Reporting Gigi Barnett
BALTIMORE (WJZ)– Baltimore’s only Montessori charter school opened its doors on Thursday for a tour of the new school building.
Gigi Barnett has more.
It took $4 million and four years to get to the ribbon-cutting at the Baltimore Montessori Charter School in East Baltimore.
The school moved into the building back in 2008, becoming Baltimore’s first Montessori school.
Now, the charter school can expand on more middle school grades.
“One place I really enjoy is the community space where we can hang out and relax while we finish our work,” student Kailah Parham said. “It took a long time to get here, but since January, we have been able to adjust and now feel right at home.”
In recent years, the city has worked to revitalize this area by bringing in more homeowners and businesses, and this school is the center of it all.
“This was once a vacant site here for more than 10 years and so we brought it back to life,” Allison Shecter, the director of the school, said.
Montessori is a teaching method that allows the student to choose how he or she learns.
The school has 300 students and a waiting list of more than 1,000.
While it’s Baltimore’s only Montessori, city school leaders say they want more.
“I have been pushing Montessori to come to me for a Montessori school on the west side, so I want to put a little pressure on the organization,” Dr. Andres Alonso, CEO of Baltimore City Schools, said.
The Montessori uses a lottery to select students.