We love Jess Harben! This is a wonderful, small school serving the beautiful College Park, College Park North, Glenville Park and Town North neighborhoods. The students are truly cared for and their successes are celebrated. There are only 200 students in K-6 so it feels like my kids go to a private school! Many children walk or ride their bikes to school which gives the neighborhood a fun energy in the mornings and afternoons. The principal is hands-on, proactive and creative. My kids' classes use differentiated teaching meaning they learn at their level and aren't held back for struggling students or pushed ahead if they are not understanding the concepts. The PTA is active, drama-free and it's easy to get involved in. My kids have loved enrichment clusters where they worked hands-on, several hours a week in a subject they were interested in. One learned a host of magic tricks and even put on a show. The other learned how to write a script and make a movie. We have really loved our experience at our neighborhood school. The intimate learning environment provided by Jess Harben is rare in the public school setting and we couldn't be more pleased.
My daughter began her second year here and we are very pleased. She received an excellent education her first year. There is a different principal than the one previously mentioned in other reviews. I can not speak for the past but the current one is very approachable, professional and caring. I feel confident she is leading the school in a positive, engaging manner and is focused on giving the students a quality education. The school is small and most staff know the names of the students. My daughter feels welcomed, cared for and safe. I would recommend it to anyone!
Even though we love Jess Harben, we had always hoped to send our children to private school. So with our youngest in his last year of preschool, it seemed like a good time to make the switch. Although our older children were not happy about the possibility of leaving they are big Harben fans- we decided to go through with the entrance testing required by the private school. Not only did they pass the test with flying colors, but the testing teacher was amazed at the way one of our sons showed his strategies throughout the test. As I left the school, it was clear to me that our children are where they need to be they are happy and well-established members of the Jess Harben community and as parents we are thrilled to have outside confirmation that they are getting an excellent education. We are grateful for the wonderful leadership at Jess Harben and the quality education our children are getting. Thanks to all who make it possible.
Jess Harben Rocks! The teachers really take their time with the children and the classes are smaller than most school which is what make the learning experience so much more enjoyable.
I read the review dated February 1, 2007. Mr. Forte has not been the principal of Jess Harben for the last three years, Mr. Goodson has. I personally have not been that impressed with this school like I thought I would. Although I think that this school scores high when it comes to acedemic performance and expectations I give them a failing mark when it comes to the treatment of students and parents. I have dealt with some of the most arrogant and rude attitudes from teachers at this school. I am very dissapointed with Mr. Goodson because I believe everything starts at the top. I think that this school needs to not only set high expectations on test scores but also act in a positive manner which effects our childrens mental health. There is no excuse for verbal abuse!
My son has gone to Jess Harben for the last 3 years and I have been impressed with the level of professionalism of the staff as well as the dedication of the teachers. We've had a range of teachers that have been there forever to one that was a first year. I was a little nervous about both, but they all ended being amazing. He has two teachers this year and I can't even begin to convey how unbelievable they have been. Very invested, caring, and available. Mr. Forte, the new principal is fabulous as well. He truly cares for/about the children and it shows. I am grateful we chose Jess Harben to be the foundation of our son s education.
Someone noted there were teachers that were fired from Jess Harben. That is incorrect. Many of the teachers who left were at retirement age and had to retire to meet a deadline for benefits.
Jess Harben is located in a very family oriented neighborhood. The park and public swimming pool next to it is convenient as well. I didn't know the principal before Mr. Forte so I can't compare the two but he seems to be doing a fine job. There are a few first year teachers in the younger grades which I'm not sure is negative or positive.
Hmmm...as far as I know, no one was fired...contrary to the other review, I have found there to be a good mix of new and older teachers all of whom are consistently caring and well able to teach my children. I have nothing but the best to say about Jess Harben. I have to wonder about the reasons for the negative review.
Most of the experienced teachers from 2002 were either fired or quit for 2003. This may be due to budget cuts. I plan on placing my child in private school due to inexperience of two many first-year teachers.
Community ratings and reviews do not represent the views of GreatSchools nor does GreatSchools check their accuracy or verify the reviewers' identities. Use your discretion when evaluating these reviews.
The Community Rating is the school’s average rating from its community members (e.g., parents, students, and school staff). The highest possible rating is five stars; the lowest is one star.
To start a new list, click OK. Otherwise click Cancel.
Thank you! You will begin to receive newsletters from us shortly.
Thanks for verifying your updated email address.
Oops! That email verification link has expired. Please click the button below to receive a new one.
Create an account to submit your answers.
Sign in with an existing GreatSchools account or using Facebook:
Your review has been posted to GreatSchools.
Share with friends! Post your opinion of Jess Harben Elementary School on Facebook.
Welcome to GreatSchools!
Thanks! We just sent you an email – please click on the link in the email to post your answers.
Get timely updates for Jess Harben Elementary School, including performance data and recently posted user reviews.