He is doing very well there again this year and again I am pleased with the open communication between his teacher and us. The staff are friendly and welcoming, they put in a lot of time, effort and hard work. We couldn't be happier!
I live in the neighborhood and recently visited the school to see for myself what level of education is provided. I was pleased to see such a wonderful and creative school in my neighborhood! Our neighbors whose children attend Hickory Hills are very pleased. I was in the school most of the day and did not observe any negative behaviors from faculty, staff or students. Overall, the school appears to be exactly what parents want in an elementary school: rigorous course work, a fun learning environment, and caring, involved faculty.
Racial problems are visible in the 4th and 5th grade. Many parents pull children out because of the way those teachers talk to the students. Often calling them names. Parents have gone to administration before but it still continues. MCAA is the only saving grace if your child is smart enough to get in. Otherwise, you are stuck. Sadly, the new administration is coming from a school in cobb that just isn't up to par. The test scores from Hickory Hills are the lowest in the district. If you can, apply to another school, because this is just a sinking ship. It seems if you are not white, your voice doesn't matter here, sadly, a common theme it seems for this school. White parents get to group all their kids into one class... it's very obvious
We started our daughter here in K, and she went through 1 and 2, but now that we made it to 3rd grade, we decided to move her over to MCAA. Luckily she was grouped with "similar" children as she was in the minority here, and they had the teachers we as parents requested. It was fine when they were younger, but as they get older, we knew we had to make a change. We are not fond of any 3-5 teachers at this school, and sadly have heard horror stories about the ways the 5th grade teachers talk to kids. Several parents have made this aware to admin and although they are changing people around, it still doesn't help. MCAA just can offer more for 3-5 than sadly this school can. The demographics are not what they need to be. Too much change yearly, and with the new admin, they are young and trying too many changes that it feels like most staff are resisting. We are excited about the work our daughter will do at MCAA, and that a good amount of her friends are moving over too. Sad to see what this school has become in retrospect to what it used to be.
We started at Hickory Hills last August and I went into it a little nervous about sending my kindergartener to a public school. I have been blown away by the love and care that my daughter has received. Each teacher (art, music, dance, drama and classroom) made her feel welcome, accepted and valued. This is such a beautiful environment for children to explore their talents and gifting and become uniquely "them". We LOVE the staff and the small classes. We could not be happier.