This is the best elementary school that I have ever seen. The teachers are amazing. My child has Traci Harris, a national board certified teacher and he loves going to school. She makes learning fun.
I have a child that attends this school and I wouldn't have him go anywhere else. The faculty at this school are top notch. I know that there may be some teachers here that don't measure up to what the rest of the school may be at, but you will run into that at any school. I have been fortunate to have my son have great teachers that communicate well with us about the progress he is making. I have read the complaints of other parents and the only thing I can say is that if you are not willing to get involved with your child's education, then you are the weak link, not the school. My wife and I both work full time, but we take time off to get involved with the school and our son's class. Don't blame the school for your uninvolvement.
I read the other reviews and I have to agree with all of them . Saying that I strongly defend this school as the best public elementary school I've seen so far. I volunteer at the school and see the the school in action during the day. It looks like organized chaos but its choreographed splendidly by the principal. The teachers are in control but at the same time the school philosophy is to let the children make decisions in a safe environment. Some people may not like this because they are use to the traditional way a school is run. As a parent if you are not open minded about the school you will hate it . Luckily they have the option of going to a traditional school a few miles away. Great academics, extracurricular is basically music but that is fine with me. Finally the parents are heavily involved.
My daughter is in the 4th grade at Washington Ele. This is her 1st yr. & I have been overwhelmed by the academic excellence at this school. The teachers and staff have made her transition a very positive experience. Everyone has been so helpful, friendly & gone out of their way to help. There is a real feel of 'community' there. I am especially impressed with her teacher, Mrs. Ketron, who is so enthusiastic & compassionate about teaching. My daughter transferred to this school from a county school & I was shocked at how academically advanced Washington is compared to her other school. Thank You so much to the staff and to Mrs. Ketron for making my daughters 1st yr. at Washington such a great one. (I only wish I would have started her there from the beginning!)
My son transferred to Washington Elementary from another school his first grade year. It has been a wonderful experience for him. Washington is not a 'traditional' school. They have a lot of hands on teaching, they do not just sit around at a desk all day. The kids there are excited about learning. The teachers are wonderful and caring. They take time to teach the children and you can tell they love their jobs. I have seen no problem with mulit-age. The kids all get along and take care of each other. They are taught to respect each other. I cannot say enough good things about Washington Elementary.
Washington Elementary was a wonderful program for my children and helped them get through Middle School. There are so many great things they have taught my children, and they will use the rest of their life. In my opinion, this is the best school in Kingsport, if not Tennessee, but I would rather have K-1, 2-3, 4-5, in a classroom like it used to be because i think three year difference between children is two big of a gap.
My child has been in this school for 4 years. It is a terrible learning enviroment. Multigrade class rooms are not good for children. You have 3rd grade with 5th grade. There is a big social difference in these ages. If you want your child to stay on track with their emotional and normal expected social development, I recommend you find a differnt school than Washington. Don't expect any smiling faces when you voice your concerns here either. It's their way or your out of the way.
My child is always stressed when she comes home from this school. This school is like a sawdust cake. If you look at it with all the icing, it seems very nice. You cut into it and you'll find its not all sweet. There are no books in this school. You will end up teaching your child at home. And God forbid you have a job and don't have time to be teacher too.
Most families I know are extremely proud of the fact their child attends GWES. The principal is unusually 'in-touch' with the children and families of the school community. I love how the school embraces the philosophy that every child deserves equal opporutnity even if their age or learning styles may vary. Most of the teachers tirelessly go above and beyond to meet the needs of the individuals in which they serve. There are a few teachers who appear ready for a different career and could definitely be a bit more optimistic/positive. Children at GWES are receiving a great foundational preparation for life. They truly try to focus on what is best for children and don't resort to bribery to motivate children. When looking at other schools, Washington definitely provides a fantastic program for our children. Stay positive and keep shooting for the stars. Lots of us love what you do.
I have one child that is attending this school. I feel that the teachers in his learning center are not suitable for the children. They do not show love or compassion to the students. And the children need that, especially at this tender age. The teachers need to build the kids self esteem and confidence level. My child has come home upset because he overheard a few teachers talking about him, saying that he said something that he really didnt say. When he tried to ask them about it they hushed him and told him to get back to his seat. The teachers also make rude comments to the kids thats unacceptable. When you confront the teachers they get so defensive even over little things. Myself and other parents have discussed this matter, but there doesn't seem to be any resolve...very concerned parent.
This school has multigrade class rooms. Each room has 4 'class rooms' with the grades mixed in each.(grades K-2 together and grades 3-5 together) therefore each room has the equivalent of 4 classrooms (about 80-100 students per room)They rotate teachers throughout the day for different subjects. I think the class sizes are too large for individualized attention, and the mixed ages do not always get along together. Favorites are played among teachers with students. Social status lines are drawn among the children, who are not reprimanded when this results in cruelty due to the different maturity levels in the classroom. They have a 100% 'let the children work it out themselves policy' with 5-12 yr olds alike. The choir and school news programs are the extracurricular activities. They do not allow activities that might have any competition among students.This includes Spelling Bees, Science Fairs, etc.
They depend on the kids to solve their own problems all the time and sometimes that is not possible. Some teachers are so picky about the snacks the children bring and even have told them that they will have to put them in the trash if they are not the kind that they agree with. I have two children there and one of them is having a really rough time and is really unhappy. Once a teacher pegs you a being a nondoer, you can't get a break from that point on. I feel that they are just to picky and most of the teachers act to uppity to be working with children.
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