Xavier University Montessori Lab School Expands

June 19, 2013

Jun 11, 2013

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Xavier Montessori Lab School Expands

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Photo by Greg Rust, courtesy Xavier University.

Xavier University’s popular Montessori Lab School will add new classes and teachers next year, when a new principal will take over the 43-year-old program.

Begun in 1966 as a demonstration project that soon became an opportunity to educate teachers in the Montessori Method, the school will add its first age 9-12 Upper Elementary classroom, as well as a new age 3-6 classroom.

In the Montessori Method, students are divided by age and stay in the same classroom for three years. With the addition of a 9-12 classroom, XU will be able to demonstrate the Method in use from preschool through grade six.

The expansion means the school will now occupy two floors of the university’s Joseph Building, with Early Childhood classrooms on the first floor and the Lower Elementary and Upper Elementary classrooms on the second floor.

“Expansion allows for better modeling of the Montessori Method and aligns with Xavier’s teacher education program, which credentials through grade 6,” says a school spokesperson. “It also allows Xavier to answer the call from parents asking for a program covering all the elementary years. The long-term goal is to expand through high school.”

Since XU began its program with Hilda Rothschild, who opened the area’s first Montessori school and studied with Maria Montessori, it has trained teachers who now work all over the country, and has helped establish Montessori schools in South Korea and China.

XU’s teacher training program was also instrumental in the growth of Montessori schools in the Cincinnati Public Schools system, which now operates five elementary schools and two high schools using a modified version of the Method.

Of the many of children educated at Xavier’s Montessori Lab School, many became teachers and some 25 to 30 have worked in the school itself.

Both new staff members have XU connections. Rosemary Quaranta will begin this fall as the Lab School’s new principal. A graduate of Edgecliff College (which merged with XU in 1980), the Washington Montessori Institute, and Cleveland State University, she will move here from Illinois, where she is currently elementary head teacher at Seton Montessori on Clarendon Hills and serves faculty for AMS Teacher Education Program for both early childhood and elementary at the Seton Montessori Institute.

The new head teacher for the Upper Elementary classes, Joshua Shanklin, will also start this fall. He earned his Master’s in Montessori Education from Xavier in 2012 and will move to Cincinnati from Avilla, IN, where he has been been lead teacher in the Upper Elementary at Oak Farm Montessori for the past two years.