finding/choosing/affording pre-school - Mothering Forums

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#1 of 10 Old 02-08-2002, 01:29 PM - Thread Starter
 
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I've finally decided I want to send my oldest ds (4yrs) to pre-school next fall. I think he would really benefit from the social interaction. I should have researched this ages ago I'm sure.

I know nothing about pre-schools and don't know any local moms who put their kids in pre-school. . .so my question is how do I find preschools in my area?

Typically how expensive is pre-school? The only one I looked into at all was Waldorf, which I loved, but it ran around $4-6000, if I remember correctly, and that's just not do-able for my budget.

Once I find the names of some local schools what kind of questions do you ask them when you call? (I swear I'm not a moron I've just never done this before).

I just feel overwhelmed by the task at hand - HELP ME!
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#2 of 10 Old 02-08-2002, 05:22 PM
 
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Well as you can see in my post"just found the nursery school of my dreams" i just found what I was looking for.

O.k. where to begin:

Talk to other moms
Search the internet-alot of sites have lists of places by area
your local paper may have ads
local churchs-they are usually the cheapest and are often not religious themselves
Many grade schools have their own preschool

Decide what you are looking for:

lots of structure/little structure
lots of security/don't care no wierd ex in the picture
montissori/waldorf/self directed play,ect
co-op/no thanks
healthy snacks/you should see what we eat

And then go and visit.Visit as many places as you can because I think the feeling you get is far more important than any question you can ask.Does it feel good ?Would I like to spend time here?The last place I went to(which I love)I hardly asked any questions because it was so right on.I could feel it.

I hope this helps some. Good luck!
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#3 of 10 Old 02-08-2002, 05:27 PM
 
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Oh I forgot to mention $$$ .It totally depends on where you live.And if you are doing mornings or all day.
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#4 of 10 Old 02-08-2002, 07:27 PM - Thread Starter
 
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Thanks Cookie -

How did you find pre-school information on-line? I have tried doing a Yahoo search for Connecticut Preschools and it comes up with nothing helpful. The only mild sucess I had was looking in Yellowpages.com in my town. I found two listings for preschools. I plan to call them Monday.

LMK
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#5 of 10 Old 02-08-2002, 07:44 PM
 
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Try just general sites for Connecticut like Connecticut.com or Connecticutkids or something.I search on www.google.com alot.Just type in your state and see what comes up.Then look for a site and lots of times they have a family or kids section.I had some luck that way or also try your town by it self.

Then you can also search a montisori(if you like them) site that will list them in your area.I found one awhile back.

Maybe call some local churchs and ask if they have a preschool and if not ask who does.

Moms have the best info though even if there kids are older .

I'll try to think of more
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#6 of 10 Old 02-08-2002, 09:22 PM
 
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Also, ask at libraries and kids re-sale shops and such. Here in San Diego their are two local Familiy magazines that have ads and regular features on preschools. Maybe there's something similar in your area.
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#7 of 10 Old 03-03-2002, 12:16 PM
 
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Dotcomma- try doing a search for something like "Conneticut Resource and Refferal Network". This should give you a link to your caounty's agency. Also try to call your county Human Services department and ask them if your county has a childcare resource and refferal agency. I work for an R&R agency where I live and it is my job to help people find preschools, daycare, etc and to help people get subsidized childcare. A R&R agency cannot give you recommendations, but they can give you a list of places in your area. My agency has a litle bit of info on each place like "in home, waldorf oriented, all vegetarian food" or " stuctured pre-K program, no TV". If you have something very specific in mind, you should also ask how many kids they are liscenced for, what hours are available and get their liscence number to do a back ground check.

Good Luck!
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#8 of 10 Old 03-03-2002, 10:40 PM
 
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I had my oldest 3 children in preschool at the Catholic school and they loved it. This time with my 4t child I held him back due to expenses and he was having potty problems and I had newborn twins.
I just found out about a preschool that is in my 2 childrens gradeschool. It mixes handicapped children and regular children. I know alot of communties are doing this now and I only hear great things about it from the parents and the kids involved. They teach the sign language plus many other things and best of all they will grow up not stereotyping people dddifferent then themselves. It is very affordable too. It will be $50 per month and he goes 5 afternoons a week. Look into it!
My son has learned so much in the past couple of months with just me teaching him but I just want the social interaction for him. WIth 2 babies Ihave very limited time to spend with him each day so it will help me feel less guilty.
Good luck!
Angie
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#9 of 10 Old 03-03-2002, 11:02 PM - Thread Starter
 
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Luna - thanks. I actually did find a few locally through the yellow pages. I wish I'd known about the resources and referral network - sound like that would have helped.

I fell in love with one sponsered by the local Lutheran Church. Ds is signed up for September and I'm sure he'll love it.

angie6- that sounds like a great program. I haven't heard of that before, but it sounds like a wonderful idea.

LMK
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#10 of 10 Old 03-08-2002, 12:56 PM
 
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I live in the District of Columbia and private schools are almost required for middle and upper middle class parents. Some of the best private schools are here, and many schools have financial aid programs. Don't make the assumption that you will not qualify and don't be put off by the paperwork. Go for it!
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