We welcome the opportunity to address this parent's concerns! Our schools are true to the Montessori approach, which allows children ample stretches of time to become engrossed in their activities, without interruption. One of the guidelines in a Montessori classroom is that children receive an individual lesson from the teacher before working with a particular material. This individualized approach sets children up for success by ensuring they encounter new materials as they are interested in and developmentally ready for them, and that the children know how to use the materials correctly, to gain from them the intended concept or skill. We invite parents to visit our Lake campus and observe the children's work period for themselves. What you will see is children who are self-motivated to choose from an array of fascinating activities, who are concentrated on their work, and who interact peacefully and courteously with one another. You might also see them taking a break between activities by observing other children's work (they learn a lot that way!) and perhaps by looking at the various shelves to see what sparks their interest next. A child who has difficulty choosing will gently be offered limited choices by the teacher. Our YouTube videos and brochures all contain actual footage from our classrooms and playgrounds, but again, we love to meet parents in person and have them see for themselves! When you visit with us, we hope you have the opportunity to meet our staff. We couldn't agree more that what makes a school great is its teachers and leadership. Lucia Tompkins is Lake campus's loving and wise leader. She has been an integral member of LePort's team since 2007, and brings with her decades of Montessori experience. As well, all of Lake's head teachers have undergone rigorous AMI Montessori training, and I believe you would be hard-pressed to find a group of more caring, dedicated, skilled, and compassionate educators anywhere else.
This is a safe place to share your honest opinions of a school, whether good or bad.
LePort Montessori School1
Posted September 12, 2014
- a community member
My mother was hired by le port schools as a teacher. They told her she would go to a few of the different campuses in Irvine and fountain Valley. My mom had 2 different jobs to chose from and she choose this school. Her first day on the job and they tell her to drive to San Diego. She told them she can not drive to San Diego. Her car will not get all the way over there plus its a 2 hr drive and she was not told she would have to go to San Diego in the interview. Just the surrounding jobs in the neighborhood. They found other places for her to work for a week but then started pushing san diego on her again. she let them know she can not go to san diego and so they fired her. They have another position open at one of the schools in Huntington beach and they told her she can not have that position because she does not speak Spanish. How discriminatory is that?! She tried to go get the other job that she gave up for le port but they already hired someone. Now my mom is jobless because of Le Ports inability to communicate the truth in the interview that she would have to drive to san diego. They took complete advantage of my mother. Please be careful where you put your children.
Leport Lake Irvine, as well as Leport, only care about money. They hired cheap foreign teachers who can't communicate with kids in proper English. One of my kid's teacher cannot explain anything to my kid. They raised tuition every years, plus a bunch of extra cost. Once you put your money down, you can't get it back, even if the service is 6 months from the time you pay them. Class size is big, teachers can't pay attention to all students. They only focus on the special needy ones. At 'watch my kid" days, my kid did not do anything and noone give him guidances or attantions. I put money to hold spot for kindergarten, and try to cancel that at the beginning of Summer, they told me they can't because they already reserve that SPOT for my kid, no other has a chance to apply (and yet, they still accepting more student int that class). The principle is the true master of manipulative witch, if you talk to her, you feel like you are at fault not the school, but you go home, you'll be like "that's a load of crabbs from her, why did I even listen". I also heard bad stories from other parents from this school and other Leport schools. So do your kid a favor, take them somewhere else.
So happy our son goes here! He has attended for 9 mos., starting in a toddler class and recently moving up to primary. Both teachers and classes have been excellent. His toddler teacher was observant, skillful and loving. She knew each child s personal style and interests. E.g. she saw that our son could be easily intimidated by new things, so she would explain, give him time, and then gently encourage him, whether it was to try a new activity in class or to greet the visiting banjo player. It is because of how well she responded to him as an individual that our son adjusted to the classroom so quickly and cheerfully. Our son s language skills have exploded, and he has flourished in terms of his independence: feeding and dressing himself, using the potty, learning to express his needs, and better weathering his frustration with difficult tasks. His teachers confidence in his ability to handle such tasks was instrumental to this growth. All this has been a boon to our son's confidence and has brought out his naturally sunny disposition even more. It warms my heart to see how happy our son is to walk into the classroom every day, and perhaps that says as much as anything else.
Choosing Montessori for your child is choosing to take a journey with them. Our son entered LePort Lake's Pre-primary at 2 years and recently completed his third Primary (3-6 yr) year (in liu of K). LePort's parent education seminars helped us understand what he does for "work" at school and how we can prepare our home environment to reinforce his learning. We've had our share of worries and concerns over the four years. But his teacher has been a wonderful partner, listening to our observations from home and sharing her insights from the classroom . You really know all the investment is worthwhile when one of the "oh wow" moments happens -- the latest was when our almost-six and often rambunctious boy politely asked his grandparents to be a little more quiet so he could silently read the library book he'd chosen for himself. It was the first time I'd noticed him switch from out loud to silent reading! He did just fine on his IUSD first grade reading assessment a few days later. Better communication about staffing changes and fewer school closed days were two concerns we shared with the Principal in our first year. Year after year, we saw continuous improvements in both.
I love LePort Lake campus! This is a friendly, warm community of educators who are conscientious about putting a great program together. The school has an easy-going atmosphere to it, and my son loves it there. I am really surprised by one of the other reviews that says this school doesn't 'get' Montessori. I've been in many schools that call themselves "Montessori", but those don't have classes with the full age range, they use worksheets, and they don't give the children uninterrupted time in the classroom! It's natural for there to be a certain amount of wandering in a Montessori classroom -- these are CHILDREN, after all, and they are learning how to make choices and decide for themselves what they want to do. This is a big part of what Montessori gives to children: an environment where they can self-direct and work, step-by-step, through a program. Yes, children need a lesson before they can use a material -- how else will they know how to use it? LePort teachers and classrooms are set up in the right way so that children come out with excellent skills in reading, writing, and basic math. I saw it with my older daughter and now with my son, who's thriving.
This is one of those private schools with an impressive fa ade (good campus, glossy brochures) which fails to justify the amount they charge compared to the quality of education they churn out. Truth is, a school is made by the teachers. Teachers are motivated by the school leadership. From my interactions with the teacher and the two occasions I had the chance to observe my child's classroom, I came to conclusion that this school doesn't get Montessori education. It really has nothing to do with knowing the theory. In the classroom, I saw older children 5-6 wandering about uninspired, hardly working on materials with any focused attention. The work period is more of distracted wandering. I saw plenty of admonitions from the teachers, less of guidance. Children are not allowed to work with Montessori materials that captures their interest instead only on ones they have been given 'lesson' on, according to some curriculum set by the teacher. As a result I know my child won't learn anything in spite of the claims in the school's you tube videos and brochures. Decided to send my child to public school for kindergarten instead and work with my child with Montessori materials at home.
We've been enrolled in this school for a little over a year now and have had our child in the preprimary and primary classes. If we have any complaints about this school, it's that it's *extremely* difficult if you're a two-working-parent family. With all the closures, events, and parent education nights, you miss lots of work. We make it work bc we believe in the Montessori method, and that it takes more of a commitment than regular childcare. The HIGH annual fees ($450 compared to an average of $100 at other schools in the area) and required annual deposit equal to one month's tuition...it's rough, we almost can't keep it up. The teachers are AMAZING. And that's why we're here. That's the holy grail. It does drive us crazy to have no idea what our child does all day unless we go out of our way to call or email. You don't go in the classroom or talk w/ the teacher on a daily basis. That's hard when you have a little one. This isn't the school for you if you want a daily report or have trouble getting time off work. If you can swing it, your child will flourish here. You may not, but your child absolutely will! And they will be loved! At the end of the day, that's what matters.
We enrolled our 4 year old Daughter in the Lake campus of Le Port Montesorri because we wanted a more academic and stimulating environment...Although our child initially had a difficult time adjusting to the new teacher and classroom, the management along with Ms Andrea Diaz quickly identified the problem..and made a switch in teachers..and we literally saw a total transformation in our child..Under the guidance and care of Ms Diaz & Ms Kang..our daughter became actively involved in the classroom activities and develop both intellectually and behaviorally..Their daily academic task are excellent and really help the children to learn and advance at their own level..Their attention to social skills and the importance of discipline is clearly noticeable and has had a great impact on our child..At the end of the school year (pre -K)which for us was only 8 months, Our child is now reading books entirely on her own.and she is only 5..But most important was the overall level of individual attention the teacher and management give each child..AMAZING..They really cater to each child as though that is the only student..We are very pleased with the program..high marks..
This is an update to an earlier review. Our son started at LePort's Lake Campus in their Pre-primary class when he was18 months old. We were thrilled with his first teacher, Ms. Ana and her assistant teachers Ms. Anabella, and Ms. Maricela . After he moved up to his Primary class with Ms. Dias, we had the opportunity to observe the classroom and were impressed withher teaching style. Ms. Dias and her assistant teacher, Ms. Kang, are patient and caring, and they seem to have a close connection with their students. Ms. Dias is both stern andnurturing at the same time, and it is apparent how much her students respect and learn from her. Recently, our son took an accidental tumble at home. He spilled his drink all over the floor and was crying because he had hurt himself.Although he had not stoppedsobbing from the pain, he automatically got up, retrieved some paper towels, and proceeded to clean up his mess. This self-disciplineis an example of the influence that Ms. Dias and the Montessori method have had over him. We recently asked him what he thought about Ms. Dias. He said, "I like her because she loves me." I don't know how much they pay her but it is not enough.
They really have to look into what is actually happening inside the classrooms especially when it comes to nutrition. AM snacks are kept in a place, where the kids can go and take it if they wish to do so. It is not being served like in other schools. Most kids are involved in their activity do not release and by the time they get hungry and go to pick up snacks, they are told its time up and the snacks are taken back to the kitchen. Some way of saving up on snacks. I also heard from my son that the PM snacks are served by other older kids. Somedays my son complains that he did not have his snacks because the kid who was serving that day did not give it to him. I fail to understand their policy. Why can't they have AM and PM snack breaks and the kids are better served like other schools. My son is finishing up this year and can't wait to take him out.