I am parent to a kindergartner at this school this year and I have had nothing but great things to report about this school. My child's teacher is wonderful and caring. My child is SO excited to learn from her teacher and the classroom community that has been built with the other students has been great! She has been growing educationally by leaps and bounds. My child has allergies to nuts and the teacher contacted me about alternative snacks for her so she doesn't feel "left out" of the fun. Also, during snack time, her teacher encouraged all the students to bring healthy snacks of veggies or fruits to snack on... I haven't experienced the negatives that the other people posting have brought up. I would totally recommend this school to other parents.
This school provides good education (2 starts for that) but wellness program isn't the best... Not enough exercise throughout the day and other thing that bugged me for all 3 years that my daughter attended this school is that children are often rewarded with candy or other junk food for good work by teachers. Yes, they are given treats like pets. Parents are also welcome to stop by with donuts or whatever treat they wish to bring. I brought this issue to the principle several times through the years but was told that "This is an American culture and that I should adopt to it"... I should mention that I was not born in US and still have an accent but I lived most of my adult life here in US and feel I have adopted very well :) I tried supplying classroom with other little things like pencils, stickers, erasers for rewards but it was disregarded. This school simply isn't open for new winds to make it better. Also I must mention that classes are huge (25 kids per class!) and no wonder teachers aren't as friendly as they could be with fewer children. Next year we are moving to a different district. I would not recomend this school if you think outside the box.
The kindergarten teacher is fake 100%. She is all about her !! The second grade teacher isn't qualified to teach period and she was moved from a higher grade down. The school is only as good as its principal. He doesn't come out of his office too much. Last year, in the winter, the kids were falling all over the playground and sidewalks that were sheets of ice and no one there cared. Thank god for our children he is retiring. Can't be soon enough. There are two seasoned teachers in this school that still care about the success of students. One in second grade and one in sixth grade. The rest can care less and are not willing to help. Fifth grade teacher has got to be the worst. She is clueless and if you confront her with her mistakes grading paper she makes your kids life miserable the rest of the school year. Take note people. This school wouldn't have what they have if it's wasn't for the parents.
We have two children who have attended Fairmount School (one now going into 6th grade, another will be in 8th grade) and have nothing but positive, glowing reviews for the school, the staff, the principal, and the PTA's efforts to create a nurturing, well-rounded and top-notch educational experience for our kids. Having moved to Downers Grove from the North Shore when our first child was just an infant, we had heard good things about Downers Grove and the quality of District 58 schools. Once we became part of the Fairmount community we found it to be a fantastic environment for our children and have been more than pleased with our children's education and preparation for matriculation. Perhaps those who left a negative review failed to get involved and participate actively in their own children's education? We loved our kindergarten teacher, have had nothing but positive experiences with the principal, and were thrilled with the level of commitment, dedication and volunteerism that the PTA devoted to making this school a great place for ALL of our children to learn. Would highly recommend this school, and this community to anyone considering moving into this area.
We have had 2 kids at Fairmount - one just graduated (now at O'Neill) and another going into 6 grade. I must rebut the parent who said that Fairmount was not a good place to get an education. Our kids excelled there, made great friendships, became involved with after school activities - and received a very good education. In a world where Yelp type reviews give the reader a 30 second snapshot of a unhappy reviewer, I feel it's best to get an overall picture of the school. We've been heavily involved with PTA and I've never shared a coffee or doughnut with a PTA member because the meetings are at night. Yes we work on fundraising to supply our kids with the best technology and chance to succeed. The principal is engaged with the parents and the teachers are accessible and "real" friendly. NEVER had any issues with the communication or problem solving. Given the option of sending our kids to Fairmount School again - I would do it in a heartbeat.
The PTA has added so much parent involvement to this elementary school, bringing funding to push this school up to the elite level of Hillcrest and other Great Schools. Mini iPads are provided for all but one grade (1st) in 2014 in an expanded program making it perhaps the best public school in the state and this is within a town cited as the 2nd best place for kids in the US besides Boise, ID. While two prior posts mention a Kindergarten cop veteran, it's noteworthy that veteran has been very effective in teaching perhaps the most people and generations in all of the DG community. Tough teacher? Yes. A double poster's prior post says 'fake friendly'; I don't know about that. Effective? Ask the generations of students and parents that had her as well and you'll have an overwhelming majority say 'yes, effective'! When you reach the 1st through 6th grades, you'll continue to find teachers engaged. And particulary by 4th increasingly challenging the kids to prepare them for O'Neil Jr High. Fairmount is a Great School with an involved principal, teachers and parents working together for improvements each year.
Very unhappy with this school! We saw great ratings and moved here from the city without digging deeper assuming all suburban schools are great. What a disappointment it was... Kindergarten teacher felt fake and is not warm nor friendly with kids. Teachers and parents are allowed to feed kids junk food whenever they feel like bringing treats and if you have a kid with allergies - your kid can sit and watch others eat. Cruel! DG wellness policy states that no junk can be sold at school but if it's free - eat away... First grade - same story. We have one more kid that will be ready for K this fall and she isn't going there. Downers Grove is a nice town with great parks and a lot to offer for family life but kids spend half day in school and it has to be good... We are moving :(
School has great ratings but sadly it all looks great on the outside only. We tried to make it work for 3 years but it didn't. Kindergarden teacher was mean and fake friendly. My both kids didn't want to go to school from the first week (and they both loved going to pre-k!). They always complained about teacher being mad (K and 1st grade especially). I agree with the post above about the first grade teacher being fake and inexperienced as well. Second grade was a little better but it didn't get to the good where it would make us to stay. Principal seems like a good person but school is small, there's a lot of gossip and it is set in the old ways where new/fresh ideas are not welcome. PTA is for coffee and donuts and the main concern for them is to raise money... We were able to move and transferred kids to different district. It's been almost a year now and it's a great feeling for me as a parent to see my kids finally being exited to go to school. I do not recommend this school if you want your child to be exited about learning from the very start.
I love Fairmount School becuase they really are an extension of our families in this community. The school is small, the class sizes are small and the children get the exact attention they need! My son struggles in school and has a hard time paying attention and focused. The teachers and staff there are very good about making sure he stays with the class and does not get left behind. They are all available for the families at just about any time. They make me feel and know that I am the parent and main educator of my son and together, we can make sure these kids know they can be and do anything they want to.