There are many things that make this school fantastic. The first is the principle; she is out there each more welcoming children by name with a smile. She is always available to talk with parents and takes concerns seriously. She also cares about the teaching staff which makes it a better place for teachers which in turn benefits the children. The teachers here care so much about children and work hard to work as their advocates. So far, we have had amazing teachers and have watched our child achieve great things at Pioneer as a direct result of their instruction. The support staff is also fantastic at Pioneer, every Para has a smile, knows children by name, and seems to be as invested as the teaching staff in their success. The PTSA also works to create great programs for this school although the fundraisers could use a bit of a change. Arlington School District really cares about students and families; they are small enough to provide a home town feeling but large enough to provide excellent resources to the families whose children attend their schools. Pioneer is an amazing school and the children here are fortunate.
While I have noticed some snobbish kids (and parents), the majority are not like that. My family does not live Glen eagle and it has not been a problem. The PTSA is a dedicated group of people who guinely love their kids and the school. They raise tons on money allowing the school to get loss of extras. I wish every PTSA was like that. Their new watch dogs program is incredible. Most teachers are amazing. Other reviews show these things as a negetive. I think dedicated parents, students and teachers are definately a good thing not bad. There will be bad apples at every school but how the school handles it will set them apart. My son had an incident last year and the principle jumped right on the situation and I never heard anything negative again. So overall, if you want your kids to have great teachers who care, a ptsa that may look like they walked out of a tv show but raise tons of money, dads who take the time to volunteer, a priciple that will always make the time to adress your concerns then this is the school for you.
The school is located in pretentious Gleneagle - an above average middle-income neighborhood with strict HOA rules. Some believe this is high-class living at its finest and put on airs of prestige and snobbery. Here's a sampling of what you'll witness at Pioneer: SAHMs dressed to the nines, still walking their 5th-grader to school, zipping coats, tying shoes and generally being the helicopter parents that the teaching staff so despise. In general, the school lacks diversity and is predominantly white/Christian. There is a complete lack of culture and respect for diversity. Bullying is rampant, especially aimed towards students of color and those of lower socioeconomic status (those in homes outside Gleneagle). The school chooses it own rules and fails to follow national standards and public schooling requirements. For example: Christmas songs are taught, and Halloween is celebrated during the school day. Office staff are not helpful nor knowledgeable of answering basic questions, transferring calls, replying to e-mail promptly, etc.. I got the run-around frequently and we changed districts quickly!
I attended Pioneer from when it opened when I was a third grader to the last 6th grade class at Pioneer. Now that I'm in college looking back I truly have a love hate relationship with Pioneer. Over all the school academic is great the teachers are truly fabulous and Pioneer kids consistently end up to many majority of the valedictorian attended Pioneer. Though I must agree the school is full of snobs many children parents are so involved in the school that it is literally there full time job. The PTA is extremely clickie and nearly all of the parents live in GlenEagle. As one of my friend said there should be a reality show that intertwines around the Pioneer PTA. I guess if you want to be apart of a click it's a great school.
When we moved to Arlington, we did allot of research on the schools. Pioneer came up as one of the better ones, yet it's an affordable area (a rare combination). We've lived here 3 years now. Both my kids attend Pioneer and we are very happy. The school is well run, and all of their teachers so far have been excellent.
I was so happy to be moving into such a 'great' school zone. I think it is horrible that the WASL scores go by % at basic level!!! Basic?! I thought the schools scores were great until I realized this. The teachers seem to shoot for 'basic' skills and nothing more. I want at least proficient from my son. My son went from proficient and advanced to basic level at this school. He was a GATE student as well which tells me that they were only teaching basic skills. The only good thing about this school is the brainteasers GATE program.
This school is the best! Both my daughters love it and I as a parent do also. The teachers have all been way higher than my expectations and the Principal always goes above and beyond. Keep up the great work Pioneer.
I would seriously have to agree with the parent who discussed the snobby kids and parents. We live in Gleneagle and have found oursleves very suprised about the superiority complex that shows itself in the children. When these instances arise we use it as an opportunity to teach our children a sad lesson about life and people. That being said, my children's experiences at Pioneer have been mostly positive. The staff is wonderful and for the most part we're very at home at Pioneer.