Both of my children went to TMS and received good educations, but I know now that they would have been just as well served in TUSD or at any other charter school. The teachers at TMS were wonderful, but the administration less so. There is no sharing of information and consistancy in how the school is run or how diverse families are treated. TMS was not an open or responsive environment for parents. There are better schools in Tucson, keep looking.
I find the post that was left on December 17th baffling. If you are familiar with Montessori that is exactly how the schools are run. They expect that you are continuing the same type of independent philosophy at home. They do a lot with the children and care very much for them. They promote independence, so yes if they need to wash their hands they get to do that themselves. I, too, was surprised by what seemed like, little communication BUT when you understand the philosophy behind Montessori you will begin to understand. When you drop off and pick up your child the teachers are all there for your questions. I have heard this concern with the lack of sense of community, but I ask you, what would you like for them to offer? You can reach out to the parents that are there and chat with them over lunch. I think that if you do not embrace the Montessori lifestyle then you will not understand and appreciate how the school is ran. I had my girls in the school for almost 6 years collectively and left for an AMI school in a different state and they were right on track academically. You should be thrilled to have your child in this school!!
Our daughter went to Montessori schoolhouse for preschool and we were not happy with her year there. First of all, there is no communication with parents. I found very odd never to get an update for a three year-old s day and general progress. The only time I did was during the scheduled parent-teacher conference. Whenever I asked about my daughter, I would get monosyllabic or brief, uninformative answers. I found this lack of communication unacceptable. Parents were discouraged from being involved in any way, the teachers preferring to leave the preschool experience entirely to them, the experts. There was no attempt to socialize the parents and allow them to get to know each other to create some sense of community. Second, the 'child-led development' philosophy is an excuse for them to not spend too much time with kids. My daughter played with the same toys every day for an entire year, did not really learn anything or became interested in anything new. At her new school after Montessori, she learned more in her first month than in a whole year at Montessori. There are better options in Tucson.
Our son attended the school for preschool, and we put him at the public Montessori school for Kinder, after we observed some very odd educational procedures. First of all, the 6th Street location routinely held kindergarteners back for an additional year of "pre-1st." Now, what exactly that "pre-1st" was, I do not know. But disturbingly, we observed that only children who did not quite "fit in" were required to stay behind, and most of their parents pulled them from the school when they were asked to hold back their child. It seemed to me it was a "weeding out" tactic, designed to get rid of students who could not perform to the level expected to mainting the Ft. Lowell campus' high academic achievement standards. Which is fine - you can get that at any private school that charges tuition. But as parents, we never knew how the school's money was being spent, even though we were required (not asked, mind you, but required) to give a $200 tax credit each year (we have other children, who attend other schools, and were told that didn't matter). The director was strange, but we had few, if any, interactions with her, nor did the students.
My child has been at Montessori Schoolhouse since preschool and is now in upper elementary. This is a fantastic school! I have personally observed the classes on numerous occasions and have always been impressed by the fact that all the children are always on task and are joyful about their learning. My child has loved all of the teachers, especially Regine Ebner, who is the director and teaches lowere elementary, is excited to learn, has had wonderful guidance on peer relations. Another wonderful thing about this school is that they use the Virtues Project and each week focus on learning a different virtue, such as compassion, curiousity, justice, etc. My child is excelling academically both in the school and on the standardized tests, but far more importantly he loves to learn and solve problems. I have heard negative statements about the director from other parents, however I can see another side to the story in the cases that I am familiar with. Most parents here seem to be very happy with the teachers and the education their child is getting and overall it is a lovely community.
I currently have a child in the Upper class and have great things to say about this school. The circle time is a concentrated period of instruction each day and is kept "distraction free" for a reason (you must be on time or you might have to sit out of circle). It helps the kids stay focused on what the teacher is presenting that day. But parents are allowed, even encouraged to come visit/observe the classroom but they are advised to schedule a visit and minimize interactions with the students while they are working. It is not a traditional school setting but I have not ever felt that there is any secretive stuff going on as the last review noted. Also I believe that financially they must be audited each year according to the AZ Dept of Education. Montessori is not for everyone but most children I have seen come and go through the school in my 10 years of having a student there, love being there and go on to be great students at the next school they attend.
I agree with the review of 8/30/09. Parents are not encouraged to be part of their childs education. Little if any feedback is provided on an ongoing basis, except for the twice a year parent teacher meeting. We removed our daughter from this school due to bullying. We reported it to the staff, which acknowledged the "bully", but told our child to "work it out with the child". After repeated attempts to resolve the problem, both in person with teachers, the owner/administrator and via a letter of concern, we met with the owner/administrator. She was adversarial and defensive, and indicated that it had been dealt with and no more was to be done. She claims to have a degree in counseling but lacks the skills to utilize the education she has received. We strongly DO NOT recommend this school.
My child attends the MSH preschool and really enjoys it. The teachers are warm and caring, and they respond appropriately to parent questions/concerns. One complaint: the teachers/staff do not communicate much about daily activities or upcoming changes.
This is a poorly run school that should not be allowed to call itself Montessori. The Director is not fit to work with children, she displays no empathy and enforces rules based on her personal preferences of which families she likes and dislikes. If there were an accreditation process for Montessori schools, this one would never pass! I guess if you have the degree you can use the name but this is a shameful representation of what Montessori is suppose to be.
The director of this school thinks that she should be able to collect public funding and have the admission discretion of a private school. THIS IS ILLEGAL! She refuses to accommodate working families schedules and insists on meeting with them during the work day. When they can not attend, she claims the parents are not compliant. We were not the first family to file a complaint with the Charter School Board and from what I have heard there have been lawsuits against the school as well. STAY AWAY!!
My Kids attending Montessori Schoolhouse campus for preschool and K. They were students from 2006-spring 2010. I strongly recommend this school. My children excelled both academically and socially. The teachers there are the role models that I want my children to emulate. Probably the best school in Tucson. I visited many schools before chosing this one. At one other school I observed a teacher who looked like she was in her Teens or maybe early twenties, had visible tatoos. This is not the environment you will find at Montessori Schoolhouse. Exactly the opposite. Being a doctor, I have high expectations for my children. This school exceeded my expectations for math and reading. But at this age first and foremost is role models. Kids learn more by watching us. I hope my kids maintain the social grace that I observed from the teachers at Montessori Schoolhouse.
As I write this review, I see that of the 13 reviews left, all but one of them fall into two categories: 1 star or 5 stars. Fascinating! Our child started attending MSH when she turned 3. An independent and outgoing child, she adapted beautifully. Now in her 2nd year, she is thriving and her younger sibling cannot wait to enroll. The staff is wonderful. Each teacher brings their own strengths to the school. Some are more affectionate, others more practical. Some are more soothing, others more invigorating. They provide a balance of character to the students, while operating under a unified vision of education. The curriculum is exceptional. In response to reviewers' negative feedback to the principle, I'd like to note that during the registration process, I, too, had a negative experience with her. But instead of allowing one experience defeat us, we overcame it and were very happy thereafter.
Well, my son started at the preschool last year at age 4, and we've had an excellent experience. Let me begin by saying, this is not his first preschool. His previous preschool literally disintegrated, due in part to the rapid turnover of unqualified staff, and there was a considerable bullying issue. As parents, we were looking for an educational environment that was first and foremost safe and stable, and where we felt he could reach his fullest potential. Montessori was very different from what he had before, and we have watched him blossom! His teachers are caring & professional. He does the 45-card layout about once a week with his best friend, and is way beyond where his sibling was in mathematics at this age.
The director lacks the personal skills, sympathy, and patience to do her job effectively. I do not recommend the preschool for those seeking a warm, nurturing environment that fosters social and emotional growth; close parent-teacher communication and/or parental involvement; and a low ratio of students to teachers.
This school was a disappointment and a very poor example of Montessori education. My 3rd grader was not encouraged to learn outside of her comfort zone. She didn't even learn division last year. Parents are encouraged to leave the educating to the educators. Parent involvement is discouraged, if anything. There are some significant social issues amongst the children and some seem to really suffer without the teacher guidance needed to limit bullying, gossip and discriminatory behaviors. The Director of this school is very unprofessional and emotion-driven. Montessori education can be so rewarding! I urge parents to choose Montessori education, but not at this school. I am aware that many of the teachers have children at this school and that some of the positive reviews posted on this site are written by these teachers. Please investigate this school thoroughly before placing your child here.
My child had a wonderful experience at this school for her kindergarten year, which was a transition year, as we had just moved here from out of state. The teachers did a great job with the children in general, and my daughter in particular. The teacher as facilitator method worked very well for her; she learned an an amazing amount this year: by year end she was writing all of her letters correctly, reading, and had learned many other things from gardening to geography. I thought the teachers, parents, and other students associated with the school were all supportive and caring.
My child attended this school, and I have to say the director is by far the most disrespectful educator I have ever worked with. I'm really disappointed in the way she carries herself, and she is assumed to be very educated. I really feel as if the world has evolved, and so should the Montessori Schoolhouse. Education is very important to parents, and I think that this school should take parent concerns very seriously. The communication between educators and parents is key to any childs' success, and this school is no exception. There are other choices of Montessori schools out there, and I feel that parents should investigate all options before making their choice. I know that this school rates a ten which makes the school very appealing, and test scores are important, but not everything. I feel that your childs' overall happiness plays a huge role in their success.
I have two children currently attending in the lower and upper elementary classrooms, who started in the pre-school program. The education they have received is truly outstanding. The curriculum and academics are superior and all the teachers are committed, bringing their unique talents to the classroom. The most wonderful aspect of Montessori education beyond superior academics is that the the children are self-confident, respectful, motivated and engaged in the education process. Under the guidance of their outstanding director, the school has flourished for over three decades. Enrolling our children in this school is easily one of the greatest gifts we have given them...one that will reap a lifetime of rewards.
As a parent of a child in this preschool, I found the staff and director of this school very difficult to work with. It also seemed to me that communication with parents was not emphasized at all.
It's an amazing school! The dedication to helping children learn and grow is awesome with these Teachers.
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