Been at Dewey for two years now and am disappointed. Teachers and the principal rarely communicate with parents unless they are pushed to do so. My kid started first grade and it took two and a half weeks for the teacher to email parents or even send a piece of paper home with info on classroom schedule, homework expectations, allergies in the classroom, etc. I tried reaching out several times and was ignored.
The principal is friendly and the kids like him but he seems so afraid of meddling parents, he hesitates to say yes to any parent suggestions. Parent volunteers in the lunchroom like they have at several other schools in District 65? Nope. Asking teachers to send home weekly or biweekly summaries of what the kids are doing in class, or even just a copy of the lesson plan? Sorry, can't insist on that. Requesting that daily homework be graded and returned? Ummm, no. My kid's teacher has returned about ten graded homework assignments in eight months-they have homework four days a week!
If I didn't believe that public school education is best for children, my child would be in a private right now. We are looking to move into Washington or Dawes-same diverse school population with better, more responsive teachers and principals.
Dewey is a wonderful school. The new principal is wonderful, the teachers are very dedicated and have a vested interest in their students, the parents pitch in together. It is not only a school, but a really caring community.
My step-son came to live with us this summer, and I'm so glad our house happens to be zoned for Dewey! All the staff, including the new principal, seem very engaged in meeting the needs of the children. His teacher promptly answeres e-mails and is very approachable. My boy's classroom has laptops for all the kids to use, the PTA is VERY involved (they even have a Compost Committee!), and they use positive recognition (Tiger Tickets) to reward the good behavior, instead of constanty drawing attention to poor behavior. This school seems very progressive, even in their methods of teaching. I really like that all the teachers can post the homework assignements on-line. There is also a new Multi Purpose Room that was built this past summer. Too bad this school wasn't around when I was a kid!
We moved to Evanston three years ago and particularly wanted our children to attend Dewey School. We have not been disappointed. All of our children have had fantastic teachers that are caring and energetic. They really have gone the extra mile. We also love the parent community at Dewey. The parents at this school are highly involved and deeply care about education. There is a brand new principal this year as well he is great with parents and students. We couldn't have asked for a better school.
The way this principal treats people is unprofessional and outrageous. (I wish others would not excuse his behavior.) He seems to be all about tooting his own horn (knack for hiring talent?). This is hardly the best school in Evanston.
Our two kids attend Dewey. Lots of weird policies-- like on cold or wet days, they are forced to watch TV as "indoor recess". They never get to meet their teacher before the first day of school. Not to mention that the sun rises and sets with "tiger tickets" which is their only means of dealing with behavior. I feel bad for the kids that need any kind of pro social opportunities--it's just not allowed here.
The principal has been here for a very long time. While dedicated, he's not the most open person and the school is not the most progressive. I wish he would move on, and give the chance for some fresh air to come into the school. And while not inspiring, my kids do, at least, feel safe going to school there.