Collaboration at Local, Public Montessori Benefits Students
Families in five Stark districts - Canton City, Jackson Local, Lake Local, Plain Local and North Canton City - may choose to send their kindergarten through 8th grade students to free, public, Montessori school thanks to the partnership and collaborative efforts of school leaders in these districts.
Dr. Bob Roden, Dean of Students, recently gave me an opportunity to visit with students at Portage Collaborative Montessori School (PCMS). Upon entering a classroom, the young greeter for the week introduced herself, shook my hand,
and welcomed me. She explained various classroom procedures that clearly outlined expectations for students and offered support when needed. She told how students often work together, and that they are able to choose the order in which tasks are completed. It was clear that developing independent learners who treat others with respect was a primary goal.
What's different at PCMS? Students stay with one teacher for three years in a mixed-age class. The teacher individualizes the curriculum to meet each child's ability and performance level, and there is key emphasis on social development.
When asked to describe the strengths of PCMS, Dr. Roden shared, "This is a family. We know the students and families well, and we all work together to personalize the learning experiences for students. The teachers are caring and...engage the students in learning that matters. Students create, solve problems, work collaboratively, are self-directed, and are expected to practice kindness and respect every day."
Currently, there are 211 students in attendance at PCMS, and their building report card is stellar! If you haven't yet visited, you are missing a treasure in Stark County!