Saturday, January 8, 2011

The art of compromise

In the spring construction will begin on the new Montessori school building. The architects brought in some samples of color schemes for the site council to look over and decide upon on Thursday afternoon, and then that information was given to the PTSA later that evening.

At first it looked like we were evenly split on the choices. The two boards were displayed and explained, and I took issue with the use of the color red in the first choice, but the second choice was way too gray and cold to me.

We live in a part of the country that is gray for most of the school year, so I felt that the school needed some warmth and color. I stuck with the first choice, even though I didn't want the red. I've seen research that suggests that red is not a good color for ADD and ADHD kids, and in general I think it is a distracting color in a learning environment. We tried to make it a deeper rust, but the swatches didn't have that as an option.
Then one of the architects who was clearly facilitating asked if we could make suggestions of how to improve the second choice. I couldn't think of anything, I just wanted the first color scheme without the red.

But another parent asked if we could change the gray of the second choice to brown used in the first one, and use the warmer wood tone and outside colors from the first one. Suddenly one of the other architects pulled some pieces off of the first board and made those changes and it made all the difference. We all compromised.

I haven't heard how the PTSA meeting went, but hopefully they were all as pleased with it as we were. It was painless and I think everyone got a little bit of what they wanted. No matter what, that school is going to be BEAUTIFUL. The architect has some special degree in Montessori school design, and he incorporated the trinomial cube into the entry and the lighting. It is going to be soooo cool. There will be lots of wood and wood accents, and even the lockers will be wood. I'm so excited about this new building.

BTW, the school now has a waiting list for K, 1, 2 for next year. The only new students accepted in the Montessori classes will be Children's House and 3rd graders for next year. There will be 6 new lower elementary classrooms next year to accommodate all of the current Kindergarten students who will move up to first grade, and there will be some kids shifting classrooms to make sure the 3-year age groups are balanced. So many people want Montessori education for their children. I can't wait to see how the district responds to this clear preference by parents both in the district and outside.
Oh, and we're still waiting to hear about our math waiver. I'll post about that when we get the word.

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