I have a little boy about to be 3 years old in July. We are attachment parents, so I'm looking for a school that has a bent toward taking each child's individual needs into account. I know every parent thinks their child is special or different, so this probably sounds arrogant at best, but my son truly is noticeably different than the other kids in his My Gym class or his little music class. Parents and instructors comment on his personality all the time. There are no social or learning disorders or autism issues...he's just introverted, a thinker, a processor, very sensitive, definitely high needs, and much slower to act than other kids. He observes everything and takes a while to warm up to others. But he's as healthy and kind and well-behaved as can be. These traits just don't fit with the way these little classes work that I take him to each week. Everything is so fast-paced, loud, geared toward extroverted children.
All that said: I desperately want to get him into a Montessori school. I've researched Montessori since my pregnancy with him, so I've been sold on Montessori for a while. Before I began picking up on his personality traits, Montessori was a luxury, but now that I know my son, it feels like more of a necessity. I cannot fathom sending him to just any preschool...I just know he would be mislabeled and that he would flounder in those environments.
However, Montessori in our area is upwards of $6000/year for a 2- or 3-days/week schedule. We simply cannot afford that.
So, enough set-up: what are options for families in our situation who want/need a Montessori start for our children but simply can't afford it?
Thank you for your insights!