Award Year: 2019

Robert H. Down Elementary School

485 Pine Avenue
Pacific Grove, CA, 93950-3401

(831) 646-6540

Mr. Sean Burgess Keller, Principal at time of Nomination

Pacific Grove Unified School District

School Website


Robert Down Elementary School's mission is to challenge every student to learn skills, acquire knowledge, and develop character that is necessary for a rewarding life.

Student Demographics
  • Black/African American: 2%
  • White: 63%
  • Hispanic: 17%
  • Hawaiian/Pacific Islander: 1%
  • Asian: 10%
  • Native American: 2%
  • Two or more races: 5%
The 2019-20 Robert H. Down Otter Ohana.

The 2019-20 Robert H. Down Otter Ohana.

Robert H. Down Elementary (RHD) is one of two elementary schools in the Pacific Grove Unified School District in Pacific Grove, CA. Serving families since 1891, RHD (previously known as Pacific Grove Grammar School from 1891-1921) is named after its beloved principal of 31 years. RHD continues a tradition of academic excellence by providing appropriate interventions and enrichment for its students.

Our school always looks for innovative ways of supporting students in and out of the classroom. The Toolbox Social-Emotional Learning program helps Robert H. Down Elementary students to achieve greater academic, social, and emotional success. We believe that students have the tools to correct their mistakes and find ways to restore relationships with peers and staff - a major reason there are little to no discipline issues on campus. In addition, RHD provides a rich assortment of experiences for students through field trips and after school activities - including visits to the Monterey Bay Aquarium, PG Natural History Museum, Whale Watching, FIRST Lego Robotics, Underwater ROV, Jedi Choir, Just Run Club, and the Lyceum Spelling Bee.

Our families respond in kind with extraordinary support from our Parent Teacher Association and volunteers. The RHD PTA provides each teacher with monetary support along with family-centered activities such as Art night, Bingo Night, Silent Auction, and Bike Rodeo that focuses on safety and fun. Volunteers stem from parents, community members, and staff alumni. These support systems provide students at RHD with a community of caring which we call an Otter Ohana.