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GreatSchools Rating

Dr. Thomas L. Higdon Elementary School

Public | PK-5 | 421 students

 

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Last modified
Community Rating

3 stars

Community Rating by Year
2014:
No new ratings
2013:
Based on 1 rating
2012:
No new ratings
2011:
Based on 1 rating

Teacher quality

Principal leadership

Parent involvement

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9 reviews of this school


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Posted June 9, 2013

We have found the teachers to be very good at this school. They appear to genuinely care and have done an excellent job teaching my child. The administrative staff does seem to be lacking however. They mostly just seem out to lunch or something. I see some reviews about how the school encourages parents' involvement. If by encouraging you mean they give you lots of paper to cut and make copies of, then yes, you would be right. I wanted to be able to help in the classroom with things that are difficult for just one teacher to accomplish, but was told during the volunteer orientation that volunteers could go check the boxes to see what the teacher needs done. Volunteers were not allowed in the classrooms. I have also been concerned with the lack of safety precautions the school has taken. Primarily, volunteers wandering the halls are not given background checks. It would also be nice to see staff in the hallways (especially by the front door) when kids are arriving at school. Anyone could waltz in there and go wherever they please with no accountability. I've seen it happen.
—Submitted by a parent


Posted October 10, 2011

I love this school!!!! We could not be more happier with this school. They still celebrate all the holidays and are very hands on! They love parent involvement. I think it is the closest we can get to a private school. The teachers are very nice and helpful as well as the rest of the staff and all the kids are happy when you go into the school like they enjoy being there. I do not agree with the score of a 6 for this school. I have done research on this school and others in the county and Higdon has the highest testing scores and most certified teachers who love what they do.
—Submitted by a parent


Posted June 24, 2010

No school is perfect. Overall, I have been very happy with Higdon Elementary. The teachers are excellent. The P.E. teacher is every child's favorite and I am paticularly fond of the librarian who obviously loves children and her job. Curriculum is well rounded, although indoctrination into a liberal viewpoint is over the top, in my opinion. But I think this is common in most public schools. There are plenty of clubs and extra-curricular activities for every interest, including a very effective chess club. Parental involvement is highly encouraged. On the one hand, this provides transparency into the schools inner workings. The downside of this is that childrens academic rewards are based on the parents level of volunteerism, as opposed the childs actual performance level. It's all in who you know. Such a shame, as promising children are purposefully overlooked.
—Submitted by a parent


Posted March 18, 2010

I would like to improve to have more interesting books in the library for kids to be intereste. Also have more activities and encourage kids to read more and more. also to reward them for if they read a lot of books or atleast read.
—Submitted by a parent


Posted September 3, 2009

My daughter is a student at Dr. Higdon. We have been here for two years now, and we WILL be moving and putting her in a different school. Her 'primary' teachers are great. Some of the other staff is not! One teacher in particular is like a drill sergant. The principal boasts all the time about this is the best elementary school in the county (and at times state). And that everyone wants their kids to come here or to work there. Just because you say something out load, does not make it so! I've met alot of parents of students who are either current or former students and as of yet, I have not met one person who is happy with this school! At times, it seems like they are more interested in the bottom line and 'appearnces' than anything else.
—Submitted by a parent


Posted September 9, 2008

I am not impressed by the staff at this school. Hopefully one day there's a change over and things will improve. The curriculum is substandard. I am very involved in my children's education both at school and at home; however, I found this school to be lacking. And it definitely shows in how this school rates compared with other primary schools in Charles County.
—Submitted by a parent


Posted August 20, 2008

My daughter's math and reading skills have really accelerated since going to this school 2 years ago. The teachers don't just teach the kids what is required for the present grade, the actually prepare them to excel in the next grade the following year! The Principle and staff are wonderful! Parents should be involved and show an interest in their child's education. You will then appreciate the talent and dedication of the staff at Higdon Elementary.
—Submitted by a parent


Posted May 29, 2008

The principal and teacher for my kindergartener were very unsupportive of parent involvement. Also, if you accidently drive in the wrong way (the sign was extremely small--they've since replaced it) during bus hours, the Principal will remember you and seems to hold a personal vendetta against the person. I'm very surprised at the unprofessionalism amongst the leadership at this school. I disenrolled my child and took him to a different school (which has been very supportive of parent involvement!!!).
—Submitted by a parent


Posted May 14, 2007

This school is wonderfull. I feel that that they welcome any and all parent involvment. The pricipal and teachers all work together to provide a continuity in the school. My son has excelled in his education at this school and I am sure he will continue to do so. The school is very willing to work with the parents to make sure that the child is recieving the best care. I have had the opportunity to research other schools in the area and choose to stay in the area that would allow my children to attend this school.
—Submitted by a parent


Community ratings and reviews do not represent the views of GreatSchools nor does GreatSchools check their accuracy or verify the reviewers' identities. Use your discretion when evaluating these reviews.

About these ratings

The Community Rating is the school’s average rating from its community members (e.g., parents, students, and school staff). The highest possible rating is five stars; the lowest is one star.

The test results by subgroup show how the designated group of students is performing in comparison to the general population.
Math

The state average for Math was 74% in 2014.

61 students were tested at this school in 2014.

2014

 
 
85%

2013

 
 
91%

2012

 
 
91%

2011

 
 
88%
Reading

The state average for Reading was 77% in 2014.

61 students were tested at this school in 2014.

2014

 
 
85%

2013

 
 
93%

2012

 
 
85%

2011

 
 
85%
Scale: % proficient or advanced

About the tests


In 2013-2014 Maryland used the Maryland School Assessment (MSA) to test students in grades 3 through 8 in reading and math, and grades 5 and 8 in science. The MSA is a standards-based test, which means it measures how well students are mastering specific skills defined for each grade by the state of Maryland. The goal is for all students to score at or above proficient on the test.

Source: Maryland State Department of Education

Math

The state average for Math was 81% in 2014.

55 students were tested at this school in 2014.

2014

 
 
87%

2013

 
 
92%

2012

 
 
92%

2011

 
 
>=95%
Reading

The state average for Reading was 86% in 2014.

27 students were tested at this school in 2014.

2014

 
 
96%

2013

 
 
92%

2012

 
 
84%

2011

 
 
95%
Scale: % proficient or advanced

About the tests


In 2013-2014 Maryland used the Maryland School Assessment (MSA) to test students in grades 3 through 8 in reading and math, and grades 5 and 8 in science. The MSA is a standards-based test, which means it measures how well students are mastering specific skills defined for each grade by the state of Maryland. The goal is for all students to score at or above proficient on the test.

Source: Maryland State Department of Education

Math

The state average for Math was 73% in 2014.

70 students were tested at this school in 2014.

2014

 
 
73%

2013

 
 
87%

2012

 
 
87%

2011

 
 
84%
Reading

The state average for Reading was 89% in 2014.

70 students were tested at this school in 2014.

2014

 
 
87%

2013

 
 
88%

2012

 
 
90%

2011

 
 
92%
Science

The state average for Science was 64% in 2014.

71 students were tested at this school in 2014.

2014

 
 
78%

2013

 
 
79%

2012

 
 
71%

2011

 
 
72%
Scale: % proficient or advanced

About the tests


In 2013-2014 Maryland used the Maryland School Assessment (MSA) to test students in grades 3 through 8 in reading and math, and grades 5 and 8 in science. The MSA is a standards-based test, which means it measures how well students are mastering specific skills defined for each grade by the state of Maryland. The goal is for all students to score at or above proficient on the test.

Source: Maryland State Department of Education

Breaking down the GreatSchools Rating

GreatSchools Ratings for this school are based on 2012-2013 test results. Use the breakdown ratings below to compare types of students at this school. Learn more »


Student ethnicity

Ethnicity This school State average
White 74% 42%
Black 15% 35%
Two or more races 6% 4%
Hispanic 3% 12%
American Indian/Alaska Native 1% 0%
Asian or Asian/Pacific Islander 1% 6%
Hawaiian Native/Pacific Islander 0% 0%
Source: NCES, 2011-2012

Student subgroups

  This school District averageState average
Students eligible for free or reduced-price lunch program 29%N/A42%
Source: NCES, 2011-2012

Teacher resources

Special staff resources available to students School psychologist
Read more about programs at this school
Source: Provided by a school official.

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Special education / special needs

Level of special education programming offered
  • Intensive - the school offers a full program for many needs and/or offers at least one very comprehensive program for very challenging needs such as autism or complete visual impairment

Language learning

Level of ESL/ELL programming offered
  • Moderate - the school consistently offers a full program for particular ESL/ELL needs

Health & athletics

Staff resources available to students
  • School psychologist

Gifted & talented

Instructional and/or curriculum models used
  • Gifted / high performing
School leaders can update this information here.

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School basics

Before school or after school care / program onsite
  • After school
  • Before school

Programs

Instructional and/or curriculum models used

Don't understand these terms?
  • Gifted / high performing
Level of special education programming offered
  • Intensive - the school offers a full program for many needs and/or offers at least one very comprehensive program for very challenging needs such as autism or complete visual impairment
Level of ESL/ELL programming offered
  • Moderate - the school consistently offers a full program for particular ESL/ELL needs

Resources

Staff resources available to students
  • School psychologist
Extra learning resources offered
  • Counseling
Transportation options
  • Buses/vans for students only
School leaders can update this information here.

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School culture

Dress Code
  • Dress code
Parent involvement
  • Join PTO/PTA
School leaders can update this information here.

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12872 Rock Point Rd
Newburg, MD 20664
Phone: (301) 934-4091

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