Now DD (child 4) is three and we are looking into Montessori. We applied at the local publiuc Montessori school -- a VERY solid reputation...I have a neighbor who is a teacher there, her kids went there, etc. But we didn't get in. She's on the wait-list.
Then I found about a private/charter Montessori school...very cool, low-key, no-cost...we had to be interviewed. We still haven't heard if we've been "accepted." There is sort of a CLIQUE-Y attitude here...and what someone wrote about lack of playground supervision really hit home with me...I recall thinking that both times I was there...
In the meantime, I visited a private Montessori school that I absolutely fell in love with...just the atmosphere, attitude, kids....(granted looks can be decieving)
the problem is the tuition: $5,000 a year!!!!!!!!!!!!
We cannot afford this. I have one DD in college..DS will enter next year...I am in college...I am IN DEBT...so why do I EVEN PRETEND...
But then I get into this mental dilemma of shouldn't I pay for the education, isn't this my responsibilty
and then I wonder WHAT DO MOST PEOPLE (or Mothering moms, anyway) THINK IS TOO MUCH TO PAY FOR PRESCHOOL (OR ANY SCHOOL)?
I couldn't do 5K a year for one child that is for sure.
Amy - Blessed wife to Jesse (the best dad in the world), mother of 10 on earth plus 8 in heaven. PROUD to be a Catholic! :
With your experince in homeschooling, why not homeschool this little one too? If you really like the school though, can you maybe be able to apply for financial aid?
Originally Posted by alegna
In my area I'd be hard pressed to find ANY private school for $5000 a year. The ones that I like are a lot closer to $10,000. Hence, I plan to homeschool since I'd have to win the lottery to have one (nevermind the 4ish that we plan) child in private school.
Homeschooling mom to 4
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The thing is, even though this may be the case, that tuition costs this much, do you think it's necessary...or that the child necessarily receives that much "better" of an education?
As far as homeschooling her...as I said, she was our surprise blessing baby! And I had already made the committment to my own college degree program (financial and emotional) never intending on our little DD.
So my circumstances are quite different now than they were when I homeschooled the others. My schedule next semester will be only three days a week...and that is one sort-of full day, and two very part-time days.
As far as my own finances, yes, I have maxed out my financial aide and am trying to help out my oldest dd with her college tuition.
I write and make *some* money *sometimes* from articles I sell...otherwise DH is the breadwinner here...I wish...I mean
ANYBODY NOW OF SOME LEGITIMATE HOME BUSINESS OPPORTUNITIES!!!!
[Sorry...off topic. : ]
|The thing is, even though this may be the case, that tuition costs this much, do you think it's necessary...or that the child necessarily receives that much "better" of an education?|
I am a weak mama - I really look forward to my "quiet time" but this is way- Way more than I want. My dd really enjoys her little friends at school and the learnin'. I also have a 1 year old tot and she adores her big sister.
I guess I have some ambivelance.
Also, my dh started a business and we're making on his salary pretty much just the basics. Somehow we find money for what is important - I'll do without haircuts/newclothes not a big deal etc. But is preschool really that important?
I guess I'm in a similar boat.
Maybe someone knows a percentage of income or other guideline on what to spend. Please share!
I know this is hard. One of my concerns with the Montessori school is that it is five days a week...you cannot opt for three or less. When I said this to another mom, she said, well it's only two hours a day...Well, it is three hours actually, and that is a lot for a three year old!!!! [or it can be]
The other thing I dislike is the mentality out there that kids NEED to go to preschool...I do not think they NEED to go for intellectual reasons. I think parents' schedules neccessitate it...and there is no judgement there. Parents NEED to work, or go to school and kids need a safe, sound place to be...BUT they do not NEED to go, you know?
So...I am wavering here, too...I still haven't heard from the Montessori school if we were "accepted" or not...but I am more leaning to Tiredx2 the idea of sending her three days a week to my school's day-care, which is more like a play-group...
BUT dd is having a lot of seperation anxiety lately. She wants tocome EVERYWHERE with me.
I live in NYC, and I am a preschool teacher so my ds goes to my school for free. However, I teach at a school where full time (9:00-3:00) costs $12,800 - there is no break for siblings either. We follow the public school calendar - so parents pay extra for childcare during holidays and summer, early bird and extended day.
My son goes to school 3.5 hours a day - those are the hours I work. If I did not have to work for financial reasons (I was a SAHM for 2.8 years), then he would be home with me. If I had to pay to send him to school - it would not pay for me to work. So, for me any tuition is too much.
Are there parent cooperative preschools by you? They are usually considerably less expensive - and more AP friendly.
Laura Seeing as you work in the preschool, do you think, even from your perspective as teacher that the children receive a better education than one-on-one? What about playtime with the othe kids?
I did not worry about that last thing with my other kids...but I do with this little dd because her siblings are so much older and she LOVES to play with kids. BUT she has a big seperation anxiety lately.
Honestly, I am a preschool teacher who does not believe preschool is necessary *unless* both parents have to work or go to school (as in your case). I do not think that children need to be in a group setting to develop social skills - and some children are not ready to be in group settings (which is why so many children are having difficulties and are being evaluated).
If you have to be away from your child out of necessity, personally and from what I have witnessed, a high quality preschool is better than hiring a babysitter. At least with a preschool there is a system of checks and balances. A few other pearls: make sure the staff is qualified (through certification and/or experience), visit the school frequently (before and after you enroll your daughter - if a school does not have an "open door" policy for parents be very weary), make sure there is a good teacher to child ratio.
Feel free to ask any other questions,
He goes to a beautiful informal preschool now , much more reasonable and he's learning so much and talking!! So Montessori is not necessarily the gold standard. Even the international Montessori board has a clear disclaimer about individual schools having their own interpretation of Montessori philosophy.
That said, the second year of preschool (for each of them) was at a classic drop off (not Montessori or religious, just your "regular" preschool for lack of a better term....) Half days, four days a week. Dd1's (four years ago) was $200 a month. Dd2's (this fall) will be $330 a month and that is a little steep for my taste but it is a GREAT school and I have a gut feel that it is "the" place for dd. To do the math and think we will fork out over three grand for preschool this year is hard to swallow. But it is heads and shoulders above all the many, many other preschools I researched within a 30 minute drive of my house. It is not about the location or the reputation or the type of toys - for me it is about the incredible respect the teachers show the children. How they treat them. What I think that "says" to the child to be given responsibility, to be in a developmentally appropriate environment, to be respected and valued. You can find that in a preschool that costs $58 or $500 a month - depends on the teacher.
I would not go into debt to send my child to a certain preschool. If you can afford an expensive preschool that you've fallen in love with then great - I agree with another poster that no amount is too much. But if it will cause financial trouble for your family, then it is too much. Keep looking and see if there is something out there (that you may not even know about yet?) that would be perfect for your child.
Good luck deciding - it is always a lot of work to come to a decision you feel good about. But you will just know when you get there!
I fully agree with this statement. It's so good to hear other Mamas who resonate with this. I guess I feel a certain pressure w/ other Moms who send their kiddos to preschool and some as early as 2.5 yo.
I agree w/ the other Mamas that cost doesn't always equal quality & finding a school that ISN'T a Montessori, but is a good fit for your dc might be another option.
I moved dd from a nanny (very, very expensive - you're paying the person's full time salary plus taxes plus any benefits) to a Montessori preschool right about when she turned three. It has worked very well for us so far. Dd loves being able to socialize, likes her teachers, and enjoys the activities (largely outdoor time, self-directed "work" (which she calls "playing" ), and "circle time," where the children are read stories and sing songs in a group). OTOH, I've only been working part-time this summer, and so only have her in school in the mornings. This will change in a few weeks, when I return to full-time work. She'll also be moving up a class, so we'll see how all the transitions go.
When she's in full time, we'll be paying about $6,000 per year for her tuition (not including summer months and any extra babysitting time necessary for care during school breaks). We're just south/southwest of Houston.
I was a pre-school teacher at a co-op in nc for six years. When I left I was making a little over 12.00 an hour. I had great benifits as well. Consequently, the school had low turnover and *most* of the teachers really loved their job. You want your children's teachers to be well compensated for the time they spend with your kids!
You pay alot for a fancy name sometimes.
Another thing to keep in mind is how long are thse programs? My dd will be going for 6-7 hours/day 5 days a week. So that's a decent price for that much care, and in fact, as I said, it is less than I would pay in daycare for that amount of time.
I don't have the choice of staying home. If I were a sahm, though, I'd probably only send her to a shorter program of 3-4 hours/day for 3 days a week at this age, which is much cheaper, about $200/month.
We have choosen to do a preschool program for our kids but we can't choose one that costs a ton of $ becouse I'm home. I feel a certain amount of guilt for doing it at all. We have really gotten alot out of the experience though