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Baltimore area preschools/kindergarten/elementary schools - Page 2

post #21 of 32
Barbara - Sounds like the school has accomplished quite a lot considering the challenges! Hopefully, those that don't share the vision will one day realize how fortunate they were to be at the school. Thanks so much for taking the time to write! - Lily
post #22 of 32
I am interested in being a "founding" member of the new City Neighbors school...how do I go about that? I am also considering trying to get some people together to start a second montessori school. My daughter is almost a year old.
post #23 of 32
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by radiowave View Post
I am interested in being a "founding" member of the new City Neighbors school...how do I go about that? I am also considering trying to get some people together to start a second montessori school. My daughter is almost a year old.
I inquired about that too. I wanted to be a founder but was told that there are no founders. So basically I'm going to be volunteering for 2 years with the school, before my oldest child is even old enough for kindergarten, and she won't be guaranteed a spot. I'll have to enter her in the lottery just like everyone else. So if she makes it in, I'll stay involved, of course. But if not, I'll have to switch and become involved with whichever school she ends up going to. I was told this is a law that they must strictly adhere to. I'm going to take my chances though, because I really, really like what I'm seeing and hearing so far.
post #24 of 32
I checked in with City Neighbors Hamilton and also was told that they have no need for founders and already have a waiting list. Is anyone here interested in founding another charter school in the city...either Reggio Emilia or some other progressive approach, perhaps in the Hampden, Waverly, Charles Village or Ednor Gardens area? One of the founders of City Neighbors Charter School offered to help me through the process. My daughter is only one, but I am thinking ahead to nursery school and kindergarden years from now. Another thing I am interested in is starting a pre-school coop.
post #25 of 32
Nina -- Thank you for the heads up about Greenmount. I know the kindergarten teacher and adore her, but I kinda got a weird vibe from the rest of the school. I didn't understand why it was so expensive and yet it the school itself did not appear as upkept and organized? I know that sounds odd -- it just didn't meet my expectations for a 11k a year school!
My husband as a fan, but I think he is desperate to find a school that will fit our family that is close to our house.

I am so stressed about finding someplace for my son next year. You can message me personally.....did it bother you that most of the teachers weren't actually full-time teachers? I thought that was odd. They would drop-in to teach a subject? Or is that normal for a co-op?
post #26 of 32
There was a voice in my head telling me to avoid GMS as well and my husband overrode me (interesting).

This is just my opinion, but I believe the only reason that school is still open after all these years is the desperation of city parents who will overlook so many things because they are frantic to find a place for their kids. I spent more than 100 hours volunteering at GMS last year, all of it during the school day. I am convinced that if other parents saw what I saw a lot of them would not be sticking around.

Yes, the school is terribly disorganized. It is filthy dirty as I already mentioned in a pp. The kindergarten teacher is awesome, but there are limits to what even she can accomplish inside this school.

To answer the question, yes there are problems with having so many part-time teachers. The part-timers teach all the "special" subjects--art, music, cultural studies, phys ed. Most of these special subject teachers are also not "teachers" in the sense that they don't have a degree in education. This is permitted in a private school, but it means that they may just be passing through (the gym teacher quit mid-year without even saying good-bye to the kids).

Did they tell you that when the kindergarten teacher is absent it will be some parent filling in? Same goes for every teacher there--there are no subs. You will not be informed about who is teaching your child on those days and the school makes no effort to check their background or skills. Nice!

I was a board member at my son's co-op preschool before sending him to GreenMount so to answer your question, NO that is absolutely not how all co-ops work. In fact, GMS is not a co-op in any meaningful sense. They are a private school where parents have a requirement to complete a lot of volunteer hours that they call a "co-op" for some reason. In a real co-op, parents are members of the non-profit organization and there is transparency in decisionmaking and accountability to the membership--nowhere near the situation at GMS.

You mentioned that you have a son. The bullying problem at GMS is real and it mainly affects the boys.

I don't get any joy out of bashing GMS, but I make the effort to tell people what I know because that school took my happy little boy who always loved learning and loved school and turned him into a nervous wreck who felt humiliated and scared and who will never again approach school with anything other than wariness and suspicion.

I played a part in this by not moving him out of the school immediately and I will always blame myself for that though I did what I could at the time. I hope other families will not get into a situation like ours.
post #27 of 32
Well, back to the drawing board. My husband now wants to live in our house and rent an apt across the street which is Roland Park Public school district. Cheaper than tuition. Of course, I would just like to find an inexpensive, comptent, good place for my 3 kids

Thanks the the info. If anyone has info on St. Davids or Shrine of the Sacred Heart -- I would love it!
post #28 of 32
Quote:
Originally Posted by jasper28 View Post
My husband now wants to live in our house and rent an apt across the street which is Roland Park Public school district. Cheaper than tuition. Of course, I would just like to find an inexpensive, comptent, good place for my 3 kids
I have several coworkers whose children attend Roland Park Elementary and have heard wonderful things about it! If you go that route, you can then wait until 5th grade to fret about what happens next.
post #29 of 32
Our dd (3 y.o.) is a Bridges Montessori (Technically Towson - Providence Rd at 695) and we love it...They are very small (about 40 kids) ages 3 to 6 - affordable, great hours for working parents, nice outdoor space..and fab teachers that are very child/ family oriented...Montessori method in the morning but more like traditional arts/crafts preschool type stuff in the afternoon...PM me if you want more info..I recommend that you visit and apply early (like NOW for Sept 2010) as they only have about 10-15 openings a year..
Lisa in Baltimore
post #30 of 32

Old-timer City Neighbors parent here. If you can, find another charter school. The disorganization, and lack of faculty supervision is a disaster in the making. Their ancillary faculty are barely component and vetted.The principal, Chalupa, used to be at Greenmount until that spun down. Interesting that he does not mention his very lengthy tenure at GMS in his bio or in person. 

 

Ask City Neighbors what the admissions for high schools are. Their test scores. Their rate of disciplinary measures. Numbers can't lie. 

post #31 of 32

My daughter is at The Green School and we LOVE it.  We're also in NE Baltimore, and we applied EVERYWHERE to see where she would get in.  We were not impressed with the Baltimore International Academy (we turned down her spot there) and one of the kids in her class transferred in from there a few weeks into the school year.  I know there are other Green School moms here who have been around (and involved) longer than I have if you have questions.  But, they don't start until K.  

post #32 of 32

Oh dear, this is a really old thread.  Sorry for adding to the necropost!  yikes.gif

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