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Fort Dorchester Elementary School9

Summerville, SC | Dorchester County

Quality
Principal
Teachers
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Parents
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January 9, 2015


We moved here in August from Pennsylvania and I was concerned about the schools, only due to what I have heard and some of the comments on this site. Having come from a great school (with great big taxed) there's no doubt we had considerable trepidation about what the difference might be. People only tend to write reviews when they are having an negative experience so I figured I'd write a positive one. I realize every child is different, but our kids have had a great experience at Fort Dorchester. It made it a very simple transition and none of our concerns were founded. The school is every bit as good as their school in the north. Most of the kids are great and the teachers have been excellent. My kids want to go to school every day; a sign that they are doing something right. For those having issues, I am sorry to hear that and hope things improve!

Submitted by a parent

November 12, 2014


What should I do? My child is in Kindergarden right now, the other day he told his teacher squeeze his shoulder really hard just to try to get him stay in line, he told that he almost cry. I also put my child in Extended Day, but feel like being discriminated, because the other day when trying to pay, I was charged $60 for full time stay even though my child had couple day absent, while the policeman get charge $28 dollar for the hours that his daughter has went even though he said that his daughter is a full time. I don't think the policeman is any special than me, I'm a businessman and had to pay a lot of tax for it, I don't think it's fair that I have to pay anymore than that . Other than that my child had a terrific year with Mrs. Gunter in 4K

Submitted by a parent

October 8, 2014


I hate this school. This is our first year in a public school and this school has been awful. We've had numerous problems and can't seem to get any resolve. I've asked to soak to the principal three times and she absolutely refuses to speak to me. If you have the option, DO NOT send your child here!

Submitted by a parent

May 11, 2014


I love this school. Both of my kids go here and have been doing wonderfully. They push academics strongly, but stay well rounded with excellent Art, Music, and PE programs. They have outside experts come in for special projects for the kids to learn. They've done a great job handling the common core curriculum. They incorporate a lot of SC and US history (social studies) into their reading curriculum to hit 2 subjects at once. The academic is wonderful with inclass science projects, language arts, amd math. My child is in GATE and i have been impressed at the level of information they have taught. The kids still have fun, too. It's not all "business" at school. They have lots of after school activities that either i corporate learning or reward it. I had to laugh at the previous review that the receptions didn't need to be working with children. She is very curt and acts like she'd rather be anywhere than there. Their last reception was super sweet. We've postponed moving so we could keep them in this school. People who are complaining about this school must be people who complain about everything!

Submitted by a parent

March 25, 2014


I'm military, considering this school district and I am very, very unhappy with the amount of reports I see here about bullying. I ask the principal and all teachers to immediately put an end to this and create zero tolerance policies, for teachers and students.

Submitted by a parent

February 13, 2014


This is the third DD2 school my child has gone to, and by miles the worst. The school is constantly pushing for test scores over actual learning. If a child is struggling in a subject they give you two options " get a diagnosis" or "find help elsewhere".

Submitted by a parent

January 19, 2014


I absolutely love FDES! I have 2 children that attend here and they love going to school. We moved from out of state and Fort Dorchester is so much more organized than their previous school. They recognize and celebrate the childrens achievements all the time. The teachers are wonderful and I have not had a problem with communication. You can see the difference it makes to have such dedicated parents, staff, and volunteers. The school is much larger than our previous school, but the class sizes are smaller. I volunteer weekly and the principals are always stopping in a class or are visible within the schools. My only complaint would be the receptionist, you can tell she doesn't belong around children. Not very pleasant or friendly. Keep up the great work FDES!

Submitted by a parent

September 30, 2013


Get your children off those broken down buses, put them back in your car and go to another school. The kids are great at this school and some of the teachers are too. Though finding well-trained, devoted staff here is like an Easter egg hunt. I agree 150% with the other parents; there is enormous pressure to pass standardized tests and to put on a good show so the school could finally win a Palmetto award. But for what?! The kids don't get field trips, sports, iPads or anything else they claim the students should receive. They issue students passing grades and parents are fooled into what learning they think took place. There is a reason that SC has the highest rate of high school drop outs year after year. There is a huge turnover of staff here. There is a large problem with bullying and the staff overlook it. There is very inconsistent communication from the school. Try reaching your teacher and you may wait a while, if you get a reply at all. This school has great difficulty following their own district's policies and make excuses for not doing so. And you want these people modeling leadership for our children??! Do yourself and your children a favor and run!!

Submitted by a parent

September 19, 2013


Someone stated below that this school is better than the Washington state school their child previously attended. Not sure how, as we just moved from there and thought this school would be on par. Not even close! This school is way over crowded and keeps getting more crowded every year. The kids just get lost in the system here and there are so many disciplinary issues that education takes a back seat. I was so happy when we moved away from SC and got our child into a better school. It's sad that this school is considered one of the best SC has to offer.

Submitted by a parent

September 18, 2013


My son went to this school for K-4th grade. The teachers were great but bullying is definitely a problem that is not addressed or taken care of at this school! We recently moved to another area and my son is a completely different child at his new school! Kids are much nicer and bullying is not tolerated!

Submitted by a parent

August 18, 2013


I have lived in this community for 10 years and both of my children went to this school. The teachers work very hard and that is the ONLY reason that this school is successful. There is a very high teacher turn over due to working under great stress and constant pressure. The administration is so focused on winning awards such as Palmetto's Finest which they tried SO hard for the last five years to FINALLY win and begged for money and free labor to improve the looks of the school all for the prestige of winning the award. My children are outstanding students and were well prepared by the teachers that they both had. They continue to succeed at Oakbrook Middle School and for that I am grateful. Kudos to all of the great teachers... you all deserve all of the credit.

Submitted by a parent

July 12, 2013


This school is clean and decorated nicely but the inner workings of the school are a very different story.There are many very nice teachers there. And ones that actually want to teach. However this school is weighted down by tunnel vision of winning awards and receiving recognition at any cost. The staff will show you how great the kids are doing but when you take a closer look you will find a generous grading system that has little to do with actual work or achievement. And if your child is failing they won't tell you. They just pass these kids to get them through the system and win awards. Bullying has been a problem at times but the staff makes it worse by not addressing the issues. And there is no communication.Teachers rarely respond to parent contact.I have had several children at this school and this has happened with all of them. There were no field trips for kids these last few years which is a disappointment.There has been a high turn over of staff over the years too.I'm disappointed at how little my children were prepared for middle and high school compared to some of their friends from other districts.People need to look into things deeply before coming here.

Submitted by a parent

May 20, 2013


Fort Dorchester Elementary School is AMAZING!!! We are military and chose where to live based on the score this school received and I am so very glad we did. We couldn't have asked for a better school. Awesome teachers, staff and volunteers.

Submitted by a parent

May 22, 2012


Fantastic school! Anyone who doesn't think so will never be happy anywhere. Teachers have all been very organized. Great family activities. Many opportunities for parental involvement.

Submitted by a parent

February 14, 2012


My son has attended FDES for 4 years. I can't say enough good things about this school. The teachers truly care about the kids and go the extra mile to help them learn. The office staff is friendly and helpful. It is obvious that parents in this school support it and their kids. It is a positive learning environment with teachers able to work with kids at multiple levels.

Submitted by a parent

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