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Downington Middle School9

Downingtown, PA | Chester County

Quality
Principal
Teachers
Activities
Parents
Safety

September 26, 2014


My daughter is in her second year at DMS. First, the new bussing situation is unacceptable. Children must walk to and from busses through the busy high school parking lot, to the high school next door. For this reason I now drive my child both ways each day. One thing DMS does we'll is teach kids how to manage their time and schedules. Academically though I am not impressed with DASD at all. We move frequently and both of my children are far advanced in English, Science and History. My child has learned no new material in these subjects since we moved to Downingtown after 4th grade. Her current 7th grade history teacher does not teach, but babysits while the kids copy text from photo copied material in folders. We are at the mid-term of Q1 now and all lessons have been taught this way. I'd estimate that at least 50% of the work is project based and done in groups with inadequate supervision. This typically results in one child doing the work,a fair amount of social drama and no real learning. Considering all the accolades DASD receives, and the tax rate for the district, I expected more rigorous curriculum and a better learning environment. We have been disappointed.

Submitted by a parent

May 30, 2014


We moved here recently and have been delighted with DMS, Shamona Creek Elementary, and DASD. I have an 8th grader and a 5th grader and the staff, teachers and students have been very helpful. The band/music program is a big improvement over our prior school district (Marple-Newtown) and the social environment is much more welcoming. I'm looking forward to my kids graduating from high school here.

Submitted by a parent

May 29, 2014


In the two years my son has been a student at DMS I have found most of the teachers are there to collect a paycheck and not teach our children. They always have an excuse. In the private sector employers do not want excuse they want results and anwers. The Principal is a waste. Maybe he should send less time making YouTube vidoes and more time running the school.

Submitted by a parent

May 29, 2014


DMS has excellent and supportive teachers! The band program is fantastic! With sports, plays, clubs, ect... there are plenty of ways for students to get involved. Very welcoming environment and wonderful staff. As a parent who has had 2 children attend DMS I am very happy with the Downingtown school district.

Submitted by a parent

May 16, 2014


Downingtown Middle School is a phenomenal school! The administration, teachers and staff are all amazing people and do a superb job. I have nothing but positive things to say about DMS. THANK YOU SO MUCH FOR ALL YOU DO FOR OUR CHILDREN!! Keep up the incredible work you do!

Submitted by a parent

May 13, 2014


I'm outside the 4-year limit described in "School Review Guidelines", but perhaps a view of the long-term impact of DMS is worth sharing: Both of my children studied here, participated in the school's core curriculum programs and gifted ed programs and in the exceptional music programs... and went on to win early decision admission to two of America's most selective liberal arts colleges, Bucknell and Swarthmore. The current principal is the former Penn State Nittany Lion, mascot and principal cheerleader of the world's largest alumni association, and he brings a talent for spirit-building to his work with the faculty and school community. He was a fearsome pro wrestler and a tenderhearted special ed teacher too, and he reads Thomas Merton and Thich Nhat Hahn -- a remarkable, eclectic guy who brings all of his varied gifts to his work. Faculty members always struck me as committed to their disciplines, but committed even more to kids; special ed teachers and guidance staff in particular seemed to bend over backwards to please parents and serve students. Parents I know who still have kids in the school seem to share my assessment of DMS. Five stars then... and now!

Submitted by a parent

May 13, 2014


DMS's motto is "Every Child. Every Day." The entire staff, student-body, and community truly live that slogan. In addition to a rigorous core academic program, DMS provides a tremdously robust arts program (just attend one of their concerts or musical theater productions for proof) and a wide array of extracurricularl activities (evidenced by the beautiful murals adorning all walls of the school, which were painted by the Mural Club." The social, emotional, and academic growth of children at the middle level is paramount. The team-based wholistic approach at DMS leads to success in these areas. To that end, DMS and DASD have also become a choice location for its phenomenal special needs programming. The Life Skills, Supplemental Life Skills, Autistic Support, and Supplemental Autistic Support programs are second to none. Finally, along with its counterpart, LMS, the DMS Lancers were just awarded the prestigious "Pennsylvania Governor's Award for Academic Excellence" for its exceptional School Performance Profile Score. While the incredible DASD high schools receive most of the formal accolades, it's the middle schools that build the strong foundation for that future success.

May 13, 2014


My school is Downingtown Middle School and I can honestly say that the principal and administrative staff have been nothing but fantastic and supportive throughout my years here. The teachers are outstanding and they continuously go above and beyond for the students. I couldn't be happier or more satisfied.

Submitted by a parent

May 9, 2014


This school is a perfect example of everything that is right about Downingtown. Awesome teachers and principals who go out of their way to help kids. A variety of programs to suit children of all interests. Outstanding academics to challenge children of every ability level. We could go on and on.

Submitted by a parent

February 20, 2014


This school is excellent! Not every teacher is perfect but I found no communication issues between the staff and myself for my children. The teachers want my children to excel and the homework is definitely going to prepare them for high school. Both of my kids are able to juggle extra curricular activities(there are an array of choices) and their school work just fine and I really like the curriculum this school has especially compared to other middle schools in the area.

Submitted by a parent

September 26, 2013


awesome! this school was amazing for my kids and I am glad to have given them this head start in life. great district, great families, great administration!

Submitted by a parent

March 6, 2012


I have had two students in this school. Overall, DMS is an excellent school providing you have a willing learner. Under that premise, you'll find dedicated teachers, excellent opportunity for advanced classes, consistently high testing results and a general attitude of support. I cannot speak to complaints by others voiced here, but my daughters IEP was handled extremely well and I never have had any issue with guidance, staff or teachers being anything but professional. If results matter to parents reading this, we have one student who is a graduate here who is heading off to a top ten liberal arts college and many many past classmates are matriculating to our nation's top colleges and universities. I, for one, thank DMS for making my students more prepared to succeed in the challenging world they will face.

Submitted by a parent

December 15, 2011


In three years I have had not a good experience with DMS, my daughter has an IEP for "specific learning disability" reading, comp and math... to get communication and support for her on a regular basis has been like pulling teeth. Meeting after meeting nothing gets better, last year I did take her out after a death in our family and home schooled her because there just was not enough support there.. and she has no behavioral issues or anything... She did amazing with home schooling moved up in testing and everything, but the socialization was just not there... so sadly this year I put her back in the school 8th grade and it is horrible again. It has taken since October for me to have a real response from the teacher that does her IEP to make changes. The principal is about bottom dollar all the way... no help there.

Submitted by a parent

July 18, 2011


I am new to the Downingtown area and am stuck with a decision! I read the great schools rating of 9/10 but I see parents only give it a 3/5. As I remember my math 90% is not the same as 60%. Can anyone help me reconcile why the difference? As my only intereaction has been with office staff in getting my children registered, I must agree, the district does not do a very good job on customer service (the receptionist that scheduled my registration for my kids was rude).

Submitted by a parent

July 8, 2011


Both of my children attended this school. I feel teachers there always blame either the children or the district for thier lack of teaching. The guidance counslers have a negative atitude and are slow returning phone callls

Submitted by a parent

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