Dear parents of early childhood children,

We have had a successful first week of Distance Learning and have gained ideas on how to expand and fine tune our program as we continue through May 1. We still plan to observe our previously scheduled Spring Break from April 6 through April 10. No teacher led remote learning will take place during that week. However, we will provide optional activities for the children.

We can always count on our VMS community, and now during this challenging time is no exception. We are grateful for the kind words of support and appreciation we have received from our amazing VMS families. We are equally thankful for the tireless effort from our dedicated teachers. They have all risen to the occasion to work through this transition and support each other every step of the way. It is truly heartwarming. We will get through these trying times together and look forward to when we can all be back in the classroom again with the children to continue the outstanding Montessori education for which we are known.

Of course we also recognize the delivery of a Montessori education to our youngest children is a greater challenge in the remote learning environment. As a gesture of goodwill, the school is offering the following financial relief for the month of April:
  • April childcare fees for periods outside the standard 9:00-11:45 or 9:00-3:00 tuition have been discontinued.
  • Students enrolled in a half-day toddler or primary program will receive a 15% discount for the month of April.
  • Students enrolled in a full-day toddler or primary program will receive a 30% discount for the month of April.
  • Families experiencing an extreme financial hardship should contact me directly.

Since each family's situation is different, if you feel your family is not in need of the financial support, please consider foregoing the discount to enable us to more easily support those in dire need. Simply email to opt out HERE by Sunday, 3/29. Thank you - again, we value the compassionate, generous and resilient spirit of this community.

As we move into next week, the teachers will continue to communicate curriculum information directly with their students and families. We'd also like to direct you to the supplemental learning activities on the homepage of our VMS Website . There are links for amazing virtual fieldtrips, reading activities, audio book links, as well as an extensive Learn at Home tab with activities from our VMS specialists, including Music and PE. Stay tuned for exciting VMS YouTube videos that are in production by some of our teachers. We will continue to add to the website, so please check back regularly.

Both the teaching and administrative staff, are here to help you in any way we can as all of us adjust to this unprecedented, yet temporary reality. I will leave you with an excerpt of a letter from a family with two children currently enrolled at VMS, who sees the ongoing value of our school in their lives, especially now.

With Respect and Gratitude,
Ann

Dear Ann, 
“I wanted to commend you and the entire staff of VMS ...The task of pivoting to distance learning is a truly daunting one....as a parent I have been so overjoyed and thankful for the experience that the school is providing [our children] during these crazy times. It was so welcoming to receive the daily email updates with clear and calm wording about the plan. The transparency was greatly appreciated. I love how the teachers started with a test for the Zoom meetings last Friday and have followed with consistent updates and information.
It has been so great having the morning Zoom meetings this week. It's given us as parents a way to help keep a sense of normalcy in [our children’s] lives. We are now able to keep them to a schedule with a simple reminder, "Your meeting is starting soon." The daily one-on-one with teachers is wonderful. [The children are] so excited each day to see them. [They] continue to feel connected and cared for. [Our youngest] then goes off to work on various jobs and often comments how she is excited to share with her teachers the next day about what she has accomplished. 
While I can imagine that the teachers and everyone is spinning from this sudden paradigm shift, please let them know that what they are doing is delivering the Montessori experience despite the crazy circumstance. The work and suggestions have helped us to create the best environment we can at home....We are so grateful of all the work everyone is doing. Hang in there!
With much love and appreciation from the entire family."
Valley Montessori School
1273 N Livermore Ave Livermore CA 94551