I love this school! They have wonderful teachers who don't just teach your kids but loves them. All my children went their for preschool and when it was time to go onto elementary school, they all tested at least a year ahead of their peers. They screen children for speech and language issues. They have a peanut free enviornment that puts any parent worries at ease. We are not jewish, but their program reinforces the belief in God. Plus, they learn about the Jewish faith and how to respect all other faiths. As a mom of four, sending my kids to CLC was one of the best decision I ever made.
I have two children at CLC and we've had a very positive experience. When we moved to the area, we were looking for a school that would provide part-time childcare with a great preschool setting for our older child and warm loving care for our infant. We found just that. The teacher to student ratio is excellent, especially in the infant and toddler rooms, and there is very little staff turnover. The school truly has a "family" feel, where everyone knows all the children. We love the play based nursery school curriculum. There is no question that our oldest will be ready for kindergarten, as reading, math, and important social skills are integrated into the day, but the emphasis is on fun and play. We also love all the outdoor space, large indoor gym, and big classrooms, which allow the kids to get their energy out! The flexible beforecare and aftercare options have worked out well for our family. The only downsides for us have been the cost and the fact that compared to standard day cares, the school has many days off (it follows the MCPS calendar, plus has extra days off for Jewish holidays). Our family is not Jewish, but we feel very welcome there.
I had 2 kids that went to CLC for the past several years. While I was pleased with the teachers warmth and kindness, I do have to agree with the comment posted on September 7 that most of the teachers were, in fact, unprofessional and most of them did not have a degree in education or even a teaching diploma. I also found the CLC contract to be unfair towards parents and I was ripped-off by the school. You can go and compare the contract and terms with ANY Jewish school in the area and see that I am right. I know for a fact that other parents were not satisfied with the management as well, and called the way they were operating in the office "Shady". Not to talk about the outrages prices and all the other fundraisers/donations, etc. that we were required to attend and donate regularly (way too much to my opinion). While the director may give you a good first impression as a warm and kind educator, she is FAR from it once you see her true colors. I will not send my third kid there for sure, and I will not recommend this school to anyone I care about. I think that the last commenter just started at the school and didn't have a chance to have a full impression of the school yet.
WE COULD NOT BE HAPPIER WITH THIS PRECIOUS SCHOOL. Please do not pay attention to the previous review because this school excels in every way it possibly could. The teachers are absolutely oustanding for many reasons: (1) nurturing; (2) deeply insightful to the needs of children; (3) deeply committed to learning and fostering a life long love of learning; (4) patience and excellent discipline. My son loves school so much he wants to go even on the weekend. And he is learning so much! They teach kindness and responsibility. They are even teaching the 50 states to 4 year olds. The kindergarten preparation for the pre-K is the best. The cost is on par with other private parochial Jewish schools in the area. What you get is priceless--a life long love of school and of learning, in a safe and nurturing environment. The staff, including the principal and the principal's husband are first rate--kind, flexible and responsive to individual needs of each family. Yes, the school has financial issues--because of the economy it has taken a hit. Many parents who would love to send their children there lack the resources now. But if you have the money to do it, you will be happy!
DO NOT SEND YOUR KIDS THERE !! They are understaffed with mostly nice BUT unprofessional people. Most of the teachers do not have a teaching diploma, non a degree in anything related to education. The lead teacher in eaxch class is not determaied by his/her ability or qulifications, but by have a degree no matter in which field!! That all they need in order to get certified! redicilus! They overcharge parents. Their rates are thorugh the roof expensive compared to other similar preschools. the director's husband deals with all the money issues. I did not feel comfortable that someone related to the director of school was dealing with the finances. It seems like a conflict of interests. He was also very unpleasant to talk to. It's a source to all kinds of financial issues. I know that the school almost closed two years ago. They are on a very shakey ground regarding their finanaces and staff. I didn't want to sign up my kids to a school that will not last for very long. This year they had only 47 kids and the number seems to be declining each year.
I have 2 children attending CLC (one in the preschool and one in the elem. school). The preschool; in particular the PreK program, is superior. The teachers are wonderful. I know several public elem. school teachers and they all agree they can tell the CLC kids upon entry into public K as they are very well prepared. The Elementary School is equally superior. If you are looking for a small school, with a good student/teacher ratio, and a warm loving environment where the education is individualized then please consider CLC. Most of the staff has been there greater than 20 years. The staff is very committed to the school, the director and most importantly, the kids. - where it matters most.
We were very pleasantly suprised with how well our son (8) has adjusted to CLC. Not coming from a strong religous backround, we thought it would be a little intimidating, but the loving, nurturing, inclusionary model utilized at CLC quickly enveloped us and our son is doing great. This is our second year. He is one of children in second grade in a combined classroom with older students for a total of 19 students with one teacher, one hebrew teacher and one assistant. You can't ask for a better ratio.
I moved my 2 year old daughter to Childrens Learning Center (CLC) last January when she was finding our synagogue's preschool too overwhelming and chaotic. Within one week of being at CLC, she was participating and more engaged in school than she had been for the first half of the year. CLC is a truly unique school. Since it is located in a former elementary school, the classrooms are very large and enable the teachers to keep the rooms much more organized than a traditional preschool class while having far more supplies on hand. The teachers are incredible. Many have been at the school for over 10 years and are wonderful at working with kids at different stages of development. They are warm and caring people who are as invested in my child's development as I am. I cannot recommend this school highly enough.
My son attended preschool and preK at CLC for 4 years and now my daughter is in preschool at CLC. She was also in the first toddler class. You cannot ask for more loving teachers, a wonderful educational and playful curriculum and a school environment with lots of land and playgrounds. You can't go wrong at CLC!