well, i assume this isnt supposed to be a montessori type program. what i would worry about is the fact they may be latching on to montessori philisophy without following the full idea of the program. preschool in general for age 4-5 would be assumed to have academics-unless the parent wants an alternative such as montessori which is fine as long as thats what you want. i would assume a UPK would have a basis of academics.
im confused on one thing, you mentioned last year's program and said what she learned. is the program this year continuing with those things? im just not clear on whether she is ONLY not using pencil work which concerns you or if you mean she isnt do anything academic?