We have one child at Pines. It is a very good school. The Lower Elementary has had it's issues with instructors over the past few years, but is has been corrected and they are now fantastic. Upper Elementary has 2 of the BEST teachers I have seen. Just Excellent. Middle school is still developing. The only reason for 4 stars is the lack of independence between the school leadership and the board. For any school to flourish, these areas must be separated. At Pines, it is not. The tail wags the dog much of the time and has held back the school from becoming current in several needed areas. Many great students (and parents) have left because of this. That said, we love the education our child continues to receive from the Montessori teaching method. Based on education alone, it deserves 5 stars
My child began at Pines 8 years ago -- for financial reason we had to withdraw for a couple of year but returned in 2012. The school is by far the best private school in Kingwood. They have an amazing staff, caring teachers and top notch educational materials. While the Montessori method of teaching might not be right for every child, it is an amazing way to teach for most students. Pines educates the whole child and nurtures the whole child. This is the reason we return to the school after being in the public schools.
We love the Montessori philosophy and our children are leaps and bounds ahead of their public school peers. The kindness of the families who attend and the supportive environment make Pines a great private school choice. While there are personnel changes throughout the years, this is normal for any small business. There is some student turnover, which is normal and healthy also...as not all children can self direct and succeed in an environment that offers so much freedom. If a child has behavioral and/or attention problems, this environment will not do them justice and will disrupt others. Our children are gaining problem solving, time management and life skills that no public (and very few private) schools are capable of teaching. I'm confident that Pines is developing the future entrepreneurs and bosses of the world.
If you seeking an amazing education for your kids and a true place of belonging for your child(ren) and family, then Pines is the place. Highly trained teachers, wonderful staff, and a great bunch of kids. Such a beautiful campus and playground too. I feel so lucky to have such a wonderful school right here in our neighborhood!
Parents be ware and erroll you children elsewhere. We decided this summer not to re-enroll our child at Pines after 4 years of attending. We began seeing changes within the schools leadership and staff during the 2010-11 school year that we questioned and were told that these changes were in the best interest of the children. A few other parents that we are casual friends with advised us to seek other options for our child's education. I wish we had listened then and did not enroll our child for the then upcoming 2011-12 school year. Instead of filling this board with the MANY instances of questionable behaviour and decisoins made regarding the safety of the student body on the part some staff and the Dean of students, we would rather stick to facts and hard quantifiable data. Pines Montesorri has seen little to no ergonomic growth in the four years our daughter attended. Since the start of the 2010-11 we are personally aware of 14 students who's parents have chosen not to re-enroll their children because of the issues with the Pines staff. The 7th grade class at Pines for 2011-12 was 10 students with 1 of 10 being the child of staff. 2012-13, 4 of 10 will not return. STAY AWAY!
This school is a gem in the heart of Kingwood! The teachers from Preschool through to Middle School are fabulous. They show such care and concern for each of the children, and show a hunger and excitement for their learning.
We currently have 2 children in the school and in the past years, the school was quite educational and the teachers (certified) did an excellent job. This past year several changes have occurred which have resulted in excellent certified teachers being relieved of duty and teachers/subs with longevitiy with the school being let go. Changes are in the wind and they do not seem to be for the better.
This is a school that is getting better all the time. The Administration has stepped up and really taken control - eliminating many of the politics and insider jostling that takes place at small private schools. Other great changes: - addition of new activities and teams - addition of a highly qualified and excellent lower elementary teacher - improvements to materials and facilities - better financial controls - better integration of the PCO (equivalent to the parent-teacher organization) - addition of middle school classes.
As parents of two children who attend Pines, we have been delighted with both the environment of the school - which is nurturing, peaceful, and loving - and the quality of the teachers, which continues to exceed our expectations. We had originally planned to place only our pre-schooler in the school and to put out elementary aged child in the public schools. After visiting the school and interviewing the teachers, we felt it would be unfair to give our youngest such an extraordinary experience and not offer it to our oldest as well. We have not been disappointed. Both children are thriving. We will keep them there as long as we can - we just hope the middle school takes off!
Pines Montessori is a wonderful school. While it has gone through its challenges in the past couple of years the new director of the school, is montessori trained, and has required all of the teachers to be certified. It is a authentic montessori school and first rate in kingwood. None better.
My 3 1/2 year old daughter loves the Pines - she feels totally at ease there, and has developed a lovely, spunky spirit that is delightful to see. She will begin her third year there this fall - she just completed her first year in the Primary Community. I am most impressed by the commitment to the Montessori method, the focus on teacher and parent education, and the encouragement to forge relationships among parents, teachers, students and board members. The new Head of School is an experienced Montessorian, with a masters degree in early childhood and many years of experience in administration and teacher training. Many of the teachers have bachelors and masters degrees in addition to Montessori certification, and parents are very involved in the school. I served as the president of the Pines Community Organization this past year 2006-07. This is a beautiful, special place.
My child has flourished at Pines. Her teachers have always been professional and helpful. I think the Pines does a great job teaching and using Montessori methods. I have learned more about Montessori as an activity member of the community. I will send my next child to the Pines.
Our son has attended Pines for almost 2 years now, and he started in the toddler community when he was 18 months old. He is an incredibly happy, well-behaved, and inquisitive 3 year old, with very strong verbal skills. I give all the credit to his excellent teachers and their use of Montessori methods and a well-prepared classroom environment to expand our child's horizons. One of the most amazing things about this school is the staff's desire to educate parents about incorporating Montessori concepts in the home. My approach to parenting has changed in many respects, all to our family's benefit. Although we never thought we would consider private school in Kingwood beyond pre-school, my husband and I are now committed to Pines for our children's education through elementary school.
We had our daughter there for two sessions when she was 3 yrs old. We pulled her out. Too much chaos and teachers prefer kids who 'fit' the Montessori style. Not sure it's Pines, but the unstructured environment was too loose, unfocused for a preschooler and just a bad fit for our scheduled and structured household. She'd come home rattled after her day there. We moved her to a traditional preschool classroom and she flourished. Some aspects of Montessori concepts are good to incorporate, but not for total curriculum. We are glad we pulled out early!
We were very disappointed with our experience at Pines. We loved the families and felt like this would be a good experience but we were forced to pull our child out mid term our second year. They hired the secretary to serve as principal. When we moved our child to another private school our child had to have some remediation in order to catch up to the new peers at the new school. Although I like the concept of Montessori education for preschool I could not recommend Pines to anyone.
My daughter went to Pines for 2 years. I had to withdraw her from Pines due to unprofessional behavior by her teacher. While volunteering, I witnessed the teacher humilliating her assistant teacher, a student, and swearing out loud around the children. That teacher was nasty to me too. I reported the incidents to the director and to a member of the board and they didn't do much. They were aware of the incidents, but decided to shove them under the rug and wanted me to do the same. They suggested that I move my daughter to another classroom instead of dealing with the problem. I refused. It appalled me that Pines is more concerned about keeping appearances than about the welfare of the children. If the teacher had the nerve to act badly in front of me, you can only imagine what goes on when no parents are around. Very scary.
Pines Montessori School has been the best thing for my family. The teachers are top quality.
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