We heard great things about LRMS before sending our child there. They promised to cater to her needs and told us how child focused they were. While the environment was very safe, she was bored there. When we pointed out that she had progressed far beyond what they were on, the school did nothing to address that. Rather, they just became defensive and went on about the glories of the curriculum. If you have a child who is ahead and likes traditional methods, this is not the school for him/her.
Little Rock Montessori has very high quality teaching. However, they will nickel and dime you to death. They are also extremely inefficient in terms of accounting and billing. As an example, they have monthly tuition rates, snack fees each semester, supply fees each semester, an annual book fee, and an annual building fee. Instead of adding all these fees together and dividing by 12 to give you one monthly rate, they hit you up for very unequal amounts that make planning a budget very difficult. While I may owe $550 in July, I owe $975 in August because of the building fee and snack fee and $775 in September because of the supply fee. It is also incredibly taxing on parent vacation days as they schedule field trips and events that parents are either required to attend or keep their child at home.
My husband & I were and still are great supporters of the Montessori concept. We have no complaints about the school as far as education goes. Our complaint is the fact that our daughter would be sent to the nap room if the teacher thought she was not minding in the morning class session. My daughter is not one to sit idle. She was placed in time out 3-6 times a day, and she would be sent to the nap room because the teacher said she "could not deal with her". If my daughter had not brought to my attention the time outs and the fact that she was being sent to the nap room, we would never have been told. My mother witnessed one of the teachers on several occasions yelling at the children. That is unacceptable! My daughter is now in the Little Rock School District and this year she has had zero problems. The teacher recognized early on that my child was finishing her work quickly and found additional activities for her to do until her classmates were finished with an assignment. My daughter was bored at LRMS and even when we asked for additional work we were told no. I am not saying this is a bad school, I am saying that I could not recommend the school after my experience.
My son started LRMS in the primary classroom the Monday after he turned 3. He is 6 now and is graduating from kindergarten in a month (his birthday is in October so he was almost 6 when he started kindergarten). He is reading at almost a 3rd grade level. He is solving 4 digit addition problems, subtraction, and learning multiplication. He is a sweet, loving, polite and confident child. I can't say enough good things about the Montessori program and the teachers, staff and director at LRMS. I love that a child's progress is based upon the child's ability and not restricted by his/her age or the level of other children in the class. I highly recommend this school, and have never heard a negative comment from any parent over the past three years. If you have any doubts, I strongly encourage you to drop by and observe the classrooms and ask for parent references.
Comments regarding the director could not be less true. Anytime we had a issue it was address immediately. She was there on a daily basis always extending her help even when we had a personal crisis. The teachers went above and beyond to ensure that my child was a whole person. I love the family like environment that the parents created. My son is now sucessful in anohter school because of the strong foundation that he received here. There is not one private school in this city that had nearly as many happy and productive children as this school in particular. I'm sorry if you had a poor experience but none of the negative information listed have a fair basis. I have and will continue to suggest this school for several reasons. If you did a little research all private schools in the local area are happy to take children from this school because they are so well mannered. There is not ONE private school that can make that claim. I am a very informed and proud parent of my child that is a product of this environment.
This school does not far exceed minimum licensing standards as stated in review by teacher. It sounds nice but it is not true. I don't think this is a bad school and there are some good teachers but there seems to be lack of understanding of Montessori. Director is not open to any input to even the smallest suggestion.
Regarding the review of 4/24/2011 The Montessori philosophy stipulates that you have mixed ages 3-6. There are always varied numbers of 3, 4, 5, and even some 6 year olds in each Primary classroom. We far exceed the minimum licensing standards for teacher/child ratios. Often times a third teacher is in the room or children are participating in other activities outside of the classroom. Both campuses of Little Rock Montessori School have an open door policy. Parents are always welcome and encouraged to observe their children during their school day. The teachers are superb, but no one is perfect. We ask that you address any issues or concerns you might feel that you have with your child's teacher or with the administrative staff. We strive to do the best for our students and their families. The education and well-being of our children is our TOP priority and assuming anything less would be unfair to our teachers and staff. We welcome any questions that you might have about our school or the Montessori philosophy. We encourage you to come tour our facilities at anytime.
As a father of a Montessori child and now the grandfather of three Montessori grandchildren, I am interested in the review posted on April 24th. I wonder if the parent who posted this read about Montessori or her philosophy on education before they enrolled their child. All of the concerns posted, 24 children with 2 teachers, mixed ages in the same class, are attributes of a true Montesssori classroom. While this school does offer daycare, it is also a "school" that offers quality education which adheres to the Montessori Method. Schools in other states require parents to attend parent education classes and be interviewed before they are allowed to enroll. I have heard it said that "Montessori is for 'every' child....it's just not for every parent". I feel sure there is a recommended reading list available from the school office which would be helpful for the parent who posted this. We are a second generation family that loves this Montessori school.
I like the teachers but class size is very large and often at the maximum allowed. Two teachers trying to teach 24 small children of different ages is a major challenge that is hard and to me impossible to meet. In my view, putting the different ages together doesn't work well. The teachers work extremely hard and I see excellent dedication. In my view, the school is gotten too big to manage and this is hurting the education at the school. I rarely ever see the Director and much outside of the classroom is disorganized. The school needs lots of improvement to be one of the best.
This is my child's second year at LRMS. Every parent is allowed to observe (observation room) the teaching and learning at any time. I am extremely pleased with the teachers and the way they discipline and teach each child; the classes are well controlled and are fun. My child is almost 4 and will be reading before the summer. He knows his shapes, numbers up to 40, colors, and all of the letters (phonics). I feel blessed that he is attending this school. My son's class is well rounded and racially mixed. I would recommend this school to everyone!