A refference for enrolled families
Parent Handbook
This handbook contents the school rules, procedures and recommendations. Please, read it carefully in order to ensure getting the best experience during the studying process.
MISSION STATEMENT

We strongly believe that the quality and wholesomeness of education available to the children of early years is what defines their learning style for life. Our staff are committed to work with each family individually to ensure the children and the whole family benefit from their experience at the Montessori School of Moscow.

Maria Montessori spoke of education for life. Our goal here at Montessori School of Moscow is to support each person's optimal development. We strongly believe that emotional stability is key to intellectual and physical growth. Montessori School of Moscow is looking for families who are committed to supporting their children's adaptation to a healthy social environment. Students with strong academic potential will thrive in our challenging learning environment.

Our mission is to establish the highest internationally acceptable standard of Montessori education in Moscow and to become a benchmark of Montessori in Russia and worldwide. Diversity and multicultural character of our community is a priority for us: both English and Russian are our official languages and to become a Lead Teacher in any of the Montessori programs offered by our school, one must have international training obtained under the guidance of AMI (Association Montessori Internationale) at the relevant level.

We are diligent in our work with parents to ensure that they are knowledgeable about child development and the needs of their children. This allows parents to participate intelligently in the life of their children, as well as through activities in our community.

Montessori School of Moscow utilizes the philosophy, methods and materials developed by Dr. Maria Montessori. We welcome students of any race, religion, color, national, or ethnic origin and do not discriminate in our educational or admissions policies. Montessori School of Moscow is not affiliated with any specific religion; we honor the religious beliefs of all our families and acknowledge the rich and diverse heritage of our school through classroom studies and celebrations of traditional and cultural holidays.

At Montessori School of Moscow, teachers and parents form a partnership to provide optimal learning and living environments for each child. We are concerned with the growth of the whole child and create experiences which promote each child's social, emotional and physical development as well as intellectual growth. As a member of our community, you will enjoy the satisfaction of knowing that your children are thriving and that you are contributing to their education and personal growth.




CHILD DEVELOPMENT

Maria Montessori actualized the idea that the child is the maker of man. The child, in a prepared environment, will explore different interests and fulfill various needs under the careful direction of a trained adult. Montessori's method is extensive and detailed and the prepared environment is continuously updated to encompass scientific advancement, current events and cultural milieu.

Maria Montessori saw the developmental growth from Infant to Adult taking 24 years, with the development itself being split into four stages: 0-6, 6-12, 12-18, 18-24. Throughout each stage, the child's learning style and needs change, and a different environment is needed to support the child through these stages of development.

Birth to 6 years is a time of enormous physical and psychological growth. Physically over this stage, the human body changes drastically in size, developing from a newborn baby into a small adult. Psychologically, the 0-3 age child is in a period of acquisition, unconsciously absorbing language, movement and social behaviour. The 3-6 age child consolidates this knowledge consciously, emerging with a cultural and social identity, adapting to his/her world.

During this stage of development, the child has three gifts to aid him/her; 'the absorbent mind', 'tendencies', and 'sensitive periods'.

The child's absorbent mind gathers impressions sensorially from the environment. He/She absorbs everything effortlessly and non-selectively, retaining it permanently, to build the foundations for the person they will one day be.

Tendencies guide the child in certain direction to make decisions that will help them fulfill their needs at the time.

The sensitive periods give a child a focus that illuminates a particular element in the environment in order to acquire and establish human characteristic or function. There are six sensitive periods: language; co-ordination of movement; social behavior; order; small objects; and refinement of the senses. These experiences are universal to all children, being essential to their development as individuals.




PROGRAMS AND CURRICULUM
Montessori School of Moscow offers four programs for children aged birth to 12 years old: Parent Infant Program; Toddler Program; Casa dei Bambini and Elementary Community.




PARENT INFANT PROGRAM
Our Parent Infant Program is offered through the format of two-month long workshops that run throughout the year. In small groups of five children and five adults, we explore key topics of the Montessori approach to children. Each session is organized around one central topic and provides opportunities for parents to develop awareness of their children's needs and interests.

The Parent Infant Program is a very important time, as the child is reliant on the adult for everything, including providing a rich and nurturing environment. Throughout this period of the child's development, they are absorbing the language and movements of their surroundings. Ideally, this environment offers isolated stimulation in a calm and structured way, so the child feels safe and secure. At Montessori School of Moscow, children learn through exploration and are given the time to see and touch materials, developing both physically and mentally.

As children grow and become more mobile, the Parent Infant Program will provide many activities that interest the children. The activities are designed for the child to work with independently while feeling the safety of their parents close by.




Parent Infant Program: the Environment

Infants need a purposefully built environment for all of their changing needs. For the younger children, there are activities to help with their first movements. Matted areas are provided for them to move freely and safely. As their movement increases, there are activities to help them sit up, stand and walk. We strive to make the infants feel safe so they can accomplish the task that they have set out to do, helping them feel confident and content.

This is a key developmental time for language, therefore the infant environment is rich in language possibilities. We give the children the names of things around them, describe what we are doing, read stories and sing songs, enriching their language before they even start to speak.

We keep the Parent Infant environment very orderly, keeping activities in the same place, and having the same Montessori guide and classroom routine, so the children may feel safe and secure in their environment.




Parent Infant Program: the Teacher's Role

The Montessori guide will observe the children so that he/she may introduce activities, guiding their child's exploration. The Montessori Guide will also work closely with the parents to help them understand their child's needs. The Montessori guide will introduce the parents to the Montessori philosophy and encourage ways to incorporate it into their home. There will be time for parents to discuss the changes they are seeing in their children and share ideas with others.

It is important to remember, when the Montessori guide is speaking with you in English, you as a parent must continue to speak to your child in the language you have always used. If this suddenly changes it can be distressing for your child.




The Toddler Program

The Toddler Program is for children aged 18 months to 2.8 years. This is a time when the children need to explore in a different environment with an adult guide. The toddler class is a place where this is available. Here your child will take his/her first steps towards independence, develop fine and gross motor skills, enrich their language and develop a sense of order and concentration. The classroom is carefully prepared to meet the unique needs of this age. All furniture is a size that allows maximum independence and the toddler materials are designed to be attractive and inviting to the children.




Toddler Program: The Environment

The toddlers need a self-contained environment prepared just for them. Many of the activities in the toddler program are under the subject we call practical life, which are activities that give children self-help skills, leading to independence. Children are given the time and guidance to do things for themselves, such as hang up their own coats and put on their own shoes. These types of activities are helping the children with the many challenges of self-development, as well as enhancing the children's fine motor control, hand-eye coordination, sense of order, concentration and independence.

The environment has space for gross-motor activities like jumping, throwing, balancing, walking, as well as places where the space is limited, encouraging the children to coordinate their movement so not to bump into things.

Toddlers are in a highly sensitive period for language. They are just starting to talk, saying a few words or perhaps stringing several words together. In the toddler community we enrich the children's language, encourage them to share their experiences, giving them the terminology to express themselves, and building their vocabulary.

The children are offered activities for classification, first with objects and then with picture cards, adding to their vocabulary and helping them internalize this information orderly.

In the toddlers first community, they are experiencing new social skills, learning to wait their turn and seeing others use the materials. Grace and courtesy activities are offered to the children to show them the appropriate behavior for a situation, so that they can work together smoothly.

In the community, the children are introduced to their culture in such a way to give them an understanding of their own surroundings, such as what clothing we wear and why, what food we eat and what plans and animals are around us. If the children have a good understanding of their culture in the Toddler Community, it will lay the foundation for much of the culture work in the 3-6 class.




Toddler Program: The Teacher's Role

The teacher of a Montessori Toddler community is familiar with the stages of development for this age group, with an extensive list of activities and developmentally appropriate educational materials that isolate one concept or skill at a time. The teacher carefully prepares the environment, observing the child so he/she can guide them based on the observations. Children at this age learn not only through individual lessons and independent practice, but also through watching what the adults around them are doing. The adults in the environment are the children's models, so they will conduct themselves in the way they expect the children to conduct themselves.




The Casa dei Bambini Program

Our Casa dei Bambini Program is designed for children from 2.5 through 6+ years of age. Dr. Maria Montessori observed that children in this stage of life appear to "absorb" information nearly effortlessly from the environment surrounding them. To take advantage of this naturally occurring propensity for comprehension through doing, touching and experiencing, our classroom is very carefully prepared to offer concrete, hands-on, self-directed, self-correcting materials. In translation from Italian Casa dei Bambini means the "Children's House".




Casa dei Bambini: The Environment

The "Children's House" is the environment which is offered to the child that he/she may be given the opportunity of developing his/her activities. The special characteristic of the equipment of this environment is that it is adapted for children and not adults. It contains not only a didactic material specially fitted for the intellectual development of the child, but also a complete equipment for the management of the miniature family. The furniture is light so that the children can move it about.

The Casa dei Bambini program offers children age three to six the opportunity to develop in a Montessori environment that focuses on the independent self within a community. By taking responsibility for their learning, students become self-confident problem-solvers who develop a more complex understanding of their world.

Children begin to discover who they are intrinsically and in relation to their families, friends, and classmates. In the inclusive atmosphere, students are encouraged to understand that, among the many differences to celebrate, they each have a unique style and pace at which they learn.

In our mixed-age classrooms, children are given liberty within limits, the independence to teach themselves, learn from one another, and to assume leadership roles. The classroom offers a wide range of developmentally appropriate educational materials that are easily accessible and inviting to the children.




Casa dei Bambini: the Teacher's Role

The success of the results is closely connected with the delicate intervention of the one who guides the children in their development. It is necessary for the teacher to guide the child without letting them feel her presence too much, so that she may be always ready to supply the desired help, but may never be the obstacle between the child and their experience.

The child has a personality which is seeking to expand; he/she has initiative, he/she chooses his/her own work, persists in it, changes it according to his/her inner needs; he/she does not shirk effort, but rather goes in search of it and with great joy overcomes obstacles within his/her capacity. The child is sociable to the extent of wanting to share with everyone their successes, their discoveries, and their little triumphs.

In Montessori School of Moscow, the specially trained teachers offer guidance and lessons, ensuring exposure to a broad range of activities while allowing each child to follow his/her own interests and pace. Teachers move throughout the classroom, facilitating children's work choices and social interactions as they carefully observe and record the key points of each child's day.




Casa dei Bambini: Activities Overview

1. Practical Life

The exercises of the Practical Life curriculum are designed to foster independence, self-confidence, self-esteem, and self-control, characteristics that play a critical role in subsequent intellectual growth. These tasks include moving around carefully, moving things to appropriate locations, taking care of oneself, maintaining one's surroundings, and interacting appropriately with others. Dr. Montessori classified these sets of exercises as Control of Movement, Care of the Person, Care of the Environment, and Grace and Courtesy. The different exercises of each category develop concentration, sense of order, attention to small detail, awareness of exactness and sequence, and coordination. The key ingredients of each activity are order, beauty, demonstrated sequence and precision, and, on the child's part, repetition. Active participation in the everyday affairs of a child's life grows self-confidence, self-reliance and self-discipline as the child masters the tasks represented in the individual exercises. Order, exactness, and detail cultivate aptitude for logic, mathematics, science, and composition. Repetition allow for extended concentration, more accurate hand-eye coordination, and a sense of deliberate action manifested in the feeling of self-initiated control: "I can do it myself!," the first step on the road of self discipline.




2. Sensorial Activities

Children receive impressions through their senses from the moment of birth. Designed to isolate and categorize qualities of the environment perceived through the senses, the Sensorial activities focus on the development of sensory perception. As adults, we rely heavily on visual and auditory perception for acquisition of information. The Montessori program offers a multi-sensory approach to learning, encouraging the children to use the optimum combination of senses for learning. Using the senses easily, with refined distinctions, increases productivity of experiential learning activities. As perception skills develop, appropriate language is added in the positive, comparative, and superlative of the quality illustrated in the material. For example, the Pink Tower activities compare the visual qualities of "large" and "small," highlighting the comparative qualities of "large, larger, largest" and "small, smaller, the smallest." The incremental differences manifested in the materials are mathematically based and develop faculties of mathematical understanding.




3. Language Activities

Language lessons continue throughout the day in all curriculum areas and in all activities. The specific lessons outlined below assist with vocabulary development, the progression into reading, the development of writing skills, and composition.




4. Cultural Activities

A specific extension of the Language curriculum, the History activities give the child an awareness of time past, a sense of change and development from prehistory to the present, an appreciation of cultural difference and a beginning foundation of historical facts. The Geography activities present facts and nomenclature of physical geography, i.e., the physical characteristics of the earth, and political geography, i.e., the countries and cultures of the world. Other subjects introduced in the "Cultural" activities explore topics including history and appreciation of art nomenclature and classification of zoology, science experiments, history and appreciation of music, and the study of historical figures. Reading and writing skills are used extensively in these activities.




5. Math Activities

The specific Math curriculum (there has been quite a lot of math cognition development activities presented in the Practical Life curriculum and the Sensorial curriculum already!) begins with activities to teach sequence, recognition, and quantity of numbers 1-10. Two parallel lesson formats continue with the concepts of (1) the process of the operations (addition, multiplication, subtraction, and division) and (2) the memorization of the math facts - the tables of addition, multiplication, subtraction, and division. Eventually used together, these two disciplines form the foundation for working complex math problems "in one's head." Other lesson series introduce and develop math concepts and skills such as odd and even numbers, linear counting and number recognition through 1000, "skip" counting (2 . .4 .. 6 .. 8 .. ), the squares and cubes of numbers 1-10, and fractions.




ELEMENTARY COMMUNITY

While the first plane of development is one of rapid physical growth and transformation, the second plane of development is characterised by physical stability and steady growth. Because less energy is being used for physical growth, children in the second plane of development have increased stamina, These stronger, healthier children are more adventurous and daring, often willing to try physically challenging things, and to ignore scrapes and bruises in order to demonstrate their increasing strength and toughness. This increase in physical stamina can also manifest itself as a capacity for sustained intellectual work. Children in this plane of development are more receptive to intellectual learning than at any other time in their lives. From about the age of six, however, the mind loses the ability to absorb the environment unconsciously. Instead children begin to use reason and logic to learn about their world consciously. Typical questions asked by children of this age include why, how and when. This is a time when children are developing great intellectual power.




Elementary: The Environment

The preparation of the Montessori learning environment for the second plane of development and the design of the resources and activities offered to these children are based on the Montessori understanding of the distinctive characteristics of children of this age.

The Montessori environment for the second plane of development is designed for a mini-community of peers. As children begin to disengage from the family, they strive to 'belong to, and become accepted by, a new community, this time of peers. Membership of this new community supports children as they become increasingly independent of the family, an independence that enables them to do things by themselves, and for themselves and others. A social environment of this type enables children, over time, to mature socially. In a community of peers, the first question children ask is 'Can we work together?' In the Montessori learning environment this community provides them with the opportunity to collaborate on research projects and to share information.




Elementary: Curriculum

Please ask in the office for a copy of a detailed elementary curriculum.




Program Advancement

Each program at the Montessori School of Moscow has an age guide: Parent Infant 2 - 15 months; Toddler Community 15 months - 3 years; Casa Dei Bambini 3 - 6 years, Elementary 6 - 12 years. Some children are ready to transition before the end of these age guides and some children are ready after. When the teacher observes that a child is ready to transition to the next program, the child's teacher and the teacher of the next program (as long as it is available within the Montessori School of Moscow) will meet with the parents and inform them of the passage of transition. The child will be slowly introduced to the new classroom on a daily basis until they feel confident to come by themselves, which will indicate that they are ready to change programs.

If a child transitions from the Montessori School of Moscow to a different school, the child's teacher will work with the family to prepare the child in the best possible way. When necessary, the Head of School and/or office staff will assist the family in locating the appropriate school for the child and will serve as a liaison in the communication with the next school on behalf of the family.




SCHOOL OPERATIONS

Drug and Alcohol Free School and Workplace; No Tolerance Policy

The Montessori School of Moscow is a drug and alcohol free workplace and school environment. No staff member may be under the effect or in the possession of either while in the school or during interactions with its clients and students. There is a no tolerance policy when it comes to smoking, chewing tobacco, snuff, cigars, pipes, and other types of tobacco and any staff member found in the possession of either will be immediately released from their duties at the school and ineligible for future employment with The Montessori School of Moscow.

Outside of their working hours, Montessori School of Moscow staff members are kindly reminded to promote moderation and serve as a model for their communities.




Admission Process, Non-Discrimination, Language, Required Paperwork

Our admission process starts with a phone call/e-mail from the parent(s) requesting information about The Montessori School of Moscow and takes at least two weeks before the admissions decision is made and followed upon, though it may take longer depending on the season and the school's calendar.

We adhere to the principle of Non-Discrimination and for our 0-6 programs are happy to accept all children up to the age of 4 whose developmental and educational needs can be accommodated on our premises. Older children may be accepted in cases of transfers from other Montessori schools, should the records be provided prior to the admissions decision. Because the Montessori School of Moscow is a bi-lingual Montessori school, one program to another may differ but the main guideline is the following: our school is international school and one of the main aims is to teach English our students. We also insist parents who want their kids to learn English to support us at home and to create English speaking environment by using English or read books and listen to the music.

The rules of using languages at classes are the following: All teachers speak English with kids, except some particular situations when the child is emotionally not stable or needs more understanding. A teacher decides when and who of the assistants speaks Russian. All assistants speak English and never switch the languages. The assistants speak Russian only if they have instructions from their teacher to use Russian in a particular situation. The exception is Casa Dei Bambini 2 class which is 100% bilingual environment and there are two co-teachers working with kids equally using Russian and English languages.

Natalya O'Sulliven is teaching and speaking English in the class, Ekaterina Rodionova is teaching and speaking only Russian with kids. Assistants speak English.

The following documents must be on file in our office before a child enters the classroom. No child may start school without the following on file:

  • Application for Admission
  • Enrolment Contract
  • Birth Certificate Verification
  • Child Information Form
  • Medical Information Form
  • Medical Form 26

It is the parents' responsibility to keep all forms updated with all necessary telephone numbers and any new information pertinent to their child's well being.




TUITION POLICY, PAYMENT PLANS, GENERAL FEES

Please see administration staff for information on the General Financial Terms for Annual Tuition Costs for the 2017-2018 school year.

Our standard payment options are a) one-time payment, b) two installments per school year, or c) monthly installments throughout the school year. Discounts are offered for options (a) and (b) when payment is made before the beginning of the studying process.

At Montessori School of Moscow, our sole source of funding is tuition and any delays will threaten overall school operations.

When you cannot submit payment on time for any reason, please contact school administration in advance to find out if an extension of your payment deadline may be provided. In case you are late to submit your payment and did not provide a written notice, the following penalties will be applied:


  • Each day following the deadline when the payment is still not received by Montessori School of Moscow is subject to the Late Payment Charge of 0.5% of the payment due.
  • If tuition has not been paid by the first day of the term in which your child is attending school, the child will not be able to continue in school.




PROGRAM PROCEDURES

Arrivals

All children attending our 5-day/week programs start arriving at school at 8:30 am. One member of staff will be in the classroom entrance area to greet the children, facilitate the sign-in form and to receive any information about the child.

Please note: children are not allowed to bring toys from home to school. Toy weapons of any kind are forbidden and will be confiscated.




Late Arrivals

Children are expected to arrive between 10 to 15 minutes prior to the beginning of class at 9:00 am. This allows children time to get changed, socialize and to get ready for the start of class.

Arriving late will disrupt the learning process, not just for the tardy ones, but also for the Teacher and all the children that are engaged in their work. This can also lead to disruption of group work.

At 9:00 am the classroom doors will be locked. Parents who are late must come to the office to take a key from your class. After you accompanied your child to the classroom and signed him/her in (without getting yourself inside of the classroom), please, lock the classroom door and bring the key back to the office.

If children are excessively late and cannot be at school by 10 am, we request the parents of children attending a Full Day Program to wait for an opportune transition time (12:00 pm) to rejoin the class. In the case of children in the Half Day Program, parents are requested to refrain from bringing the child to school on that day.

Transportation is the responsibility of the parents. Children need to be brought into the school by a parent or an authorized adult. The adult should never drop the child off without supervision. To ensure child safety, we require parents to drive very slowly while approaching the school. Parents have been requested to not leave their car running or leave children unattended in the car while in school.

At Montessori School of Moscow, we want to ensure we can provide the best possible school experience for all children. Teachers will be happy to help and advise in cases of any organizational difficulties.

Continuous tardiness is seen as grounds for concern and will be addressed by the Head of School. Office staff will keep a monthly list of late arrivals and dismissals to ensure adequate measures may be applied by Head of School.




Departures

All half day programs in Toddler and Casa finish at 12:00 pm, full day finishes at 3:30 pm and extended day finishes at 5:00 pm. Elementary program finishes at 4:00 pm. All dismissals takes place outside the classroom door. At the time of dismissal, all children will be ready to leave immediately once their parents sign the sign-in/sign-out form.

Children are expected to be picked up immediately after class by identified family members or by identified family assistants. Written notification is necessary if someone other than an authorized person is to pick a child up. At the time of pick up this new adult must present identification to the office, where a copy of the document will be taken (if not taken in advance).

If, during the course of the day, a child has needed to change their clothes, the soiled ones will be returned to the parents in a school red or blue bag. Inside the bag there will be a note describing the reason for change of clothing and a checklist with information on which clothing needs to be replaced at school. Please have the parents send new clothes back in the same bag.

If a parent needs to sign the Accident Report form, the staff member indicated in the form will be present at time of pick up to comment on the situation.




Late Departure

We understand that Moscow traffic can make it difficult to respect time limits, but bear in mind that your child is waiting for you. Waiting to be picked up for anywhere from 5 to 10 minutes tells your child that you are running late. Waiting for 30 minutes can make the child start to worry.

Parents who are more than 10 minutes late must fill out the according portion of the sign-in/sign-out form. If parents are running later than 10 minutes, they must phone and notify the school, specifying how late they will be. The Lead Teacher will be informed of any parents tardiness. If the Lead Teacher has not been notified and a child has not been picked up, please inform the office staff and the parents will be called immediately to clarify the situation. Staff will reassure the child that parents are coming.

The child will stay in their classroom with a teacher until 3:45 pm. After this time, the child will join the Extended day program. A day charge will be applied to the family's next payment or at the end of the month.




ATTENDANCE POLICY

Students in all programs are expected to be in attendance at each session, for the duration of their session. Should a child be sick, or for some other reason be unable to attend class, the school should be notified well in advance of the class start time. Students with prolonged absences (greater than one week) will be requested to present a doctor's note.




PARENT AND TEACHER COMMUNICATION SYSTEM

At Montessori School of Moscow, we have developed a customized, more streamlined Parent/Teacher communication system. Parents should always communicate with their child's teacher directly and are encouraged to meet with the Lead Teacher and Head of School. When a parent has a particular issue to address with the school, the following staff member(s) will deal with it:

  • Concern about individual child's progress or status in class - Lead Teacher;
  • Montessori curriculum questions - Lead Teacher/Head of School;
  • Staff issues - Head of School;
  • Attendance/Tuition and Fees/Admission questions - Deputy Head of School, Admissions;
  • Building/Grounds – Administrative Assistant/Head of School.

ONLY LEAD TEACHERS ARE ALLOWED TO COMMUNICATE INFORMATION ABOUT A CHILD'S DEVELOPMENT AND CLASSROOM EXPERIENCE. IF A PARENT ASKS QUESTIONS TO THE ASSISTANT, THEN THE ASSISTANT WILL REDIRECT THE PARENT TO THE LEAD TEACHER.




Toddler Program Progress Communication

The first communication will be a home visit. This will be a time where the child can meet the teacher in their own home and feel ready for seeing them again on the first day at school. It is also a time when parents can share their expectations and address any questions about the first few days of school.

Each week, a weekly report about the children's progress, interests and emotional state will be available for the parents. These reports will be will be kept in the child folder in the classroom and available for the parent to see at anytime.

Throughout the year there will be three "child development meetings". A sign-up sheet will be put up on the notice board where parents can sign up for a convenient time. This will be done in advance and is the responsibility of the Lead Teacher. This meeting is for the parents and teacher to talk about the progress their child has made and answer any questions that may arise.

If parents would like to meet with the teacher out of these times, an email will be sent to the Lead Teacher with an outline of the topic. The teacher will arrange the next available time to meet.

Please remember, children should not be present when you are discussing his/her development. If child care is needed, the parent will inform the Lead Teacher and an arrangement will be made with the Assistant to watch the child while the parent and teacher are meeting.




Casa dei Bambini Progress Communication

The first communication will be a home visit. This will be a time where the child can meet the teacher in their own home and feel ready for seeing them again on the first day at school. It is also a time when parents can share their expectations and address any questions about the first few days of school.

Throughout the year there will be two "child development meetings". A sign-up sheet must be put up on the notice board where parents can sign up for a convenient time. This must been done in advance and is the responsibility of the Lead Teacher. This meeting is for the parents and teacher to talk about the progress their child has made and answer any questions that may arise.

If parents would like to meet with the teacher out of these times, an email will be sent to the Lead Teacher with an outline of the topic. The teacher will arrange the next available time to meet.

Please remember, children should not be present when you are discussing his/her development. If child care is needed, the parent will inform the Lead Teacher and an arrangement will be made with the Extended day program parent and teacher are meeting.

At the end of the school year, parents will receive a written report on their child's progress.

Additionally, throughout the year, photos are taken of the children in the class, and while doing projects. These will be assembled into an end-of-year book which will be provided as a lovely keepsake for families! The book will be sent to parents with the end of year report, and the handbook for the upcoming school year for the returning families. Please send any photos you take to the administration on a regular basis.

Furthermore, parents are able to sign up for a 30-minutes classroom observation every Thursday. When there are available spaces, prospective parents or Montessori enthusiasts will be offered the place.

Please note: In order to maximize sound settling-in of students, open classrooms will not be offered during the first 6-8 weeks of the new school year.

The parent will be invited to sit inside the classroom so they may observe the children's learning and behavior. When participating in such observations, parents or others are required to arrive 20 minutes in advance, as they will need to read through the observation guidelines first. If observers are late, they will still need to read the guidelines before being invited to enter the classroom. As a result of being late, the observer may lose time from their observation. An observation is limited to one adult per 30-minutes long session.





Elementary Community Communication

Throughout the year there will be two "child development meetings". A sign-up sheet will be put up on the notice board where parents can sign up for a convenient time. This will be done in advance and is the responsibility of the Lead Teacher. This meeting is for the parents, teacher and student to talk about their progress and discuss any questions that may arise.

If parents would like to meet with the teacher out of these times, an email should be sent to the Lead Teacher with an outline of the topic. The teacher will arrange the next available time to meet.

At the end of the school year, parents will receive a written report on their child's progress. Please refer to the school calendar for dates of issue.

Additionally, throughout the year, photos are taken of the children in the class, and while doing projects. These will be assembled into an end-of-year book which will be provided as a lovely keepsake for families! The book will be sent to parents with the end of year report, and the handbook for the upcoming school year for the returning families.

Furthermore, parents are able to sign up for a 30-minutes classroom observation every Thursday. When there are available spaces, prospective parents or Montessori enthusiasts will be offered the place.

Please note: In order to maximize sound settling-in of students, open classrooms will not be offered during the first 6-8 weeks of the new school year.

The parent will be invited to sit inside the classroom so they may observe the children's learning and behavior. When participating in such observations, parents or others are required to arrive 20 minutes in advance, as they will need to read through the observation guidelines first. If observers are late, they will still need to read the guidelines before being invited to enter the classroom. As a result of being late, the observer may lose time from their observation. An observation is limited to one adult per 30-minutes long session.




DAYLY INFORMATION

When you need to give information about your child to the Lead Teacher, please write a note and hand it to the assistant greeting the children in the morning or relay a message through the office. In the toddler program there is a notice board in the entrance where you can pin up your notes.

If, during the course of the day, a child has needed to change their clothes, the soiled ones will be returned to the parents in a plastic bag with a note describing the reason for change of clothing and a check list with information on which clothing needs to be replaced at school. In Elementary program the child or teacher will communicate about the reason.

If there is an accident where a child is hurt, two Accident Reports will be filled out with information about what happened, who was involved and what action was taken. This is then signed by both the school and the parent. The original will be given to the parent and a copy filed in the child information folder in the office.

In the case where a child is a participant in an after school activity, and the class teacher is no longer present at collection time, any relevant information from the day will be placed in the child's schoolbag in the form of a general information note.




Newsletters

In addition, every three months, a newsletter is published and distributed to parents electronically. This contains information about the topics, activities and achievements of each class during the past months. The community calendar, sign-up sheets and all general school notices and information will be placed on the website of the school and updated as needed.

If any parent has any information (such as events of interest etc.) that you would like included in the newsletter, please email admin@mosmontessori.ru




Adult to Child Ratio

In the Elementary community two members of staff will work with the children during the morning and afternoon work cycles – two Lead Teachers; in Casa dei Bambini (class 1) – Lead Teacher and two Classroom Assistants; in Casa dei Bambini (class 2) - Lead Teacher, Teacher and one Classroom Assistant.

In the Elementary Community if children are leaving the school grounds additional members of staff or parents will accompany the children.

In the Toddler Program (class 1), three members of staff will work with up to 12 children: Lead Teacher and two Classroom Assistants. In the Toddler Program (class 2), four members of staff will work with 15 children – two Lead Teachers and two Classroom Assistants.

In the Parent Infant Program, one guide works with a class of eight families (eight children, each accompanied by one adult).




Park and Near-School Outdoor Activities

In the park, two adults will be with the children at all times. If it is raining, thundering, lighting, hotter than +30 degrees C or colder than -25 degrees C outside, the children will remain in the building. Alternative playtime will be arranged indoors.

Children dress and put shoes on by themselves. If necessary a staff member will help any child to dress. The children who are the first ones to be ready will wait outside with one member of staff while the others children continue to get ready. Children will walk to the park in pairs; toddler class will use a lead system (rope and rings to hold).

While outside, in order to prevent accidents, it is strictly prohibited for any Montessori School of Moscow students to leave the park area unsupervised.




FIELD TRIP/ OFF CAMPUSES ACTIVITIES

A word about terminology: a field trip is usually a trip planned by the guide or the children for the whole class (e.g., concert halls, museums etc.); a Going Out is a trip planned by and for 2-5 students whose studies or responsibilities in the classroom take them out of the classroom (e.g.a trip to the public library or a trip to interview a veterinarian or a trip to buy aquarium plants).




Procedures: FOR DRIVERS IN CHARGE OF A SMALL GROUP OF ELEMENTARY AGE CHILDREN

We gather the drivers for each of the classes into that classroom before going to the cars. The guide reads the procedures to the children and to drivers together, so that the tone is set for everyone, thereby avoiding confusion.




In Transit

Children must be seat-belted at all times. Lively conversational tones are normal. Please discourage loud, boisterous behavior by engaging children in conversation, telling them a story or having books available. Loud, rousing music ill-prepares the children for the event or for their return to the classroom. Soft, soothing music or story tapes are fine.

The guide will have presented etiquette appropriate to the event in advance. The driver is encouraged to ask the children for a review. "What special manners or customs do we need to remember for an expert art exhibit?"




Upon Arrival

After parking the car but before unloading, unbolting or opening any doors, the adult establishes which doors will be used (curb side only) and where the children will stand to wait while the adult locks up the car. The children walk two-by-two beside and behind the adult and never pass each other or the adult. When approaching a parking lot or street, the two children in front stop beside the adult two feet back from the curb and wait to hear when it is safe to cross. The other children stay close behind.




The Destination

Certain field trips require more supervision than others. Sometimes it will be necessary for the children to stay with the adult driver for the entire outing, other times the class will come together as a unit. Talk to your guide about what kind of help is needed. Help focus the children in the group by directing their attention to the speaker. Ask the guide to assist you if your own child is having a difficult time. Having a parent come on a field trip (or to an event) may be overstimulating for your child. Parent can volunteer to accompany children from all of our programs.

When parents accompany children on a field trip where a speaker, guide or docent takes questions from the children, only the children ask the questions. The guide or assistant might ask certain questions on behalf of the children in such a way that the speaker answers to the children. "Perhaps the children would enjoy hearing why this dinosaur is called triceratops." "Could you tell the children how you became interested in this subject?" If adults ask their own questions on the adult level the speaker tends to answer to the adults at length and above the children's heads. The children tend to lose interest and become restless. For the children's sake, your indulgence is greatly appreciated.




Rules

  • Each passenger will board from the curb side of the vehicle;
  • Each passenger will take a seat and buckle up;
  • While the van/car/bus is in motion, the children will remain seated;
  • No objects may be passed around from person to person;
  • Conversation will be held in soft voices and only with one's seat mate;
  • No games will be played;
  • No snack/food is to be eaten;
  • Movements will be soft and gentle;
  • All objects (lunch boxes, books, etc.) will be kept away from windows.
All of the above still applies when a school bus is used for the flied trip.




Guidelines for Parent Chaperones of "Going Out"

"When a child goes out, it is the world itself that offers itself to him. Let us take the child out to show him real things instead of making objects which represent ideas and closing them in cupboards." Dr.Maria Montessori

"Going out" is an essential element in the Montessori elementary program and is very different from a traditional field trip. The children "go out" in small groups as an extension of their research and to gain experiences in the world outside the classroom. The children develop independence, resourcefulness, and self-confidence through functioning capably in the larger world without adult assistance.

Ideally the children should "go out" on their own by walking or taking public transportation to their destination, but in our time and place safety dictates the adaptation of adult accompaniment. The role of the adult is an active one because remaining focused and observant while refraining from participating or interfering is so demanding. The adult intervenes on three occasions only:

  • to insure the children's safety by preventing inappropriate adult interaction;
  • to interrupt unsafe or inappropriate behavior and return the children to school immediately;
  • to observe, record, and transmit the experience to the guide.

Because having his own parent on a trip could be overly stimulating for a child and would not allow him to feel as fully independent and empowered in the group, children "go out" only with parents other than their own.




Before Leaving

The children should be prepared to:

  • carry all that they need-- notebooks, pencils, sketchpads, money, ID, guidebooks, etc—in a backpack by themselves· handle all money transactions;
  • conduct all communications for the group;
  • know what behavior is expected of them before leaving the classroom;
  • direct the driver to the destination through a map or written instructions;
  • stop, look, and listen before crossing at parking lots, driveways, and streets;
  • stay within sight of the adult at all times;




In Transit

Children must be seat-belted at all times. Lively conversational tones are normal. Please discourage loud, boisterous behavior by having appropriate books available. Loud, rousing music ill prepares the children for the event or for their return to the classroom. No music is preferable. If there is any kind of electronic device or media player (TV/VCR, CD, computer, etc.) in the car, it is to be turned off at all times. Also, cell phones are valuable on trips, but should be turned off from departure until the car is parked at the destination.




Upon Arrival

After parking the car but before unloading, unbelting, or opening any doors, the adult listens while the children establish which doors will be used for unloading (curb side only) and where the children will stand to wait while the adult locks up. The children should be prepared to pay the parking attendant or put coins in the meter. Approaching a parking lot or street, the children stand two feet back from the curb and wait until it is safe to cross. All children should remain close together. The adult stays behind the children, watching that all their behavior is safe and appropriate, that the environment is safe, and that any adult interaction with them is safe and appropriate.




At the Destination

The role of the chaperone at this point is one of active observation and alert self-restraint. The chaperone must remain focused on the children, their safety, and appropriate behavior. It is important to stay ten paces behind the children to help them rely upon their own resources on the trip.

The children should be prepared to pay entrance fees and find their own way using maps, directions, and guidebooks. They should be the ones that seek out the contact person, if there is one, and introduce themselves. They point out the driver who is standing ten paces away and explain that s/he will be there only for safety and transportation. The driver nods and looks away in order to reinforce the children's independence.

Any time the children have questions during the "Going Out," they find adults other than the parent driver to answer them. If the children forget and ask the parent driver a question, s/he turns the other way as a reminder.

The chaperone avoids making eye contact with the adults at the "going out" site. If at any time the contact person or other adult tries to direct his comments toward the chaperone, the children reply that they speak for themselves, the driver doesn't speak. We want to give the children the support they need to conduct the outings entirely through their own efforts.

In the case of unsafe or inappropriate behavior, the adult makes no comment on it, gives no guidance, but only returns immediately to school with the children saying, "I see that we must return to school right now." Guidance is given on campus by the guide, who helps the chaperone and children discuss how to have a successful trip next time.




Rules for Riding in Cars

  • Each passenger will board from the curbside of the vehicle only;
  • Each passenger will take a seat and buckle up;
  • While the vehicle is in motion, the children will remain seated and belted;
  • No objects may be passed around from person to person;
  • Conversation will be held in soft voices and only with one's seat mate;
  • No electronic games will be played;
  • No snack/food is to be eaten;
  • Movements will be soft and gentle;
  • All objects (lunch boxes, books, etc.) and hands will be kept away from windows.




LUNCH PROCEDURE

Montessori School of Moscow recognizes that the physical health of our children has a direct effect on their learning and overall well-being, and is committed to working together with parents to ensure that our students have healthy nutrition choices.

Please make sure that children have an adequate breakfast before arriving to school. All children staying for the full day program, gather to have lunch in their classroom before of after the park. Lunch is provided by the school, a month menu will be send to all families before the beginning of the month.




ALLERGY CONSIDERATIONS

If your child has any allergies please make sure that you have informed the office. This information will be used to determine food restriction guidelines for each class.

Please note that individual classrooms may prohibit specific foods because of a child's allergy.



PERSONAL HYGENE POLICY

Toilet Usage Procedures

To be enrolled in Casa dei Bambini, children must be diaper-free and toilet trained. The Casa staff will help the children to be independent at using the toilet. Please work closely with the program teacher to help this process.

The Toddler community is a diaper-free class. This does not mean your child needs to be fully toilet trained, but when the child enters the classroom they must be wearing training pants or underwear.




Brushing Teeth

All children attending our full day programs will be given a toothbrush. All children will be encouraged to brush their teeth after lunch. Child friendly toothpaste is used. The toothbrush will be replaced for a new one as needed.



DRESS CODE AND GROOMING POLICY FOR STUDENTS

Children in all programs need a pair of indoor shoes that are soft and comfortable for the children to move in. No crocs please (they are not good for developing feet and if the floor is wet, they slip very easily).

Please think about your child's ability and independence: all children should be wearing clothing that they can change in and out of themselves. Clothing with cartoon characters is not allowed, as they can be very distracting to the children.

Depending on the age of each child, two to five complete sets of spare clothing must be available at school daily. If the soiled items are returned to parents, they must be replaced the next day.

Other than on specified school holiday events, children are not allowed to come to class in costume or in makeup or any other form of disguise. Montessori School of Moscow reserves the right to ask for modifications in the child's attire should it be deemed inappropriate:

  • Any garment or object with obscene, offensive, or intimidating language, drug, tobacco, or firearms, or alcoholic beverage promotion or advertisements may not be worn.
  • Children may not wear midriff shirts, tank tops with less than a . inch strap, halter-tops, or undergarments (such as boxers) as outer garments. Under garments should not be visible. This includes spaghetti strapped tops, undershirts as regular shirts and shirts which expose the midriff.
  • Children may not wear garments made of skin tight spandex-like material, see through clothing, torn clothing, clothing with holes in it, cut-offs, pocket chains, or over-sized pants, shorts or shirts.
  • Shorts, skirts or dresses must reach the tips of the fingers above the knee or can be longer. NOTE: Clothing length must be nearer the knee than to the hip.
  • Belts, suspenders and overall straps shall be worn in place and fastened.
  • Head covers are not to be worn indoors unless for religious or medical reasons.
  • Appropriate shoes must be worn indoors and outdoors. NOTE: No Crocs sandals please.




CLOTHING RECOMMENDATIONS BY SEASON:

Children are expected to be dressed according to season, taking into account weather changes. The children will spend a portion of the day playing outside. Be sure that your child is dressed appropriately for the weather. If a child is not well enough to go outside, he/she should not come to school.

Late Spring/Early Fall: dry, warm, sunny weather, not very windy (+18-+24) – sandals, shorts/light trousers/t-shirts/cotton dresses for girls.

Hot Summer weather (+25-+35) - sandals, shorts/light trousers/t-shirts/cotton dresses, panamas/hats and suncream.

Spring and Fall: dry, sunny weather (+10-+15): wind jacket, sneakers/shoes, trousers/leggings.

Rainy, cool, windy weather (below +10): wind- and waterproof lined jacked with a hood (like Reima), hat, gloves, wind and waterproof sneakers/shoes preferably ½ size larger than actual size (Ecco, Geox, Viking) with Velcro fasteners, ankle-high, alternatively, rubber boots (Viking) with additional warm socks inside, waterproof pants/trousers with straps (Reima).

Wintertime (November through mid-March): Down-padded coat or jacket with a hood (O'Hara, Marmot, Reima), Down-padded wind- and waterproof strap trousers (Reima, O'Hara), Warm lined waterproof boots over the ankle height (Viking, Geox, Ecco, Kuoma) preferably ½ size larger than actual size so that the feet don't get cold, in case of severe colds additional warm socks; definitely not rubber boots! Lined Waterproof gloves/mittens 1sizes larger than the actual size so that the hands don't get cold (O'Neil, Solomon, Reima), hat that covers ears and neck, warm jersey/cardigan/sweatshirt, scarf.




MOBILE PHONES OR ELECTRONIC IN ELEMENTARY

Students are not permitted to use mobile/cell phones or electrical devices while in school. Any student carried Phones/ iPads /Game conceals into school will be kept in the office for the duration of the day. If you need to talk to your child a message or a phone call can be arranged through the office.
In the interest of the students, adults' phones should be put on silence at all times.




FULL DAY CHILDREN SLEEPING

If your child will be attending a full day class and needs to sleep in the afternoon, please send in a plain white (light colour) sheet, a pillow with pillow cover and a blanket. The blanket can be any colour but no cartoon or colourful designs. This will be sent home every Friday and must be brought back to class on a Monday.




BIRTHDAYS

When celebrating children's birthday in the classroom, children have the opportunity to participate in a "Birthday Walk." This involves a circle time experience when the child walks around the 'sun' (a candle) with the globe equivalent to their number of years. If a child is soon to have a birthday, please coordinate with the child's parent a few days prior to the date. Parents are welcome to write a short note about each year of their child's life and we can read it with the class. We encourage parents to share photographs of their child, to recognize how they have grown and changed during their life thus far.
If you are planning a party for your child at home and are willing to invite his/her classmates, please mail the invitations directly to each family on your list. Make sure to include the R.S.V.P section in your invitation. Alternatively, you may invite the children over the phone. Class lists are available in the office.




CLASS TIME EXPECTED BEHAVIOURS, TOYS AND OBJECTS POLICY

Our ground rules imply that 1) students may not hurt or disturb others by their actions or words; and 2) students may not disrupt or destroy the environment of others. We understand that, for young children, adherence to even these simple limits is not always easy, and that an inability to express themselves in words leads some children to resort to more aggressive behavior when they are frustrated or upset.

When a child needs to be corrected and realize their boundaries, the staff member will guide them to an appropriate activity. If the child does not respond or is aggressive, the staff member will do the following: 1) stop the aggressive behavior so that the child does not hurt any children or adults; 2) offer the child to choose from 2 alternatives, one being the desired change of behavior and the other being the external containment coming from the adult; 3) count to 3, and if the child still does not make the suggested choice, pick him/her up or provide other relevant type of physical containment.

In the Montessori system we do not use "time out" or punishments. Instead, the teacher will take the child aside, explain what was wrong, and explain what is expected. The teacher may also engage the child in a conversation about the action and discuss how the situation may be handled in the future. Teachers will remind the children to use their words to express themselves and to control their own body. If a higher level of discipline is required, the teacher might ask the child to accompany her for a period of time during the day. Alternatively, when a child has difficulty engaging in class appropriate behavior they will be asked to sit on a chair and rest before they are ready to do work. If a child is continuously disturbing classroom experience for other children and does not respond to disciplinary measures taken by the teachers that child will be sent home. When dismissing the child, the Lead Teacher or the Head of School will explain to the parent the reasoning for that measure and the follow up necessary to provide at home regarding the situation.




HEALTH AND SAFETY

Accidents, Medical Emergencies

If the situation can be resolved by members of staff without any external help, a member of staff will manage the situation. Once the situation is resolved and the student(s) returned to class, an Accident Report form will be filled out by the staff member involved. At the end of the school day the parent(s) picking up the child will be informed about the accident and asked to sign the Accident Report form. Parents take the original and a copy is kept in the office.

If the student must leave school as a result of an accident to receive medical assistance, parents will be informed of the accident immediately. At the same time, the hospital/doctor's office indicated in the Medical Information Form will be contacted and informed of the nature of the accident to confirm whether the child should be taken for examination/medical assistance. Should the parents and/or child's doctor be unavailable, we will call the ambulance and accompany the child to the nearest hospital. The Accident Report form should be signed by the parent at the time when the child is handed to them by the member of staff who accompanied the child.




Illness

As soon as parents find out that their child cannot attend classes because of illness, the school should be informed. In case of an infection which could affect other children, the Lead Teachers will check if any children in their classes have similar symptoms. An e-mail will be sent out to all families to inform them of the illness and what symptoms to look out for.

Medications and Their Administration

There is a variety of first aid medication kept in each class that can be used in case of accidents.

If your child takes medication every day for a long period of time, or needs to have a Epi-pen left at the school, a medical registration form will need to be filled out.

Except for these, no medication can be used in the school. Children are not allowed to bring any medication or cosmetics to school. In case if the child needs to use any cosmetics (creams or lip balm) this must be given by the parent to the Lead Teacher but not to the child in his/her pocket or bag. If the child has any medication and cosmetics with him/her, it will be kept in the office and given to the parents at the end of the day. If a child is sick and needs to take any medication, he/she must stay at home until fully recovered.




When a Child Should Not Attend School/Exclusion Guidelines

Contamination is a reality in any group of young children. Please do not bring your child to school when he/she is a germ carrier.

In the event that a child becomes ill during the school day, we will measure their temperature, and in case of fever, we will separate him/her from the other children and contact a parent with the request that the child be taken home. Please pick up your child within an hour of the call.

When a child's physical condition prevents them from concentrating on their work in class but there is no fever, the Lead Teacher will inform the office and, depending on the situation, a conversation with the parents will follow to suggest solutions.

A child should not attend school when they are tired due to lack of sleep or jet-lagged. The following conditions may indicate that the child is about to get sick and should not attend school: unusually tired, uncontrolled coughing, irritability, persistent crying, difficult breathing, wheezing. In these cases, a medical exam is required to indicate that the child may return to school. Any child on antibiotics or anyone with the following symptoms must stay home until a physician has certified that the child may return to school and the symptoms are not associated with an infectious agent:

  • Fever - Auxiliary temperature of 37 degrees C or higher;
  • Respiratory Symptoms - Difficult or rapid breathing or severe coughing; child makes high-pitched croupy or whooping sounds after he coughs; child is unable to lie comfortably due to continuous cough;
  • Diarrhea - An increased number of abnormally loose stools in the previous 24 hours. Observe the child for other symptoms such as fever, abdominal pain, or vomiting. Diarrhea may be a symptom of Campylobacteriosis, Cryptosporidiosis, Enteroviruses, Giardiasis, Rotavirus, Salmonellosis or other disease(s);
  • Vomiting - Two or more episodes of vomiting within the previous 24 hours;
  • Mouth sores with drooling;
  • Unusual color - until a medical exam indicates that it is not hepatitis A (yellow eyes or skin [jaundice]; grey or white stool; dark, tea or cola-colored urine);
  • Eye/Nose Drainage - Thick yellow or green mucus draining from the eyes or nose; pink or red conjunctiva with white or yellow discharge that causes matting of the eyelids; pain or redness of eyelids;
  • Sore throat, especially when fever or swollen glands in the neck are present;
  • Skin rashes, undiagnosed or contagious;
  • Appearance/Behavior - Child looks or acts different, unusually tired, pale, lacking appetite, confused, irritable, difficult to awaken;
  • Streptococcal Sore Throat/ Scarlet Fever (with rash);
  • Bacterial Conjunctivitis (Pink Eye);
  • Lice (head).
Any child who is diagnosed with one of the infectious diseases below must be excluded from school activities until their doctor confirms that they are no longer a threat to the health of other children:

  • Campylobacteriosis
  • Chickenpox (Varicella)
  • Conjunctivitis (Pinkeye)
  • Cryptosporidiosis
  • Enteroviruses (Nonpolio)
  • E.COLI O157:H7
  • Giardiasis
  • Haemophilus Influenzae Disease (Hib)
  • Hand, Foot, and Mouth Disease
  • Hepatitis A
  • Hepatitis B
  • Impetigo
  • Influenza
  • Measles
  • Meningococcal Disease
  • Mononucleosis (Infectious)
  • Mumps
  • Oral Herpes (Cold Sores)
  • Pertussis (Whooping Cough)
  • Pinworms
  • Respiratory Infections (Viral)
  • Respiratory Syncytial Virus (RSV)
  • Reye Syndrome
  • Ringworm
  • Roseola
  • Rotavirus
  • Rubella (German Measles)
  • Salmonellosis
  • Scabies
  • Shigellosis
  • Shingles
  • Streptococcal Sore Throat/ Scarlet Fever
  • Tuberculosis




CONFLICT RESOLUTIONS

(Between Students, Parent/School)

Ideology

At Montessori School of Moscow, we are committed to addressing any and all conflicts to the point of their satisfactory resolution within the bounds of our responsibilities as an educational establishment. Should any disputes arise, we encourage families and staff to clearly communicate their concerns to the Head of School in written form so that appropriate mediatory action can take place to alleviate the situation. We further urge everyone to respect family and staff confidentiality and demonstrate utmost discretion when dealing with conflict situations. We discourage any individual action that has not been approved by Head of School.

In cases of conflict between students, the Lead Teacher of the class will first attempt to resolve the situation, involving other members of staff, should that be necessary. Should the conflict persist, parents will be notified and involved in the process, along with the Head of School. Depending on the gravity of the situation, disciplinary measures such as temporary suspension may be employed.

In cases of conflict between families and staff members, both parties are required to bring the issue to the immediate attention of the Head of School, upon which a formal meeting will be scheduled to address the conflict. Based on the results of the conference with the family and the relevant staff members, the Head of School will determine if any further action needs to be taken to settle the issue. Families and staff members are reminded to remain respectful and discrete in conflict situations. Should the Head of School be temporarily unavailable, a formal written complaint can be filed with the office staff, to be later addressed by the Head of School.




Discipline Methods

In order to provide for a healthy learning environment, we need to maintain certain rules of social conduct at the school. The following behaviors will not be tolerated: physical and/or verbal assault of oneself, students, members of staff and other people present at the school; purposeful destruction of school property and/or of property of other students; excessive and violent disobedience and defiance; rude gestures and inappropriate language directed at other students, members of staff and other people present at the school.

Failure to comply with behavioral expectations at MSM will result in a formal meeting with the Lead Teacher, the Head of School and the family, upon which appropriate sanctions will be determined.

As an educational establishment, it is our responsibility to ensure safety and well being of our students and our staff members. We therefore reserve the right to request a child be removed from the school, should his or her presence be deemed destructive to other students, members of staff and school property.




Grievance Procedure

Should a family or a member of staff find issue with school rules and regulations, they are expected to file a formal complaint with the office staff or directly with the Head of School, submitted in written form, clearly stating the nature of the complaint and the desired remedy. All complaints will be carefully evaluated and discussed with the relevant parties. MSM reserves the right to carry out unilateral decisions on all submitted complaints.




Withdrawing Your Child From School

If you decide to withdraw your child from school, a written notice needs to be sent to Head of School at least three months in advance. A meeting with the child's Lead Teacher, Head of School and the Parents will be scheduled within two weeks from the receipt of the notice to discuss the situation and determine further steps. In a case when the withdrawal decision is a result of a life-changing event, a shorter notice period may be applied upon approval from Head of School.

A child withdrawn due to illness, vacation, or other reasons will lose his or her current and future space unless tuition payments are continued during the absence period.




Parent Participation

At Montessori School of Moscow, we offer many workshops and short lectures for parents. Please refer to your school calendar, school website (Parents' Pages chapter) and newsletter for more information.

Volunteers: When a parent agrees to perform a service for the school, the entire community is counting on that person to fulfill their promise. If it becomes clear that a parent cannot volunteer, they should contact a member of the Parent Committee and arrange for a replacement right away.

Parents are always welcome to bring fresh flowers to be used for the purpose of children arranging flowers in the classroom. If your child attends our Casa dei Bambini or Toddler program, ask your teacher for the Flower Sign-up List.

Monthly, on a Wednesday, parents are invited to "Coffee with Head of School" between 8.45 and 10.00 am. If you need to meet privately or schedule a different time, you can call or email Head of School, to schedule an appointment that is mutually convenient.

All parent are welcome to volunteer their time to help with Elementary outing. Please inform Elena or Ksenia if you are interested.




EMERGENCY PROTOCOLS

Closing of the School

Should the need emerge to close the school unexpectedly, Head of School will send an e-mail message to the parents as soon as it is possible and will call all families with this information.



Weather

During the winter inclement weather may force us to close the school for the entire day, open late, or close early. All parents are urged to plan now for the care of their children in the event of a schedule change. For school closings and delayed openings we take into account the following:

  • Severity of the weather;
  • Local school closings/late openings;
  • Availability of staff able to make it to school;
  • Safety of staff, students and parents when traveling on the roads.

Should weather be deemed by the Head of School to be hazardous and unsafe for the operation of the school or students, they may close the school. Often, this will happen in the morning before classes begin, however, due to the changing nature of weather, it could also occur during the school day. If weather presents a sudden hazard to the school or its students, proper emergency protocols will be followed.



Medical

At times, an illness may require the closing of the school in order to limit those that become exposed. Due to the small nature of our school, illness can quickly spread. The best defense is to make sure that you and your child wash their hands, and do not attend school when sick. If the school needs to be closed for medical reasons, the Head of School has the authority to do so in order to limit exposure and continue to provide the educational experience you expect from MSM with minimal interruption.



Other/Administrative

There may be times when the school needs to be closed for visitors/students due to administrative reasons, such as repairs, staff development, installations, or other events. The majority of these issues will be handled over school breaks or in the evenings when no students are in school. In these instances, the Head of School has the ability to close the school as needed.



Fire Procedure

In case of a fire emergency, the standard building protocols will be followed. The school premises are equipped with fire alarms and the emergency protocols will be issued through the speaker system installed within the ceiling. Students and staff will be evacuated to a safe location and follow the instructions of all emergency personnel. Should a fire occur, parents will be notified immediately, and informed if they need to pick up their child at the school.



Fire and Evacuation Procedure

In case of minor fire outbreak on the school premises one member of staff will operate the fire extinguisher, and all others will perform evacuation of children immediately, taking them outside.



Fire Drills

Fire drills will be conducted to train students and staff to react adequately to actual fire outbreaks.



Medical

If a medical emergency occurs at the school, we will follow standard medical protocols and also alert Emergency Medical Services if deemed necessary. Our first line of defense is the Medical Information Form that is kept on file for all students and employees. Should there be a specific medical condition or treatment that needs to be administered, it should be noted on this form and when it should be performed. Unless otherwise notified, if medical or school personnel find it necessary for hospitalization, the child must be transported to the nearest adequately equipped hospital for the condition. This hospital will be chosen by Emergency Medical Services, unless parents have specifically declared a different hospital on the medical information form. A member of staff will always be present with the child, and parents will be notified as soon as it is safe to do so. Our immediate concern is the health and safety of the child and making sure they receive proper medical assistance, which, depending on the situation, may delay our ability to notify parents and student emergency contacts immediately.



Other: Situations Outside of Our Control

Our calendar is planned properly with the needs of families and children in mind. However, unforeseen events may cause changes to the schedule. We will try to give as much advance notice as possible if changes are made.

The following situations may interfere with successful operation of the school:

  • power cuts and water supply cut offs as well as malfunctioning of any utility lines;
  • any kind of damage to the building and grounds that is unsafe for the children to be around;
  • dangerous construction work taking place in the vicinity of the school building entrance and/or in the park and common areas.

Should such situations emerge, office staff and/or Head of School will work with the facilities management to make sure those are resolved in a timely fashion and in the best interest of the children. In case these situations lead to the closing of the school it is the residential complex management company that should be held accountable.




CONCLUSION

As a parent of an MSM student you can always count on the support of our staff concerning your child's developmental, emotional and academic needs. The Montessori Method is based by large on great respect of each child's individuality and you and your family can expect to be treated with the same consideration of your particular circumstances. You are welcome to make appointments to speak with staff members should you require any additional information or input concerning your child's progress. On behalf of the school we will make sure to maintain close contact with you to help you be part of your child's school experience. Opportunities exist for you to observe your child's classes, participate in various school events organized throughout the year as well as to get involved in extracurricular activities and the MSM Parent Committee.

Please help us maintain the mutual trust and respect we all need to keep our community healthy by safeguarding the privacy of children, parents and staff. Passing on confidential, damaging or hurtful information is not acceptable. Keep staff and parent email addresses and phone numbers confidential. Use contact information for school-related business only, unless you receive permission otherwise. When addressing school-related issues with staff please call the school numbers between 8.30 am and 5.00 pm and refrain from using personal staff contact information for this purpose at any time. Should you need to inform us of any matter later than 5.00 pm, please e-mail school and your message will be processed the following working day.