My daughter is only in K so I don't know how well I can judge this, but she is given an assignment Monday through friday - basically a quick review and practice of what they learned that day. I enjoy it because I feel like it keeps me in the loop and my daughter enjoys showing off what she has learned. Her teacher made it clear in the beginning of the year that this wasn't a "graded mandatory" assignment, if there were nights after soccer or whatever that we were not able to complete it she did not want it to be a crying or upset time and not to worry about it.
This is the last week of the first year of my daughter attending elementary school, she will graduate Kindergarten Thursday!! I do not understand any of the negative comments on this board as I am very pleased with Pinewood. Both my daughter and I absolutely adore her teacher, Mrs. Berline. She has been wonderful and really helped both my daughter and I make the transition from preschool to elementary school. She has been very flexible in scheduling parent meetings and very responsive to my emails - which in the first few months were often! I am very puzzled by the parents below who have said the quality of the staff and their lack of help with the students - my daughters teacher has always been very helpful as have her other teachers. Honestly, I am offended that their quality is being quetioned! While my interaction with the other teachers is far less frequent, my daughter has had nothing but nice things to say about all of her teachers, administrators, cafeteria personel and play center teachers. The principal Mrs. Brown is very nice and has never made my daughter or I feel awkward or unwelcomed. In the beginning of the year my daughter was crying on the way to class (the transition to K was rough for her) and Mrs. Brown stopped her in the hallway and consoled her - she also provided her encouragement that helped going forward. I have also bumped into Mrs. Brown when I have been to the school for various reasons and she has always been friendly, inviting and seems very approachable. Overall, I am glad my daughter will be attending Pinewood for the next 5 years!
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 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.