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Barbara Gordon Montessori School3
Posted April 28, 2015
- a parent
The guides at this school are exceptional! They have a strong level of commitment to their students and go above and beyond to ensure development of the whole student. They get 5 stars! Notably, the school is now Waypoint Montessori. In the last two years, there was a change in administration. It seems as though the staff is going through a transitional period under the new leadership. Some seasoned staff have left and others seem to have pondered leaving. This may work itself out over the next few years. As of now, it appears confusing to a parent looking in from the outside and makes you question what is really going on behind the scenes. Classes, are comprised of a wide range of students. Some students benefit from the Montessori approach, while others do not seem to benefit. At times it seems that they accept students who probably don't show promise in the Montessori environment and have needs above and beyond what is offered. Several students would greatly benefit from direct instruction in bullying prevention and promoting kindness from a trained professional. Overall, the school is average, especially when you consider the tuition you pay.
I first learned of BGMS by attending the parent infant class with my son, going one day a week for 2 hours over a period of 10 or so months. I had zero exposure or understanding of Montessori (and more specifically, true AMI Montessori) until this time. I work from home and originally had planned to keep my children home with me along with a nanny until they started Kindergarden. Any kind of daycare seemed unnecessary. My exposure to BGMS during the parent infant class completely changed my mind. Around 18 months I felt my son truly NEEDED to be submerged into this environment more than 2 hours a week and my instincts were right. He has absolutely thrived in the toddler community. I have very minimal power struggles with my just turned 2 year old and have never seen a tantrum out of him. I attribute most of this to him feeling fulfilled during the day at school and my husband and I learning the 'Montessori way' of how to communicate with him on a daily basis through wonderful direction given to me by the guides. He is already potty trained and his lunches always consist of fresh, non-processed foods. I am a very pleased parent and plan to send all of our children here.
Worked for one our two kids, but had some difficulty transitioning to public elementary from the self guided Montessori program to the more structured elementary approach used in our public school. We felt the class sizes was little large given the price. Could benefit from more physical activity. Some kids seemed to thrive, some didn't with their approach.
We just love our school! My children have attended for over 4 years and I cannot imagine giving them a greater gift than BGMS. Our children are confident, happy and self motivated. The guides are kind, caring and personally invested in following the AMI standards that drew us to the school. It's easy to get feedback from guides via email. I feel lucky to be part of this community!
We have had a wonderful experience with this school! We have two children enrolled and have been happy with both our teachers and the other kids. Everyone is helpful and engaged when we have concerns and questions. The new administration has been smooth to come in and hasn't disrupted our experience with the classes at all. I hope to keep our kids here through middle school.
The elementary program has problems. Attrition is high in the elementary school. Class size is too large. The guides do not provide enough guidance and do not utilize Montessori methods such as the 3 period lesson. They do not provide guidance such as a work plan for students to organize and plan their work. Classrooms are noisy, chaotic, and have behavior problems. There is some bullying and meanness that goes on unchecked and happens over and over again without intervention or guidance. The tuition is higher than most. The class size is higher than most. The before and after school care is not drop in and is overpriced. The extra-curriculars are all over priced. No PE or sports. The students do not spend time actively playing during recess or time in the gardens. There is very little physical activity and there is no hot lunch program. The spanish program is ineffective. The spanish teacher comes to do some conversational spanish for those that want to join her in a corner of the room. Independence is supported, but with little guidance and some children have transferred into the school with behavior problems this combination leads to problems.
My son has attended BGMS since he was a toddler, and we continue to be very pleased with his progress, now in lower elementary. Staff is well qualified/certified and most guides have been there for the past five years or longer. I feel strongly that the staff and administration works hard to maintain and strengthen the curriculum and learning environment. For us, an overwhelmingly positive experience pretty much all around.
My kids have attended BGMS for the past 7 years, and we have been extremely happy with the school, the environment, the campus. The school promotes independence and curiosity in a warm, caring environment.
BGMS is an outstanding AMI Montessori school! We have 2 boys who have thrived in the Primary & Lower Elementary programs. The guides nuture each invididual child's social, emotional & academic potential. The beauty of the Montessori method allows each individual to grow, develop an internal love of learning and learn responsibility. The new adolescent program is exciting. The 7th graders have visited Anasasi Indian Pueblos in New Mexico, developed their own business model and even enjoy weekly yoga classes. I would highly recommend BGMS to anyone who wants so much more than just TAKS test & group think mentality for their child.
BGMS is a wonderful environment in which our son has thrived. His amazing ability to learn new concepts and achieve academics far beyond his years is due in large part to the nurturing environment and his amazing guides. The before and after school program is spactacular - the guide there is experienced and fair with the children. However, the only complaint I have is that it is difficult to communicate with the staff for families with two working parents. We do everything that we can to afford this school and it is challenging to feel like we are kept in the loop since neither of us are on campus except for drop off and pick up. This is a challenge for the administration. Despite this we love the positive effect BGMS has on our son and we appreciate the diversity of the student and guide population.