Heike Larson, February 14, 2011
LePort Schools Responds to Question about Policies They Exist for the Benefit of Your Child. We have reviewed some of the comments made by posters here, and would like to provide you with some information about our policies. LePort Schools does indeed maintain some strict policies, but we believe that if you understand the underlying purpose of these policies, you will see that their purpose is to ensure the safest and most nurturing possible environment for your child. One policy that may seem unduly harsh is our sign-in policy. We require parents to sign in their children each and every morning, and we follow up with a call or email in cases where a child has not been signed in. These attendance sheets are a critical safety and security tool that allow us to keep track of every single child at all times, including whose care that child was in at the moment he left ours. It is of utmost importance to maintain accuracy. Our supervisory agency, the California Department of Social Services, requires this procedure and LePort Schools fully complies with the requirement. So while it is true that we ll repeatedly follow up with parents who fail to sign in, this is an expression of our commitment to each one of our students. We understand that signing in may create an added inconvenience. In this area, as always, we are open to your suggestions on how we can streamline the process for you. Another of our policies is to charge hefty late fees ($15 for every 10 minutes) when a child is picked up after our 6 pm closing time. The sole purpose of this policy is to protect our staff, who already spend long hours in devotion to their jobs. Every penny collected in late fees is given directly to the staff member who, after a full, tiring day of actively engaging with our wonderful students, would have preferred at 6 pm to go home to his or her own family. Since a daycare supervisor cannot simply leave in the case that a child remains under his or her care, we institute fees that we hope will discourage lateness, and in cases when it does occur, will provide our staff more significant compensation. Another very important policy, particularly in an authentic Montessori program, is our late policy. We actively encourage parents to bring their children to school on time in the mornings, and we do follow up with parents who are chronically late. The reason we do so is that a calm, orderly transition in the morning, with an uninterrupted stretch of work time to follow, are very important to young children, who crave order, and whose developing attention spans require sufficient time to settle in and build up to complete concentration. When we do follow up with parents, our goal is never to be critical. Instead, our practice is to meet with parents and work with them to brainstorm solutions. (For instance, we may be able to offer feedback on how to assist a toddler who is resistant to getting dressed in the morning, or to help arrange a carpool for an elementary student whose parents have to first drop off a sibling at high school.) In cases where there is no legitimate solution, we encourage the parent and teacher to work together to minimize the morning transition for the child when he does show up late. Please speak to any of our Heads of School or teachers if you have questions about why a proper morning transition is so helpful in ensuring that a child gets the most out of his school day. Finally, there have been a couple of inquiries about why we provide our students with outside time in the afternoon. As an authentic Montessori school, we reserve the morning work period for our children to spend long, uninterrupted stretches working in the classroom. At the same time, we know that children love to be outside, to run around, and even to have a snack out in the fresh air. This is why, weather permitting, we bring our students outside for 30-45 minutes for lunch, and then again after the afternoon class period has ended (at 3 pm) for another 45-60 minute period. The children love running around in our spacious yard, playing with balls or tricycles, and climbing around on our play structure. For the children that stay with us into the evening, we typically go back inside after an hour for playtime, arts and crafts and other activities. Children wear sunscreen while outdoors, and teachers encourage them to drink water regularly. If the day is particularly hot and the children seem tired of playing, our teacher has full discretion to bring her class in earlier but of course, the usual case is that the children relish their outside time. We encourage you to read about our program on our web site, www.leportschools.com, and to come in for a tour, or even an extended observation: we take pride in offering a high quality program that includes flexible hours and a variety of enrollment options, and that places no priority above your child s developmental needs. We would love to have the opportunity to show our school to you, so you can form your own opinion.
We've been enrolled in this school for a little over a year now and have had our child in the preprimary and primary classes. If we have any complaints about this school, it's that it's *extremely* difficult if you're a two-working-parent family. With all the closures, events, and parent education nights, you miss lots of work. We make it work bc we believe in the Montessori method, and that it takes more of a commitment than regular childcare. The HIGH annual fees ($450 compared to an average of $100 at other schools in the area) and required annual deposit equal to one month's tuition...it's rough, we almost can't keep it up. The teachers are AMAZING. And that's why we're here. That's the holy grail. It does drive us crazy to have no idea what our child does all day unless we go out of our way to call or email. You don't go in the classroom or talk w/ the teacher on a daily basis. That's hard when you have a little one. This isn't the school for you if you want a daily report or have trouble getting time off work. If you can swing it, your child will flourish here. You may not, but your child absolutely will! And they will be loved! At the end of the day, that's what matters.
We enrolled our 4 year old Daughter in the Lake campus of Le Port Montesorri because we wanted a more academic and stimulating environment...Although our child initially had a difficult time adjusting to the new teacher and classroom, the management along with Ms Andrea Diaz quickly identified the problem..and made a switch in teachers..and we literally saw a total transformation in our child..Under the guidance and care of Ms Diaz & Ms Kang..our daughter became actively involved in the classroom activities and develop both intellectually and behaviorally..Their daily academic task are excellent and really help the children to learn and advance at their own level..Their attention to social skills and the importance of discipline is clearly noticeable and has had a great impact on our child..At the end of the school year (pre -K)which for us was only 8 months, Our child is now reading books entirely on her own.and she is only 5..But most important was the overall level of individual attention the teacher and management give each child..AMAZING..They really cater to each child as though that is the only student..We are very pleased with the program..high marks..
This is an update to an earlier review. Our son started at LePort's Lake Campus in their Pre-primary class when he was18 months old. We were thrilled with his first teacher, Ms. Ana and her assistant teachers Ms. Anabella, and Ms. Maricela . After he moved up to his Primary class with Ms. Dias, we had the opportunity to observe the classroom and were impressed withher teaching style. Ms. Dias and her assistant teacher, Ms. Kang, are patient and caring, and they seem to have a close connection with their students. Ms. Dias is both stern andnurturing at the same time, and it is apparent how much her students respect and learn from her. Recently, our son took an accidental tumble at home. He spilled his drink all over the floor and was crying because he had hurt himself.Although he had not stoppedsobbing from the pain, he automatically got up, retrieved some paper towels, and proceeded to clean up his mess. This self-disciplineis an example of the influence that Ms. Dias and the Montessori method have had over him. We recently asked him what he thought about Ms. Dias. He said, "I like her because she loves me." I don't know how much they pay her but it is not enough.
They really have to look into what is actually happening inside the classrooms especially when it comes to nutrition. AM snacks are kept in a place, where the kids can go and take it if they wish to do so. It is not being served like in other schools. Most kids are involved in their activity do not release and by the time they get hungry and go to pick up snacks, they are told its time up and the snacks are taken back to the kitchen. Some way of saving up on snacks. I also heard from my son that the PM snacks are served by other older kids. Somedays my son complains that he did not have his snacks because the kid who was serving that day did not give it to him. I fail to understand their policy. Why can't they have AM and PM snack breaks and the kids are better served like other schools. My son is finishing up this year and can't wait to take him out.
We are very happy with this school so far. After watching our daughter attend the preprimary program for several weeks we have noticed definite social maturity and dramatic increased vocabulary and speech. Her teacher, Ms Ana is wonderful and our daughter is really excited when she talks about her. We attended the parent education event and we realized how much thought and prior organization goes into all the activities that the children do daily. There are not "just playing", everything has an important learning point and lesson. We have been very impressed with the Head of the School Ms. Thompkins- very intelligent, well spoken, educated individual, who definitely "knows what she is talking about"! I have the read the other reviews, I do agree, it would be nice to get some kind of daily or weekly progress report on the child or the activities they did that day/week. But, if you take the time to ask the teacher, she happily explains and tells you what they did that day. We look forward to future time in Leport with our daughter and soon our youngest son!
LePort Our daughter is 4. She is at Leport Lake for 6 months now. We can't be happier with the quality of this school. And we have to compare with... We've had terrible experience at one of Newport Beach preschools. At LePort Lake she is safe, happy, she learn's a LOT. She starts to try to read, she's alredy writes her name, they learn geography, mathematics, they have dance classes, music classes, foreighn languages classes, sports.... They changed some of the teachers. I ALWAYS recieve letter that confirms about some changes or events at the school. I ALWAYS have opportunity to speak with my daughter's teachers or the head of the school with no problems. And i never felt or heard anything rude from whomever: children, teachers or parents. The reviews are a big help if your in the process of finding a school for your child. BUT i would say: trust your eyes and heart! Just pay a visit to the school. When i saw confident, polite, happy and smart children there, when i came, i knew i want my daughter there. I'm still not dissapointed. Look at the children. If you like what you see, then you'll like your child to be there.
My daughter (34 months) goes to this school for the last 5 months in the half day primary class . I have seen a great improvement in her attitude, intellect and social behavior. The other day I was picking her up from school and she said, "I think my school is fantastic and my teachers are incredible". I know it was hard for even me to digest the fact that my 34 month old can use words like incredible and fantastic, but the truth is that she is right. Her teachers Ms. Rees and Ms. Jones are very understand and patient. Her pre-primary teachers were great too. And Ms. Julia and Mrs. Thompkins are so helpful, always greeting parents with a smile and ready to resolve any problems that parents like me have. I am glad that I enrolled my toddler in the Leport Irvine school. In my daughters words, "its oouutstanding"
My son goes to this school since 6 months. They indeed have too many policies for the little ones. The teacher in the primary section is very rude and so is the baby sitter who takes care of the kids after 3. They are left outside from 3 onwards to clean the classrooms and they are made to eat outside in the cold weather at 4. I can't wait to take him out soon.
The instructional aides are the foundation at this school. Very nurturing and focused on the children. Some of the actual teachers and the administration seriously lack professionalism. It is run like a business, (they have CEOs) rather than an educational pillar. I witnessed some extremely unecessary and rude behavior from the director to other parents and interested parents. Montessori philosophy is meant to cater, uphold, and prioritize the child and community it serves. This school's policies are inflexible and patronizing. The other Montessori schools in Irvine include a lower tuition price for a full day (7-6pm) without nickel and diming parents for "policy" details. Furthermore staffs at the other programs are more professional. Limited equipment as well. I was relieved to find other programs when I pulled my child out of LePort. I could go on...however, my advise is to talk to the parents at the preschools you consider.
I am so happy with the school, but more important, my toddler is also as happy to go to school each morning. the teachers in the pre-primary room are so nice and patient and sweet. And Julia at the front office y so nice to both parents an kids, and always ready to help out in every way she can.
We enrolled our son in Le Port Montessori when he was 20 months old. Within a couple of weeks he was waking up everyday wanting to go to school. The teachers are very involved and completely plugged into the child's development. We find in him a very positive change in confidence and comfort level in social settings. We attribute a large part of his development to Le Port Montessori teachers and their curriculum.
My daughter started in Sept. She is always happy at the end of the day & proud to do the Montessori 'work'. She also learns a lot from the older kids in the class. She can sing complicated songs and loves her caring, enthusiastic teachers. I have observed the class and found most kids are very self-disciplined and confident. I found the adminstrative staff to be very helpful, and my teacher responded to my concerns timely. The teachers are all well-qualified Montessori teachers.
My daughter started in Sept. She is always happy at the end of the day & proud to do the Montessori 'work'. She also learns a lot from the older kids in the class. She can sing complicated songs and loves her caring, enthusiastic teacher. I have observed the class and found most kids are very self-disciplined and confident. I found the adminstrative staff to be very helpful, and my teacher respond to my concerns timely. The teachers are all well-qualified Montessori teachers.
My son has been going to Leport for almost two years and we are very happy of his progress acadamically. The teachers are supportive and very caring. I am enrolling my 2 y/o son this year. Ms. Julia is very nice to the children and she tries to greet the children in the morning. Always prompt with communication email for the parents, for any updates or holidays off. It enables the parents to plan ahead.
our 3 years old daughter loves to go to school. we are so impressed how much she has been improved in social life and in a way of getting ready for academic knowledge. teachers are great and patient to the kids. staffs are very helpful. we are so happy to be part of this school.
This is the first year for my daughter bt i really feel happy i gt in to her in leport,they way teaching,learning skills are diff from other regular preschools..she really loves it and teachers are wonderful and administration too,they have evalutatio &parent meeting its good for parents too
I can't shout loudly enough how much I LOVE this school! The teachers are wonderful, the classroom clean and full of things to explore. They outside play area is huge! I saw the comment by the parent about the school being closed--and I am very surprised...because the school gave me the calendar when I enrolled my son. I knew the days they would be closed in advance. Also, they offer daycare on these days for a small price. I don't mind because I can spend more time with my son (even if it means some time off of work because he's only going to be little once). I recommend LePort because I have seen my son learn so much this year under the hand of his teachers. I wanted the best for him and I found there.
I am sending my son to Leport school for toddler program. They have way too many holidays..its about one and half month per year. This school is definitely not suitable for working parents. It works well for parents who would like to send kid to a Montessori program for few hours. I find the Administrative staff very irresponsible. They do not inform parents when a teacher is replaced.
Our four year old has been attending LePort since he was two and a half. The level of attention the children receive is exceptional and they truly foster a love of learning that makes us proud to see. The staff are committed to their program and the children they are entrusted with. We were amazed that our son had learned to write his name at age three and were blown away by the fact that he has started to bring home completed math assignments already. LePort fosters a caring environment and family atmosphere, which we love. The children enjoy their 'work' and take pride in their accomplishments. The older children helping out their younger peers on more challenging tasks develops a social dynamic that is special and unique. As parents we are very pleased with the value we receive from LePort and will be enrolling our younger son as well.
This school has been great for my daughter! The staff is friendly and the classrooms neat and tidy. My daughter loves going to school each morning (after a brief couple of weeks with intermittant crying at drop-off time). The price is a bit high, but I don't mind because the staff is well-trained and loves working with the students. I would highly recommend LePort Schools to any parent who wants their child to be educated.
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