FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS
- Should I stay with my child on the first day?
We suggest that you bring your child to the door, kiss them goodbye and tell them that you will return to pick them up later. It is best to remain positive and not show any anxiety on your part. Anxiety is expected when change occurs and is common for the first few days of school. For young children and their parents separation anxiety is common. It may be reflected in a child’s reluctance to come to school, even after a weekend, and should be dealt with sensitively, not regarded as abnormal. Sometimes a child’s separation problem is a direct reflection of the parent’s anxiety.
- Do the children have sharing?
Yes. We have sharing on the first Friday of every month, in both morning and afternoon classes. The purpose of sharing is to give your child the opportunity to practice speaking in front of a group and to build their vocabulary. The object to share should benefit the entire class and may be something that the child made, a favorite book, CD (compact disc), pictures, cultural objects, but please no toys.
- Are parents allowed to visit and observe the classroom?
Yes, by law parents may drop in at any time to inspect the facility and watch the children. Classroom observations are the best way for parents to understand their child’s school experience. Parents not only learn what their child is doing; they also see Montessori principles in action. Please keep in mind the teachers give their full attention to the children during class time and may not be able to talk with your during your observation. We request you schedule an observation at specified times in advance. This assures only one or two guests are observing at a time, and protecting the classroom from constant interruption and minimizing disruption. When dropping off your child, please do not linger in the courtyard. It is often disruptive to the children while they are trying to settle in for their lesson. If you wish to visit with other parents, please continue to the parking lot.
- Are there parent-teacher conferences and how are they scheduled?
Yes. We have set aside specific Parent-Teacher Conference days (See the school calendar). There will be no school held during those days so parents may meet with the teaching staff. We will post a sign-up sheet well in advance so that you may plan accordingly. A reminder notice is sent to the parents several days before the conference. We encourage both parents to attend the conference, as it is more than a method of evaluating student progress. Conferencing is one of the most important ways to demonstrate and encourage a reciprocal parent/school partnership. Conferences are most effective when both teacher and parent expect to contribute and to learn for the benefit of your child. Please note that staff members are not available for lengthy conversations before school hours. However, we do appreciate and need your input and feedback. If you would like to schedule other appointments to discuss your child’s progress or any other school matters, please call the office or send an e-mail.
- How do parents find out about what is happening at the school or would like to speak to a teacher?
Villa distributes a monthly newsletter to parents at the beginning of each month via email. This is the main source of communication of the school’s events and news. It features upcoming events, information on major developments at the school and a Teacher’s Corner to note activities of the class as a whole. If you prefer a hard copy of the school’s newsletter, you may request one from the school office. Villa has also implemented a tool named "Montessori Compass" , which lets you view your child's classroom progress online. Notices and reminders are occasionally distributed as needed. Be sure that the school has your e-mail address to ensure proper and timely delivery of these newsletters and notices. Occasionally we post articles, reminders, and notices on the bulletin boards located outside the classroom. Be sure to read these as well. The Director and teachers are happy to discuss your child and any school matters with you. Please schedule a time for them to meet or contact you either by phone before or after school hours. Please be mindful, the staff has a limited time for lunch and preparation for the afternoon class. We prefer that any meetings or phone calls take place outside of the core school hours (before 9:00 AM after 4:00 PM). You may contact the teachers via e-mail. The school’s Office Manager will forward these confidential messages to the appropriate recipient.
- Are there meetings for parents?
Yes, there are two mandatory general meetings every year. We require all parents attend these meetings since essential school business that affect your child is discussed.
- Does Villa provide parent education seminars and/or workshops?
Yes, we do. See the School Calendar for specific dates. We encourage all parents to join us for hands-on exploration and academic enrichment. These workshops provide parents with specific information about child development, Montessori principles, and educational methods. This is an excellent opportunity to find out what your child does in school. These workshops are designed to explore an aspect of the curriculum, which help parents understand not only what their children are doing, but also why.
- What are some of the ways parents can help Villa Montessori?
The school needs parents to help with the weekly laundry, making materials for the classroom, serving as a member on the Board of Directors, serving on the fundraising committee and working on the various clean-up days announced throughout the year. We appreciate any and all assistance.