Our vision began 35 years ago, when, after much deliberation and research, we decided to send our (then) two-and-a-half-year-old daughter, Olivia, to a Montessori school in London called The Gatehouse Learning Centre. It was the best decision we ever made, as we watched her flourish in every conceivable area (academic, social and emotional), exceeding even our very high expectations.
In fact, we were so inspired and impressed that we approached the school principal, who was trained by Maria Montessori, to design a distance learning course to teach the Montessori Method to people all over the world. The first of our students enrolled at the College of Modern Montessori in London in 1981. Since then, over 12,000 people from over 80 countries have enrolled for our distance learning Modern Montessori teacher training course.
Soon after moving to South Africa, it became clear to us that the country’s provision of early childhood education was distinctly lacking, and we knew that an increased Montessori presence would positively impact South Africa’s education system. So, in 1991, we moved the Modern Montessori head office to Johannesburg and worked towards expanding the scope of our operations to include distance learning as well as part-time and full-time lecture-based Montessori training.
In 1994, our part-time and full-time Montessori teacher education programmes were awarded international accreditation from the Montessori Accreditation Council for Teacher Education (MACTE), which is an autonomous, international, non-profit accreditation agency for Montessori teacher education programmes. The MACTE Commission is based in the United States and is the premier global standard-setting and accrediting body for Montessori teacher education. MACTE accreditation is testimony to an institution’s unwavering commitment to the provision of high calibre, superior quality Montessori education.
In 1996, after a seemingly endless search for new premises to house our administration department, lecture facilities and flagship school, we found the perfect property set on five beautiful acres in Linbro Park, Sandton. The property was originally developed by Raymond Ammoretti, an acclaimed Italian woodcraftsman. Raymond and his wife, Lorna, had six children and as their family and business grew, they erected more buildings to accommodate their needs. When the children left home, Raymond and Lorna decided to sell their five acres. The property was far too big for most families, however, and was on the market for some time before we came across it. We knew immediately that it would be perfect to develop into a Montessori school and training centre.
We started with a Montessori preschool for children aged three months to six years old. After only a few months, parents were so pleased with their children’s development that they pressured us to expand to the primary school level, catering for children aged six to thirteen years old; which we did, most successfully.
The success of our Linbro Park School inspired us to expand Modern Montessori’s school division to include two more sites:
The School of Modern Montessori Gillitts, Durban, KwaZulu-Natal (established in 2003).
Our experience of excellence in Montessori education is the foundation upon which each of the Modern Montessori schools were built. Our dedication to the development of early childhood education and our belief in the Modern Montessori Method ensures the standard of each of the schools will always be maintained.
Please do not hesitate to contact us if you have any questions.