This is a safe place to share your honest opinions of a school, whether good or bad.
West Seattle Montessori3
Posted April 05, 2015
- a parent
The theater and music program is excellent. The friendships created are also very positive along with a strong structure. Our daughter liked her teacher and was happy there. The best experience to occur at this school seems to be if you start at the beginning of the school year. Also, at least according to one classroom, it did not work well for a student to not be fully potty trained. While there is some highly positive and excellent communicators at the school, because of inconsistency and some negativity, the communication is average. Just because a school is Montessori does not make it a positive learning environment. A positive behavior intervention system is where the entire school is highly trained and has an entire system and culture for supporting students and recognizing what they are doing well, much more than misbehavior. It is unrealistic to expect a child to change their behavior and potty problems in one week's time. Lastly, the classroom size of 20 for ages 3 to 5 seems overwhelming and too much for teachers.
This is in response to the previous review. It is true that at WSMS we take ongoing inappropriate behaviors (especially aggressive physical behaviors) very seriously, in order to protect the learning environment of all our students. We routinely set up benchmarks for improvement to help rectify situations, providing written reports at meetings that indicate the behavior displayed, strategies we will use at school, and suggestions (and sometimes requirements) for parents to do at home. A full report may take up to a week to produce, as it is a very thoughtful process. WIth that said, parents are always informed of severe incidents immediately after the event, either verbally or by email. Again, our goal is to help protect the learning environment, as well as to find ways to help the child who is displaying challenges within the classroom. Most often, we are able to see progress immediately. Unfortunately, for a variety of reasons, some folks are unwilling to work with us and decide to leave because they feel their child's behavior is acceptable. Although it is hard for us to say goodbye, we must wish them well, as we are not willing to compromise student safety or comfort.
We had a very negative experience with this school. Our preschool son had a hard time adjusting to the Montessori environment, and the response of the administration was extremely inflexible. The communication channels between us and the administration did not work. They wrote reports on his behavior and never shared the written reports with us, but still held us accountable. The response to discipline issues was more appropriate for a grade-school student than for a three year old. It was extremely frustrating and disappointing.
We moved my son from the local public school to West Seattle Montessori when my son was in 4th grade. It was the best decision we've made. He is a unique individual and did not fit in with the mold the public school needed him to be in. This school challenges him academically but also allows him to work in his own special way. We are very pleased.
We have been so extremely happy with West Seattle Montessori over the past 4 years. All 3 of our children are enrolled here (and will continue to be for years to come) and we have been so pleased with their growth. We have 2 in pre-primary (entering kindergarten) and 1 entering 2nd grade and it s a joy to see them smiling before and after school every day. Their confidence (emotional, educational, physical, social) continues to grow day after day which is, in part, a product of the system in place at WSMS. The teachers are smart, involved, loving and truly care for every child at the school not just those in their classrooms. The 10-1 student to teacher ratio also leads to the teachers being able to appropriately and consistently address each child s unique needs. Another huge win is the parental involvement which is beyond remarkable. Dozens of parents attend the monthly parent meetings, auctions are always exceeding goals, parents are constantly at the school helping kids read and learn. It s comforting to know our kids are so well taken care of, and that their futures are brighter because of the experiences they re having at such a young and impressionable age.
What an incredible school! The teachers at West Seattle Montessori are experienced, caring, and committed. They provide a unique, student-centered experience for each child, following the principles of Maria Montessori. The administrator is a well-educated, well-informed young lady with great vision and passion for the school. Under her leadership the school has greatly expanded in the past few years. The facility is top-rate, with exceptional classroom materials, large classrooms, and excellent outdoor equipment. Parents are encouraged to participate in all school activities, and are routinely found in large numbers at school events. Last week my wife and I attended the all-school play. The play's directed stated that she was thrilled to work for a school that continues to value the arts and makes the arts an integral part of the curriculum. I couldn't have said it better myself. Our five year old is already reading and has a number sense well beyond her years. Our three year old is learning independence as well as practical social skills. I can't imagine a better school for pre-schoolers through eighth grade. (I know the 6-8 grades have aligned to the Common Core).
WSMS is the most wonderful little community. The small class sizes, the amazing staff. There is an emphasis on compassion and respect for others, respect for yourself and your environment. The Montessori method of learning to read is so failproof and easy, I'm such a fan. We fretted so much about where to send our Son, and feel like we made the best decision ever.
I love West Seattle Montessori School & Academy! My child has benefited greatly by the DEDICATED staff and CARING leadership. We are so HAPPY to have a new school home at WSMS & WSA. As I pick up the monthly administrative letter, I see so many wonderful things happening--kids returning from Washington D.C., students going on class overnight trips, parent teas, community outreach opportunities, plant sale, and so much more! The list goes on and on. I just can't wait to have more children, so I can send to this school!
I have two kids at West Seattle Montessori. As there are really only two options in West Seattle which go from prek-8, are private, and non-religious, I was very interested in both. I am pleased with where we ended up because the new young, energetic director is determined, the parents are enthusastic, the kids wonderful, and it seems to be getting better and better. I feel I am part of somethiing great.
We started our kids at West Seattle Montessori when it was at its' old location. The new move and new ownership has been fantastic for many reasons: all the kids (ages 3-14) are under one roof with new student family programs creating a big school community feeling; the teachers have always been amazing and now there are even more teachers who have been hired (art teacher, science instructor, Spanish and PE teacher in addition to a dedicated Sign language teacher and fantastic music and drama teacher); the new ownership has inspired a school wide Virtues project, and community outreach monthly (just google West Seattle Montessori & Academy to see all the amazing things we've done!), as well as delicious whole foods lunch with FareStart catering lunches weekly. The parent community is highly involved not because they are required to but because they want to. I cannot speak highly enough about a school that has for years flown under the radar.....