CTM is great. Dedicated teachers (amazing), great teacher-to-student ratio, curriculum targeted to each student. The school teaches a big world view but in a small, friendly neighborhood way. It's also amazingly lean--almost no admin staff, so it's very inexpensive for a private school. Again, the level of individual attention is amazing. (E.g., we typically have had 3-4 teachers sit in for our parent-teacher sessions.) Because the school is small, they also try to do a lot of stuff outside of school, and they manage to do good stuff (field trips, phys ed--swimming, gymnastics, etc.--on a tight budget). Our sons is doing very well in math and has leaped into reading, thanks largely to CTM teachers. ... Also, the kids really learn to do project independently, especially writing/research papers, and they learn/practice public speaking at an early age. All great stuff that is lacking in many students now coming out of high school and hitting college with dismal skills.
Cedar Tree Montessori Kindergarten program. The program is ONLY geared towards pre-school age 1-4 years of age. My daugheter cried every morning and she NEVER has done that with previous schools. We were only there for 3 weeks and I took my daughter out and I got stuck with a full months tuition, which I refuse to pay and now attorneys are involved. Ridiculous...I tried to contract teachers and directors 3 different times about certain issue with NO response back.
After two years of struggling with public school approaches to education, we moved my son to Cedar Tree. He is SO HAPPY there. He is fully engaged in the curriculum and thrives in the Montessori environment. The upper elementary classroom has Spanish, Art and PE every week, and Theater and Music during the year. The teacher, Amy Silver, is gifted at recognizing each child's strengths and nurturing those strengths along. She maintains firm standards for all curricular work, and does an impressive job of negotiating the social growth of the multi-aged class. Parents have lots of opportunities to be involved in the school. Some parents are working to develop more formal avenues for parent participation.