School’s in for the summer for MMS teachers attending Montessori training across U.S.


Maria Montessori prepares to lecture to Montessori teachers in India.

“The training of the teacher is something far more than the learning of ideas. It includes the training of character; it is a preparation of the spirit.” Dr. Maria Montessori

For nearly 40 years, Mountaineer Montessori School has demonstrated its commitment to providing a superior, authentic Montessori educational experience for our students by supporting high quality, on-campus training for our faculty members.

That tradition continues this summer. MMS is making a substantial investment in our faculty and academic programs by sending several staff members to some of the nation’s premier Montessori teacher training centers.

Rebecca Moore, who will lead our second lower elementary classroom, is spending the summer at the Montessori Institute of Milwaukee, Inc. taking the demanding AMI 6-12 training program that provides international certification.

“It is only one of 10 centers to offer this level of rigorous training,” says Head of School Dana Gilliland. Rebecca, who has taught in Kanawha County Schools, will be mentored and assisted in the classroom by Dana this fall. (Dana has more than 25 years of experience in authentic Montessori classrooms.)

Suzanne Sanders, who will lead our middle school, is participating in the AMI Adolescent Course at Hershey Montessori Farm School in Ohio. “It is, by far, the leading adolescent program in the world, with students coming from many different countries. It is the only adolescent program in the world that is approved by AMI,” says Dana. (Suzanne also is AMS certified in 6-9 and 9-12 education.)

Samantha Van den Berghe, a former preschool teacher who served as a classroom assistant last year, is taking the primary training at the Virginia Center for Montessori Studies in Richmond, Va. Samantha will co-teach as a lead guide in our second primary classroom with Julianna Phillips. Julianna is participating in the primary training at the Greater Cincinnati Center for Montessori Studies. They each have highly experienced mentor teachers (Susie Newhouse and Kathryn Rhoads) at school who will mentor them on-site through their practicum year. They have already begun working with their mentors, in addition to their coursework.

All MMS faculty train at programs approved by the American Montessori Society (AMS) or the Association Montessori Internationale, the two most established and recognized Montessori teacher training program worldwide. Currently, there are no Montessori training programs in West Virginia.

“A quality education for children starts with qualified teachers in the classroom. Our teachers will bring the highest level training and an international network of peers and mentors to further enhance our programs this fall,” says Dana.

“Authentic Montessori teacher training is not inexpensive and we thank our many supporters whose contributions help fund tuition and associated costs. Investing in education pays the highest returns,” added Harry Bell, president of the MMS Board of Directors.


About MMS:

Mountaineer Montessori School is the oldest, largest and most established Montessori school in West Virginia. MMS has served an estimated 1,000 Charleston students since its founding in 1976 by education pioneer Mary McKown. Starting in August, MMS will offer a full range of academic and cultural programs, including a full-time on-site learning specialist, to 120 students ages 3 to 14 at two campuses, located at 308 20th Street and 804 Myrtle Road in Charleston. For more information, call 304/342-7870.


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