We've had a wonderful experience at Rising Star. Our daughter's learning has blossomed there - the teachers are caring and deeply engage with the students. Even in preschool our daughter was learning like crazy, and she continues to thrive and grow academically and socially as a Kindergartner. She also gets to participate in music, art, dance, and sports. She loves school and that's the best indicator to us that she's in the right place.
This school really does cater to only one personality type - children who are introverted and already mollified. Our kid is extremely bright and social, and loves to engage and talk a lot, which he will do if he's not being intellectually stimulated enough. He loses interest when he's in the young age group, but does well with older kids and with more challenging materials. However, the teachers tend to be self-righteous and make comments about how he's not conforming to his own age group, instead of being cognizant of how each child is unique and age differently. This is a for-profit institution, and their goal seems to be herd kids with cookie-cutter traits and go home instead of putting in the extra effort to help every child succeed. Luckily, we found a more inclusive school that teaches to each kid's ability, instead of conforming them to a certain level and personality type.
My daughter attended the Cottage for preschool/preK. We kept her there for about 2 years because the program, teachers, and facility were all fine. My beef is with the owner's approach to parent involvement. This is a privately-owned for-profit business but they fool most of the parents into believing that it's a non-profit. All families are required to work for 20 hours per year. This means that virtually ALL site maintenance is free labor from parents. When we were there they had a "parent-teacher-school" organization that constantly pressured parents to fund-raise for the school. We received 10-20 pages per week of assorted notices - mostly about fundraising or volunteering. I caused a firestorm at one of the meetings when I began to question who controlled the funds raised (the school) and whether it was appropriate to fundraise for a non-profit. Some parents were offended that I would even ask questions, but others were grateful I was questioning what was going on. I'm not saying anything was illegal. Just manipulative and greedy.
My daughter has been going to Rising Star since she was 2.5 years old. She has learned so much at Rising Star both academically and socially. I feel very safe with her there and love the teachers. I wish the upper classes (1-5) were bigger - we'd consider keeping her there up to fifth grade if the school was slightly larger!
My daughter started Rising Star about a month ago and I am very pleased with her progress. The staff is fabulous. I am surprised by the negative reviews. The school structure, manner of disciplining students, and request for parent involvement are all things every school should consider. My daughter feels like she is accomplishing great things everyday. She is writing her name (she is 3.5 yo), making friends, being respectful, and listening better. Rising Star is not a daycare it's a real school that provides a learning environment based on supervised play and interaction. I'm so glad I found Rising Star and recommend this school to anyone looking for a school that believes in community, child growth, parent involvement, and educational achievement. My husband and I both work more than 40 hours a week and have found the staff extremely accommodating with parent work hours. The extended care program fits our schedules and isn't too pricey. Rising Star (High Street campus) gets 5 stars all the way!
My two children have been with Rising Star for the past 2.5 years. We chose the school not only because the Montessori teaching method sets in place the fundamentals of a great education, but also since our whole family was warmly received by the teachers and staff. It is a wonderful environment, and comforting that our kids know all of the teachers, and the teachers, in turn, know both our children with or without having taught in their classrooms. We are saddened to hear that some parents have not had the same outstanding experience we found at Rising Star. However, we would highly recommend the school (both Cottage Campus and High Street) to anyone looking for an excellent academic program with great and caring teachers from Pre-K on up to 5th grade.
Our experience at Rising Star has been very frustrating. We have found it be a very strict demanding environment that is inflexible and extremely self-righteous in its approach. It generally caters to one personality type (pliable, soft spoken and easy going). If your child is in the least bit gregarious, mischievious or intelligently non-compliant, they will struggle to fit in. They are unrelenting in their approach to get the child to conform to "normal" behavior. Our normally happy intelligent outgoing child has been consistently frustrated and shown little improvement in three months. It has also been crushing on her self-esteem. This school is definitely not for all personalities types! Beware!
Rising Star Montessori is a fabulous school. I have been thoroughly pleased with their program. Overall, its been an extremely positive experience for my daughter, as I have seen her flourish academically and her self confidence grow. The staff is absolutely wonderful , and they genuinely care about the children success.
I rarely take the time to write reviews online but after reading the last very negative and somewhat vague review, I decided I would offer a different perspective. My daughter has been enrolled at Rising Star for 2 years now and it has been a very positive experience. I have found there is a wonderful community of parents and teachers who genuinely care about all of the children. The kids get along very well, which I believe is a sign of both quality educators and dedicated parenting. I would not rush to dismiss Rising Star as a very good choice of schools in our little island city.
Rising Star is a fine little school. My daughter's teachers have been consistently kind, while still managing to educate her. The student interactions are typically gentle, and there is a great deal of (somewhat mandatory) parental involvement that translates into murals on the playground, frequent celebrations, and reading times in the classroom. Great library, good extras like Spanish, Chinese, and usic.