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Healthy Snacks and Lunch
Safe and Secure
Clean and Green
Parents in the School
Special Needs and Special Support
Responsive Service


Healthy Snacks and Lunch

  • Parents run our Nutrition Committee and arrange daily snacks in our Pre-Primary, Kindergarten and After Care programs. They do so within a set of guidelines set by the school.

    The objective is two-fold: 1) develop a taste for healthy snacks, especially fresh fruits and vegetables, and 2) encourage children to taste new foods.

  • Snack guidelines: 1) no sweetened foods, 2) fresh or minimally processed foods, 3) balance and variety. Typical snacks include: fresh fruit, fresh vegetables, cheese, whole wheat bagels, or plain yogurt with a fresh fruit or fruit spread.

  • Children self-serve their snack throughout the school day; they eat what they want when they’re hungry. Likewise, children drink when they thirst. Bottled spring water dispensers are available in each of the classrooms.

  • Children may not bring food to school, except full-day students who pack only a lunch. We ask parents to pack lunches in line with our guidelines: children may not bring drinks, sweets, nuts or foods processed with nuts.

  • In the classroom teachers have lists of individual food allergies and ensure that children at risk do not ingest one of these foods.

  • With so many students, we’re often celebrating birthdays in the classroom. Parents may not bring birthday treats to the classroom. We celebrate with the daily school snack.

  • We relax the food guidelines for special school occasions such as school festivals or in-class cultural presentations that may include ethnic dishes or holiday treats.

Safe and Secure

  • All visitors to the school (including students and parents) enter through a supervised, monitored entrance. At school start and dismissal times, teachers supervise the comings and goings. While school is in session the door is locked and supervised via closed-circuit TV by our office staff.  In addition, an additional set of locked doors (properly outfitted for fire escape) secure each end of our classroom floor.
  • All classrooms are under closed-circuit TV surveillance (video and audio). These images are displayed in the 2nd floor parent observation area and observed by our office staff on a second set of office monitors. (N.B. the parent observation area is also under video surveillance.)

  • Our playground is fenced on all four sides. The entrance has a child-proof latch to prevent children from leaving on their own.

  • At the beginning of each school year we request a list and photos of people permitted to pick-up your child from school. We will only release a child to someone placed on your child’s approved list.

  • All our classroom teachers have up-to-date CPR and First Aid training, and have been trained on the use of “Epi-Pen” for children at risk of serious allergic reactions. In the case of serious emergency, The Montessori House is located within 900 yards of the Tenafly Fire, Ambulance and Police headquarters.

  • The Montessori House is exceptionally attentive to tests and inspections required by various government agencies. These inspections or tests include: NJ Dept. Of Human Services, Tenafly Fire Dept., Tenafly Board of Health, and Radon test. Our certificates or test results are always available for review by current and prospective parents.

  • The Montessori House is also very sensitive to the privacy of our students and families. In particular, on this website, or in our newsletter, we never mention the full names of children or associate even first names with a photo – with the exception of postings in the Parents password-protected section.

Clean and Green

  • Our school is cleaned daily. This includes bathrooms, classrooms, hallways and stairways.

    The cleaning supplies are almost exclusively formulated from natural products including: vinegar, tea tree oil, and Castile soap.

    We use a special hospital formula enzyme-based cleaner that addresses bathroom urine stains and odors (a must for the little boys’ bathroom).

  • Surfaces that children come into contact with regularly are wiped down with disinfectant (vinegar and tea tree oil are proven disinfectants) throughout the day by teachers.

    This includes table tops, door handles, shelf tops and staircase railings.

  • We provide cloth towels for wiping hands in the children’s bathrooms. One use and they’re tossed in the hamper.

    While it’s a lot of work to launder these towels, the children like the feel, and our bathrooms are much tidier.

Parents in the School

  • Parents are always welcome at The Montessori House and may observe their children via closed-circuit TV. From the Parent observation station, parents can control the TV camera to get an up-close view of each child.

  • Generally parents pick up children from the playground and this provides an opportunity to chat briefly with teachers or with other parents.

  • We have very active Parent Committees, including: Nutrition, Gardening, Library, International Festival, Cultural/Holidays, and Fundraising (for the Friends of Montessori Foundation). Most committee work involves working with the children.

  • Parents from different national or religious traditions often prepare and conduct class presentations that reflect their heritage.

  • Parents may participate in the fund-raising and social activities of the Friends of Montessori Foundation.

Special Needs and Special Support

  • Children with special needs are welcome at The Montessori House. We have successfully worked with children who bring a full-time aide to the classroom to assist with their development.

  • Our local school system makes child development professionals available to The Montessori House to help evaluate children who teachers suspect may have special needs. Only with the consent of a child’s parents will we pursue such an evaluation or expert advice.

  • The paramount concern of The Montessori House is to help children learn and develop their full potential and to ensure that they have the needed support to do so.


Responsive Service

  • Unlike many smaller schools, The Montessori House maintains full-time office staff that provides quick, responsive service to parents and frees our teaching staff to focus on our students.

  • Parents may always contact our office, or our Director, by phone or e-mail, and receive a prompt response.

  • If a child is absent, we call to check on the situation. And, we respond flexibly to parent emergencies that affect drop-off or pick-up.

  • Our website provides a password-protected Parents area that facilitates communication with the school and coordination of our Parent Committees.