FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS
Does the charter go through 6th grade?
Starting in Year 2 (2017-2018 school year) MVMCS will be a PreK-6 school. We may add grades 7-8 beginning in Year 3. We were able to expand our lease agreement with Heritage Christian School to add additional classrooms: 3 Primary (PreK-K), 3 Lower Elementary (Grades 1-3), 2 Upper Elementary (Grades 4-6). We believe that we will be able to add more space for the Middle School grades in the years to come. At this point in time, we are focusing on PreK-6th grade and will consider adding middle school (grades 7 & 8) in the future.
Does Montessori provide more of a hands-on learning style? And allow for movement breaks?
Yes, absolutely. “The hands are the instruments of man’s intelligence.” – Dr Maria Montessori
One of the things that distinguishes Montessori from classical educational approaches is the way children are encouraged to learn by touching, feeling and doing. Montessori children are encouraged to move around the classroom and engage with the wide variety of works available. They choose the activity they would like to work on, bring it to a table or mat, explore the materials and make discoveries for themselves.
Will MVMCS accept CCAP funding?
Will MVMCS accept 2.5 year old children?
Will MVMCS provide Special Education services? Gifted and Talented program?
Yes, MVMCS is focused on meeting the special needs of individual students. Like all public schools, students are eligible for special education and related services including assessment and interventions.
The Montessori method is differentiated instruction and well suited to serving a variety of students who fall within the spectrum of “special needs,” from those requiring Individualized Education Plans (IEPs) to Gifted and Talented students. The Montessori approach of allowing students to learn independently and at their own pace ensures that students can work at a variety of levels, and yet still be in the same social and educational setting as their peers. This keeps both the advanced and the challenged learners from feeling ostracized from their friends or treated as an extra responsibility by the teaching staff.
MVMCS will provide special education services via our Special Education Team. The Special Education Team consists of contracted, licensed professionals including:
- Licensed School Psychologist
- Licensed Counselor/Behavior Specialist
- Licensed Nurse
- Licensed Physical Therapist
- Licensed Occupational Therapist
- Licensed Speech Therapist
- Special Education Consultant (SPED) or Gifted & Talented Consultant
Gifted and Talented Mission: Mountain Village Montessori Charter School (MVMCS) is committed to inspiring a love for learning while meeting the needs of all learners. Within this commitment, MVMCS embraces the opportunity to develop the potential of advanced learners by providing a learning environment commensurate with each individual’s exceptional abilities. To foster maximum academic and personal growth, opportunities are seamlessly integrated into the daily work cycle, while great attention is given to monitoring and reporting student growth. Learners are encouraged to pursue interests and passions in their strength areas which in turn develops the positive self-efficacy necessary for conquering areas of challenge. Educating staff, parents, and students about the unique nature of gifted and talented learners will supply continued support for this specialized population.
For more information contact our Advanced Learning Coordinator at firstname.lastname@example.org
What is the difference between the Enrollment Application and Enrollment Forms?
The Enrollment Application is the official form needed to facilitate the enrollment process and will be used to begin building a file for the student. The formal enrollment application is posted on MVMCS.org and physical hard copies are available at MVMCS. One form per child must be filled out and submitted either online or hand delivered.
The Enrollment Forms are for after the child is accepted to MVMCS.
FYI: If you are currently “out-of-district” but enrolled at a school within the Steamboat Springs School District (SSSD) and accept a spot at MVMCS, you will lose your current district spot. You have to re-apply for a spot in SSSD should you choose to re-enter the district. But if an “in-district” student leaves SSSD to attend MVMCS and then chooses to re-enter SSSD, SSSD is required to accept the student & cannot deny enrollment since student is “in-district”. For the elementary schools, SSSD will not guarantee placement at Strawberry Park or Soda Creek but you will be granted a spot at one of them.
Do we need to fill out an Enrollment Application for each child if we are enrolling more than one child?
Yes, that is correct.
Are siblings given priority in the Enrollment process?
Yes, currently enrolled students and siblings of currently enrolled students are given priority. Siblings includes children whose primary guardian(s) are also the primary guardians of other children already enrolled in the program (in the case of joint custody, primary guardians must have custody at least 50% of the time). This could include: ½ siblings, step-siblings, adopted siblings, cousins, nieces or nephews being cared for by grandparents, etc. If a child is drawn during the enrollment lottery for an enrollment spot at MVMCS and they have eligible siblings, those siblings will be automatically granted enrollment if there is space at their grade-level.
Where can I find information on the curriculum?
A general overview can be found in the Charter Application. A link to the Charter Application and Appendices is located on the homepage.
Will transportation be provided?
No. At this time, MVMCS will not be providing transportation to and from school. Parents are encouraged to coordinate with other parents in developing a car-pool schedule. MVMCS will consider facilitating a service if enough parents express interest and are willing to pay an additional fee.
How will technology be utilized at the school?
At MVMCS, technology shall be used as a teaching and learning tool that is an integral part of the curriculum and the enhancement of 21st Century skills. Anywhere-anytime technology will be available throughout the building while continuing to maintain the low-technology atmosphere of the Montessori environment. 24 Laptops and a Storage & Charging Cart are available for testing and enhancement instruction of computer science, coding, and the creation and use of software.
MVMCS believes teachers should have competence in the use of technology and place a high priority on providing teachers with professional development to improve their ability to integrate 21st century skills into the teaching of core academic content. All Lead Teachers will have a laptop computer in the classroom that is available as needed in the classroom environment. Teachers will utilize Montessori Compass, an online record keeping system, for tracking student progress. Montessori Compass uses a Scope & Sequence that has been aligned to the US Common Core State Standards for English Language Arts and Mathematics.
Will there be a library?
No, there will not be a room dedicated for a library but each classroom will be equipped with a reading area and many, many age appropriate books. This is customary in a Montessori setting.
Will MVMCS align with the Common Core State Standards (CCSS) and use state assessments?
Yes, MVMCS has a Montessori curriculum aligned to the Common Core State Standard through the Montessori Compass software program. Additionally, the Colorado Montessori Association (CMA) provides materials and curriculum aligned to Colorado Academic Standards (CAS). During the start-up year prior to the school opening, the Head of School will dedicate significant time refining and aligning the CMA standards with CAS to refine MVMCS curriculum. MVMCS will update and re-evaluate its curriculum annually based on state and local assessment results and school audits.
Teachers will use state standardized assessments to determine the ongoing needs of individual students. CMAS for science and social students and PARCC for English Language Arts and Math data will be analyzed to determine gaps in learning and inform each student’s individualized learning plan. Additional standardized assessments will be implemented for specific subpopulations as required, such as W-APT to determine English Language Learner (ELL) eligibility and ACCESS for annual ELL student assessment of language skills. MVMCS has chosen to use Standardize Testing and Reporting (STAR) Assessment for the local assessment to further assess progress and monitor student performance. STAR provides measure for reading and math skills. STAR will be used at the beginning of the school year to establish an annual baseline and used for additional progress monitoring for those students who are not performing at grade level. STAR meets all requirements of the Colorado READ Act for early literacy development and testing.
The biggest difference between MVMCS and other public schools will be the culture of assessments. While we are still bound by state regulations to administer some standardized tests, our goal will be to treat all assessments as formative assessments. The information garnered from these test assists the teachers in modifying teaching and learning activities to improve student attainment, not simply rank and rate students and/or the school. We will strive to relieve the pressures and anxiety that testing can cause and instead create testing procedures that more closely align to the Montessori philosophy of respecting each child as an individual.
What do the different committees do?
The Advisory Committee assists the Governing Board and staff in establishing long or short-term working committees to carry out necessary functions in order to realize the vision of Mountain Village Montessori Charter School. Advisory members do not exercise Board functions. The Key Objectives are to ƒ Advise, Assist, Support and Advocate for the school.
The Key Objective of the Executive Committee is the recruitment, nomination, orientation, training, and evaluation of the Governing Board in accordance with the Bylaws.
The Finance Committee has the responsibility for working with the Head of School and Treasurer to create the upcoming fiscal year budget; presenting budget recommendations to the Board; monitoring implementation of the approved budget on a regular basis and recommending proposed budget revisions; recommending to the Board appropriate policies for the management of the organization’s assets. The Key Objective is to ensure that the financial needs of the school are met in a manner that ensures the integrity of the organization and its public image.
The Fundraising Committee is needed to raise supportive funds in order to fulfill the mission, vision and goals of the school. The Key Objective is to ensure that the financial needs of the school are met in a manner that ensures the integrity of the organization and its public image.
The Parent Council (PC) will support and facilitate school activities, celebrations, fundraising, and special events in an effort to foster a strong sense of school community. The PC provides parent input into school policies and development, conducts activities for parent education and school involvement, and links families to activities and volunteer opportunities within the MVMCS community. The Key Objective is to ensure the voice of the school’s parent community and its students’ are heard.
The School Accountability Committee (SAC) serves in an advisory role to the Head of School. The Head of School is ultimately responsible for ensuring compliance with all federal, state, and CSI requirements and meeting the academic performance expectations defined by CSI. The Key Objective is faithfulness to charter, academic success, and organizational viability.