MSA was a great school in the past and continued to excel at the preschool level. But in recent years, the elementary classroom has gone downhill. It has the potential to be a great program, but the administration refused to listen to parents when there are problems, which has resulted in a mass exodus after about 2nd or 3rd grade. Many families who gave this school their all through volunteering and PTA leadership positions have given up and walked away. (Ratings are hard to do because the preschool is excellent - I'd send my children there again and again for preschool. But think twice before keeping a child there past 2nd grade).
This is an amazing school full of wonderful caring people. When I was researching preschool for my daughter I read some earlier reviews and was concerned about the care she may receive. After visiting the school and meeting the teacher, and the support staff I felt this was a great place for my daughter. My daughter has been attending this school for almost a year now and I have not been disappointed. Everyone from the head adminstrator to the bus driver are amazing. They all are very attentive and caring. My daughter has learned so much! I am so thankful we found such a wonderful school.
We could not have been pleased. Our child excelled and was really prepared when he moved to a traditional school. The staff is fantastic, and it the school has a wonderful family atmosphere
MSA has been a great school for my children. My son started at 3 1/2 and went through kindergarten. If we would have stayed in the area I would have hands down put him in the Elementary program! LOVED THE SCHOOL. My daughter started at 2 1/2 and went to the school two years before we moved. Both my children had a very positive experience. The staff are always very responsive and helpful in everything we have needed. My kids were both writing their name by 3 1/2 and learned so much at MSA. We miss the school and staff dearly!
Up until Spring, 2010 I would have happily and wholeheartedly endorsed the other comments here. Then, my 2 year old was left unattended in a locked classroom for an unknown amount of time. The staff's response was so far from professional, compassionate, and appropriate that I can't find the adjectives to describe it. My 5 year old got a concussion on the playground, and the staff endangered him by treating it improperly. Neither incident was reported to our family or according to VA's legal requirements. We had been with the school for 3 years and my son had excelled academically. My daughter was thriving in the pre-K program, but lack of regard for basic safety is untenable. Daycare staff have become lazy or just refuse to take standards of care seriously. The results of the state inspection can be found on Virginia's DSS website.
We love this school. Our son has attended since age three and is now 6 and completing Kindergarten. We will continue his education there for 1st grade and most likely through 3rd grade and move him into a G&T program in public school. He is doing math problems that I don't think I did until I was in 2nd grade. He adds and subtracts into the thousands. He reads books normally assigned to 2nd grade. He studies a variety of cultures and learns earth science. He has a Spanish class, a music class, takes gymnastics and has PE weekly. Most importantly our son loves going to school every day. The teachers are devoted to the students and the families are devoted to the school. The administrative staff is extremely helpful and caring. It is a great family atmosphere.
My daughter attended this preschool from age 3 through Kindergarten. When she left at age 6, she had had the benefit of a warm, nurturing environment and was reading two years above grade level. The teachers and staff here are warm, nurturing, and wonderful, and my daughter was exceptionally well prepared for the academic challenges awaiting her in public school in first grade.
My preschool child is learning more than any of her friends outside of this school. It has a warm environment and a beautiful setting in the woods.
This is a terrfic school my daughter attended for 2 years & we're now headed to a top knotch private school in the area. MSA prepared her well. Had looked at all other pre-K/K programs before choosing MSA--quality of the teachers/nurturing superb. Only improvement I would recommend is in the administrative area--while computers not part of MSA teaching process--definately need to upgrade their administrative/electronic infrasturcture for use of email/etc. But don't let his deter you....MSA is a top knotch place....we were thrilled to be a part of institution for 2 very wonderful years!
This small school has an informal curriculum at the elementary level that doesn't work for all. However, many of its students are routinely accepted into the best private schools in the area, to the highly-competitive FCPS Gifted and Talented Center programs, and to Thomas Jefferson H.S. for Science and Technology. A less-industrious student or one with special needs can fall through the cracks at MSA, but he or she can also work at the very leading edge of his or her abiliies, with full support from the teachers. At the primary (pre-K/K) level, the school is simply excellent, with no qualifiers.
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