One of the best aspects of this school is the principal/vice principal team. We fled DC in part because of the system's inability to retain fine principals, and we have no regrets. The stability of the principal/vice principal; their steady, cheerful leadership during a time of tremendous growth in the student body, and their responsiveness to parental concerns (prompt responses to e-mails and phone calls) are wonderful and inspiring, day after day. I wish the school were smaller--but good schools like this one attract people (like us) who flee weaker schools.
AMAZING SCHOOL I used to go to BE it was great the kids were nice the teachers were nice i don't know why anyone would give it any less than a five the principal is great and the teachers try to make everything fun plus the community spirit is great it may sound crazy but out of all the schools i ever went to elementary school was my favorite because Bethesda elementary is such a great school
I agree with the foregoing review with an ironic twist. That is that after several years of overwelmed,sometimes first year teachers, the student could need extra help because of lack of instruction. Thirty-eight per cent of the budget in this school goes to special needs children who are mainstreamed. Essentially the class waits while they are helped literally by everyone in the room. They have a helper but that person can't help all of the autistic children in the class at once. So the children and the regular teacher must. After many years of this your child's hope for a good elementary education is toast. They do not receive curriculum assigned by the board of ed. If you the parent do not fill in the blanks, they don't get it. So maybe that seemingly below average child gets a leg up finally after years of neglect in the classroom because of the worst class assignments and parents who aren't picking up the huge slack in the classroom at home. The money drawn out of the budget for special needs children would make a great improvement in the iinstruction for the rest of our children. More teachers who are experienced is where we need to spend our money.
This "inclusive" school ignores good students until they become average. The no child left behind criteria has now defined this school as a failing school. To deal with this the teachers and principal devote an inordinate amount of time and attention to a handful of special needs children to try to bring them up to grade level. These kids have special needs and they should receive special attention but it should not come at the expense of the other students. If a child tests above grade level they are completely ignored at this school and receive very little instruction. Teaching has moved to small group instruction within the classroom. The more advanced students are grouped together and just given materials and expected to teach themselves and rarely get teacher instruction. The underperforming students receive the lions share of the small group instruction. If you have an advanced student then this is not an environment where they will thrive or be challenged. They will only stagnate until they are average.
This is an amazing school. The teachers, staff and parents work well together. The resources Montgomery County and the PTA provide is amazing. Promethean Boards are in every classroom; there are computers/laptops available throughout the school - not just in the computer lab. The arts and physical education remain priorities here as well. The extra curricular activities offered thanks to the PTA are excellent. Very well rounded school!
You get what you pay for with this school. It's free. The staff uses every opportunity to take a day off or close-up early. The student teacher ratio is Average. The parent involvement is Average (a few parents try hard but overall its average). For the most part, students don't have a choice, this is the free school assigned to them.