New Montessori pre-school to start in former Tippe building
July 2, 2012
Milwaukee Public Schools will open a new Montessori school this in the former Tippecanoe School for the Arts and Humanities, 357 E. Howard Ave.
MPS officials said the 139-student-long waiting list at Fernwood Montessori School in Bay View shows clear demand for the Montessori early childhood school set to open on the city’s southeast side in September.
A vote on June 21 by the Milwaukee Board of School Directors paved the way for the new Howard Avenue Montessori School to open to 120 half-day 3- and 4-year-olds in September.
The new school community will be able to change the new school’s name if it desires.
Nearly every 3rd-through-8th-grader in the four longest-running MPS Montessori elementary schools—Craig, Fernwood, MacDowell, and Maryland—outperforms the district average on state test scores. More than a third—35%—exceed the state average, according to MPS.
At Fernwood, the MPS Montessori program nearest to the new site, 88.8% of students scored proficient or better in reading in 2011-12, exceeding the state average of 81.9% and the MPS average of 58.4%. In math, 84.6% of Fernwood students were proficient in 2011-12, besting the state average of 77.9% and the MPS average of 48.6%.
Fernwood has a waiting list of 110 3-year-olds and 29 4-year-olds.
MPS expects that the new school on Howard Avenue will relieve the pressure at Fernwood and give Milwaukee parents another high-quality school for their children.
Enrollment will first be opened to families on the official three-choice enrollment waiting lists for existing MPS Montessori schools with a lottery that will begin immediately. Families selected through the lottery will receive letters next week and will have until July 20 to affirm interest.
Three-choice waiting list families not selected in the lottery will also receive letters next week and would have the chance to take open spaces, if available, after July 20. If those processes do not fill the school, a second lottery will be held for families who have indicated interest in MPS Montessori schools after the three-choice enrollment period. They too will receive letters next week and must indicate interest by August 2.
The second lottery will also be open to any interested family that contacts MPS’ Office of Family Services (5225 W. Vliet Street, Milwaukee 53208 or (414) 475-8448) beginning on Monday, July 2 and before August 2.
Within each part of the process, preference will be given to families in the new school’s walk zone and to those with siblings at the school, per prior Board action.
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