This is a safe place to share your honest opinions of a school, whether good or bad.
Harbison West Elementary School5
Posted March 06, 2015
- a parent
This is an awesome school. Our son has attended since 2nd grade. He is now in 5th grade. The teachers and staff are amazing! We have had only positive experiences at HWES! So happy to be part of the Harbison Heroes community!
I am a parent AND teacher at Harbison West. I have been an educator here for 8 years now, and could not be happier to have my own children attending our school! All of our teachers and staff are truly dedicated to serving each and every one of students to the best of their ability. Smiling is contagious and everyone is always willing to help. Our school is not only a great place to work, but we are a FAMILY... and we treat our students the same way. I have spent countless hours talking with different teachers who laugh, cry and live the daily lives with their students. Children at our school do not go through anything alone. We care for each and every one of them just as tho they are our own. We have numerous teachers that are mentors to a variety of children who need extra help. I can't count how many times our teachers have filled needs for students with their own money. Or how many times I've seen teachers provide opportunities for those children that couldn't provide it themselves. I could go on and on! Bottom line - I LOVE working at Harbison West Elementary, and MY two children love coming to school here every day!!!
Our daughter transferred to Harbison West last year during the middle of kindergarten. Although we were nervous at the start, we were quickly welcomed into the HWE family. Our daughter comes home everyday telling us what she has learned that day. It's great seeing how excited she is about learning.
I've been very pleased with HWES. I've not come across one teacher or administrator that has led me to feel as though my children are in less than capable hands. The location of the school renders itself to a different cross-section of the population than other areas of town, and some cultures will stand out more than others; however, that is to be expected everywhere. The teachers have exemplified to me, at least, specific attention to each child in the classroom - not just my own - from what I've observed. Each child is important to them. I'm shocked by the former comment, as it's so hard to picture malicious or negligent intent from any of the staff af HWES. I've seen the principal as well as the security officer and other teachers walking and talking with students of all ethnicities. They offer great programs to involve parents and kids, and the communication from the school is excellent. I've never missed any information I've needed for the week. They also do great at recognizing the kids for all sorts of positives; not much goes unnoticed. The atmosphere has a very positive air. Even bullying is snuffed out instantaneously, with generally constructive results. Kudos.
I am very concerned about the posting before mine. I wish I knew what caused that problem, as that description is scary! But I'll have to base my review on my own experience. Overall, I have been much happier with HWES than with the school my daughter attended last year. in this same district. However, she is part of the Escolares (gifted) program, and has an excellent teacher. She is not bored and tired of school anymore since moving to Escolares. I like the smaller size of the school, and the front desk staff has seemed competent in my dealings with them. The principal seems to run a tight ship (sorry for the cliche), but without day to day activities seeming as absurdly regimented as in the other school. My only complaint is that HWES is far from our home, so it's hard to attend extracurricular activities if they are not right after school. That is not the fault of HWES, it is the fault of the district for not having gifted programs available elsewhere. If you are in District 5, and your child needs the gifted program, this is the only real option. (BTW, the car line procedure at this school is great. I just hope the school addresses the prior poster's concerns.)
If you dont care about your child getting a great education then send him/her here...if you dont care that your child makes it home safe then send them here. The school teachers that stand at the door to let the walkers go home have been told by myself not to let mine walk unless im there to walk with her...they said they cant keep up with all the kids...there are very few white children at this school and im white and so is my child so how can they not remember me...they let my six year old walk home without me twice...and once while i was in the school, told the principle to call the teacher to send my child to where i was and guess what, yup , youre right, they still let her walk home without me...very poor school...awful...like i said , if you dont wish for your child to have a great education, send them here...
This is an exceptionally well-run school and my second-grader loves it. The teachers and administrators create an organized, respectful, and enjoyable learning environment that challenges students to do their best. We are very pleased with our experience here!
My son attends the Escolares program at HWES. The curriculum and teachers are phenomenal. The class size is small compared to other schools, which allows for more individualized attention. The principal is revered by many teachers in the district. I have heard from multiple teachers at her old school they would love to have her back. This school has many outlets for the kids to shine and feel a part of something. Chorus, step team, car rider safety guards, musicals, talent shows, in-depth study projects (some done with PowerPoint by second graders), etc., help the kids express themselves and grow. Also, there is outreach to the parents almost weekly (sometimes it is overkill, but overall very inviting and informative) to encourage participation. Overall, I am extremely pleased with our decision to move my son to this school.