"To all the Staff at First School of the Desert
Our daughter Alexa-Ann had a great time at First School. She absolutely loved coming to your school. She loved her teacher, friends and activities. We felt good knowing that she was under your care.
Thank you for running such an excellent, high quality preschool!
We cannot express enough gratitude to those involved in helping to mold and influence our daughter in such a positive fun and loving atmosphere.
We are looking forward to coming back again next season.
Sincerely," --- Nancy, Patrick and Alexa-Ann Wolfe
For the past seven years you have been like a second parent to my boys Blake, Austin and Tanner.
Thank you for all you have done. I have always felt that my kids were in the best hands when they were in your care. I would like to add special thanks for the extra care given to Austin. Having a child in your care with special needs is difficult and requires extra time; you were all wonderful when it came to my boys.
They all loved attending First School especially Austin. Please keep in touch and please use my name as a reference. Very Truly Yours," --- Roger Joles, Cathedral City
"Dear Dorothy and Mark,
I am writing because I feel it is important to commend those who bring positive and loving experiences to young children. Although it has been a while since my daughter Sofia attended your school, I have since the day she graduated Pre-K intended to write to you to express my appreciation for your wonderful school and staff.
Sofia has gone on to thrive in kindergarten at Sacred Heart School, Palm Desert. She is reading at a second grade level I am proud to say. I know that part of the credit for that goes to her caring, patient, and competent teachers at First School, the home of Sofia's academic beginnings.
We have had the privilege to attend both your Palm Springs and your La Quinta schools, enjoying both. I know that caring for so many little ones has become a practiced and successful routine for you and your staff. Nevertheless, everyone at First School seems to treat children as individuals and as special as they truly are. You both are parents and am sure can remember the first time you left your first child in the care of someone else. It is the most frightening thing in the world! Whenever I am responsible for someone else's child, I never forget what an awesome privilege it is to be trusted with their very lives. Your staff exemplifies that spirit as well.
Thank you all for giving Sofia, John and I such a positive experience at First School. Even in the rare instance when those 'glitches' happened, as they do in any professional environment, you and your staff are fully prepared to correct any situation that is less than excellent. For that especially, I am very grateful and have great respect for you both.
Although everyone at First School brought smiles to Sofia's face, in particular Ms. Janet (her first teacher) and Ms. Anna Marie (her last teacher) will be fondly remembered for many years. I wish the best of life's blessings for you, your family and your dedicated staff. Thank you all very much.
With appreciation," --- Claudia Gamlin, with John and Sofia Gamlin, Palm Springs & La Quinta
"To the First School Staff:
When we first brought our grandson, Austyn Carroll to your school to check out your facilities, we were quite impressed with the cleanliness, the happy looks on the children's faces, the teachers and the play equipment. We could see work done by the children hanging on the walls and lots of talking and laughing.
When we went to leave that first day, about 10AM, quite confused as it had been years and years since we had done this, Austyn wondered why he could not stay. My husband and I had thought that we would go home and talk about whether or not this would be a comfortable place for Austyn to be, but we were not given the chance. And we have not looked back since.
Austyn's parents had just split up and the three siblings had also been split up; two going to one grandparent's home and one to us. We were afraid that Austyn would be having all sorts of withdrawal problems as can happen in a divorce. But, he was not one bit bothered by our walking off and leaving him with strangers. The teachers have been wonderful. Every morning, when we wake about 6:15AM, the first thing he says is, "Can I go to school?" And then, he is in absolutely no hurry to come home. I feel terrible leaving him there for, sometimes as many as 8 or 9 hors, but he is happy as a lark, and if there are still children there in the late afternoon waiting to be picked up, he would just as soon stay. Guess, you know where that leaves us...
When he came to live with us, he was withdrawn, hardly talking. Did not want to be kissed or loved. Now he laughs, sometimes talks too much, loves to be hugged and will most of the time allow himself to be kissed. And I give your teachers some of the credit for this. He is very concerned with he gets home at night and does not have a Happy Face on his report. We have a little talk, and he seems to straighten up right away. It seems very important to him to do well and be god.
We just wanted you to know how pleased we are with the teachers at First School. And what a wonderful beginning we feel this has been for our new little boy
Thank you so much for being so warm and loving to our grandson.
Sincerely," --- Art and Suzanne Carroll, Palm Springs
"My children absolutely love First School of the Desert. The staff is great and the education program is comprehensive. Three cheers for the best childcare centers in the Desert!" --- Debbie & Lou Cox, Rancho Mirage
"We have always tried to provide the very best for our children. When it was time to begin our children's early childhood education my husband and I checked out every childcare/preschool in the Coachella Valley. Our due diligence paid off because we found First School of the Desert. First School was (and remains) the best choice for parents concerned about quality early childhood education."
--- Jeanette & Alan Sanborn, Cathedral City
Just looked through your site. Awesome! I can hardly believe how grown up your girls are, and you and Dorothy haven't changed much at all. I believe that my girls would not have become the young ladies and academically superior had they not attended First School. Dedicated Christian Educators like the Hastings Family and First School is what is needed in this valley and the country.
Thanks for what you did for my girls, and congratulations on your continued growth and success.
God Bless," --- Orville Voight, Cathedral City
"Our daughter has been a student of First School of the Desert since 1996. She loves her school! The teachers are wonderful! We would never think of using another preschool.
First School is the best!!!
Thank you First School! " --- Mrs. Cindy Kiernicki, Cathedral City
"Mark, Dorothy & Staff:
I just wanted to say thank you so very much for all the years of love and support you gave to my son. You are all wonderful people. Kyle & I will miss you all very much!
Thank you for teaching Kyle so much." --- Ms. Catherine Ianno, Palm Springs
"To the staff of First School:
Thank you for making my daughters first years of school the very best. I appreciate it!
Love " --- Stacy Rossi - Raevin, Palm Springs
"Dear Staff at First School:
Thank you for everything you have done for Taylor & Jeremiah. We will miss all your smiling faces. Taylor & Jeremiah will miss all their friends they have made at the school. Jeremiah especially will miss his partners in crime, Chase & Lauren!!!
Best wishes to all." --- Erik & Kelly, La Quinta
"Mark and Dorothy,
I would like to take a moment to acknowledge how wonderful the staff is at your La Quinta location. When our son started in April I was impressed with the facility, however I knew that aside from your beautiful building and play area it would be more important that the teachers were loving and patient. I realized by his second day at school that we made a good decision. As a parent, it is the little things that mean so much, like Jessica always greeting us with a smile in the mornings and the teachers making eye contact and welcoming our son, and in the evenings when we pick him up the teachers are still smiling! You have a well balanced, well run facility. Our son is in a friendly, clean, and caring environment. Yet the many rules and regulations are still followed. I am always comforted when I over hear Yolanda request a picture id from someone she is not familiar with. Thank you from the bottom of my heart for the care that my son is given.
Sincerely, --- Amy Field, La Quinta
My name is Monika Gambill. My daughter Michaela goes to your First School in La Quinta. I met your daughter Heather the other night picking Michaela up. I told Heather how very happy my husband and I are with the staff. Michaela is learning so very much and we are so pleased with her progress. That should be a big honor to hear from anyone but I went to school to become a nanny and my mother in law who is a retired teacher took care of Michaela from the time she was 9 months until about 15 months. After that she went to a in home daycare where we paid over $600 a month so she could sit and watch TV all day.
When deciding to put Michaela in your school I was very nervous. I heard stories I didn't want to hear but your teachers proofed them wrong. Miss Brandi is so tender with Michaela when I leave and she cries. Miss Ysela and Miss Slyvia are her normal teachers and are so loving towards her. My husband got called up to serve in the army full time and is away from home. The teachers and Miss Yolanda knew this and give Michaela extra attention when needed. They are considerate to ask how I am doing and offer a hug when it's needed. I feel like I am leaving my daughter in great hands. I feel like the school is part of my family.
Thanks for being there. It's a good feeling to know I have nothing to worry about when I drop her off. It's a good thing to have the whole family involved. I would like to add something on your website."
Thanks, ---Monika Gambill
"Mark and Dorothy Hastings
First School of the Desert – La Quinta
I just wanted to drop you a note to thank you personally creating a wonderful environment where kids love to go and play and learn.
As you may know, Chase will be graduating from Miss Sam's kindergarten class tonight and will be leaving First School after the summer. This has been a tough realization for me, as Chase has been at your school since he was 18 months old and now at 6 he will be leaving onto regular school. You and all the teachers at the La Quinta First School have made these last 4 ½ years so great and I know Chase is well prepared to enter 1st grade. I was sorry to hear that Miss Sam is leaving and that this will be the last year of Kindergarten at the school. Miss Sam is a wonderful teacher and exposes the kids to so many different things, that I really feel they wouldn't get in traditional Kindergarten and I thank you and her for that. She really is great with the kids and gives them all that extra attention that they sometimes need. He has always had such wonderful teachers that have meant a lot to him. I know all his teachers always adored him. Starting with Miss Pam when he was 18 months old. She made the transition into school such an ease for me and for him and I will always remember her for that and was sorry to hear when she left. His other favorite without a doubt is Miss Janet. We are so sad and devastated by what she is going through. She is such a wonderful teacher and role model for the children. Chase always wanted to stop by her class and say hi and good-bye to her everyday. She certainly is missed by everyone.
I know I've told you before that I love and recommend your school to everyone I know that has children. I don't ever regret enrolling Chase in your school. He has become such a great child and I know that your school and the teachers have a lot to do with that. He has learned so much and I'm grateful for the jump start your school has provided in his education. With the end of his time at your school comes the beginning for my baby Aidan who is now in the 18 month class and will turn 2 in August.
Aidan started part-time on June 1st and I have to admit I was very nervous about it, as I didn't know any of the teachers and wasn't sure how he would adapt to the change. I wanted him to have some time with Chase still there so he started a couple of weeks ago. Miss Carla has been great and has eased my mind and made the transition so much easier on me. She is a great asset to your school. Aidan adores her and loves his class. Of course, I think it helps that his big brother is right next door in Miss Sam's class.
Again, I just wanted to thank you for starting this wonderful school with such great teachers that are very welcoming and really love being a part of all these kids' lives. Chase is leaving, but Aidan is just starting so we will see you for another 2 years. Thanks for always listening to any concerns that I had and for taking such great care of the school. You can tell that you and Dorothy and your girls take a lot of pride in your schools and you should be very proud of what a great asset your schools to the surrounding communities.
We will continue to highly recommend your school to others and I wish you success with the new Indio School. I know that school will do just as good if not better than your others.
Thanks again from the bottom of our hearts."
Sonia and Jason Hapner, La Quinta
Parents of Chase and Aidan Hapner
"Mr. and Mrs. Mark Hastings
First School of the Desert – Cathedral City
Dear Mr. and Mrs. Hastings
We just wanted to take this opportunity to say "thank you" for providing a safe and educational environment for our granddaughter, Elise Pisani. She will be starting public kindergarten this week and will not be attending First School this coming school year.
The girls at the front desk, especially Candy and Gina, were always so nice and pleasant -- and always helpful when needed. Most people do not take the time to tell you about good employees -- and we just wanted to take this opportunity to thank you and let you know how nice everyone was to us at First School.
Shelley and Chipper Cecil, Cathedral City
2300 E. Racquet Club Road,
Palm Springs, California 92262
Phone: 760 327-5005
69-440 McCallum Way,
Cathedral City, California 92234
Phone: 760 321-0090
44-996 Adams Street,
La Quinta, California 92253
Phone: 760 772-2996
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