I am a mother of 7 children and only found out about MSTE relatively recently - in time for my son, Max, (#6 in line) to attend. My only regret is that all of my children were not able to learn under the amazing direction of Miss Annie and Miss Glenda. They both have such an amazing gift with kids - my husband and I refer to them as "child whisperers" and my son, Max, has absolutely flourished under their direction. Communication with the teachers has never been an issue. I will send him in to school with a note and have a response by the end of the day OR if I call and leave a voice message it's always returned that day. Observing the classroom has also never been an issue and this goes for Grandma observing when she was in town visiting as well. I have nothing but wonderful things to say about the structure, the framework of order, the positive learning environment, and the amazing patience and character of the teachers. As a mom to so many children, I can see the very real difference Miss Annie and Glenda have made in my son's life and feel so blessed to be a part of it. My youngest will start this fall!!!
My son is now in 2nd grade, and attended MSTE through the end of his kindergarten year. My daughter is now finishing her kindergarten year at MSTE. We LOVE this school. But, this school is not for every family. Here is some info that might help you decide: The children academics AND character qualities. They about respecting themselves and others. They learn to choose work, complete the work, and then put it away. The kids also have outdoor free play time every day. The skilled and caring teachers view each child as an individual. They get to know each child well, and form a partnership with parents to help the child reach full potential. As with most Montessori schools, the teachers are entirely focused on the children, not the parents at dropoff/pickup. This is very different from some schools where teachers chat daily with each parent at drop off and pickup times. Academically, the typical child from MSTE graduates ahead of most peers. They do well socially and emotionally as well. MSTE is true to the Montessori philosophy. When considering MSTE or another school true to Montessori philosophy (many are not), read up on Montessori education to see if it is a fit.
We LOVE Montessori School of the Epiphany. MSTE has a great school environment and we had a lot of opportunity to see and talk to the children's teacher and other parents as well. We had school picnics, school feast, parents curriculum nights, parents-teacher conferences and open house where the kids demonstrate what they have been learning at school. During our time, we had parents organized after school playdates and Moms Night Out. My son and daughter went to MSTE since they were 2 years old up to the kindergarten year. Our oldest is almost to middle school now. Each PT conference, up to now, we keep hearing compliments on how good the kids are. The teachers always mentioned the kids great work ethics and their academic excellence, but how they are also humble, always respect others and play very well with other kids. We would like to take credit for all of those, but not sure if we really can. The loving and nurturing care of the school director and teacher have thought them their great values, from nature, spiritual, academic, creativity, to leadership. We can never thank them enough. This is one of the best choices that we could make for our kids' education.
MSE is an OUTSTANDING school--this is what our experience showed us. Our daughter attended MSE when she was 2 1/2 years old until she was 6 1/2 years old (total of 4 years). She completed Kindergarten at MSE. She loved the MSE teachers, and she looked forward to going to school everyday. My husband and I felt like the teachers were our PARTNERS in supporting our daughter's cognitive/intellectual/language, emotional, and social development. We collaborated together through the delights and challenges of raising a daughter. We believe MSE was instrumental in instilling a LOVE of LEARNING, a sense of JOY in ACCOMPLISHMENT, as well as RESPECT for NATURE and OTHERS in our daughter. Our daughter is currently enrolled in elementary school, where she continues to exhibit these qualities that reinforce her progress in school and other areas of her life. My husband and I will be forever grateful to the MSE teachers for the profound competence, care and dedication that they exercised during the 4 years that our child was with them.
This school is not for everybody. But if it is a good fit with your family, your child should thrive.
We feel so blessed that our kids (and ourselves) have had the opportunity to learn and experience the support this school has to offer children and parents one on one. My youngest son would now be stuck in a special needs class, not learning to his potential, had it not been for the teachers caring and concern. A therapist told me my son would never be capable of attending regular school, especially Montessori, and I was in tears. MSOE offered to observe and evaluate him over a few weeks even though their curriculum didn t normally accept kids this young. After observation, they said not only was he fine, but instead of dumbing things down for him, we needed to do the opposite, raise the bar, and they gave specific examples on how to do this at home. I continue to be amazed, even after years of being at this school, what children are capable of. There is no doubt that our family has a far stronger foundation having been nurtured at this school by these dedicated teachers.
Our daughter has been extremely happy for the many years she has attended MSTE. Not only is MSTE giving her excellent academic & social skills, but the school also has instilled in her a love of nature, a sense of responsibility & mindfulness, & a feeling of joy in learning. Her school nature walks, sightings of the wildlife that thrive on the school's 8-acre property, & studies of wildflowers, birds, and more have inspired our whole family to connect with nature in new & deeper ways. The classroom is peaceful & bright, and the Montessori materials are engaging & challenging. The teachers hold parent education meetings, parent conferences, & an annual open house where the children show the parents the classroom materials. Parent observations during the regular school day are welcome. I have done many observations over the years. The teachers have always been open to our questions & requests to discuss issues relating to our child. We also have many opportunities to interact with other parents at the school picnics, weekly park playdates, & monthly Mom's Night Out. We feel very lucky to be a part of this community.
This school totally lacks the ability to communicate with parents or provide the least bit of nurturing to children. The teacher/director refused to return our phone calls or talk to us in person about our son. We had never had any confrontation or negative conversations with them. We had always trusted and taken their advice. The director does not allow parents to drop by for observations. I tried to schedule an observation twice and was given excuses for why I could not attend. HUGE red flag! Also, they do not think it necessary for children to go outside while they are at school whether it be a long day that goes from 8:30-4 or a short day. The facility is dark and uninviting and during the winter it is kept very cold. Furthermore, the school did not have a contact number for our family; although, it has been given to them numerous times. While Montessori schools are supposed to be secular, this one has a strong tie to the Catholic religion. From our experience, this school's philosophy is to break down the child's spirit until they are completely submissive and afraid. We put our trust in this school and they completely let us down.
My daughter has been a student at MSTE for two years and has gained incredible confidence and fine motor skills as a result of the dedicated teachers and calming environment. It is an absolute gem and we have been blessed that our daughter got to begin her education so happily and successfully.
What an amazing school! We have three children and all of them have gained a wonderful foundation of proper manners, courtesy, respect and academic achievement from the Montessori classroom. Our oldest has graduated and is now flourishing in a new school, with reading and math ability more than two grade levels ahead of his classmates. We owe so much to the Montessori School of the Epiphany, I can't do it justice with words.
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