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New Student Orientation


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Frequently Asked Questions

What’s the primary entry age for your school?
We have the most openings for children who are three or four by September 1st each year, as we have more Early Childhood classes than any other. We admit children who are between 18 months and 3 years old into the Toddler class, and generally admit some older students from kindergarten through the elementary grades each year. In the higher grades, we mostly admit Montessori transfer students.

What is the application deadline?
We accept applications at any time of the year, for any future school year. Re-enrollment for our current families takes place in February, which determines how many spaces we will have available for new students for the following school year. In March we begin drawing students for admission from the applicant pool, balancing age and gender in our mixed age classrooms, and creating as diverse a community as possible. If you would like your child to be considered in this first round of applicants (recommended), an application should be received by our office by January 15 for Toddler, Early Childhood, and Kindergarten applicants.

When will we hear back from you?
Families who meet this deadline will be notified in early March about their acceptance. If your child is admitted you will be sent a tuition agreement along with your admission letter. You will then have seven days to secure your child’s place by signing the contract and paying the Acceptance Fee (see Tuition).

What if I miss the January 15th deadline?
After the first round of admissions, there may be spaces still available for the upcoming school year. Applications are welcome and considered after the deadline for remaining spaces. We maintain a waiting pool year-round, in the event of an opening at any level later in the year.

What if another school has offered us admission and I haven’t heard from MCHD yet?
Should you face an offer deadline from another school, please call us and inquire as to the status of your application.

What is the Financial Aid deadline?
If you would like to be considered for financial aid, please apply at the same time you apply to MCHD, so that, if possible, we can notify you of your award when we offer you a Tuition Agreement (this may not be possible for late applications over the summer). Applications and supporting documents will be due to TADS by mid-January for those families who wish to be considered in the first rounds of admissions. Application for assistance in no way affects the admission decision. All applications are kept confidential, and are identified only by a numerical code. Please see Financial Aid for more information.

What is considered a completed application?
For enrollment into Toddler or Early Childhood:
¨ An observation in a classroom by at least one parent/guardian for an hour or more
¨ A completed Application form submitted to the MCHD office
¨ $100 application fee

For enrollment into Kindergarten or Elementary grades:
¨ An observation in a classroom by at least one parent/guardian for an hour or more
¨ A completed Application form submitted to the MCHD office
¨ $100 application fee
¨ The child’s student records and Teacher Assessment Form from current or former school(s)
¨ An observation by a MCHD teacher in your child’s current class or a meeting with your child, if possible. In some cases, we may ask the student to visit for a day in our classroom.

What is the difference between a waiting list and a waiting pool?
We don’t keep a waiting list, we keep a waiting pool. In other words, there is no child “next in line” for enrollment. Because our classes are balanced by age and gender and diversity, the next child we admit is based on what will bring that class into balance. All applications received for that school year are kept in the waiting pool, and all applicants who could fill the open space are considered regardless of application date. We welcome applicants to remain in the pool for the following year.

What if I’m moving into the area and can’t come to observe in a classroom?
We can conduct much of the admissions process by phone and by mail, and we’d be happy to put you in touch with some current parents to speak to in lieu of visiting. Do let us know if you make a visit to the Triangle to interview or hunt for housing, and we’d be glad to work with your schedule to find a time to visit the school.

Can I request which classroom my child will be in?
Parents are welcome to submit information about their child and his/her learning style, which will aid us in making class assignments. This information will join the several other criteria we use to balance the makeup of each class. Please ask the office for the Learning Styles Form to submit information about your child.

What happens if my circumstances change after I sign my Tuition Agreement?
Your Tuition Agreement is a contract between the school and the family. Parents are obligated to pay the full year’s tuition and no reduction or credit will be granted if a student is withdrawn, unless the withdrawal is made at the specific request of the school. If you need to withdraw your child from the school after accepting a spot, however, you may enter the Replacement Program. Upon application and payment of the Replacement Fee, the school can attempt to enroll another child who will, in effect, take over your contract. Until that time, the original family is required to continue to make tuition payments on schedule. If a replacement is found, a balance due or refund is calculated on a prorated basis. For more information please ask to see the Replacement Policy documents.

My son will turn 3 just after the August 31 cutoff. Can I still apply for Early Childhood?
Because Montessori education addresses the developmental stages of the children at each level, we prefer to enroll children who will be three years old by September 1 of the year they start Early Childhhod. Parents of younger children should consider the Toddler program as a more developmentally appropriate placement. If your child will turn three in September or before October 16, you may apply for Early Childhood, but we rarely admit children who are two to that level, and by state law your child would not be able to enter Kindergarten until his fourth year in the Early Childhood class. If you wish to go ahead and apply for a younger student, your application will be considered for Early Childhood after August 1st, if there are still spaces unfilled at that time.

The Toddler Program follows the Montessori curriculum for children from 18 months-36 months of age. Students in this program will enter Early Childhood the following fall if they have turned 3 by September 1.

What is the Diversity of your student body?
Diversity isn’t just a buzzword here. We celebrate it. Our preschool is 40% racially diverse, and we embrace families with adopted children, or who practice one of the world’s many religions, or who have two moms, or speak a different language at home.