Berkley Child/Fmly Devmnt Ctr

★★★★☆
  • 1012 E 52ND St

    Kansas City, MO 64110

    Map & Directions
  • 816-235-2600

About Berkley Child/Fmly Devmnt Ctr

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Community & Social Services

Community & Social Services
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Berkley is a fabulous, child-centered school that provides amazing learning opportunities for children in a fun, safe and accepting environment. I have two children at Berkley and really cannot say enough about the positive experience we have had at this facility. I am actually so shocked by the negative review that I looked to see if there was another school with a similar name!

Berkley teachers have college degrees in early childhood education or related fields. They follow a constructivist approach which believes that children learn from doing, not passively listening. They provide healthy meals and snacks that are NOT vegetarian and which are much more balanced than I have experienced in many schools. They not only allow but encourage parents to visit during the day and to participate in classroom events and even meals.

Berkley may not be for everyone. They do not believe in negative punishment and instead use positive reinforcement and redirection. They have a very specific philosophy about early childhood development that they are committed to and if you prefer to have a highly structured environment with set lessons and limits on creative play than this may not be the school for you. But if you are interested in finding a nurturing environment that will allow your child to find their own voice and creativity and to establish high self-esteem and a host of critical thinking skills than you should check out Berkley.

I suspect the angry post relates to the issue of admission. Berkley enrolls on a school-year basis and that makes enrolling an infant a bit trickier than at some schools but as with all of the high-quality programs in the mid-town area there is a wait list and you must get on early to have the best shot at getting in. We have been at Berkley now since 2005 and have seen many families get in during the year.

As for diversity I think Berkley is as diverse as any other school in the area. There is racial, ethnic and religious diversity at Berkley and there are definitely children with special needs enrolled and thriving.

Infant tuition at Berkley is comparable to tuition at quality, center-based care around Kansas City and is lower than tuition at schools with similar facilities and teachers. That is because Berkley is subsidized through the UMKC School of Education. Tuition for preschool enrollment is actually quite a bit lower than comparable preschools. And contrary to some rumors your children are not taught by a rotating group of education students. The teachers are full-time employees with degrees and training. Students participate in classrooms and observe but are never in charge and are not disruptive to the children.

The teachers and staff at Berkley are top-notch and are always happy to meet with me to talk about my children. Teachers of each room send out a daily journal that describes activities from the day and includes photos of your little one! They also have regular parent/teacher meetings to discuss your child's development and any questions or concerns you have. The administrative staff are knowledgable, available and willing to help with anything. And the parent organization is well-organized and willing to help advance any issues brought up by parents and families.

The choice of where to send your child is one of the most important decisions you will make. Do your homework, take tours and ask a lot of questions. Ask for contact information for parents already at the facility and see what they have to say. Request and read the handbook and sample lesson plans as well as menus.

If you do all of this I think you will find that Berkley is a fabulous option for families who share a common philosophy about how children learn and development. It may not be for everyone, but it has been a wonderful part of our family and we really cannot say enough about how happy our children are at Berkley.

5
★★★★★

Berkley is a fabulous, child-centered school that provides amazing learning opportunities for children in a fun, safe and accepting environment. I have two children at Berkley and really cannot say enough about the positive experience we have had at this facility. I am actually so shocked by the negative review that I looked to see if there was another school with a similar name!

Berkley teachers have college degrees in early childhood education or related fields. They follow a constructivist approach which believes that children learn from doing, not passively listening. They provide healthy meals and snacks that are NOT vegetarian and which are much more balanced than I have experienced in many schools. They not only allow but encourage parents to visit during the day and to participate in classroom events and even meals.

Berkley may not be for everyone. They do not believe in negative punishment and instead use positive reinforcement and redirection. They have a very specific philosophy about early childhood development that they are committed to and if you prefer to have a highly structured environment with set lessons and limits on creative play than this may not be the school for you. But if you are interested in finding a nurturing environment that will allow your child to find their own voice and creativity and to establish high self-esteem and a host of critical thinking skills than you should check out Berkley.

I suspect the angry post relates to the issue of admission. Berkley enrolls on a school-year basis and that makes enrolling an infant a bit trickier than at some schools but as with all of the high-quality programs in the mid-town area there is a wait list and you must get on early to have the best shot at getting in. We have been at Berkley now since 2005 and have seen many families get in during the year.

As for diversity I think Berkley is as diverse as any other school in the area. There is racial, ethnic and religious diversity at Berkley and there are definitely children with special needs enrolled and thriving.

Infant tuition at Berkley is comparable to tuition at quality, center-based care around Kansas City and is lower than tuition at schools with similar facilities and teachers. That is because Berkley is subsidized through the UMKC School of Education. Tuition for preschool enrollment is actually quite a bit lower than comparable preschools. And contrary to some rumors your children are not taught by a rotating group of education students. The teachers are full-time employees with degrees and training. Students participate in classrooms and observe but are never in charge and are not disruptive to the children.

The teachers and staff at Berkley are top-notch and are always happy to meet with me to talk about my children. Teachers of each room send out a daily journal that describes activities from the day and includes photos of your little one! They also have regular parent/teacher meetings to discuss your child's development and any questions or concerns you have. The administrative staff are knowledgable, available and willing to help with anything. And the parent organization is well-organized and willing to help advance any issues brought up by parents and families.

The choice of where to send your child is one of the most important decisions you will make. Do your homework, take tours and ask a lot of questions. Ask for contact information for parents already at the facility and see what they have to say. Request and read the handbook and sample lesson plans as well as menus.

If you do all of this I think you will find that Berkley is a fabulous option for families who share a common philosophy about how children learn and development. It may not be for everyone, but it has been a wonderful part of our family and we really cannot say enough about how happy our children are at Berkley.

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I had a completly different experience than a previous review. I was immediatly impressed upon entering the Berkley Child and Family Development Center. From the big smile from the receptionist, to the happy sounds of children busily occupied with play and learning, I knew this was a place that I would want my chid to attend. The considerate and well educated tour guide led me through the building not only showing me the classrooms but explained the center's philosophy through pictures and displays on the walls. Her explanation of the constructivist philosphy they follow was exactly what I was looking for!

I understand that it is a university lab school (on the campus of UMKC) and it is hard to get in since they give priority for enrollment to UMKC affiliated children and younger siblings of children already enrolled. I have some friends whose children have attended Berkley. The teachers e-mail daily journals to the families that are filled with pictures and stories of the day. I have seen these and think it would be a wonderful way to follow my child during the workday. My friends go on and on about how connected they feel to the teachers and the classrooms. Berkley's prices are reasonable and in line with Centers of this quality that I have looked for. The preschool program is a downright bargin, the infant toddler is a little more. I am hoping that I can get in.

5
★★★★★

I had a completly different experience than a previous review. I was immediatly impressed upon entering the Berkley Child and Family Development Center. From the big smile from the receptionist, to the happy sounds of children busily occupied with play and learning, I knew this was a place that I would want my chid to attend. The considerate and well educated tour guide led me through the building not only showing me the classrooms but explained the center's philosophy through pictures and displays on the walls. Her explanation of the constructivist philosphy they follow was exactly what I was looking for!

I understand that it is a university lab school (on the campus of UMKC) and it is hard to get in since they give priority for enrollment to UMKC affiliated children and younger siblings of children already enrolled. I have some friends whose children have attended Berkley. The teachers e-mail daily journals to the families that are filled with pictures and stories of the day. I have seen these and think it would be a wonderful way to follow my child during the workday. My friends go on and on about how connected they feel to the teachers and the classrooms. Berkley's prices are reasonable and in line with Centers of this quality that I have looked for. The preschool program is a downright bargin, the infant toddler is a little more. I am hoping that I can get in.

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.

After taking a tour of the center and talking to a hand full of parents that have had children there (and a few who have removed their children) I decided not to enroll my child. It is unfortunate that the staff member giving the tour was very rude and interactions with her during the tour were off-putting. I was in search of a warm, caring, compassionate environment for an infant with a solid curriculum that would develop as our child grew into a toddler and preschooler. Though the idea of Berkley's association with the UMKC School of Education was very appealing, I found the play-based learning curriculum to be inadequate and the claim of diversity to be just that... a claim. I suggest you tour a few centers and even re-visit those at the top of your list. Sometimes what is presented during the tour is not an accurate representation of the day-today activities and/or staff. For younger children, consistency in schedule and staff is very important. Be wary of any daycare center that asks for a deposit to secure a spot on the waiting list during your visit. Many centers will allow you to place your name on the list without a deposit. And for those that ask for a deposit, it is usually non-refundable.

1
★☆☆☆☆

After taking a tour of the center and talking to a hand full of parents that have had children there (and a few who have removed their children) I decided not to enroll my child. It is unfortunate that the staff member giving the tour was very rude and interactions with her during the tour were off-putting. I was in search of a warm, caring, compassionate environment for an infant with a solid curriculum that would develop as our child grew into a toddler and preschooler. Though the idea of Berkley's association with the UMKC School of Education was very appealing, I found the play-based learning curriculum to be inadequate and the claim of diversity to be just that... a claim. I suggest you tour a few centers and even re-visit those at the top of your list. Sometimes what is presented during the tour is not an accurate representation of the day-today activities and/or staff. For younger children, consistency in schedule and staff is very important. Be wary of any daycare center that asks for a deposit to secure a spot on the waiting list during your visit. Many centers will allow you to place your name on the list without a deposit. And for those that ask for a deposit, it is usually non-refundable.

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