This is my child's first year at VSY. Academically, he has learned many things and has had the opportunity to attend field trips, fun school wide events, and has made a few friends. However, socially and emotionally he has greatly regressed. He feels extreme pressure to be perfect, hates going to school, and has low confidence and self esteem. His teacher is not very welcoming and does not encourage parents to volunteer in the classroom, and is very strict with the students. This school is not for everyone.
That is one of the mantras taught each day! The school has a " news show" each morning with a mantra for the week that always evolves around doing the right thing but most importantly: "respect for others, respect for self and respect for the environment"
The parental involvement is incredible. The events are so well planned and thought out. The diversity is amazing and it is due to it being a unique school that has kids from all across the county and it is NOT a zoned school. The Montessori environment makes it so kids have the same teacher 2 years in a row so the teacher really gets to know the child. The younger kids in the course learn from the older and the older help the younger. The staff is loving and caring. Overall, a great school!
This school is beyond amazing. The teachers, administrators, staff... everyone are all just top-notch people! This is our second year at VSY and our children simply LOVE school. They look forward to going each and everyday. It really reminds me of the saying, "Love what you do and you'll never work a day in your life"... the kids there are happy to be there and the parents are too. VSY should be used as a model and replicated to build an AMAZING educational system.
Admission to this school is lottery based and only a small fraction of those who apply get in (maybe 5-10 percent, many of whom have connections or have offered money). Broward Schools only allow one magnet choice application, which means that for most this is a wasted effort. So unfair. The Montessori method is a proven model and is working very well here and at Beachside. The fact that hundreds of local families want their children to get in and cannot should be an indication that this model should be replicated throughout elementary schools, since the demand and results are evident. It is unfair that so many families are denied access to this great resource in the community. Lottery is not equal access! The other local schools in the area would improve greatly if they adopted this model of curriculum and instruction.
I think Ms. Moran, has a great love for her students and it shows. My daughter comes home everyday, wanting to continue do class work. She looks forward to going to school everyday. She is slowly making the adjustment. Parents start thinking about where you will send your 3-4 year old next school year. I suggest you check out VSY.
I have to say something because I had an epiphany the other day. I'm a 26 year old college student and I attended Virginia Shuman Young Elementary and Sunrise. Mr. Sauer (now Doctor) was one of my fifth grade teachers. As a kid, I never gave much thought to the level of teaching at the schools I attended, I was a kid and my parents made them for me. I'd started out at a Catholic private school and I was stifled. I didn't know it but I was. My parents were paying to send me to a school with limited resources and outdated ideologies. I was a little depressed because the world seemed so two sided to me. My mom submitted my application and I was accepted through the lottery. My god, it was like a 360. My natural abilities were amplified and my less than capable ones were honed to strengthen. Attending this school changed my life. It's taken me over a decade to realize it. My teachers cared, thought outside the box, encouraged me, and exposed me to this large multifaceted world. VSY and Sunrise. I've attended UM since and I can say I never had more fun-OR appreciated these schools and my teachers. Send your kids to this school. It will be the best thing you ever do for them.
My son started VSY this year. I am in the field of Early Childhood Education and I know a lot about learning environments that are appropriate for children. The environment at VSY is not only appropriate, but outstanding.
I began my experience at VSY as a teacher. Now I am a parent with my first child in the prek program. I have taught at two previous Broward County schools and all I can say is our elementary classrooms would be better served by incorporating some of Maria Montessori's methods. The developmental nature of this type of teaching allows all children to see success. I know the new principal Ms. Smith will carry on the excellent quality of student and teacher progress that Dr. Strauss did. My daughter's teacher Ms. Knecht surpasses all expectations! I surely hope the county recognizes the importance of Montessori training for those teachers new to the school. Proud to be part of the VSY family!