The school has changed greatly over the time my three students have attended. It no longer is a genuine happy place and the tension is almost palatable. In meetings where the principal is present, it is evident that she is the cause of the tension. She exudes happiness at one moment and almost scorn at another. People do not see her vision through her actions and are afraid of her retributions if you get on her wrong side. Many of the teachers hide from her, which is not as difficult as it seems as she often is in her office and rarely seen around the school. I stopped volunteering this year because she would see me in the hall and not even address me, even though I had been active in the PTA up until last year. Very unhappy school on the downward slope. So sad.
Why are so many awesome, dedicated, quality teachers trying so badly to leave Pinewood Elementary this year? And why aren't they being told where they will be working next year? It's the last day of school and teachers still do not have their assignments for next year. How is the principal going to recruit staff near as talented as all of the great staff transferring out?
The school is wonderful with excellent After School programs like Art Clubs, Spelling Bee, Math24, Black Saga & Early Bird Gym. They however do not have good entry/exit points, if you are dropping kids to school by car. The school district border was recently rezoned, to eliminate areas to minimize overcrowding.
The teachers don't help students as much as at other schools. They need to improve that.
The previous review mentions the prinicpal's race as the cause of her poor reviews. That is simply not true. As some first year principals do, she had a terrible first year. She has displayed improvement during her second year, particularly in dealing with interpersonal skills towards both parents and her faculty. Although she has a long way to go, she is learning that leadership does not need to be handled in a heavy-handed manner. Again, her lack of interpersonal skills were one of the main causes for her lack of success, not the perceived rascism of the families she interacts with.
My two kids go to Pinewood and it's a great school. Teachers are excellent and principal is also nice. I do have to say that the school is not as mixed as the previous schools my kids went to before pinewood, so it took a little adjustment. I seriously think a lot of the comments below are because the principal is an African American principal in a primarily Caucasian school. Principals have to follow guidelines and if they do not agree with something then they are the bad ones. I see lots of praises on the AP, but of course she is white. It's sad how race always plays an issue. If the school test goes down then she is not doing her job, but if the testing grades are good then she is doing her job.
Not satisfied how this school is applying behavior policy. They are more concerned about kids fingerpointing than they are about education.
The new principal is out to prove something to the parents. A few years back I was proud of Pinewood but I really don't like the direction the school has taken. I'm glad this is the last year there for my child.
Teachers are amazing, but the recent turnover at the top has caused a setback. The new principal's attitude has certainly contributed to that; she's rubbed more than a few parents the wrong way. But the new assistant principal, who just started this year, seems promising. Hopefully she'll stay.
I have to agree with the other reviewer, the new principal has brought the atmosphere in the school down. She seems very antagonistic towards parents. I rated the teachers three stars because between my two children I have had wonderful teachers and horrible teachers. There isn't a strong consistency and when trying to deal with the administration regarding any issues it can be difficult because of the new principles poor people skills. I wish I could be more enthusiastic.
I have two children at Pinewood and I cannot say enough wonderful things about this school. Their teaching staff is tremendous; truly committed to developing strong academic and social skills in each student. I volunteer at the school on a regular basis and feel my presence is extremely welcome by both the teachers and administration... I know dozens of other parents who feel the same, I really surprised to hear other reviewers indicate otherwise.
Teachers are highly qualified with an unusually high number of teachers who are nationally certified. I was very pleased with my child's preparedness for middle school. Currently have a second child who is happy and successful. They are a Maryland Green School, but since the new principal came on board this year, it seems as if environmental literacy is no longer stressed. The new principal seems simply overmatched. She makes little to no effort to communicate and has been quoted numerous times saying things such as "I would rather not have parents in the building." Her efforts to exclude parents makes for a very unfriendly atmosphere for what was once a good, old fashioned, community-oriented school. As if that wasn't enough of a downer, it is difficult to tell if she has interpersonal skills because she comes off as very unfriendly. The school succeeds in spite of her.
The facilities at Pinewood are old and dull. Class size can be high, especially in the non Gifted and Talented classrooms -- in some grades class size can vary from 23-29. "Gifted & Talented" is used too loosely, applying to half the students. The children are challenged by the GT curriculum but often instruction goes too fast for some children who don't master a subject before moving on to the next unit. Since being "promoted" to GT, my child has received C's and an occasional D! But we don't complain because we don't want our child to be switched back to non-GT due to class size. Is it better to get C's in GT or A's in non-GT? Grading is letter-based and seems harsh for elementary school. There is no foreign language instruction. Instrumental instruction begins in 5th grade. The atmosphere seems punitive with a "strike" system. In my opinion, this school is not reaching for excellence. I am amazed more parents don't complain about the conditions of the school to Baltimore County regarding facilities, class size, and the moniker "Gifted & Talented" which should apply to the top tier of students. How demeaning for the rest!
Pinewood is very good school. It has very high qualified teachers and friendly staff. My first grader loves her teachers and the envrionment. We feel very happy that we choose the right school for her.
As a parent who now has their 4th and 5th kids enrolled I am quite happy at the communication home and the caring of the teachers.
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.
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.
To start a new list, click OK. Otherwise click Cancel.
Thank you! You will begin to receive newsletters from us shortly.
Thanks for verifying your updated email address.
Oops! That email verification link has expired. Please click the button below to receive a new one.
Create an account to submit your answers.
Sign in with an existing GreatSchools account or using Facebook:
Your review has been posted to GreatSchools.
Share with friends! Post your opinion of Pinewood Elementary School on Facebook.
Welcome to GreatSchools!
Thanks! We just sent you an email – please click on the link in the email to post your answers.
Get timely updates for Pinewood Elementary School, including performance data and recently posted user reviews.