This is a safe place to share your honest opinions of a school, whether good or bad.
Posted January 16, 2014
- a parent
My kid has been there for 1st/2nd grade & her 1st teacher was remarkable.She still loves to see her in the halls & teacher still cares about my child.she kept me informed all year. Her 2nd grade teacher is another thing, I have no clue to the class schedule, what they been working on, any notes I send I never get a response so I don't know if she even got it. The security at the school is horrible. I have had someone pick up my child who is not on the list & they let him with no id check or anything. anyone can walk into that office or walk around the school & no one questions them. when they buzz you in they tell you to go to the office but they don't make sure you do. field trips are sub par and they could do better & more.she has been to the same museum three times in 2 years there. the are unorganized & unprofessional in the front office.in the mornings they have limited drop off time to 10 minutes before the first bell which is ridiculous. most schools have a 30 minute window so make sure parents get through carpool and students get to class on time. when your child is late you don't have to sign them in, just let them out & they will buzz them through with a pass to class.
School ends 3:30 & usually my child would arrive home betwn 4-4:15. Well on this particular SUNNY day I arrived around 4:40 & the sitter informed me that my child's bus had not yet come & that she had sent someone 2 the school 2 inquire where my child might b. The staff was rude 2 this person, greeting her with "The school is closed". When I called to inquire it was only THEN that they informed me that the bus was 30min late when it departed. When I asked why they had not called to inform meprior the receptionist's 1st response was "I dont have a list of every child that rides that bus to call all the parents "(T_T) her 2nd response was "There is no law requiring us to contact U". The thing that gets me is that on 1 occasion last yr during really bad weather, DPS sent a mass automated phone message 2 all that there myb delays w/ buses due to weather & every Sunday I would receive what BES calls the weekly principal spotlight (updates) via same route. Idk y they didnt think to do something as important as notify parents of a late bus. its 1 thing due 2weather, but when the sky is clear and sunny u really worry. Ive got a part 2 of 3 review coming. As 1200 Characters is not enough
BOO to the front office staff They can be VERY unprofessional in terms of overall conduct and how they speak toward parents and each other On many occasions I've been to the office and waited while the women discuss amongst themselves how crazy their weekend was or how they cant wait to go out later on In terms of education, the teacher my daughter had in particular was OUTSTANDING! It was her first year teaching at the school and my child not only adored her but learned so much from her as well From day1, the principal seemed to be a bit unorganized when events are planned, everything last minute and parents were given very little notice of things like their "Kindergarten Kick-off". If your child is a car rider essentially anyone can pick up your child so long as they know the child's name, as they dont ask for ID and all parents are doing is driving through the round about to pick up. The security issue is obvious in this regard. Also they have dissolved the PTA for lack of participation by both parents AND teachers- there was no support from the principal either. So if you are a parent who looks forward to participating in things like the PTA in particular, good luck with that.
My son attended Bethesda Elementary School for the 1st grade last year. This was the worst! The structure of the school is nothing I want for my son and I hate it for the kids who are still there. The office staff are not welcoming, the teachers seem to lack motivation. Its obvious that this school is looked over by the Durham Public School Systems in funding. I would not recommend this school to anyone! Thankfully we were able to get my child placed in another school!
On June 6th 2013, Bethesda Elementary let a man come into the school with a lady and claim to be my child's father and grandmother. The front office staff didnt check ID, nor did they make this man sign in. This man was able to walk into the office and given my son's classroom info and allow to walk to the class and get my child and walk out of the building. When the school was asked who checked the my son out, they had no idea, nor did they know when he left.When the school was asked how did this happen, Mr Glenn stated that they were so busy with 5th grade graduation. Parents please help me, do not allow this school to get away with allowing strangers in the school without following proper policies and precedures. I have not seen or heard from my son since I dropped him off at school Thursday June 6th. Parents please let other parents know about this.
As a parent of two gifted children, I must say that I am quite pleased with the level of differentiated AIG services that my fourth grader and fifth grader are receiving. My children are assigned work that is both challenging and engaging. My children are thrilled by rewards like 'caught being good' ice cream parties and a trip to a Durham Bulls baseball game last year! My only concerns are a lack of parental support and a lack of opportunities for a band/orchestra. (Apparently, this is a DPS thing...) However, I find the teachers both knowledgable and compassionate. I am happy to have my children in such a wonderful school!
I cannot say that I am disappointed the school, but I am disappointed with my child's teacher. My son is in the first grade, and I feel that the homework that he gets is busy work. He came from another elementary school where he attended kindergarten, and the work was much more challenging than it is now. Also, his teacher is out a lot. I am a former school teacher, and compared to other 1st graders at other schools, I feel that his teacher is not following the curriculum. The only feedback I get about my son's classwork is from him. I am very disappointed with this 1st grade teacher.
We are the parents of a special needs child, and we could not be more pleased with a school and it's staff than we are with Bethesda Elementary School. Every step of the way the staff and Ms. Walker, the Principal, have helped us to nurture a child who loves school and learning. He is entering Second Grade and is very excited. The teachers and other staff have been more than willing to help when needed and even gone above and beyond their jobs at times. The staff and teachers at Bethesda are doing a great job not just teaching our son, but making school a place he is excited about. The Teaching Assistant in his class won 'Teaching Assistant of the Year by the Arc of Durham'. That's just how good the staff and leadership is. We would recommend Bethesda to any parent, especially a special needs kid.