August Update and Next Steps
Lots of great progress is being made towards welcoming our first class in 2023. I can't share all the details, yet. Deals have to be closed before I can do that, of course. But I wanted to give you all an update, so you'd know that we are on track.
Location, Location, Location!
After looking at many possibilities, we have found an outstanding location. Everyone involved who has been to see it has said, "This is the EARTH School." It has everything we've been looking for:
space for art studio, lab, makerspace, garden, and greenhouse;
nearby learning resources that students can safely walk to including library, art exhibits, and college courses;
centrally located, but with natural surroundings including a stream on the property and bike path nearby;
and the current owner wants to make it work for us.
We are looking to finalize arrangements early next calendar year, at which time I will be able to share more.
Additional Teacher Leader
I've been collaborating with an incredible Columbus educator who is very excited about the possibility of joining EARTH School. I will let them introduce themselves when the time comes, but they are already helping me develop exciting opportunities and local connections for students, particularly in the Arts.
Outstanding Montessori Support
I've been working with a national organization called the Wildflower Foundation. Wildflower supports teachers to open small Montessori schools by providing experienced advisors, start-up and management resources, and funding opportunities. We have been partnered with an advisory team who have experience starting Montessori secondary schools. I'm really excited to continue exploring the Wildflower model to see if it would be a good fit for us to officially affiliate with them.
New Job for Jenn
I've been hired by St. Joseph Montessori School (SJMS) to teach English Language Arts in their middle school program this school year. This is a great opportunity for me to work with students and families who are currently in a local Montessori secondary program. Knowing that many of my future students will come from SJMS, this will allow me to shape the high school program to best meet their needs.
For those who aren't coming through SJMS, EARTH School will be open to any student seeking a program based in student driven education and environmental action. No prior Montessori experience necessary, just a longing to become a positive force in the community and in the world!
Seeking Board Members
As a non-profit organization, we will soon need a board. If you would like to be involved or have suggestions for who we should reach out to, please let us know through the contact page. We are particularly seeking people with experience with non-profits and/or fundraising at this time, but anyone with the time and passion to help us on our mission should get in touch.
So many exciting things in the works!
Peace and Health,