The International School Curriculum



Primary School



4 1/2 to 8 years old

Language Arts

  • Phonemic Awareness
  • Phonetic Skills
  • Sound-Symbol
  • Relationships
  • Short Vowels
  • Long Vowels
  • Letter Blends
  • Vocabulary
  • Word Families
  • Sight Words
  • Comprehension
  • Critical Thinking
  • Deductive Reasoning
  • Inferential Thinking
  • Factual Recall
  • Spelling
  • Invent
  • Common Patterns
  • Written Expression
  • Daily Journals
  • Poetry
  • Creative Writing
  • Sentence Mechanics

Mathematics

  • Shape Identification
  • Counting
  • One to One
  • Correspondence
  • Count by 2/5/10/20
  • Numerical Operations
  • Greater / Less Than
  • Before/After
  • Addition/Subtraction
  • Basic Facts
  • Foundation of Facts
  • 1-20
  • Time
  • Calendar Skills
  • Tells Time to the Hour, Half Hour, and Quarter Hour
  • Money
  • Coin Identification & Value
  • Count Sums of Money
  • Measurement
  • Standard and Non-Standard Units
  • Patterns
  • Repeats Patterns
  • Extends Patterns

Science

  • Scientific Process
  • Observe
  • Hypothesize
  • Investigate
  • Interpret Data
  • Formulate Conclusions
  • Aims Science
  • Hands on Experiments

Social Studies

  • Cultural Diversity
  • Human Similarities
  • Human Differences
  • Geography
  • Map and Globe Skills
  • My Place in Space
  • People and the Past
  • How the Past Influences Lives

Lower Elementary


8 to 10 years old

Social Studies

  • U. S. Geography
  • World Geography
  • Culture Studies
  • American History
  • Alabama History
  • Alabama Geography

Language Arts

  • Reading for Understanding
  • Reading for Pleasure
  • Reading for Information
  • Creative Writing
  • Responsive Writing
  • Grammar
  • Spelling
  • Effective Speaking and Presentation skills
  • Classical and Contemporary Literature
  • Vocabulary
  • Handwriting

The Arts

  • Drama
  • Music- Choral, Music History, Composers
  • Art and Art History

Foreign Language

  • Conversational and Written Spanish
  • Conversational and Written Mandarin Chinese
  • Science

    • Biology
    • Physical Science
    • Environmental Science
    • Life Science
    • Earth Science

    Technology

    • Computer Skills- Supervised Internet Access Mathematics

    Basic Mathematical Process

  • Addition
  • Subtraction
  • Multiplication
  • Division
  • Decimals
  • Percents
  • Fractions
  • Long Division
  • Word Problems
  • Physical Fitness

    • Balance and Coordination
    • Endurance
    • Sportsmanship
    • Soccer
    • Football
    • Volleyball
    • Hiking

    Upper Elementary

    • 10 to 14 years old

    Social Studies

    • World History
    • Early Civilization-Modern
    • Geography and Map Skills
    • Community Field Studies
    • Cultural Studies
    • Economics

    Language Arts

    • Reading for Understanding
    • Reading for Pleasure
    • Reading for Information
    • Creative Writing
    • Responsive Writing
    • Grammar
    • Spelling
    • Effective Speaking and Presentation skills
    • Classical and Contemporary Literature
    • Vocabulary
    • Handwriting

    The Arts

    • Drama- costume design, lighting, casting
    • Music- Music Theory, Classical Composers, Music Genres
    • Art and Art History

    Foreign Language

  • Conversational and Written Spanish
  • Conversational and Written Mandarin Chinese
  • Technology

    • Computer Skills- Supervised Internet Access
    • Power Point Presentations
    • Keyboarding Skills

    Science

    • Biology
    • Physics
    • Environmental Science
    • Chemistry
    • Physiology

    Mathematics

    • Order of Operations
    • Pre-Algebra
    • Algebra 1
    • Geometry
    • Algebra 2
    • Word Problems

    Physical Fitness

    • Balance and Coordination
    • Endurance
    • Sportsmanship
    • Soccer
    • Football
    • Volleyball
    • Hiking

    Our Founders

    Candy Ortega, her husband, Roberto and a group of investors and educators founded KLA Schools in 2008. They opened the first KLA School in Miami, FL, in 2008 and began franchising in 2010. For Roberto and Candy, the desire to provide an inspiring curriculum, a nurturing environment, and high quality education to pre-school students across America was deeply rooted.

    Roberto, KLA Schools’ CEO, inherited his passion for education from his grandfather who opened two schools of his own in South America. Candy, KLA Schools’ Educational Director, grew up in Argentina and Brazil and came to the US in 1994. She earned an Associate’s degree in Child Development and a Bachelor’s degree in Business Administration, and began her educational career as a pre-school teacher at a Reggio Emilia inspired school.

    Candy and Roberto have attended several Reggio Emilia conferences and study groups in the US and internationally. Additionally, they have participated in the National Association for the Education of Young Children conference (NAEYC) in Chicago 2009, Anaheim 2011, Orlando 2011, and they have attended the 4th North American Reggio Emilia Alliance (NAREA) Summer Conference Boulder, Colorado 2008, the 6th NAREA Summer Conference Chicago, Illinois, 7th NAREA Summer Conference Pacific Grove, California, 3rd NAREA Winter Conference Mountain View, California and the 11th NAREA Summer Conference in Albuquerque, New Mexico among others.

    Leadership Team


    Roberto Ortega

    President & CEO


    Roberto Ortega is the founder and President of KLA Schools, where he is responsible for the development, operations and oversight of multiple high-performing preschools in the U.S. His scope of work encompasses the growth of the franchise arm of the company as well as the pool of corporate owned locations. Under his leadership, he manages a team of executives and educators with a passion for providing high-quality early childhood education.

    Mr. Ortega inherited his passion for education from his grandfather who opened two K-12 schools of his own in South America. Together with his wife they wanted to create an impact in society by providing a quality early childhood education program. They knew the key was to have a curriculum suited for the 21st century and they selected the Reggio Emilia Approach hailed by Newsweek magazine as the best in the world.


    Candy Ortega

    Pedagogical Director

    Mrs. Candelaria Ortega is the co-founder of KLA Schools. She has been the Director of the first school since the company opened in 2008. Mrs. Ortega became the Pedagogical Director of the KLA School Franchise in 2010 to support the corporate owned and franchise centers. As the Pedagogical Director of KLA Schools, Mrs. Ortega supervises the development and implementation of the philosophy and curriculum of KLA Schools. She is also responsible for the continuous improvement of the curriculum and professional development initiatives.

    Mrs. Ortega and her team provide the necessary tools and materials to ensure that the students are getting a quality early childhood education program. Mrs. Ortega is the company spokesperson on education and child-related topics.


    Claudia Chaustre
    Director of Professional Development

    Claudia Chaustre has 15 years of experience in the learning and practice of the Reggio Emilia approach to education. She was part of L’Atelier School – Miami’s first Reggio Emilia inspired preschool – for 14 years. Throughout this time she was a teacher in the different age groups (0 to 5), a Pedagogical Coordinator, and a Co-Director. Her relationship with KLA Schools started in 2008, by being their consultant during their first years through L’Atelier school. She joined KLA Schools in January 2015 as a full-time Pedagogical Consultant. Her role is to visit the schools periodically to provide pedagogical support in the ReggioEmilia approach.

    Dana Grimes
    Director of Finance

    Ms. Dana Grimes has been in charge of the Accounting and Finance department of the KLA Schools Affiliates since 2008, and has served as our Director of Finance since November 2008. Mrs. Grimes has more than 15 years of experience in accounting and finance. She has worked in the public and private sector since 2001. She has an Associate’s Degree in Accounting from Miami Dade College and a Bachelor’s Degree in Accounting from Florida International University. She provides our staff and franchisees with training and support in the areas of Accounting and Finance. She holds these positions in our corporate office in Miami, Florida.

    Adriana Lamas Ortega
    Director of Admissions

    A Miami native, Ms. Ortega has served as our Admissions Director since June 2013. Prior to that, she was a teacher for a KLA Schools Affiliate from August 2011 to June 2013. Ms. Ortega earned a Bachelors of Psychology from University of Miami in 2010 and has held these positions in our corporate office in Miami, Florida.

    Jose Loor
    Director of Marketing

    Jose Loor has held the position of Director of Marketing and the Director of Marking of the KLA Schools Affiliates since April 2013. Prior to that, he was the Operations Manager of the KLA Schools Affiliates from January 2010 to April 2013. He has help these positions in our corporate office in Miami, FL. Mr. Loor has a Bachelor’s degree in Economics from the University of Miami and a Master of Business Administration from Universidad Complutese de Madrid, Spain.

    Gillian Gavurin
    Director of Operations

    Gillian Gavurin has worked for the KLA Schools Affiliates since August 2013. She started her career as a teacher for preschool children. After participating in projects throughout the school year of 2014-2015 with the marketing department, she became Assistant Director of Marketing in June 2015 and was later promoted to Director of Operations. She has been working in the education field since 2005, received her Bachelors Degree in Special Education in 2008 from Boston University and a dual Masters Degree in Early Childhood Education and Special Education from Touro College in New York City in 2010. She currently holds her position at our corporate office in Miami, Florida.

    Maria Jose Morla
    Director of Branding

    Maria Jose Morla works for the KLA Schools Affiliates as the Director of Branding. She oversees marketing and advertising activities to ensure the right message is delivered among schools. Maria Jose received her Bachelor’s Degree in Science in Communications with a Major in Advertising from Florida International University in 2009 and a Master’s Degree in Integrated Marketing Communication from Emerson College in 2017. She holds her position at our corporate offices in Miami, Florida.

    Magdalena Castro
    Pedagogical Consultant

    Magdalena Castro has worked for the KLA Schools Affiliates since 2008, before the first school was opened. She started her career as a teacher at KLA Schools of Brickell in the Class of the 2’s, Class of the 3’s, Class of the 4’s and Kindergarten. She later became the Co-Director for that school and served as the Pedagogical Consultant for the schools in Coral Gables, Pembroke Pines and Aventura. Following that she was named the Director of KLA Schools of Aventura. In 2016, Ms. Castro stepped down from her School Director position and now serves as the Pedagogical Consultant for all the KLA Schools across the nation.

    Raquel Roa 
    Assistant Director of Professional Development

    Raquel Roa has 15 years of experience working with children, she holds a Bachelor’s Degree from Catholic University Andrés Bello and a Minor degree in Early Childhood Education from Metropolitan University in Caracas, Venezuela. She worked for KLA Schools in Doral as a teacher from 2012 to 2015. In November 2017, she became the Assistant Director of Professional Development, where she oversees the pedagogical development. She holds her position at our corporate offices in Miami, Florida.

    Over her career, her passion is being surrounded by children, she is a promoter and defender of children’s rights, she firmly believes in them and thinks that if we provide an education of quality we will have a better world because they are the future of our humanity.

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