How will my child’s experiences at Discovery Montessori School prepare them for later school success?

The educational philosophy at Discovery Montessori School is research driven, experiences are rich and will effectively help young children in ways that are lasting and foster a life-long love of learning. Research continues to demonstrate that children learn best by exploring, discovering and constructing their own knowledge in an enriched environment. It is through these active learning experiences that higher order abstract thinking is gained. For young children, learning needs to be concrete before it can become abstract.

Children will learn when seen as capable, competent and creative people. Children will thrive when seen as co-researchers with their parents and teachers on their journey in discovering the world around them.

Our teachers will share your children’s growth, learning and understanding through documentation and portfolios of their “work” through their interactions with the environment, materials and their peers. Our educational program is holistic in that early literacy, science, art and math are integrated into all daily activities and enhanced by children’s individual interests.

What is the teacher to child ratio in the classroom?

Qualified Early Childhood specialists staff our program. While state licensing requires a ration of one-to-twelve, we believe that a one-to-eight or one-to-ten ratio is better practice. During the course of your child’s day, small group explorations with art or music have an even smaller ratio of between six to eight children per teacher.

Is Discovery Preschool a corporate facility or franchise?

No!  At Discovery Montessori we enjoy hands-on management by the school owners who are an active part of the Asheville community. Our owners are very involved in day to day activities. You will see them at many of our events as well as helping out in classrooms on any given day. They feel it is very important to get to know the families just as much as the teachers do.

What hours can I drop off or pick up?

Our hours of operation are Monday through Friday, 7:30 – 5:30.  The school day for the one year olds and two year olds is from 8:30-3:00.  We ask that one and two year olds arrive between 8:25 and 8:45 and get picked up no later than 3:15.   The school day for 3-6 year olds is 9-3:30.  We ask that all 3-6 year olds arrive between 8:55 and 9:15 and get picked up no later than 3:45. Arriving to school on time sets a good example for your child, sends the message that school is important, and allows him/her to benefit from the full school day.  If your child will be absent for the day we ask that you also call the school no later than 9:00 am.

We also ask that you arrive on time to pick your child up.  Children develop an internal clock and come to expect their parent or guardian at the usual time.

Can I sit in and observe my child’s classroom if I wish?

The purpose of an observation is to give the parent an opportunity to experience a typical school day; to see the work their child is doing and their social interactions.  Parent observations are allowed in the 3-6 year old classrooms, but younger children generally do not respond well to having parents visit.  It disrupts their routine and sense of order.  The toddler wants to be with the parent and often times will not interact with the materials nor with his or her classmates while the parent is in the room.  When the parent leaves, a younger child is likely to want to leave with the parent, causing trauma for the child and disruption in the classroom.

Observations are allowed for the older children in the 3-6 year old program.  You can check with your child’s teacher for her observation guidelines and sign-up procedure.

How are parents kept informed about their child’s progress?
Parent teacher conferences are held throughout the year, but you are always welcome to schedule a conference with your teacher whenever you feel one is necessary.

Can Discovery Preschool administer medication?

Only prescription medication can be administered at school and we must follow the N.C. child care licensing requirements regarding medication.  An authorization form must be completed before any medication can be given and DMS will not administer the first dose of any medication prescribed.

Are there any family events scheduled throughout the year?

Family events are planned at various times throughout the year, some during the school day and some on Saturdays.

What is the process for tuition payments?

You will receive an invoice through  Brightwheel around the middle of the month for the next month’s tuition.  The invoice will include fees for the following month: tuition, extended day for the following month if applicable, and any early arrival or late pick up fees in excess of the hours you are registered for.  The payments are due on the first of the month and are considered late after the 5th of the month.  You can pay through  Brightwheel or by check made out to Discovery Montessori.

Can I change my child’s schedule and if so, what is the procedure?

For a couple of reasons, we do require you to specify your schedule when you register.  Routine is important for young children so it is best to have a consistent schedule.  In addition, DMS needs to know how many children are enrolled on each day and for extended day hours to adequately staff and to maintain our desired student/teacher ratios.  Teachers plan lessons, activities and special projects in advance and knowing what the class size will be from day to day aids in their planning. 

We realize that work schedules or demands do change from time to time. You can check with the administration if you need to change your schedule but only permanent changes are allowed – you cannot have a different schedule every week or every month.  Adding days is subject to available openings.  If your child attends 3 or 4 days a week, you cannot make up a day due to absence or school closings.