We will come to the designated entrance each morning from 10:45–10:55 to meet our students and walk them into our location. If you are running late for the day and miss the drop-off window, you will need to park and walk your child in. However, it is a fairly short distance.
Yes, they are safe. The owner is a trained CPR/First Aid instructor as well as a trained AVERT (Active Violence Emergency Response Training) instructor. The mall has several security guards that can be easily reached by us, whether through text or voice call. They also walk around the mall, so their presence is seen. In addition, our location has an extra exit through the back. Most classrooms in schools only have one entrance into the individual classrooms, meaning there is no escape if there is a threat outside the door. While in today's world there is no absolute guarantee of safety, we take every step to make sure the kids are as safe as they can possibly be. This is our top concern.
Since our school is focused on real-world skills, this is the perfect opportunity to learn about how a business is run while also learning their academic skills. The business side is actually very slow during the school day, so interruptions, if any, are minimal. In addition, by being inside the mall, parents have the opportunity to get together for lunch or coffee while their kids are in class. Parents can easily get shopping done, run errands, go to one of the many nearby gyms, or perhaps get a part-time job in or near the mall, along with many other options during the day.
We charge $2500 per semester, which can be broken down into monthly payments. We are an approved ESA vendor, so you may pay with ESA funds. Another benefit is that we cover the costs of school supplies and activities. You only need to provide their lunch or snack. If you wish to buy cute folders or other supplies for your child, you may. However, we will not require the purchase of additional supplies. We will also plan a monthly fun activity, for which we will cover the cost. This could be a kid's night out or a family field trip. For a family field trip, we will cover the cost of the immediate family in the household (i.e., parents and siblings who live in the household).
For our first semester (Spring 2024), enrollment will be capped at 15 students. This is to make sure we have adequate space and are able to give adequate attention to each of the students. As we get an extended waiting list, we will examine moving to a larger space.
The Tucson Mall doesn't officially open until 11:00 a.m., so that is part of the reason. However, we see this as a benefit. It allows students to get a good night's sleep and a good breakfast and not have to wake up early and rush through the morning routine. For those who need longer hours for their kids, we will offer an extended care option with activities until 6:00 p.m.
This is a great question. While we are a newly formed school, the owner/director (a certified elementary teacher) has 13 years of teaching experience. Half of those years were spent as the department head as well. In addition, she has endorsements in gifted and talented education, early childhood education, and structured English immersion. She was the first recipient of the Innovative Teacher Award at the school where she worked. So you will get someone with experience.
Another benefit of being one of our founding families for our microschool is that you will be locked into your tuition rate for the following two years. Also, as a founding family, you will be in a unique position to help establish our school culture.