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Heidi Swingley
707-292-8288

Hillcrest Middle School9

Sebastopol, CA | Sonoma County

Quality
Principal
Teachers
Activities
Parents
Safety

December 20, 2013


I'm a student here at Hillcrest, and I love it. The teachers are kind and supportive- they try to get you to do your best no matter what. The music program is great too- Mr. Pulley is awsome! He helped me really learn how to play music. Unlike most middle schools, Hillcrest is almost totally free of bullying, and there is no such thing as 'popular kids' and 'cool kids'. Everyone treats everyone the same, no matter how they look or how old they are. You should absolutely join this school! Just one thing...beware of the school lunch!

October 24, 2013


Memories of my own middle school experience had me dreading the time when I would have to send my children to middle school. I looked high and low for an alternative to the mostly large middle schools in my immediate area where, when around the campuses I felt very uncomfortable with what I heard and saw from the kids who attended them. I happened upon Hillcrest which stood out as a very different environment. Upon further investigation I was pleasantly amazed at the caliber of the teachers, the academics, the extra curricular activities, the administration, and especially for me, the culture of the school where 11 to 14 year olds actually behaved like I would like to see that age behave and how they treated each other with overall kindness and respect. My eldest daughter spent her first year in middle school elsewhere and was very unhappy. After moving to Hillcrest, she too was surprised that she observed none of the language and behaviors that turned her off the other school. She thrived there as now my other two children who currently attend Hillcrest are thriving. Mr Fichera, the principal is caring, involved and impressive in many ways. I can't say enough about this school!

Submitted by a parent

September 1, 2013


Hillcrest is an excellent middle school. As a parent I could not be happier with the academics and social culture. The teachers are excellent and give the feeling that they truly care about each students progress. There is a lot of parent involvement. I will be sad when my 8th grader graduates this year. But I will know that she had a great experience and learned a lot at Hill Crest Middle School.

Submitted by a parent

August 20, 2013


My school is awsome!! Thay have made me feel good about leaving my child the curriculum is great and I couldn't have found a better school for my child.

Submitted by a parent

July 6, 2013


I go to Hillcrest and I love! there is so many great activities, such as field trips and sports day. I like how we, in all grades, are allowed to interact with each other. The school could improve by, better teachers and better school lunches. The teachers are rude. The lunches are mystery meat which means...horse meat, cow meat, and pig meat all combined! eww!

January 27, 2013


We give this school a solid A and five stars. I was surprised to see the negative reviews until i realized they are from years ago. Speaking from recent experience we could not be more satisfied with everything. The ENRICH program is wonderful and the nurturing atmosphere provides a safe and encouraging place for the children to learn. There seems no problem with peer pressure as in most other schools, the students seem to be respectful of each other and their teachers. The teaching quality is excellent and the principal is very visible on campus and at after school events. He is very well liked and runs a very efficient school. My elder grandchild graduated last year and is now at Analy, she was very unhappy at her other middle school and after transferring to Hillcrest she blossomed. Her siblings are in 6th grade now and are thriving and enjoying everything Hillcrest has to offer. Speaking as a former Bay Area teacher I have to say I am extremely impressed, and the children's parents are very happy that they placed their children here.

October 31, 2011


Wonderful School. We have been having a great experience for the last three years. My son started here after leaving Twin Hills. It's a great academics, lower peer pressure atmosphere. Wonderful Music program an incredible electives. My son is flourishing. Linda LaMarre , David Fishera and the outstanding ENRICH staff are continuing to do a great job. Loved Keri Pugno too , who is now a great elementary teacher for our lucky kids!

Submitted by a parent

March 15, 2011


Both of our kids are in the Enrich program and are blossoming. The program director, Keri Pugno, is also the school principal. One of the previous reviews complained of the school's decline and attributed it to her leadership. If anything, Keri is WHY our kids attend. She is first-to-arrive/last-to-leave, and always has made herself available when we've had questions or concerns. We see her at almost every performance or significant school event that is after hours. She is why this school is a diamond in the rough. Our daughter was part of the program when it was Reach, and we witnessed first hand the vindictive behavior of the parents that wanted complete control of the program just because they made donations. You can probably chalk any bad review of this school to one of those spoiled parents who left the program in a huff to make their own utopia. Any parent who can have their child attend this school and doesn't is making a giant mistake.

Submitted by a parent

February 10, 2010


We have had our kid's in the REACH program for the last three years. The teachers are outstanding and really go above and beyond. Every year it get's better and better.

Submitted by a parent

January 26, 2010


The creative arts magnet program they try and offer is a sad example of what can go wrong when the leadership is not good. I thought I was sending my child to the original REACH program then i found out is at Brook Haven, They are now a charter school and really have their act together. Parental involvement is wonderful, a real community. Their attention to all aspects of child development is what I was searching for.

Submitted by a parent

December 26, 2009


Sadly, we can't rec.'d. this schl. Our children, attending since 2007. Decline in School overall since 08. Entirely, due to the leadership of Principal: Keri Pugno. Teacher's are talented. Admin. has limited their direction. Complaints & gossip are now common. Again, where's Keri? The Magnet program has been very expensive w/ slight diff. to what might be received from standard school's. School-wide, the children have little self-respect for each other. Name calling & worse abound. Keri is selective to inter-district trsfr's. Our good friends were declined so that her friends kid's could attend. Sp. Ed. is worst in Seb. Parents, be wise to look at Twin Hills!

Submitted by a parent

August 25, 2009


I give this school three stars for the teachers. I think they are very dedicated and caring. However, our family left this magnet do to the money grab of the administration and district. Too bad. The teachers are good, but overshadowed by the lack of student concern in the hierarchy. If you are going to pay an extra few hundred dollars per month, you'd want to be assured that ALL of that money is going toward your child's education.

Submitted by a parent

August 24, 2009


We have had our kid's in the REACH program for the last three years. The teachers are outstanding and really go above and beyond. Every year it get's better and better.

Submitted by a parent

July 10, 2009


I was in the REACH program at Hillcrest and it was great! It was an environment that nurtured creativity and uniqueness. The academics were superb, and my class really grew together--there was no unfriendliness. I graduated this year and really appreciate what an excellent school Hillcrest was for me!

Submitted by a student

March 6, 2009


My daughter had one of the absolute worst experiences at this school. The children were absolutely horrible to her. I never thought such a negative experience could have happened at a school with such great reviews. My daughter is very creative, so I thought that the magnet program would be wonderful. It turned out to be just the same as a regular program, except the teachers were always unavailable, and they werent teaching the correct curriculum ( I'm a middle school teacher myself). I would give this school zero stars if I could. I have since moved my daughter to Twin Hills (Along with many other Hillcrest students), and her experience has been far, far better. The teachers are great and listen to the parents feedback, the students are so nice and well behaved, and the campus is gorgeous.

Submitted by a parent

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