I've been at this school for 3 years now, and have 2 children currently attending grades between K and 4. Great improvement have recently happened at this school and parent involvement is at an all time high. Many after school clubs are being offered for the upcoming school year and the PTSA at this school works hard to improve the quality of education offered here. Some cons are the consistent lack of opportunity for gifted children. With that said, my child was in the gifted education program offered in the Highline School District at Parkside and after a year of participating in it, I chose to bring him back to Des Moines because of the quality community and teaching staff here.
I agree with the previous post, 'When it comes to addressing students individual needs many parents are faced with some barriers. Also, communication with parents is often unclear and disingenuous.' From my experience there are several programs for struggling or 'at risk' students at Des Moines but if you have a child who is outperforming and needs to be challenged, there are very few options available and you are very likely left to feel that there is nothing to be done. The principal comes off as a bully and, while I am lucky enough to have not experienced it, she regularly chases parents down who cross the street with their kids illegally and screams at them. I am sure her motives revolve around general safety but her actions come off as embarassing more than anything else and it certainly makes me less inclined to approach her as a concerned parent.
Des Moines has an amazing teaching staff who show strong interest in creating a learning environment that is welcoming to both students and parents. Volunteers range from parents, high school seniors and local senior citizens. There is also a strong effort by the staff to assist students with special needs. My child was struggling academically in one subject and the teachers were quick to recommend interventions and testing that have helped improve my child's skills in this area. The administration has it's strengths and weakness's. A great effort is being made by the principal to provide strong academic programs to support all learners as a whole. When it comes to addressing students individual needs many parents are faced with some barriers. Also, communication with parents is often unclear and disingenuous. Overall the staff is amazing, dedicated, and focused.
I had significant difficulties with the leadership of this school regarding my son's disabilities. Some staff were highly resistant to understanding the individual needs of students, while others worked very hard to do the right things. I couldn't wait to leave this school.
We have been so pleased with this school. Although my son struggles with some slight disabilities, the attention and support they have provided him with has been exceptional! The principal is outstanding and the teaching staff is hard-working, smart and caring.
Warm, friendly, organized staff. Arts and Technology are obvious priorities here. High parent involvement, great teacher/student ratio in my daughter's class. The principal is a visible and friendly presence on the school grounds. We're thrilled!
Very friendly staff;welcoming teachers. Most parents are involved in school activities. Some classes are a little overcrowded.
This is s great place to learn! The teachers are intelligent, supportive, and go the extra mile for children. Parents are encouraged to volunteer and are made to feel welcome.
The principal is the best! She is always available to any student or parent. Most of the teachers are very good as well.
I've had really good luck and feedback from the teaching staff here. Leslie Perry is an excellent principal; very pro-active with each classrooms' goals, etc.
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.
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