As my child hopped into the car this afternoon after the first day of school, she said, "mom, this school just gets better every year!" She was nervous to change levels but as I drove off this morning, I thought of the Montessori three-year cycle and how this nervousness only comes up every three years! The other two are just "coming home" after a long summer break. Montessori has a way of taking the nervousness and stress out of school and instilling the joy and excitement to learn. It's refreshing and I just had to share that today! Have a great school year!
MSSA has been the most remarkable and rewarding experience for our family. Every day our children are thrilled to go to school. Our children feel safe in their environment, surrounded by nature, respect, courtesy, and the encouragement to ask questions, explore new realms, and think outside of the box. Everywhere you look, there is a real sense of joy in the learning environment. MSSA is strong in so many ways, but I think its greatest strengths are the individualized educational plans for each student, the genuine love of learning fostered in each child, and the caring and compassionate environment of the school community. The children are taught at the very beginning to have respect for themselves, to respect others and to be courteous to everyone. Such an environment fosters creativity and allows children to explore all avenues without recrimination. We have been at MSSA for many years and choose to stay at MSSA because it is the best environment for our children to explore their curiosity, reach their full potential, and master subjects at their own pace. Our children have thrived at MSSA and are thrilled to go to school every day.
Our two very different children continue to exhibit the benefits of their many years at this excellent school. Dedicated, flexible and knowledgeble teachers and a unique campus combined with strong Montessori priniciples were certainly worth the tuition. The School allowed our kids to learn, not memorize material. Each child transitioned to different public schools without any bumps and received college scholarships which the School certainly played a part in. Many of our friends enrolled their kids, based in part on our enthusiasm for the School. Concerned parents with similar priorities have become long time friends. Years after leaving MSSA, we continue to support this unique local resource.
2 of our children attended the Montessori School of San Antonio from age 4 through 8th grade; their transition to high school was seamless and they were more than well-prepared for not only their high school advanced classes, but also blew the standardized tests out of the water. The reason? An incredible middle school program that built upon the foundation of the previous years and solidified their leadership and critical thinking skills that will help them for the rest of their lives. Had they transitioned out of the school without completing 8th grade, their experience would not have been as rich and well-rounded, both academically and socially. The current head of school and administration are approachable, forward-thinking, and continually striving to improve all aspects of the student's experience. All schools go through periods of transition with teachers and staff; we have had our ups and downs with MSSA as well, but are confident in the end result. Our youngest child is in 5th grade at MSSA and will stay though 8th grade; the entire environment of the school contributes to her success as a well-rounded and productive member of society.
I am proud to say that all 3 of my children have attended MSSA, and my wife and I have been active parents in the school for the past 12 years. Never have I encountered a more caring, nurturing, respectful educational environment that fosters a love of learning and celebrates cultural diversity. My older two children attended the school for 10 years and have now graduated 8th grade and moved on to wildly successful high school endeavors largely to the myriad of skills honed in the MSSA environment. In particular, the Middle School program gives students hands-on opportunities in all areas of the curriculum and requires them to be comfortable speaking in front of large groups. The Mo Ranch retreat in the beginning of the school year bonds the children together, allows them to know their teachers on a more personal level. We have been impressed with our numerous teachers at MSSA who have a patient, respectful way of presenting the Montessori curriculum. The method of learning is simply more "sticky" than the memorization and regurgitation often found elsewhere. We have been extremely impressed with our experience and rest assured our 10y.o. will complete 8th grade at MSSA.
2 of our children attended the Montessori School of San Antonio from age 4 through 8th grade. Their transition to high school was seamless; not only were they prepared for their advanced public high school classes but blew the standardized testing out of the water. The reason? An incredible middle school program that built upon their previous years and solidified their leadership and critical thinking skills. For me, middle school is NOT the time to transition your children to a public school; the community of respect, teamwork, inclusion and encouragment of public-speaking are the crown jewel of this school. The current head of school and administration are approachable, forward-thinking and continually striving to improve the student's experience. All schools have their ups and downs with teachers and staff; we have had a few bumps in the road over the past 12 years but are confident in the end result. Our youngest child started at age 3 and is currently in 5th grade; it is exciting to see her blossom and fulfill her potential as we have seen happen with our two older children. We believe in this awesome school!
This school has been an amazing home for my children to flourish and grow into wonderful young adults. They are not only given a wonderful base in education, but taught how to be positive, conscientious leaders in society - something that so many schools are lacking nowadays.
I have worked at this school for over 10 years. I have worked for two very different administrators and the school is better than it ever has been! A wonderful place to work!
MSSA provided both of our children an incredible experience. The combination of the Montessori education with committed experienced teachers who care so much for the students is so powerful. Our two children spent 10 years at MSSA and now are enjoying success in high school and college.
MSSA is an amazing school! My daughter has learned to love to learn and to be excited about challenging herself. She has grown so much over her first two years at the school! MSSA fosters creative thinking and a genuine love of the educational process. I can't imagine a more perfect place for her to learn and grow.
I highly recommend The Montessori School of San Antonio! I'm surprised to see the negative reviews as our family's experience has been excellent. If you are considering the school, go for an observation and you will see it is a unique learning environment where they are doing everything right when so many schools are doing everything so wrong.
In the past six years, I've seen my two children blossom in their own individual ways at MSSA. By choosing work that is meaningful to them in an environment that encourages respect and independence, my Lower Elementary and Upper Elementary children have developed skills that continually impress us (just last night my first grader researched tigers at home for fun and created a report complete with drawings, facts, and narrative - mimicking research he does at school). They are engaged and interested - not just at school, but in life. All of their teachers have kept them inspired and challenged. We feel lucky to have found MSSA and although the tuition is a sacrifice for our family, it is worth every penny!
Montessori individualized planners means your child learns at their own pace. Works well for kids who like to work ahead (or need help) in some areas. Older kids are given the Iowa test (ITBS) annually in the fall so you know where they stand compared to the rest of the country. Caring teachers and staff! We love MSSA!
As a former student I can say I enjoyed Montessori but when I switched schools in 6th grade I was not prepared. The academics are not good at all. Especially in Math. I wouldn't stay at Montessori past lower elementary.
Do your children a favor and DO NOT send them to this school!! The preschool teachers are tired and some are just downright rude!! The administrators seem more concerned with the appearance of the school than the success of the actual students. I truly wish I had trusted my gut and not sent my child to this school. The campus is beautiful but that in no way makes up for the poor quality of the teachers.
Our two children have both done well at MSSA for the last 4 years. The environment helps children to develop a love of learning while also promoting respect and responsibility. They've learned the importance of time management during their work periods and they have experience working in groups as well as on their own. Academically, I've been impressed with the programs in place. Children are often guided by teachers individually and also in groups. The school does a wonderful job of making sure the children are being challenged. I would recommend an observation in at least 2 different age level classrooms if you'd like to better understand Montessori. It's amazing and you won't be disappointed.
Our children have been at MSSA since Primary and are doing exceedingly well and most exciting is that they are very well rounded, independent and thoughtful children. The teachers at this school make it their personal mission to know and fully understand each and every student's strengths and weaknesses and they lead them accordingly. For those who say that the students are tested only once a year, is completely false, The students take weekly tests in some portions of the curriculum and are tested on all levels regularly (not always in a "test" fashion). Studies show that success in a students academics is supported by a parents involvement in any school environment so I have to question the reviewer that says their child was completely unprepared and did not transition well because they were so behind. The results of the MSSA graduates speak for themselves, they are quite impressive. If you have never experienced a Montessori school, I highly recommend you visit this school and witness the nurturing,enriching and balanced daily life the children are immersed in.
I want to add another data point to those reviews addressing academic achievement, since it is often difficult to form an opinion based on few reviews. My child attended MSSA for 10 years and just finished his freshman year with a 4.11 GPA. He did very well on the SAT, taken through Duke TIP, and received an academic scholarship to a local private high school based on stellar high school placement exams. He was able to take pre-AP Spanish II because of the Spanish he had learned at MSSA and was well prepared for pre-AP Geometry, World Geography, English, and Biology. Is my child an Einstein? No. He is intelligent and self-motivated, and he was also very well prepared. The MSSA middle school is nurturing, accepting, and rigorous. Subject rotations only have 5-8 students, a key factor in academic success. Homework, which is meaningful and complementary to the core lessons, help students to transition to public/private high schools. I am 100% certain my child would never have participated in a musical or drama production elsewhere. Here, because of the intimacy, trust, and small size, all students participate in theatre and music. To me, going thru 8th grade is key.
I'm not usually one to write reviews on line, but I was really disappointed to see the (2 I think) reviews of MSSA. This school has been a terrific fit for our daughter! The teachers are kind and caring, and are involved in every child's "work". When looking into a Montessori education, you MUST ask yourself if this teaching style/philosophy is a good fit for your child. Not every child will do well in a Montessori environment. Do your research. If your child is self motivated, independent and has a love of learning, he or she will EXCEL in this environment. If your child learns more effectively with a teacher in the front of the classroom and directing the lessons from his or her desk or chalkboard, this may not be the best fit for you. Most children that I've spoken with that have matriculated on to other schools have excelled. i have found all of the teachers, administration and board members to be very involved in the school and involved in extracurricular activities. I'm sure we can all find "bad" reviews of every school in San Antonio, but if you think that a Montessori education may benefit your child, then you will be very happy with MSSA
As a former parent I can not speak highly enough of the wonderful parents, administrators and most of the teachers. The school is both welcoming and accepting. And it is this warm feeling that keeps parents with the school for many, many years. However, when your child makes the break from the school and moves on in their educational endeavors it's many educational weaknesses become extremely apparent. The gaps in learning are so great that you are amazed you missed it all those years. You will find yourself disheartened when the realization hits that while "testing" and "homework" are deemed unnecessary at Montesorri they are the foundation of their next educational journey. And if they don't have the deeper knowledge that goes beyond the basics they suffer academically. I wish the Montessori School of San Antonio focused on educational attainment/knowledge as the child ages, ironically assuring parents feel good and are catered too is not the answer for your child's future and wasn't the answer for ours. So when they tell you the one test they do a year, "doesn't matter", please remember that it does. Assure your making the right educational decision for your child.
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