The discovery center is awesome. This is a real school, not just some half daycare half preschool where the kids are mixed together. The teachers are awesome and they truly know your child and her needs and where she excels. they let me know if she is having an off day and are actually concerned. this is my daughter's second year there. they were very flexible and let her come after her 3rd birthday in october. we love it there and i feel my daughter is not only safe, but getting a great education and a wonderful introduction to socialization. i would for sure suggest this school to friends and my other children will go there when they are old enough. my mother in law who is a teacher suggested this school and i cannot thank her enough.
Just because you pay a lot more money and fall in love with the charm of an old house, you are not getting the best preschool around. My daughter was constantly treated rudely by one teacher in particular and my concerns were dismissed. Even other parents that were volunteering noticed the poor treatment of my daughter. Watching the teachers try and sing songs with the children at circle time was a joke. They come out to the car to get the children and walk them to the car at the end of the day, the most face time with the teachers you get is maybe thirty seconds a day. As a former teacher myself, I would never recommend this school to anyone. If you are looking for warm, nurturing, and fun this is the last place to go. I only wish I had that time back with my daughter.
My son started attending The Discovery Center, Jan 08 and he loves it there, as well as all his teachers. He'll start his 2nd year this fall and is very excited. The teachers are wonderful and I really enjoy being able to volunteer in my son's class. It gives me an inside view on how things are run and how my child interacts w/other children, w/out looking directly over his shoulder.
GREAT school! My daughter left here to start first grade and was head and shoulders above her peers in reading and math. My son is starting kindergarten this year, can already read books, and understands basic math. Discovery Center does an excellent job teaching CONCEPTS and not just rote memorization. They allow the students to learn at their own pace, and it works! We have never had a communication issue with the teachers, as they have regular parent meetings and are ALWAYS happy to talk with you about your child. It's a small, intimate school, and there is normally a waiting list for a reason. Upon moving to West Chester, Discovery Center is one of our greatest discoveries!
I have nothing but good things to say about The Discovery Center. My son is entering his 3rd year at the school and it has been a very positive experience. He had issues with separation anxiety in the beginning and the teachers handled him and me very professionally. I was pleasantly suprised at how independent he has become and how many life skills he has learned. At 4 years old my son learned to write and can now read basic books. He will be starting the Kindergarten program this fall and he couldn't be more excited. The program has helped him academically as well as socially and I highly reccomend this school.
I was extremely disappointed in our experience at this school. When considering my child going here, I was very up front and completely honest about some sensory issues he had, and he was receiving occupational therapy. I was told, in so many words, no problem, we have had lots of kids with similiar issues. So after preparing my son in starting here, it ended up being a disaster. The teachers had no clue what Sensory Processing Disorders (SPD) was, even though I was assured this program would be great for my child, and we lasted about 2 weeks. I wish they just would have been honest about whether or not they could meet my child's need from the beginning, which would have saved us a lot of trouble from such a negative experience.
I agree completely with the 2/7/07 parent's assessment of the school's strengths and weaknesses. I was impressed with the school's curriculum and the classroom tools used to achieve their goals. However, I too was very disappointed by the teachers and their lack of communication with parents. For those interested, you should know that the school is not a true Montessori as students are not at free will to choose their centers. There is also much more structured group instruction than a regular Montessori, which may be a benefit for some children.
The enrichment opportunities are great for the students in the areas of music and art with exposure to the symphony and famous artists. The academic program has merit in the wide variety of topics, cultures and experiences they provide. My concern is the lack of communication of the instructors to the parents in regards to student progress,ways parents can strengthen student's abilities and social emotional development.