Principal’s Corner: February Growth Report

As a service to our community, we are pleased to offer the first monthly report to keep you informed of the planned growth of Mata Montessori.

Recent Staff Hiring

Please welcome Ms. Guadalupe Garcia and Ms. Griselda Han, new teaching assistants with Montessori backgrounds. Ms. Garcia, along with Ms. Martinez, will support lower elementary classrooms, and Ms. Han will serve in Mr. Boucher’s room. Ms. Garcia is replacing Mr. Erik Carranza, who enlisted in the army. An additional special education/inclusion teacher is in the midst of the hiring process; details to be finalized.

Current Classrooms:

  • 4 Primary General Education, 3 Primary Dual Language (total 7)
  • 7 Lower Elementary Gen Ed, 5 Lower Elementary Dual Language (total 12)
  • 3 Upper Elementary Gen Ed, 2 Upper Elementary Dual Language (total 5)

Now in its first year of growth, our Upper Elementary offers fourth grade, but will continue to add a grade each year through sixth-grade.

Classrooms Planned for 2017-2018

Primary and Lower El are projected to continue at present levels.

In keeping with Montessori philosophy, Upper El will take the next step in its transition, becoming fourth- to fifth-grade multi-age classrooms. Next year’s projection is 8 classrooms: 5 Gen Ed and 3 Dual Language. (Upper El will complete its transition by 2018-2019 when each classroom will house fourth-sixth grades.)

Purchasing and Staffing

Thanks to the generosity of our excellent PTA, shelving has already been ordered for those three Upper El classrooms we’ll be adding. Material orders are being prepared to ensure that each classroom is fully equipped. Additional Montessori materials in Spanish will also be purchased.

Three additional teachers will be Montessori trained and ready to begin their duties in August. We’ll have more details about them when hiring begins in spring. Feel free to refer any interested teachers for consideration. Training is intensive, occurring over 1-2 summers depending upon the grade levels.

Middle School Update

The district has given the green light for Mata Montessori to proceed through eighth-grade. This will allow us to offer your child the continuity of a Montessori experience right up to high school! The first order of business in creating our middle school is to decide what type of program and curriculum to offer. With that in mind, we observed a high school in Plano which offers project-based learning. Ms. Williams and Ms. Rios then visited Wilson Montessori School in Houston whose Montessori middle school program incorporates some of the best practices of project-based learning. The next step will be making a recommendation for Mata’s middle school program to our site-based decision making (SBDM) committee before proceeding. We will keep you updated as our middle school continues to progress from dream to reality.