About Us

Eagle "Home of the Eagles"Eagle

Darlene

Mrs. Darlene F. Bright

At Simonsdale Elementary, we are dedicated to establishing high expectations and academic excellence while building character, encouraging creativity, promoting individuality, and developing healthy lifestyles. In cooperation with parents and community, our staff celebrates diversity in a safe, orderly, and nurturing environment. Our goal is to create a learning environment where our students acquire the skills to become productive, knowledgeable, lifelong learners, and responsible citizens.



statement

Our vision of Simonsdale Elementary is a community of learning where staff maintains a strong focus on academic achievement and students are expected to meet high expectations. Our students are considered to be a precious resource and our role is nuturing them to develop to their fullest potential.  The staff of Simonsdale  is attentive  to the individual learning styles of each student and endeavors to accommodate the intellectual, social, emotional, and physical differences of each student.
 
We envision  our adminstration and staff working efficiently and collaboratively to provide a climate that promotes academic achievement in  a safe, secure nurturing environment supported by a partnership among students, sensitive and professional staff, supportive families and community.

Believe

  • We believe all students have the ability to learn, achieve, and be successful.
  • We believe students learn best in a safe, caring  and structured environment that promotes student learning.
  • We believe a variety of instructional practices incorporated in an integrated curriculum will address the diverse learning styles of our students.
  • We believe students must maintain good attendance to promote academic excellence.
  • We believe a quality education, continuous improvements, and positive communications, are the shared responsibility of all stakeholders (school staff, parents, and community).

School History

Rear Admiral Manley H. Simons, a former commander of the Norfolk Naval Shipyard, conceived the concept of the Simonsdale community in 1939. The number of shipyard workers and the shortage of housing in the area precipitated his action. He constituted a commandant's housing advisory committee, which negotiated the purchase of a 143-acre tract that extended from the old Suffolk Boulevard (now Portsmouth Boulevard) to Olive Branch Cemetery.

In order to accommodate the Simonsdale community’s youth population who attended Westhaven School, the Norfolk County School Board constructed a school on a 24-acre site situated on Byers Avenue. In April 1946, the new facility opened with a 13 member faculty and a student body of 490. The school’s first complete year commenced with the 1946-47 academic session. By 1949, the School Board and the professional staff were planning to renovate the school facility so that it could accommodate the rapidly increasing number of schoolchildren. The School Board dedicated the new addition in 1952. The newly renovated plant provided certain amenities for 1,124 students: a library, an office suite, a multi-purpose room complete with a modern stainless steel kitchen, a clinic, a faculty lounge, and six additional classrooms.

            During the sixties, instructional innovations in the area of technology found their way into the school’s educational program: audiovisual equipment, language masters, and recorders. Computer technology soon followed. In 1971, the school served the needs of primary students enrolled in first and second grades from three communities: Cavalier Manor, Park Manor, and Simonsdale. In order to meet the students’ instructional needs, the central administrative staff added seven kindergarten classes. At that time, the school’s student population exceeded 600. With enrollment of 725 students, the school presently serves the needs of youngsters from kindergarten to sixth grade. Simonsdale Elementary School is the division’s newest state of the art LEED certified green building.

Twelve administrators have provided strong leadership during the school’s 65 year history:

Miss Mary Frances Wright

1946-71

Mr. Bernard M. Mamlin

1971-72

Ms. Rebecca P. Davis

1972-79

Mrs. Venable Whitlow

1979-81

Ms. Adelaide Crute

1981-84

Mrs. Eunice G. Southhall

1984-89

Ms. Gloria Gowings

1989-91

Dr. Ethel R. Porter

1991-93

Mrs. Nancy S. Dunn

1993-96

Mr. William H. Slate

1996-2007

Mrs. Karen D. Clark

2007-10

Mrs. Darlene F. Bright

2010-present