Starting a Public Montessori School: A Planning Timeline


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PHASE I: PRE-PLANNING
(18 – 24 MONTHS AHEAD OF OPENING)

Gathering Stakeholders & Assembling Resources

  • Assemble a design team
  • Establish relationships with nearby Montessori schools, public and private
  • Learn about local options for starting schools: district, magnet, charter
  • Educate local leaders (school leaders, community leaders, parents)
    • Visit nearby public Montessori programs
  • Prepare a fact sheet that addresses key questions related to launching a public program:
    • Proposed size of program
    • Potential locations of program
    • Start-up costs
    • Teacher recruitment and training
  • If your state offers start-up support (available specifically for new charters), apply for financial or technical assistance
  • Cultivate funders to support initial planning (typically ’12-18 months ahead of school opening)

PHASE II: INITIAL PLANNING
(12 MONTHS AHEAD OF OPENING)

Operationalizing the Vision

  • Finalize plans for size, scope and location of program
  • Draft and submit application (for charter or magnet)
  • Reconstitute initial design team to serve as official planning board, responsible for:
    • Negotiating agreements with state/district
    • Hiring architects, contractors and other professionals necessary to prepare physical plant
    • Recruiting and hiring school leader
    • Developing system of student recruitment and selection
    • Managing budget
  • Launch School website
  • Recruit students and families

PHASE III: FINAL PLANNING
(FIVE MONTHS AHEAD OF OPENING)

Countdown to Opening

  • Complete operations plan
  • Hire instructional staff
  • Conduct lottery
  • Orient new families
  • Complete all needed construction/renovation