My child has been attending Hammond Elementary School for 2 years now and I feel that she is receiving an excellent education. The school has been in transition with a new Principal this year and extensive redistricting a few years ago, but I have had good experiences here so far. All of my child's teachers have been really willing to help her learn and the Vice Principal (Mr. Tark) is always friendly.
This is my children's 2nd year at Hammond and they really enjoy going to this school. The teachers are all very friendly and willing to communicate any issues and progress as it occurs throughout the year. The music program is excellent and the class is very diverse in its student body. Each grade has different levels to allow your child to excel at their pace be it top of the class or at the back they will continue to improve. The school very much encourages parent volunteers and has a great PTA system. Being attached to the middle school is a bonus going forward and the school feels very safe and well mannered.
HES is an excellent school. The expectations are very high and the students are always challenged. MY kids love and i am very pleased with the quality of instruction. MY son hated music at his old school, now he loves it thanks to Mrs. Armstrong.
Coming from AES K-2, I've been very pleased with my child's third grade year at HES-as it's such a pivotal year academically The entire third grade team has been excellent! They have been interactive from the start and proactive throughout the year in what works best for the children. The assistant principal, Mr. Tark, is also very involved with the children and approachable.
Obviously a one-star ranking indicates a bias-slanted issue and AES (8) is ranked lower than HES (9) overall. Still both are very high and redistricting can be stressful. Regardless, as a military member who has lived all over, I had no intention of exposing my children to a public school education until I moved to Howard County. HES is top notch with great cultural diversity to prepare my children for the real world. The new VP is awesome! I'm content with having my children educated in Howard County. My sister is a professor and specializes in elementary education. She reviewed the numbers and found we have one of the best schools in one of the best districts nationwide. We frequently share programs with her and she found use of diverse lesson plans and techniques that push children to higher learning standards. I spoke with some military doctors who found humor with colleagues sending children to private schools when they could get a private school-equivalent education from most of the public schools in Howard or Montgomery County. If we don't get redistricted away from Atholton HS (rank=10) I will consider my kids lucky to get a public school eduction here.
My children have all gone to HES and still are. We have always had great communication with all the staff and administration. Sometimes it takes a little on the parent's part to communicate what they need from the staff and administration. You must remember there are over 500 students in the school. Volunteer some so the teachers know who you are...and YES I do work full time and find time to volunteer. If you see what is going on in the school, you will be extremely impressed.
This school could be called Test Prep Academy. I'm tired of my kids spending an entire quarter getting ready for the MSAs. Also - I agree with the poster about communication. The admin. should use the newsletter to let parents know what's going on in the building. right now, for an elementary school, there's no "personality" coming from the school -- all the spirit/community comes from the PTA.
I appreciate each reviewer sharing their perspective, good or bad. Not every teacher, student, and parent is going to have the same experience. At this time, I can give 3 stars and hopefully this will change to 5 stars. Does Hammond provide a safe learning environment? Yes. Are the academics strong? Yes - I would give this alone 5 stars. My children are challenged and I have the teachers to thank. How is the staff? The front office is friendly and kind. Lunch aids and recess aids are great. Why 3 stars? There is a lack of communication or lack of managing parents' expectations about communication. I would give this area a 1. For example, "no news is good news". Parents may not need to hear how wonderful their kids are (or maybe they do), but they may need to hear something. Comments on the report card would be helpful. Kudos to the teachers that take the time to write substantive comments and communicate with parents. Not every parent knows what questions to ask or can easily decipher the letters/numbers. How could Hammond improve in my eyes? Better communication.