Please read this before you sign the contract!
Just like any parent who cares their kid and want to find the perfect school with wonderful teachers, clean facility, spacious playground, I toured many schools and decided to enroll Arbor because of it offers all the things I want and I truly believe my kid will love this place and thrive.
When we first toured the school back in March, we mentioned that we may move to other area in the 2016-17 school year and end contract early and the director seemed very reasonable and agreed that we should be able to work something out. We trusted him and signed the contract without making a legal amendment and that is our biggest mistake.
In August, we bought a new house in Bellevue and we let the director know the same day that our offer was accepted expecting we can totally work this out since school has not started yet. However, he replied to us that we still need to pay six-month tuition + non-refundable tuition because we signed the contract. We were totally shocked by that. I tried very hard to negotiate and referred many parents to the school and some of them signed the contract. At that time, I thought that it is the best solution for both of us and agreed to still pay the non-refundable deposit + Sept tution. However, the director surprised us again.
“I really appreciate that you have sent us a student. One who seems to be a very good fit at the school. That brings us one student closer to filling our available spots. Your penalty is only lifted should we fill all of the spots in the program….”
So not only I need to find the one who can replace me to fulfill the contract, we can only get out of the contract by fulfilling all the spots in the program. Why? Simply because we trusted your words and signed the contract? On top of all that, since we need to move in Oct, the director would not accept my kid to go to school in Sep although he insisted that I need to pay for it.
As a working mom with two little ones who still have no school to go to as of today, I am very frustrated about the whole contract issue and still can’t believe it is actually happening to me.
I am not saying this is not a good school, but I would certainly advise everyone to think twice before sign the contract. What if your kids don’t like it? What if your job changes or you need to move during the school year?
Overall very pleased with Arbor Montessori school at Sammamish. While many things stand out about this school, the noteworthy call outs for us are (a) focus on holistic education (b) their ability to listen to each student and identify areas for each one to grow. The class set up helped my son stretch his abilities based on what he was good at, for example he was doing 2nd or 3rd Grade Math while he was in 1st Grade; at the same time he had to spend extra time on English to catch up to 1st Grade. Multiple research projects as part of the curriculum helped my son learn outside of the normal curriculum.
Based on my experience and many of our friends, we highly recommend this school.
There isn't a better Montessori school in the area. We have experience haing our children in the program from infant through primary so far and have only felt lucky to be part of such a wonderful community of educators and administrators. The educators are passionate about care for the children and their Montessori based learning approach is an organic way for the children to learn per their individual needs. I was so impressed when my preschooler was reading at advanced levels so quickly and more importantly had great confidence in his ability to learn new concepts. The administrative staff is exception as well, having a hands on approach with families, with clearly great love and passion for the work they do and the families they are supporting. This is a wonderful community to be a part of and we highly recommend it.
Our family has had some difficulties with the social growth of our youngest. The teachers and support staff at Arbor have been wonderfully supportive and we are seeing great progress in our child's social, emotional and academic aptitude
We love being part of this school. Everyone has been very welcoming to our family. The teachers and administrators have done a great job explaining the Montessori philosophy of student based learning as well as explaining the curriculum guidelines and expectations for the coming year! We are very excited.
My two sons are starting their second year at Arbor. I can't imagine sending them anywhere else! Both of their teachers pay very close attention to my boys and know exactly what they need. I am amazed at how quickly my older son has learned to read and how much he loves school. My toddler has learned to put on his own shoes and wash his own dishes - and clean up after himself! He is so proud of himself, and I am happy to see toys put away at home. The teachers are also potty training him at school! Most of all, I very happy with the culture of kindness and supportive community at the school. The students are taught to care about each other and their environment. They learn to help and to be responsible. The older students read to the younger students and teach them how to work with the math manipulatives. I can see that my boys are thriving here, and that the teachers care very much about them.
This is our family's 4th preschool on the plateau and BEST one ever. Every teacher knows the name of every student and in the classroom he was understood by his teachers. Only disappointment came from his teachers not responding well to my request to push him out of his comfort zone a bit more (thus the 4) thought Montessori would probably support their choice to leave him. I was concerned about the negative reviews but actually found a few current parents who had thorough, positive attitudes toward Arbor before we joined and glad we did. The older, lower reviews have been outgrown and corrected.
Arbor School has been a fabulous alternative to public school for our elementary school aged child. He can focus and excel in core academic subjects taught by highly educated, respectful teachers. We are pleased with the fine arts and social responsiblility he has learned at Arbor, too. The school puts emphasis on teachers in the classroom with a low student to teacher ratio. Our child is recieving an excellent education at Arbor School.
Our family has had a very good experience with Arbor - I personally like the small class size and think this is very good for kids. This school really cares about the kids and we have gotten tremendous support. I myself have seen a great deal of individualization. I also applaud Arbor's emphasis on true respect for others as well as the academics. I am happy the original director is back and glad to hear the junior high program will be managed by excellent teachers next year.