My daughter attended 1st grade in Mrs Sackley's class and had an amazing experience. The administration and school-wide staff has been supportive, I have been impressed that the school offers Spanish, geography, and lots of positive reinforcement to promote good citizenship and good behavior.
The school does excellent with what they have. There is high parent involvement, and Mr Stockwell does an excellent job of principal. The school secretary Valarie is awesome. Everyone is quick to respond to emails or concerns.
My son attended Ridgewood Elementary in K and 1st grade. I am so happy his school experience began here. There is a strong teaching staff at Ridgewood and Mr. Stockwell is an excellent leader with a strong orientation toward the kids and a clear instructional vision that has translated into good teaching even with weak teachers. Ridgewood has a great culture that is very supportive of all the kids. I have found this to be the most important factor in my kid loving school. He is a squirmy boy with a lot going on in his head. It is the relentlessly positive school culture that has made the difference for him. I realize not everyone feels this strongly about it, but my son knows the PYP habits/attitudes like the back of his hand and he talks about them all the time. He loves school so much because he has had hot chocolate with the principal, all his teachers (bless them) write back to him when he sends emails (all the time), and he truly understands how to function as a student. He has found a way to be very successful and to feel very proud of that. I don't think you could ask for anything more in a school!
My son is in 3rd grade and has attended Ridgewood since Kindergarten. I love the teachers and the new Principal. I was contiplating moving my son after 1st grade because the former Principal and I did not agree on many issues. I'm glad I kept my son at Ridgewood. The new Principal is great and I apprecaite his interaction with parents and students alike.
My son stared here last year in Kindergarten. At first we were a bit dissappointed that the Spanish immersion program was dropped, but there is now a focus on becoming an international baccalaureate elementary school which is more inclusive of all the students. All students now attend Spanish class but usually only one time a week, which is really not enough. The new principal is great! Really liked his involvement with the parent teacher cooperative. He is a very visible presence in the school and seems well-regarded by the staff. His style is approachable and he is working hard to bring the focus back to outstanding academics. The kindergarten teachers are superb, the only drawback is that kindy is only a 1/2 day. Lots of great parental involvement and volunteer programs run by parents which is a plus you don't find in other neighborhood schools.
The academics are mediocre. And after nearly a year of Spanish for all, most kids cannot understand or speak basic phrases. Parents are involved, but greater focus on core academics rather than the extras is needed. Ridgewood seems to be resting on its laurels. The new principal has energy and good intentions, but one wonders how much change he can affect.