TRAVERSE CITY — The Children’s House, an independent Montessori school in Traverse City, is expanding its educational programs to include seventh and eighth grade students.
The school currently offers educational opportunities for infants through sixth grade and will add an adolescent program for seventh and eighth grade students in the fall.
“Really, this program is an extension of our school community,” said Michele Shane, head of school for The Children’s House. “It’s an opportunity to extend the mission of the school for two more years.”
Christina Magiera is glad the school is expanding. She has three children enrolled there, and she likes the Montessori method of educating the whole child.
The school is a good fit for her family, she said, and her son will move up from sixth grade to the adolescent program next year.
“The consistency is there, and he’s already familiar with this method of teaching,” Magiera said. “I know a lot of families have been asking about when we could possibly expand, and I think it was only a matter of time. I’m glad that it worked out this way for us.”
The Children’s House has been growing since it was founded 30 years ago. It began with one preschool and one toddler classroom and now enrolls more than 240 students at its 8-acre campus on North Long Lake Road in Grand Traverse County.
School administrators worked to develop an adolescent Montessori program since 2011 as numbers in the school’s elementary programs grew. Private donations will cover program start-up costs, Shane said.
“The time is right because our elementary population is large, and with each year it expands,” Shane said. “Now I feel we have a good, solid number of students to begin the adolescent program.”
The school hired Susan Holmes Glazier, former Farm School Director at Mountain Laurel Montessori School in Flint Hill, Va., to head the program. Holmes-Glazier, a Michigan native, has a master’s degree in education and science and received her Association Montessori Internationale diploma in Montessori Adolescent Studies in 2003.
The school’s goal is to grow the new program to include between 20 and 25 students. Shane said that growth likely will mean the school’s facilities will have to expand, too, but she isn’t sure if that means the school will build or buy when the time comes.
The Children’s House will be considering seventh and eighth grade student applications throughout the spring and summer. Call the school at 231-929-9325 for more information.