The best staff are leaving this school as if it were on fire. Principal never returns emails or calls. If you stop in to speak to the principal, you will have to ask her to stop looking at her cell phone. If you are thinking about enrolling your student here, don't. Visit the office and you will hear the vice principal screaming at students- SCREAMING!
I am a former student who first attended MacDowell in the early 90's. I have stayed connected with the teachers, fellow classmates and Administration throughout my high school and college careers. I am a recent graduate of Alverno College and I contribute my collegiate success to the educational roots I established during my years as a Montessori student. For traditionally educated parents, the Montessori method may be hard to understand and that is apparent by the previous comments regarding the children "playing with blocks and making bead necklaces." These tasks, although they may seem irrelevant, are actually strengthening the child's hands to hold pencils in the future and developing their concentration skills. I would not recommend this school to parent's who do not do their research on the Montessori curriculum as a whole. When the time comes, I will be sending my own children to MacDowell because I feel that the quality of Montessori education is high, the student body is diverse and the teachers care about their students in a way that goes far beyond the classroom. Base your decision about this school on your personal research, not how up-to-date their website is.
I am a Alumni. I am now in the 10th grade. I loved MacDowell when i was there and still do. My 2 nefews go there. I now attend the #1 school in the state (Rufus King) and i would recomend it to anyone who wants their kid to not only learn when their being taught a lesson but independently.
My daughter is in K3 there and we are pulling her out. Her teacher is horrible, rude and acts like the younger kids are a burden. She won't work with them. When my daughter got bored and asked to learn something new she was told that she was not old enough for a new lesson. Instead of dealing with 3/4 year old's behaving like 3/4 year old's, they call you to make you discipline them over the phone. I've heard that she has grabbed students leaving marks. My daughter HATES it there and is constantly bored. We never had a problem in traditional preschool. She is stacking blocks and making bead necklaces instead of learning anything useful. We liked the idea of k3-k5 so she could move on to more advanced lessons but as I said before when she try's to learn something more advanced she is shot down. I wouldn't recommend this school after seeing what my daughter went thru for a year. The office staff, while nice, do not have it together and don't return calls. They have found guns on the playground and have had problems with the bus drivers having criminal records.
My daughter has been attending Macdowell for the past three years and will be graduating K-5 this year. We love her teacher; she has helped give my daughter a strong base in reading and math. I would't put much stock in the previous reviewer's comments about the website. Milwaukee has faced many cuts to MPS and maintaining a website is, I'm sure, does not top Macdowell's priority. My daughter will not be attending the school for the 2012-13 school year which due only to the fact that the school is moving out toward Wawautosa and is not convenient for us as we drive her to school each day. Had the school not opted to move, we likely would have kept our child there for years to come.
If your considering sending your child to this school take a look at their website first. The school calendar is blank. Their most recent newsletter is from May 2011. It says view pictures of past family events at the bottom of the page but the bottom of the page is blank. It lists Ken Wald as the principal......but he's not anymore. I could keep going but I have a limited number of characters I'm allowed for this review. Anyway, it's not just the website that's disorganized; rather it's a reflection of the school as a whole. If you value education do yourself a favor and choose a different school.
We love MacDowell. Our daughter is in 5th grade, and has attended MacDowell since 1st. She has had AWESOME teachers, and has absolutely excelled and blossomed. The work she is doing is very challenging, and has been since day one. Since is it a Montessori School, learning is encouraged as an active, dynamic process. In addition to great academics, she has enjoyed chess club, drama club, and Spanish club.
Still unsure,as a parent it is hard to see your child so willing to learn, and wanting to learn to do new things, yet cant do other lessons because they havent mastered 'the polishing ' lesson yet... it hard to see the progress, when other kids his age are maybe 'doing more' and your child is not. I think teacher are deticatied, and love what they do, but some times it feels like they forget the fun time, my child once made a comment to me about brign silly time, and there is 'no silly time in school' and thats hard to hear as a parent- school should be structured and fun! Agian, I am fairly new to the school, and it hard to see if its a fit for my child.
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