I enjoyed our child's time there but it was very difficult to fit in as a new parent and student. There would be events where the new children, who are having a hard enough time transitioning were seperated from the kids that have "always" gone there. For example, the Reindeer Games. "The Elves" could only be children who had been at Bethesda since kindergarten. Talk about feeling left out. I understand that it is special to have an experience of being at an elementray school from beginning to end but it showed no consideration for a child coming in or not having been there since Kindergarten. Surely there could be some other way to acknowledge the kids that have been there. Some sensitivity towards new families coming in would be a great benefit.
Our children attended this school last year. Our experience was not stellar. Although the staff was nice enough and we all really liked the principal, our youngest child was frequently bullied. His self-esteem plummeted while here, and the bully problem never really improved, which was very disheartening. We withdrew our children, and our youngest is now happy and confident again. Also, this school allows and encourages children to bring and use electronic devices in school, which we felt should NOT be the case. It ends up creating a "keep up with the Joneses" scenario for the kids (which is not a problem for most of the children at this school, since it's a very "well-to-do" area). My children were exposed to music and videos on other kid's personal devices that I was NOT okay with, and they felt "underprivileged" since they did not have personal laptops or ipads to bring to school to complete their projects and assignments on, like the vast majority of the other students. It creates quite the unnecessary scenario of economic inequality awareness, which was never an issue at their previous school who did not even allow the presence of electronic devices on campus grounds.
Bethesda teachers and faculty really care about their students and parents and their community, and the parents and faculty work as a team for the good of the children. This is true all year long, and carries over from one year to the next.
My daughter was only at Bethesda for 5th grade and she was not excited about the move there. It turned out to be her best year of school ever. The only area that was not up to the standards we were used to was the choir department. The teachers and principal were all great.
Bethesda Elementary is a great school. The teachers are so goal oriented, striving to make their students the best of the best. The teachers spend numerous days attending seminars during the summer months. The principal, Mr. Fisher, requires each grade level to have meetings frequently. I have never seen such strong leadership at a school, including a prviate school. Great principal! Great staff/very organized! Great Teachers!!
I have two kids at this school. The principle is very old school. He is nice ,but doesn't listen to the parents when there are problems. The office staff has been there for 50 years and they are extremely rude to the parents. We've had a couple of good teachers and some very bad teachers. Not alot of warm fuzzys at this school. Very strict with noise levels etc., even at lunch. The PE program is the best I have ever seen in any school. They are awesome and the kids love the PE teachers.
My son just finished kindergarten at Bethesda and had a terrific year. We could not have asked for a better kindergarten experience. All day kindergarten is the way to go. Fantastic principal and teachers - we can't wait for 1st grade to start!