If I were paying close to 20K annually for my kid’s preschool education (if that’s what we’re calling finger paints, nap time and juice and cookies these day), I would expect her to come home daily with a gilded brain and diamond encrusted paper mâché while alternating between Swahili and Russian as she recites the Declaration of Independence in full. You know, to ensure the curriculum at her school isn’t too provincial.
Apparently one New York City mother feels the same way. Nicole Imprescia is suing her 4-year-old daughter Lucia’s $19,000-a-year Manhattan preschool, claiming it wasn’t sophisticated enough to properly prepare her for the city’s elite private schools.
According to the lawsuit, poor Lucia was “forced” to spend her days at the tony York Avenue Preschool on New York’s famed Upper East Side, which turned out to be “one big playroom.” Quelle horreur!
Although the school pledged to prepare Lucia for the ERB entrance exam, which is required for admission into most private schools, her mom says instead she was learning about shapes and colors, and occasionally being subjected to the presence of younger children in her classroom.
The suit is seeking class action status on behalf of all York students from 2009-2011. According to the suit: “It is no secret that for many Manhattan parents, getting a child into the Ivy League starts in nursery school . . . Studies have shown entry into a good nursery school guarantees more income than entry into an average school. As a result, there is tremendous pressure to choose the right preschool.”
The suit seeks a refund of the $19,000 given to the school for Lucia’s (mis)education. The school’s owner told the New York Post that the charges were a first in their 30-year history.
While I can appreciate wanting to prepare children for the rigors of the New York City private school system, the school does have an excellent reputation, and I wonder if it’s possible that perhaps little Lucia was given sufficient preparation but perhaps isn’t the world’s best test taker or cracked under the pressure (although not from her mom, bien sûr; she sounds like the nurturing type).
Here’s hoping mademoiselle Lucia (and her mom) recovers from the trauma of preschool and goes on to bigger and better schools. Or at least marries well.