Here are some factors to consider and some relevant information about what CVMS offers – and does not offer.
Your child’s personality and learning style
At CVMS, our teachers establish a structure that includes some direct teaching, some independent work time, and some work with other students, either collaborating or getting or giving help. Teachers set weekly learning goals for each student and track their progress, while also helping them learn to become self-directed learners. We describe our classrooms as having a quiet energy, with students comfortably and happily focused on their work. Our 7 C’s describe the outcomes we pursue: curiosity, command of concepts, critical thinking, cooperation, compassion, citizenship, and confidence.
Particular interests or special needs
Our curriculum meets or exceeds all New York State standards. In addition, CVMS students take Spanish throughout all their years at CVMS except toddler. Because our class sizes are small and our student-teacher ratios are low, students are often able to pursue their own particular interests in context of projects. We are also able to foster students’ creativity through music, art, literature, writing, drama, and other activities in ways that many other schools cannot. The same is true for math, science, and technology.We work individually with students, and our faculty are skilled at dealing with a wide variety of learning styles. Because of our small size, however, we do not have specialists trained to deal with profound learning differences. The best way to find out whether CVMS can work with any special educational or emotional needs your child may have is to have a candid conversation with our head of school and the appropriate teacher.
Communication between you and the school
We are wholeheartedly committed to being a partner with you in your child’s education. We encourage you to get to know what is going on in your child’s classroom and also to communicate information about your child or family that may be helpful to the teachers. We strongly encourage parents to observe their child’s class. Each Friday, students are given school event sheets and notes from their teacher to take home. At all levels, we provide written evaluations three times yearly. Parent-teacher conferences occur twice a year at the Early Childhood level, and at the elementary and middle school level, parent-teacher-child conferences.
Your involvement in the school
Part of our philosophy as a Montessori school is to function as a collaborative community. In order to ensure an appropriate level of community involvement, and to provide for an enriched curriculum beyond the scope of a private school’s budget and expertise, each set of parents is expected to contribute 30 volunteer hours each year toward the school’s operation, growth and development. There are a wide variety of opportunities to fulfill this service, from classroom presentations to fundraising activities to contributing other needed skills and time. Learn more in our Parent Handbook.
Safety, discipline, and well-being
At CVMS, we actively cultivate a culture that focuses on learning and on and respect for oneself, others and the environment. We appreciate and value cultural and individual differences. Kindness and courtesy are taught and practiced continually. In general, students absorb these lessons and abide by our expectations of them. As a result, we have an environment that promotes students’ safety and well-being. Our approach to discipline is to help students learn how to become self-disciplined. We establish clear, consistent expectations throughout our classrooms, and teachers and older students model these. Nevertheless, there are occasionally situations when it is necessary to deal with inappropriate behavior. In keeping with the Montessori philosophy, we stress the development of self-control rather than imposing external constraints. Our Parent Handbook provides our discipline policy and procedure for redirecting inappropriate behavior.
Before and after school care, and bus transportation
CVMS provides before- and after-school care and enrichment activities to our enrolled students through our Kaleidoscope program for an additional fee.Bus transportation is available for CVMS students from our Early Childhood extended day through upper elementary levels in the Corning, Elmira, Elmira Heights and Horseheads school districts. You can arrange for this by contacting the transportation department in the school district where you reside.