We have 2 younger children at CM. Our son began when he was 4 and our daughter began when she was 3. I really appreciate that the children stay in the same studio for 3 years. By the end of 3 years the relationship between the teacher, student, and parents is so well developed. My son has a learning disability and he has always had a tremendous amount of support from the school. During his IEP conference every year I am always amazed at how deeply his teachers, the developmental staff, and the director know and understand him. Whenever I have requested a meeting with a teacher (or the directors) to discuss either of the kids, I have always been readily accommodated, even though they have very busy schedules. They WANT to be in communication with the parents as much as possible. I am so grateful they are in an environment that encourages internal validation rather than external, creativity, compassion, and graciousness. Every child on the planet is an individual; not just a statistic inserted into a bell-curve of achievement. Why should we accept one traditional educational paradigm for all children? After all, Fibonacci was considered a moron when he was in school because he didn't demonstrate learning the way the other kids did. But, if it weren't for his mathematical genius, we'd still be using Roman Numerals.
This school is THE epitome of why charter schools should not exist. The teachers are underpaid and under qualified and the same goes for the administrators because one of the perks of being a charter school is that you can make and enforce your own rules. Teachers here don't have to have college degrees. Administrators are placed in their roles thanks to nepotism and not based on their skill-set or educational experience. My child attended this school for 5 years until their learning disability was no longer welcome. The Director of the school has a knack for bullying out the families of kids with learning disabilities by making it impossible for our kids to succeed which is ironic since Maria Montessori started her schools with children disabilities. Again, a perk of being a charter school is that you can choose how you want to operate. You get what you pay for, folks. If you want a free "Montessori" education that is a watered-down version of what Maria Montessori truly envisioned for her philosophy then this might just be what your family is looking for. If you want to send your kids to a school where the teachers actually teach then send them to a real Montessori school that has taken the time to go through the accreditation process. If you're ok with mediocre then you might do just fine here.
My son has attended a local country public school, was held back because at the end of the year he was tested for glasses and needed them. No, he did not attend preschool either. I chose to take him out of that public school because 1/4 of the class was held back. I then enrolled him into a Christian kindergarten, the teacher asked me why he was repeating. She believed he should have been moved up. The church preschool and kindergarten closed and he went to a large Christian school, he loved it! The cost of the school and where we lived at the time became too much for us to allow him to continue there. My son then went back to that country school where he was thriving, but had to move in the middle of the year for our house finally sold. He then attended a very large and popular West Clark school. He hated it, I did as well. He was coming home with mounds of homework that the teachers at this school would give every night. A child who is in the fourth grade should not have to be up until 10:00 at night to get this amount of homework done each night. I then applied to get him into Community Montessori, I was elated! He has thrived at Community Montessori! He had many different experiences and some of these gave him anxiety at other schools and at CM he has become into his own man. He will graduate next year and after this year will have all, but 2 credits to graduate. Community Montessori allows the child to mature on their own time and guides them in this task. They do not try to guide their opinions from one to another, my child is a baptized Christian by the way. He has never felt his religion was attacked or bullied about it. I believe if you feel that strongly about religion and can afford it, go to a religious school. There is some great ones around that area, speaking from experience. My child is not the top notch student, but of course neither was I. By the way in college I had a 4.0 upon my completion. Many times children become young adults before they understand the need of a GPA. I will tell you, my child can clean an entire house, do his own laundry, truly loves and cares for others, and tries to be responsible in many aspects of his life. I do not worry about his actions when he is away from me. CM has helped support those attributes that he has learned here at home. The best thing I can tell you is go and see. Thanks
To all staff, thank you for being apart of my son's life and guiding him to become a prosperous individual. Those of you who may be struggling with things in your life, hang in there. I believe people forget that you are human and not a robot that may need help too. Sorry that you are judged in a negative light sometimes by others. God bless you all! Thank you for all you do!
Advisors (teachers) are there with another Advisor in each studio. The ratio is one to twenty and each studio has 40 learners and two advisors. How many schools can you say has this? By the way they are both there ALL day.
Homework is not given at CM. The only way a learner has so called homework is if the learner did not meet their goals that week. Learners do have the opportunity to exceed in whatever project they are doing by doing more if THEY wish.
They have supplies that are shared, including technology, snacks that the learners bring in for the rest of the class, jobs that are assigned to do at the end of each day to keep their studio beautiful, internships that once you are 16 that are to be done, and sooooo much more. CM gives the learners many opportunities to become respectful human beings.
We have been at this school many years however are hesitant about continuing. We have had some great teachers there , however the past couple years I have felt like the teachers were burnt out. We had a couple of minor issues ( non teacher related ) and attempted to talk to Glenn , but I get the impression that he really just doesn't care. It is obvious he just doesnt even try to listen.
Our daughter began attending this school at 3 and she will be a 10th grade this year. As parents, we understood that this was a different approach to education. We both went to public schools and decided that this was a great alternative for her, taking into account that is would be a VERY different approach to our educational experience . Throughout the years, there were moments of panic when we looked at the state ratings,but the fact of the matter is, once we focused on how OUR child was doing at the school and not others, we were at peace! She does well academically and absolutely LOVES her School. We, as parents, chose not to get involved with the politics that are involved with ALL schools, but to focus on our child. She is a bright, articulate girl who has a mind of her own and a passion for life. What more could we ask for?!!! I do agree that this school is not for every child (or family) who wants or needs a more "structured" environment. That is not what this school is about and is not for everyone. It's about opening THEIR minds (not ours), to the obstacles and rewards of their own choices. Our daughter WILL graduate in 2018 and we will stand by proudly.