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Hello, we are considering Academia de Mi Abuela. The spanish immersion aspect of the program looks great! I did read about a few citation issues. Does anyone have any recent experiences to share?
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I just recently left Academia de Mi Abuela. I have both compliments and criticism. My daughter is 4. In August she will be 5 and will be entering kindergarten.
The positives I can attest to would be Maestra Leo, she's phenomenal. She is the AM teacher for Casa Lima, my daughter's class. My daughter was loved and her Spanish HAS improved immensely. I'm so proud of her and grateful for the Spanish-immersion part of the program. The culture of the school is diverse and loving and ultimately the teachers do love on the kids. They have cool field trips like going to a play in Spanish, and they celebrate all sorts of diverse holidays. They have a cool system that updates you daily through an app and they can send pictures and updates of what happens with your child, activities they participate in, what they eat, etc. ITS A GREAT communication tool!
We started at AMA last summer in July. I'm a single parent household. I receive tuition assistance through Bananas Bunch Organization. Low-income families or really, any families, are offered the opportunity to barter services or time to this school in co-payment of tuition. So I helped with stuff like painting, cleaning up and organizing on a weekly or bi-weekly basis to help cover co-payment.
When we started in July, the tuition was $1600 and the head of school, Cynthia, gave us her word that we could keep that tuition amount, knowing it was already above what I could afford, which is why I bartered hours and services. The new tuition rate is around $1800 per month. In March, Cynthia scheduled a time to meet with me, AND CANCELLED that week, and every week after, at the last minute. Then literally the last Friday of March, she saw me about to walk out with my daughter and pulled me into her office to try and finesse me into signing a new contract. I said I wanted to read over it and she was insistent on me signing without reading it. I told her I would need to take it with me and read it. She was reluctant to let me do so, but I did anyways. I read it later when I had time that evening and saw that she wanted to increase tuition starting THAT MONDAY. Handing me a new contract on a Friday and expecting me to be prepared for an increase by Monday.
I told her that was unfair and I could not sign that contract. She said that they love having my daughter but if I wanted her to return and continue at AMA I would need to sign the contract and bring it to her on Monday. Luckily, my daughter was already leaving to visit family in Seattle for that week. Otherwise I would have been SOL. It was a stressful process to find child care in the middle of the year last minute for my daughter, since she will be in kinder in a few months. I wouldn't trust their administration or the way they operate as a business.
Also, my daughters class (Casa Lima) is almost like they're in a basement, rather than an actual school. Also general hygiene stuff can be sluffed on at times. They don't ever clean the kids' nose who have boogers or wash their hands, or at least encourage the kids to wash their own hands and face. The parking is horrible and very limited. They don't do a lot of "pre school". I would say it's 80% child care and 20% pre school.
I'm sure if you're paying out of pocket and they fix some of these things you may be okay with it.