Have had 3 kids in Pioneer. No issues at all. I look at the date of the remarks beloew (2009-2011) about bullying, etc. Not in the recent past for sure. My kids have gone (2nd-5th grades) since 2012 and have had great, engaged teachers. Kids will do as well as the involvement of their parents - that's a fact. I fine school as are most in the Olympia School District. Very happy and strongly recommend it to anyone looking at moving here (we're in the military and definitely move alot and have seen alot of good and bad schools across the country).
This will be our fourth year at Pioneer. My son will be entering the third grade and my daughter will be in the second grade. As a former first grade teacher I have been overly impressed by the teachers, the principal and the office staff. I believe my children are engaged in a learning environment and truly cared for by the entire school. Pioneer is a neighborhood school, many of the teachers, the principal and the school employees live in the neighborhoods where the students live. There are days where over a hundred bikes are parked in the school bike racks. As for the comments about lack of structure at recess... The playground is staffed and has rules and limitations but Isn't that what recess is for? As for bullying we have not experienced any bullying but I feel the teachers and principal are easily accessible and would be open to discussing parent concerns.
We love Pioneer now. Our kindergarden teacher is great! I admit, I was disillusioned over the summer before we began, as there was no contact from the school during the summer after the Sneak Peek. I had hoped for a welcome letter (or postcard, or e-mail...) with a bit of info for us about our new school and where/how to get information. As first-time parents of an elementary-schooler, we were sort of waiting to receive a supplies list or something. Turns out it's all on the website. Maybe a letter, postcard, or e-mail with this tidbit would be helpful to the parents of new kids... It's quite a change after the over-informational style of preschool! As for the bullying comments below, my child hasn't experienced anything, but I do see a missed opportunity in that the kids aren't taught how to interact on the playground at recess; it's sort of a free-for-all. It seems like there could be some structured/active teaching going on with the kindergarteners during which some bullying prevention education could occur to prep them for how to behave for the rest of their time there. "An ounce of prevention..." Overall, we're very happy there.
We recently moved to the area and were very excited to start our 2 oldest boys at Pioneer. At first, things seemed great, but now that we have been here 6 months, they don't seem as great. Our 1st grader is doing well. He is advancing, but I don't feel he is being pushed to his highest potential. Our 4th grader is miserable here. He has had a hard time fitting in and is teased and bullied quite often. Prior to moving here, he loved school, had a lot of friends and was quite happy. Now, he hates going to school and is sad at home a lot. I have contacted his teacher and she says she doesn't see him during lunch/recess when socialization is allowed. Not sure what to do now. We are thinking of moving out of the area and finding a school that is a better fit for our family.
Disgusting, horrible, unappealing. Theese are just some of the things that describe Pioneer. If your kid has a special need the teachers will NOT help at all. I seriously would rather move to a different continent than be at Pioneer. If you want your kid to be a boring, obediant, robot then I would send them to Pioneer. The kids at the school are mean, horrible and judgmental. Competition is encouraged and promoted by the staff and so they're is a lot of fighting and drama between kids. I would never ever reccomend this school... EVER!!!!
Both my boys attended Pioneer and we've had a very positive experience. We've had teachers at the kindergarten, 1st, 2nd, and 3rd grade level (a total of 5 teachers) and they've all been excellent. Neither of my boys experience excessive competition and grew academically and socially. We found the teachers to be professional, creative, and supportive. One of my children has special medical needs and was supported and accommodated during both of his years. We've loved our time at Pioneer. PTA involvement is excellent.
The prior three posts are completely accurate. Parental supervision of homework is absolutely necessary. Competition among students is encouraged and leads to severe bullying that begins in the 1st Grade and gets worse every year. The new principal is more responsive than the old principal, but he cannot change overnight the bullying that has been permitted for years. And if your child has a special need, the school is very reluctant to help out . A few teachers were good at helping my special needs child, but the rigid teachers (and there are quite a few of this type at this school) were completely unhelpful - your child either fits into the teacher's scheme or he/she is left behind with no one at the school to help him/her. It's quite heartbreaking. If I had it to do over again I would not move into the Pioneer school district.
Overall, our family has had a positive experience at Pioneer Elementary. Admittedly, as we entered kindergarten as a new family, we were discouraged by the quality of instruction. Thankfully, our child performs at a standard learning level. I personally know families whose children have either special needs, or excel above the standard, and their needs were not met at the primary level. At this time I cannot rate the administration as it is new this school year. The PTA is very active and supportive of student learning. The organization supports families and the school in a very positive and effective manner.
The school year is about to begin and I am sorry to say that I am not excited for my child. I agree with the previous post, it is a very conservative learning environment and the administration and teachers seem perfectly content to keep it that way. If your child thrives on being the best and likes to compete, then this is the school for you. There is much bullying which is never addressed and the kids are completely out of control at lunch and on the playground. There is a great emphasis put on test scores and I believe the children have undue stress put upon them to constantly achieve. There is a new principal this year and I hope he does a better job than our previous principal. We will see.
This is a very conservative learning environment. There is no teaching to a child's interests or needs -- they are either with the program or they are left behind. Perhaps this makes sense in more advanced grades. But it's heart breaking to watch children's enthusiasm whither in first or second grade because they don't quite fit through the round hole. Parent participation in the form of homework support is a necessity, but some teachers completely rebuff parental outreach. Also, there is a horrible culture of bullying that is totally ignored by the principal and faculty. Many parents adore Pioneer, but if you have any sense at all that your child may not 'fit the mold' then you should seriously consider your alternatives.
What an amazing school! My child started this year at Pioneer. It has been nothing but positive, supportive, excellent education. My child has had a wonderful school experience this year and has blossomed in the environment Pioneer offers. My child wakes up every morning eager for school. Keep up the great work Pioneer. Kudos for the great education you are providing! Our family couldn't be happier. : )
I was privileged enough to student teach at Pioneer and couldn't have had a better experience. The third grade teacher I worked with was a great mentor. She was always patient and gave me constructive feedback in a positive way. The same can be said about the principal. His level of commitment to the school is very apparent and impressive. The staff was warm and welcoming, unlike some other schools I have been to. The students are so wonderful. They accepted me with open arms, making my job so much easier. I have been to a lot of schools but Pioneer's warmth and charisma make it the best I have visited.
New to Pioneer this year, I find the teachers extremely competent and creative. My child was welcomed into the school and has been encouraged and challenged this. Parent involvement is very high at this as is student/family pride in the school. Very happy with Pioneer!
In the past 6 years I have had 3 children in Pioneer and have had teachers in every grade. I have been very impressed with the quality of the teaching and the administration. There are many opportunities for after school activities from science to drama to sports. Parent involvement is very high. (For working parents the expectations might be a little too high sometimes. Not all parents can make it to the lunch barbeque every time.) I would highly recommend this school.
Pioneer is a very traditional school, with a very stable and yet demanding clientele. The teachers are topnotch. The new principal brings enthusiasm and a positive role model. The school will be adding a new wing beginning this fall and subsequently growing in number of students. It is currently a very small and cozy place. From first grade through fifth there are great extracurricular options available, from sports, foreign language, art, and science classes.
This is a fine school for normal typically developing children. Luckily my son has no special needs and does just fine here. There are many round holes for children who are round pegs but if your child has any edges she will not get her needs met here. We will not place our daughter with special needs in this school. Most of the teachers are committed and caring.
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