Winter Haven, FL, August 07, 2014 --(PR.com
)-- On Friday, July 1, 2014, four local moms headed to the Polk County School Board offices in Bartow, full of a mixture of excitement and nerves. Melissa Davis, Katrina Hill, Tasha Keppler and Karen Winningham make up the founding board of Winter Haven Montessori Academy.
“We’ve spent the last several months working together, alongside several others, to prepare a needs assessment, curriculum plan, organization plan, business plan, and detailed action plan,” says Katrina Hill. “We are confident we’ve answered all the required questions and have a solid, executable plan. Most importantly, we’re excited about the opportunity to bring an alternative form of education to students in Winter Haven."
By its very nature, the Montessori learning environment is innovative when compared with traditional pedagogy. Of particular note is the use of multi-age, multi-level classrooms where students are part of a diverse learning community that mirrors the larger society. Montessori education focuses on students as life-long, self-directed learners who impact their community in authentic and effective ways.
“It’s human nature to have a learning desire,” says Tasha Keppler. “The Montessori method embraces that natural desire to learn allowing students to learn concepts more thoroughly and in a way that works for them whether that be through the use of manipulatives, through one-on-one interaction, or simply through being allowed more time to practice during the three hour work cycle.”
Winter Haven Montessori Academy seeks to serve families in their local community who are interested in a proven, hands-on learning approach for their K-8 aged children. The school will strive to put children on a path that embraces creativity, builds self-awareness and helps them develop the academic skills, physical tools and personal confidence necessary for lifelong success. Winter Haven Montessori Academy will
not discriminate against any minority, and the school will be nonsectarian in its programs, admission policies, employment practices and operation. They seek to bring a world-class Montessori educational experience to the students of the Winter Haven community.
“We’ve had such positive community feedback,” said Hill. “I’ve been amazed at the number of people who have written support letters, shared kind and encouraging words with us, and provided positive feedback on surveys we’ve conducted.”
The founding board will present their proposal to the Polk County School Board during the August 12th work session. That presentation will be followed by an interview session later in the month. The final notice of whether or not the application has been approved will be announced at the October 14th Polk County School Board Meeting.