At least one of my children has been attending NSMS since 2005. The classrooms are spacious, and the school surroundings are very well maintained. I love that the school is located on a dead end side street. No traffic to worry about!
The student/Directress ratio is great- one main Directress, one extra licensed Directress and one aide per classroom of at most 20 kids. Three teachers to 20 kids is awesome!
There are plenty of ways for a parent to get involved in the school and they don't need to cost you any more money. The school is parent run and all decisions-tuition, fundraisers, etc.- are voted on by a parent board that meets once a month.
The lack of childcare that someone else mentioned doesn't bother me as I am not looking for daycare, but for an established, accredited Montessori school for my children. Having been to a Montessori preschool myself, I was definitely looking for a Montessori environment and not a glorified day care. Spanish and Music in included in the curriculum and there are extracurricular activities like a Gym bus and yoga for extra money.
My now kindergartner was reading at a much higher level than her peers when she started kindergarten and I believe that is due to the process of how reading is taught at NSMS. My kids have had almost all of the teachers at NSMS and they are all wonderful. They really care about the kids and they definitely take Maria Montessori's philosophy of Follow the Child to heart. They will never push a child into something they are not ready for, but they will also never keep a child from learning as much as the child wants.
My 2.5 year old learned about butterflies this year. She knew about the entire life-cycle, from caterpillar to chrysalis to butterfly. They even had butterflies in their classrooms that they released recently. In the next few years, following the steps of her older siblings, I expect her to learn about different flags, continents, environmental issues like recycling, numbers, math and reading.
I would recommend NSMS to anyone!
Pros: Beautiful, safe location
Cons: Parking lot is a little small (but impossible to fix)
They have some great teachers, but the administration is poor. Communication is inconsistent (often wrong info is sent out) and parents are constantly being hit up for donations. Although the tuition is one of the highest in the area, the least amount of services are offered (e.g. no full-day care offered during school breaks, as at other local Montessori's). The facility and grounds are nice, and they are really good about getting the kids outside as much as possible. The even have "Sledding Days" in the winter and "Bike Days" in the summer!
Pros: Some great teachers, nice facility and grounds.
Cons: Poor administration