I visit loads of schools for work, and think Bryant is probably the crown jewel in the top notch NE Seattle public elementary cluster. The (fully-modernized) building is aesthetically beautiful, with 100-year-old classic 3-story brick architecture and giant, light-filled multi-pane windows right out of a picture book. But it's what's inside that matters most: excellent, devoted teachers, an advanced curriculum right out of the gate in kindergarten (Gallagher in particular prepares the kids for 5th grade rather than 1st), hard-working PTSA and more parent/grandparent involvement than they probably need! Our family has loved Gallagher, Chon, Richard, Koerner, Bernard, Matthias & Kereluck--all thoughtful, dedicated, instructors. Loads of after-school activities to choose from, too...chess? Tennis? Sewing? Cooking? And so many more. Wonderful community of kids, parents and teachers--I wouldn't want my children to go anywhere else.
The sense of community at this lovely school surrounded by large old trees and beautiful homes is unsurpassed. Teachers seem dedicated, kids seem happy, demographics lead to bright, motivated students and an active PTA. After school activities abound, the large playground is a welcome spot for the whole neighborhood.
My children were offered a place at (SPS academically gifted campus) Lincoln Elementary, and if Bryant were not so fabulous, I'd consider it. But why leave when Bryant offers the whole package? Great curriculum, tight community, top teachers, beautiful campus. We couldn't be happier that our children have had this elementary experience.
The issue with the before and after care for this year (and the subsequent transition to an outsourced, more expensive option) has highlighted an unbelievably poor principle in place at this school. It is a great school - the faculty is truly above the norm, but the lack of communication, and effective involvement of the principle is a real shame. I have no personal beef with Ms. Fox, but I really hope the district can find someone better suited to fill this position at an otherwise remarkable public school in a great community...
Demographics and proximity to UW help this school achieve high test scores. It is successful despite being plagued by years of dismal leadership. The district published School Climate Survey clearly highlights there is a problem at Bryant, yet administration remains intact. Teachers currently work under a principal who is known to push (good and bad) teachers out, not exactly great for morale or for developing a collaborative workplace. There is no clear discipline strategy, the recess stories my kids bring home resemble a modern day story of Lord of the Flies. Bullying often goes unaddressed. The curriculum is deficient, although that is a district wide issue, and Bryant teachers do their best to supplement. It is tough to break into the community, but that sentiment is Seattle in general. We have met many nice families, but it definitely will take an effort for new non-K students. I strongly feel this school has the potential to be a 'great school', but needs a new principal, and the district superintendent needs to work faster at making some necessary curriculum updates. Test scores don't paint the entire picture, teachers need/deserve a better environment to thrive!
Not sure why this school is so highly regarded. We're new to the school this year and there are very few opportunities to volunteer or contribute. Academics seem mediocre. Very little in the way of extracurriculars. Zero sense of community, no help for new families trying to feel involved (look at the reviews - one review a year about sums up Bryant when it comes to "sharing"). Feels like the teachers don't want you at the school. Unless you've been at the school since kindergarten, forget trying to meet other parents, or have your kids be accepted and included. Information for new parents is non-existent, but boy will you hear about it if you've done something incorrectly. And if you ask questions you're spoken to like a dimwit. Frosty reception at pickup is just icing on the cake (I've rarely had a smile returned). Just an odd vibe all around, and my kids feel it, too, despite my sincere efforts to make it seem like the best school ever. Sad. We'll be looking at other options next year.
Excellent school, as are all the NE Seattle public elementary schools. My two sons have enjoyed their time at Bryant. Considering just how high the test scores at Bryant and other NE public schools are, I'm still trying to figure out what those private school kids are getting for their money at this age! But I guess people still buy jaguar cars so go figure.
So disappointed. I was told this was one of the best schools in the district, if that is true that's pretty pathetic. My son including many other children learned close to nothing the entire year. The teachers are all very young and new and do more babysitting than teaching. The principal pays more attention to her make up than what is going on in the school and lastly the recess "monitors" stand around chitchatting and don't even pay attention to the kids, several kids are bullies at this school and its allowed since no one cares to watch out for the children. We are selling our house and moving just to get our son into a better school. Goodbye Bryant, thank you for a nightmare of a school year!!!
Bryant is a community center, not a school. The kids there test high because of the education that they get from their parents not from their professors. My child attended kindergarten and 1st grade there. In kindergarten with play "educational" computer games sponsored by kellogs. In first grade he came back at the end of the school year with empty science and math journals. The journals had stickers that said "great job" and "terrific". The teacher follow the curriculum but never made sure the kids really learn or did their work. My child scored a96% in math 99% in reading n his MAP test. I guarantee that it was not because of he education he gets at Bryant elementary. The principal does not like to talk about those issues and will do everything possible to avoid a meeting this concern parents.
Despite the concerned remarks about blended K below, I found the school welcoming to my son who was a special needs child in thus program from 2008-09. Sadly the program has been discontinued due to a 'new special ed model' in Seattle Schools. This is tragic for many children who like my son can benefit from a bridge year with smaller class sizes and an understanding teacher. Ms. Newman, formerly blended K teacher, luckily stays on at Bryant in the resource room. She is exceptional and I have high hopes for 1st grade at Bryant too.