Welcome to Harding Elementary School!
For those families new to the area, we look forward to you enriching our school community, and for those returning families, welcome back and keep up the great work!
We had a very successful start to the school year. Thank you to all the students, families, faculty and staff for setting a tone of high expectations and genuine caring so that all of our students can experience success and growth this year!
Harding Elementary school is the second largest elementary building in the district.
Harding Elementary implements looping in grades K5 thru 5th grade.
What is Looping and what does it have to do with me?
Looping is an educational practice in which a single graded class of children stays with their teacher for two years or grade levels. The children and the teacher remain together as the class is promoted. At the end of the second year, the children move on to a new teacher while the looping teacher returns to the lower grade level to receive a new group of students. At Harding, students and teachers in grade K5 will loop with grade one, grade two will loop with grade three, while students and teachers in grade four will loop with grade five on a two – year cycle.
What are the benefits of Looping Classrooms for students, parents, and teachers?
For students, the benefits of looping include reduced apprehension of starting a new school year, increased continuity, and more in-depth relationships with teachers and peers. For teachers the benefits of looping consist of becoming more familiar with the development stages of children, and working with students and parents for longer periods of time. These long-term relationships established through looping have been shown to support student learning.
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To provide a safe and predictable learning environment where all students are challenged daily and given the opportunity to grow academically, socially, and behaviorally through classroom experiences and social interaction.
We will focus on the education of the whole child with attention to safe learning settings, healthy lifestyles, challenged and engaged teaching and learning, and district – wide support services. Together, we will initiate a learning improvement process focused on student needs highlighted by innovative thinking and a culture of learning. Professional learning communities will guide our improvement strategies and implementations. These learning communities will draw on the wisdom, experiences, and ideas of our students, teachers, administrators, parents, and community members to determine the best practices for becoming a high performing school.
Instruction that supports resilience focuses on a broad range of learning styles, builds from perceptions of student strengths, interests and experience, and is participatory and facilitative, creating ongoing opportunities for self-reflection, critical inquiry, problem solving and dialogue.
Grouping practices that support resilience promote heterogeneity and inclusion, cooperation, shared responsibility, and a sense of belonging. And, lastly, evaluation that supports resilience focuses on multiple intelligences, utilizes authentic assessments, and fosters self-reflection. Providing our students with opportunities for meaningful involvement and responsibility within the school is a natural outcome in schools that have high expectations.
Our teaching practices include asking questions that encourage critical thinking and dialogue (especially around current social issues), making learning more hands-on, involving students in curriculum planning, using participatory evaluation strategies, letting students create the governing rules of the classroom, and employing cooperative approaches (such as cooperative learning, peer helping, cross-age mentoring, and community service).
We are continuing with our work to maintain a positive school climate and culture that will help more students experience success each and every day. Research has indicated that schools that establish high expectations for all youth and give them the support necessary to achieve them have high rates of academic success. We are working extremely hard to create structure and predictable environments that will reduce stimuli and allow our students to feel safe and secure through our routines and expectations. Additionally, we have “Morning meetings” where students can voice their concerns, affirmations, and opinions about what is going on in the Harding Community. In order to promote a better world, we must learn to have respect for everyone. We must be responsible for ourselves and for what we do. We must gain the power of self-control, even when things become difficult. We must practice a good work ethic so we can be the best individuals we can be.
We hope that with a sense of pride and dignity you will make Harding a better school for yourself and others. We see Harding as being that better school where all students look forward to attending and staff members are happy to serve.
Safe School Committee
Our Safe School Committee meets four times a year to discuss and resolve safety issues or concerns that may have an effect on our students. If you have a concern, please contact Mr. Reager or Mr. Bullock, as parent input is always welcome for discussion.
We have a wonderful PTO, which provides many opportunities for our school community to experience. Activities like Race for Education, Santa’s workshop, and a day at Rita’s are just a few of the events that take place during the school year. Our PTO is made up of special people who make special things happen at Harding. Please consider partnering with our outstanding PTO, their support for our school enriches school life in so many ways.
We work in collaboration with the J.T. Dorsey Foundation and Lebanon Valley College to support our soccer/character education program at Harding. This program allows our students to experience the joy of a sport but more importantly, work on their teamwork skills.
Updated PSSA scores
We did not accomplish our goal of making AYP this year, which is disappointing; however, Harding will continue to do whatever it takes to reach our goal during the 2013-2014 school year. Please follow the link below to Harding’s School Performance Profile.
We recognize that parents are their child’s first and most important teachers, and we need your cooperation and involvement to provide them with the best education possible. Take time to talk with your children about their school experiences. Your interest and concern in their school progress will motivate them to do their best. Maintain contact with your child’s teachers and with the administrators. Ask questions and communicate concerns so that we can build a partnership which will ensure students success.
Communication is important. Please do not hesitate to contact a principal, counselor, teachers, or staff regarding any questions or concerns. Our goal is to work together in providing the students the optimal learning experience.
It is a privilege to serve as principal of Harding Elementary. Please feel free to contact me if you have any questions about our school. Thank you for visiting our school web site! For continual updates, also please visit and “Like” our Harding Elementary page – you will find the link to it below.
Michael Reager - Principal
Nicholas Bullock - Assistant Principal
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