Frequently Asked Questions
What kind of school is MKA?
MKA is a rigorous college preparatory, coeducational, independent day school serving 1030 students in grades Pre-K-12 on three campuses in Montclair, NJ. Our mission is to ensure our students are not only well-prepared for the academic demands of college, but also to be positive, contributing citizens. With excellence in teaching, creativity in curriculum and a highly personal, technology-enriched curriculum, MKA provides the opportunity for every student to develop to his or her maximum potential and meet the real-world challenges ahead.
What differentiates MKA from other independent schools in New Jersey?
MKA reflects the diversity, vibrancy and strong community spirit of the town in which it resides. In addition to its three age-appropriate campuses (see below), the curriculum is unified by Signature Programs in Writing, Core Works and Ethics, by a faculty committed to ongoing professional development and excellence, and by the integration of technology into the curriculum - all students in grades 4-12 are provided with MacPro laptops complete with an extensive suite of software. 29% of our student body is comprised of students of color, and we draw from almost 80 towns in the New Jersey area.
Why are there three campuses? How does that affect the students?
MKA is the product of a merger of two schools, Montclair Academy and The Kimberley School. Our Primary School (Brookside) is the former Brookside Elementary School; the Middle School is the former Kimberley School; and the Upper School is the former Montclair Academy. These three divisions allow the faculty at each campus to create the appropriate environment and curriculum to meets the needs of the different age groups they serve. It also means that each campus has its own extensive facilities, such as libraries, science labs and art rooms, gyms and auditoriums.
How Is technology part of the MKA experience?
MKA provides a wireless network community Pre-K-12 and all students in grades 4-12 enjoy a 1:1 laptop learning environment. MKA is a recognized leader in the effective integration of technology into the curriculum. Students of all ages utilize technology to maximize research and collaborative learning.
What College Counseling Resources are available to students?
MKA's College Counseling Office has four full-time college counselors as well as two additional full-time faculty members dedicated to those students interested in athletics and the arts. Students and parents begin their relationship with the CCO in the freshman year. This remarkable student-counselor ratio ensures that every student's individual needs are met, and MKA consistently places its students in the most selective colleges in the country. Click here for more information.
Does MKA provide any Extended Day Care?
Extended Day care is provided both before and after school at the Primary and Middle School campuses, starting at 7:30 a.m. and ending at 6:00 p.m. An extensive range of Extended Day classes and activities are offered.
Does MKA have a Dress Code?
Although slightly different at each campus, the dress code can best be described as "smart casual" with khaki pants and collared shirts required for boys, and solid pants or skirts and collared shirts required for girls. Students enjoy regular "dress down" days on which they can wear more casual attire. There is no dress code for students attending Pre-K.
Does MKA provide Transportation?
MKA contracts Station Wagon Services to provide busing from 53 local communities at an additional fee.
What qualities does MKA seek in our applicants?
The MKA community welcomes students from a variety of backgrounds, family types, and cultures. The Admissions Committee values academic fit and fine character and looks carefully for evidence of these criteria in each applicant.
How do I get an application? Can I apply online?
There are three ways to apply: online, by downloading the application and mailing it in, or by contacting the Admissions Office and requesting an application be mailed to you. You may call us at 973-509-7930, and we will be happy to help you.
When is the application deadline?
Applications should be submitted by February 1, 2013. Later applications may be accepted depending on availability of spaces. MKA will notify families of Middle and Upper School admission decisions on March 8, 2013, and requests that enrollment commitments are made by April 8, 2013. Primary School admissions decisions are mailed at the end of February.
How old should my child be to apply to the early grades?
MKA's guidelines for pre-kindergarten are that boys should be four years old by June 1st, girls fours years old by August 1st. For kindergarten and first grade, the ages are five and six, respectively. Each child is evaluated based on his or her individual abilities and characteristics, and social fit at this age is an important criterion. The Admissions Committee looks closely at the child whose birthday falls near to the guideline and will decide placement based on what, in its opinion, is in the best interest of the child.
When I try to log in to see my child's application status, the system says it can't find the username. How can I log in?
Make sure you are not logging in on the site's home page; that login is for MKA community members. Applicants must log in from the Admissions section. Scroll to the top of this page and click on the right-hand button which says, "Applicant Login."
What if my early childhood applicant does not cooperate on the visit or screening?
MKA's teachers and admissions officers have years of experience working with young children. We are able to work effectively with virtually all our applicants; however, we do recognize that young children can have difficult days. On those rare occasions when a child is unable to complete the visit or screening appointments, we will ask the child to return on another day.
When should I apply for financial aid?
Financial aid applications should be submitted at the same time as the admissions application. We will notify you of both the admissions and financial aid decisions at the same time. Please remember that MKA is not able to offer financial assistance until the sixth grade.
What can my child expect on his/her visit day to MKA?
Depending on the campus, your student can expect the following:
At the Primary School:
Pre-kindergarten applicants visit on a Saturday morning in January with other pre-kindergarten applicants; they return for a short weekday one-to-one screening.
Kindergartners visit in a peer classroom for an hour and a half on a weekday, and participate in a one-to-one screening either on the same day or on another weekday.
Applicants for first through third grades spend a full weekday in a peer classroom; they participate in a one-to-one screening during the visit.
At the Middle and Upper School Campuses:
Each visit will begin with a campus tour, followed by attending classes with a student host and meeting with an Admissions Officer.
I don't see my question here; how can I ask it?
If you don't see your question, email the Admissions Office at email@example.com. We will post selected questions and answers to this list.