School Details
Showing school attendance zone

Test Scores by grade:

About This School

Harding Elementary School is a public elementary school in El Cerrito. The principal of Harding Elementary School is Valerie Garrett, whose e-mail is 369 students go to Harding Elementary School and identify primarily as White, non-Hispanic; Hispanic; and Unspecified. 19% of the Harding Elementary School students are "limited in English proficiency." 38% of the 369 students here are paying reduced lunch prices. The student to teacher ratio at Harding Elementary School is 15:1. Cornell Elementary School is one of the nearest elementary schools.

Extracurricular Activities

  • Arts

    • Band
    • Ceramics sculpture
    • Chorus
    • Computer arts
    • Dance
    • Drawing painting
    • Orchestra
    • Theater drama
  • Languages Taught

    • Cantonese
    • Mandarin
    • Spanish
  • Sports

    • Basketball
    • P.E. classes
    • Tennis
    • Yoga

Student Ethnicities

Ethnicity School District
White, non-Hispanic 28% 11%
Hispanic 25% 46%
Unspecified 23% 5%
Native Hawaiian or Other Pacific Islander 2% 29755%
Black, non-Hispanic 15% 23%
Multiracial 15% %
Asian 14% 10%
Filipino 0.9% 5%
Native American or Native Alaskan 0.3% 0.2%
Pacific Islander 0.3% 0.6%

Student Subgroups

Subgroup School District
Students eligible for free or reduced-price lunch program 38% 64%
Limited English proficiency 19% 33%

Community Rating & Reviews

  • (7 months ago)

    This is our neigbourhood school and we have a 5th grader and a 2 nd grader and we have been at the school since my oldest started kindergarten.Sofar we have been very happy with the teachers of our kids even with the ones that have not been the "preferred"teacher of that grade.When my youngest was in kindergarten did I always agree with the teachers way of teaching and testing the kids? No but the important thing was that my child loved his teacher was happy in the class and was learning. This year we have some great new programs amongst others our new garden coordinator who incorporates gardening and schoolwork and the drama and dance program from Youth in Arts which both my kids enjoyed a lot.If you want to see projects or art the kids are doing they are shown in various glass cases throughout the school and right outside the classrooms.We have the spring concert coming up where the music and vocalteachers show what they have been working with .We have a great new newsletter the sciencefair an ice cream social bike recycle and rummagesale.Is this school perfect?No.It is however a good neigbourhood school.I volunteer a lot inclassand outside of class.It does take a village.

  • (7 months ago)

    Mediocre school an over-emphasis on assessment "arts and music" programs have nothing to show for it (no artwork performances etc.) Principal is unresponsive to parent concerns regarding teachers. Our child's kindergarten teacher is unbelievably incompetent. Upsides nice parent community- carnival and dad's club. Seeking alternative next year.

  • (1 year ago)

    Our oldest child has been attending Harding for a little over a year now and we couldn't be happier. The teachers parents and principal are dedicated and work hard to make sure the kids have everything that they need to learn. Principal Takimoto is very respected among the teachers as well as the kids and has been implementing great programs to ensure the school keeps going in the direction it has been. Harding has a diverse group of kids from all socio-economic backgrounds and some with special needs which is also a wonderful learning opportunity for my child. From my experience all the kids no matter the teacher have learned all that they are supposed to be learning and at the end of the day that is what matters most - not a teacher's popularity contest. Thanks to Harding my child and my family have met wonderful friends and neighbors thanks to the many opportunities the school the PTA and the Dad's Club offer. When the kids connect at local events and outside school -- they are genuinely happy to see each other and are respectful of one another and that is priceless. So take the tour and learn more about our amazing neighborhood school.

  • (1 year ago)

    Since there hasn't been a review posted in two years I thought I'd update from the perspective of someone who has lived in the neighborhood since 2002 and who has had children at Harding since 2007. Harding has become an outstanding neighborhood school. Anyone looking to move into the neighborhood or already in the neighborhood and weighing options for your pre-K child should not hesitate to take a tour and talk to parents of current students. Yes there is still an achievement gap between non-economically disadvantaged and economically disadvantaged students; and yes that gap also happens to fall along race/ethnicity lines. But Harding has a committed and experienced principal who is respected by the teachers and a broadening base of parents who are engaged in everything from yard supervision and classroom assistance to fundraising and community events like Harding's amazing Fall carnival. Don't hesitate to check it out.

  • (4 years ago)

    Small classes a beautiful campus and strong classroom teachers. The only downside a small group of entitled parents who indulge in a lot of gossiping and back-biting--mostly about teachers and other parents they don't like. It's very tiresome. It's a tiny minority but if they would vote with their feet and leave instead of endlessly complaining it would be more fun to be involved. Office staff and principal are great.

  • (4 years ago)

    Our daughter has attended Harding for 3 yrs. K-2. We have had mixed experiences. There is a teacher in every grade it seems that is very unfavorable and the other is usually very good. If you happen to get the right teachers it can be great. We have had both. The principal although very involved and energetic doesn't seem to have any power to make changes to the staff as they are protected by tenure and the union. It's a beautiful school and there is a wonderful core of families who are very dedicated to making it better. The after school enrichment classes organized by the PTA are awesome. The after school care mediocre.

  • (5 years ago)

    HASEP is indeed a wonderful program and the two co-chairs deserve all the credit in the world for their excellent work however I think the previous post is way too hard on our teachers. Like any group some embrace change some resist it and most are willing to consider any reasonable request or thoughtful suggestion. I have been impressed by how much staff members do to accommodate requests/support the school. Many of them co-chair PTA activities and contribute generously to fundraisers. Teachers from almost every grade level showed up at the auction last year which raises funds to support art music and science. Some of them helped with set-up for the carnival this year. A few of them co-chair PTA events (family math night and the variety show). Most try hard to teach the rigorous CA state standards and advocate for their students. Give them a break! --big fan of hard working teachers

  • (5 years ago)

    The community of parents is great and the HASEP classes are fantastic thanks especially to the 2 moms in charge. The teachers while great are entrenched and resist change. Sometimes it's like shucking an oyster with a butter knife as far as getting communications going with them. The principal is a godsend on that and many other fronts! She is devout in her belief in the children and 'her staff'!

  • (6 years ago)

    Great families teachers and principal! Beautiful newly built school with tons of after school enrichment classes!

  • (7 years ago)

    This school is great & the parent participation makes it a wonderful Harding community )

  • (7 years ago)

    Harding elementary has an excellent staff of teachers! This school district has a great staff of teachers! I hope that they do the right thing and take care of the teachers so they will remain in the district. We need a new school board!

  • (7 years ago)

    Harding is a great school for exceptional learning! No the test scores are not that attractive but take a look into the entire school year progress! Testing is for the District. Look deeper into what the children are accomplishing! The children experience hands on learning and have lots of fun as well. Harding is great!

  • (7 years ago)

    Harding is an excellent school! My family has been very pleased with the overall instruction at the school!

  • (9 years ago)

    Great teachers. Strong music art and science programs. Outstanding academics. Ignore the test scores and rankings. Come and see for yourself. Visit online at

  • (9 years ago)

    I am very impressed with the academic programs and the availablity of 'The Arts' at Harding. Thanks to Tova Halpren and the entire staff at Harding; they helped my daughter love school again. Keep up the great work!

  • (9 years ago)

    My daugther is in kindergarten at Harding and we are very happy there. They have music class once a week and will have a new campus for fall 2005. The parent involvement is very high and Harding has an active PTA. Her kindergarten class is geared for learning in a fun and challenging environment. We love her teacher and all the kids in her class are really really good kids.

  • (10 years ago)

    We have found at Harding Elementry a truly diverse group of students teachers and parents who all care alot about children's education. Test scores alone do not tell the story of Harding. There are many very bright students at Harding and some who come from disadvantaged homes who with the help of the excelent staff are able to make great academic strides. We are looking forward to moving into our new school in the Spring of 2004.

See all reviews on GreatSchools


Sign in with Google