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Our son has attended Pride & Joy Preschool for the last 2 years and we had seen him grow from a reserved, self-conscious little preschooler to an active, happy, well-adjusted, and confident youngster under the kind and nurturing care of his teachers. By the time he left for kindergarten, he was a beginning reader, counting to a hundred, and enthusiastic to learn more! Like any active child, he has had his fair share of scrapes, bumps, bruises, rough days, and challenging mornings/afternoons, and we felt that, in general, information/feedback regarding these matters was conveyed to us in a prompt and timely manner. Everyone in the school, from the administrative personnel (Moilan and Mark) and the teaching staff, had always been accommodating, warm, and welcoming, even during drop off and pick up times (which were the busiest times of the day). Needless to say, we loved it there! happy parents of a Pride and Joy graduate
hi. i recently visited Pride & Joy Preschool in El Cerrito. I absolutely loved it and am highly considering sending my daughter there. Are there any parents out there who can offer more current feedback. thanks lola
My name is Moilan Manning. I am the Director of Pride and Joy Preschool. I would like to thank all of our parents who took their time to write a review about our program. My staff and I welcome feedback of any kind, both positive and negative. Valid complaints help us to identify and correct any problems that may come up. However, I feel that I should address some of the negative comments here that I do not believe are accurate.
A few of the reviews here mention that we have a high staff turnover rate. It is actually similar to most childcare centers in the bay area. The majority of our staff members have been with us since we moved to this facility four years ago. Our student/teacher ratios by far exceed the licensing requirements. Because of the high quality of our program, local colleges have asked to send us student teachers for internship in our facility and we are glad to help. When these student teachers have completed their training they move on. This might give some parents the false impression that teachers come and go frequently. Only our permanent staff members count towards student/teacher ratios.
I can say, without hesitation, that I have never once called a child a ''bad child.'' I am totally against using negative behavioral management and have tailored my program and trained my staff accordingly. Also, because of this philosophy, we sometimes cannot oblige a parent who asks that we deal with their child's challenging behavior with extreme measures - such as the reviewer that asked us to give their child frequent time-outs even for minor issues. These requests, we feel, would not serve the best interests of the children.
Because Pride and Joy Preschool embraces inclusion for all children, we give the parents of children with disruptive or violent behavior issues the option of providing a professional, at their cost, to assist their child on a 1:1 basis to participate successfully in our program. I think most parents would agree that it would not be fair to the rest of the students if our teachers spent all of their time dealing with one child.
Our program philosophy embraces Developmentally Appropriate Practices. For this reason we do not push children to do academics beyond their level of development, as we believe this does more harm than good. Occasionally we have a parent that wants their child to be exposed to a more advanced curriculum than we feel that they and their classmates are ready for. We encourage such parents to instruct their child in any subjects they wish to, at home.
One parent wrote about her concerns over her child watching TV. We do not have cable in our facility and therefore, our children cannot watch broadcast TV shows. The flat screen TV on the office level of our facility is used mainly for staff-training purposes. We also sometimes use it to show our children Yoga videos. On rare occasions we may use it as a special reward to show documentaries or fairy tale shows no longer than 30 minutes. Realistically, I do not find it damaging for children to participate in group activities with a teacher's direction using a TV monitor to enhance their learning experience once in a while. Having said that, please rest assured that TV is never a part of our curriculum and we do not encourage its use as a teaching tool.
Some reviewers felt that they were discouraged from visiting our facility. In truth, parents are welcome to visit our facility at any time. However, we ask visiting parents not to linger on for too long for several reasons. Long visits tend to disrupt our regular program schedule and over-excite some of the students. Another reason is that our facility is located on a one-way street and does not have a great deal of parking space for parents' pick-up and drop-off, making parents' parking a bit challenging at times. In over 2 decades of Pride and Joy Preschool we have never once refused parent visits, despite these challenges. Parent communication is very important to our program. Parents are asked to understand that at times our teachers may not be able to communicate for as long as you like them to because they have other children they need to attend to when school is in session. Parents can request a parent/teacher conference if they need to discuss issues in detail. Pride and Joy has an open school policy and our goal is to work with parents to better serve our children by having frequent communication throughout the child's enrollment, either via email, telephone, parent conference, or at our yearly open houses.
With that said, I thank you for the opportunity to hear and address all of your concerns as well as your praises.
Pride and Joy Preschool, Inc.
I am looking for a preschool for my 3 yo daughter, the reviews of the school Pride and Joy Preschool on BPN seems outdated, could someone who had experience there share a review? Thank you. Y.
And as with any large school, there will be the biters and hitters. The communication around that issue was not great. For a period of time my child was a target of a couple of aggressive kids. About half the time, it was my child who came home telling us what happened, not the school. It was either not passed down, or even forgotten amidst the craziness of the day. We were very unhappy about that part and forced a safety plan to be put in place so my kid wouldn't come home bruised and bleeding. We emphasized that if something did happen, the school would have to tell us before my kid did. That helped, but didn't stop the problem completely.
That said, I think Pride and Joy is good preparation for parents sending kids to public school. The admin is caring, but communication was an ongoing issue for us. We worked it out by keeping in close contact by email and phone. And we had to because the school is set up so parents do drop off and pick up at the door and never enter the school. Getting in can be hard as teachers and admin actively discourage parents from visiting. In that regard, an assertive parent who knows the law and his/her rights can and does get in.That part rankled me, but admin wants to reduce the chaos and distraction of parents coming in. I felt that I could visit without causing disruption, and proved that I could.
A part of the program that still bugs me is that the children watched TV. When on tour, I saw the big screen TV and asked about it. I was told it was strictly for yoga videos. Then rainy season hit and my kid started talking about watching TV at school. I inquired, found out that yes, children are put in front of the TV, and the director saw no problem with that. Once we found out, we explicitly opted her out of TV watching.
But, as much as issues kept arising, we chose to listen to our daughter and we kept her in. We did because she made good friends, loved the program activities and really loved her teacher. She's a socially skilled and assertive kid who could negotiate the complexities of a large place and tell us if something went wrong. For a kid, especially a younger one, who gets overwhelmed by the size and the many rules needed to manage that many kids, and who hasn't developed the verbal skills to talk about his/her day, this school would not be a good fit. We made it work by being ''that parent''who calls, pushes and holds admin accountable. We don't regret it. My child loved it there and grew, even if we parents were at times less than thrilled. Parents who made it work
Having said that, the teachers who stay are wonderful, loving, and focused on doing their best for the children, and the director, Mark, tries really hard with the constrains placed up on him.
The best part was that the other families and kids are amazing. Our son dearly loves his friends he made there and we also made several close friends. But it takes effort - there is no mailing list, parents are not ever welcome in the classroom except for one teacher/parent day a year and for fifteen minutes on your child's birthday, and requests for a group email go ignored. The parents have somewhat taken that into their own hands and are welcoming to new families. We have playdates regularly with families from there.
Finally, the school is very much play-based and our son did not learn much about writing his letters or even their sounds. If you want any academics, this is not the school for you. But if you want playbased, the play yard is great, the school room, at least on the preschool side, is great, and my son consistentally brought home fun art projects. Glad we switched
Our daughter, Kayla, started at Pride and Joy Preschool right around her first birthday. She had been with her mom and dad or her nanny until then. We were nervous about the transition, but after months of research, we decided to give it a go. It was the best decision we could have made. Kayla looks forward every morning to meeting with her best friends -- the other toddlers as well as her caretakers. While I'm dressing for work in the morning, or she's having her breakfast, she's happy to tell me what's on her mind: "Emma, Emma," she says, "Maximus, Roman." When we pick her up in the afernoon, she's happy and proud to show off what she's learned: "ABC TUV Y and Z" Kayla is our miracle baby. Our miracle daughter. We're so careful to give her the best we can. Pride and Joy is one of the best things we've given her. Kim
I will strongly recommend Pride & Joy Preschool in El Cerrito, CA. My son has been attending this school from 3 years. It's a wonderful facility with fabulous staff. Moilan Manning, the Director is an awesome person. -Natasha
My four-year old daughter began attending Pride and Joy Preschool this past August of 2008. After about three months of attending three days a week, she has fully adjusted to the schedule and is very comfortable with the rules and expectations. She walks into the front door of the school upon arrival in the morning, with her head held high and full of such anticipation that she will have a fun, rewarding day. Her spunky, energetic teachers are so wonderful with her, addressing her in such a pleasant tone and giving her that praise and acknowledgment which continues to build her self-esteem. Moilan, our wonderful director, reinforces and emphasizes an environment where kids are respected for who they are and their contributions they make to the larger group. Moilan also invites parents and community members to make presentations to the students. In fact, one of the fathers comes each week to read to the students. There is also a mother who is a dentist and has made several presentations on the importance of dental hygiene.
On the issue of communication between Moilan and the parents, Moilan is very receptive. She passes out memos and announcements on a regular basis. Moilan is available by phone (number to the school is 510-232-3121) or by e-mail. I have personally found e-mail communication to be more effective since the majority of the school day, Moilan is interacting with the children and busy with day-to-day activities involving the kids. She is always open to meeting with parents at appointed times. I have had my daughter now in the school for the past nine months and there has been really no time where I have needed to contact her for an emergency or vice versa. Hopefully, this addresses the issue of communication well.
For more information about the school and others' testimonials, check out Pride and Joy's very professional-looking web site at www.prideandjoypreschool.org Thank you very much, Moilan, and your wonderful staff for doing your best job everyday in caring with such big hearts and allowing kids to grow and develop along their own timeline along with ensuring that they are safe and well-nourished. -Susan
Looking for current reviews on the preschool environment. Is the director easy to communicate with? Are the young teachers effective? Is there a sense of parent involvement/community? The space is beautiful and very thoughtfully planned out, but feeling unsure about the other factors. Any feedback would be greatly appreciated. anon
Pride & Joy preschool in El Cerrito is a wonderful place for
children. My son attended 10 years ago at the original location.
My niece now attends at the new location and it is amazing with
a beautiful outdoor play area and even has around 30 security
cameras installed to ease parents minds. The inside is beautiful
and has many rooms for different types of play including a doll
room. The owner Moilan is the most kind and caring person and
she is an amazing parent. The school is located on Liberty
Street near the El Cerrito city offices. Phone number is
Re: Small part-time preschool
Pride & Joy Preschool is located in El Cerrito. We toured this place when I was looking for a spot for my daughter and really loved it. The program includes 3 meals for full day students and the director helps to reinforce a positive self image for kids through a bilingual/multicultural program. Moilan Manning, 233-8449. --big fan of small preschools
Re: Afterschool care for Harding Kindergartener
For the parent(s) wanting good after-school care for their kindergartener, I highly recommend Pride & Joy Preschool in El Cerrito. They have a wonderful program. Transportation from one school to another might be a challenge, but the programs, love, fun, snacks, and care your child will get will be worth it. My preschooler is there from 8am until nearly 6pm and she doesn't want to leave at the end of the day. Her learning skills are off the charts, as is her ability and desire to play with children of all ages. esther
Re: Part-time preschool in El Cerrito or Richmond
We are currently researching preschools in Richmond/El Cerrito too. We just saw one we really liked.
Pride and Joy Preschool and Afterschool program in El Cerrito has approx. 12-14 kids, offers a wonderful program in a warm home-based setting, and I liked the director when I toured the school a few weeks ago.
They offer 2 full days/week or 3 mornings/week and the price was very reasonable compared to other schools I visited.
Here is the contact info: Moilan Manning, Pride and Joy Preschool 233-8449
Best of luck with your research!
--El Cerrito Mom
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