Sunday, February 01, 2015
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CMSM Course Descriptions

CME|NY Course for Montessori School Administration and Leadership (CMSM)

Coordinators: Marie Dugan and Beverly Smith

Course Content Hours: 165 (summer academic content hours--divided into three weeks (three parts) with each part consisting of 55 academic hours. CME|NY offers 2 weeks (2 parts of 110 hours) one summer and 1 part the following summer (55 hours).

Practicum Hours: 1,080 hours working for 9 consecutive months during a full academic year, for a minimum of six hours a day, five days a week in your own school setting.

This is a comprehensive program to assist current and future heads of Montessori schools to operate within the philosophy and best practices of Montessori education while giving practical and necessary tools for the smooth operation of a well functioning, healthy, Montessori school. The program offers a comprehensive study of Montessori philosophy and current research of Dr. Maria Montessori's writings as well as a study of all areas of the Montessori curriculum, including lesson and material in each curriculum area and age grouping from birth through secondary. (Part I)

The learning is both practical and instructive and prepares each Head for the specific challenges, needs, and aspirations for his/her own school, whether the school is an  independent, pubic, charter school or a child care center.

Participants gain knowledge in school finance, legal and licensing requirements, curriculum administration, personnel supervision and evaluation, program planning and development, as well as parent relations, building a healthy board, school policies and short and long term planning. (Part II, Part III)

The Practicum consists of 1,080 hours, lasting a full academic year, with the administrator working at the practicum site at his/own school, a minimum of six hours per day, five days a week, for nine consecutive months. Assignments and assessments are integrated throughout the practicum year. A required case study is presented in the second summer. The practicum site must contain at least one Montessori classroom that meets the environmental set-up, materials and age range of children as required for its level.  Administrators work at their own school during the practicum.

The Administrator /Intern receives three site visits from CME faculty during their practicum, with observations and evaluation reports submitted to the CME. Program Development/Leading a Montessori School (Core)

(Course begins in Part I and continues in Part II and Part III)

What differentiates a Montessori school from other schools?  The operating tenet of a learning community that exists in harmony with Montessori principles sets the tone for a Montessori school.  This core course provides the school head with the knowledge, understanding, skills, and practical applications for the creation of such a community.  The faculty, comprised of highly recognized and experienced Montessori educators, serve as role models of good leadership--attentive, understanding, patient, encouraging, community builders, conflict handlers, role models, and mentors.  Topics include: developing and leading a Montessori school—both starting a new Montessori school and expanding an existing one--AMS school accreditation, and professional development of self, teachers, and staff.  The course covers all aspects of the professional relationships with others, including working with teachers, parents, boards, and communities.  As observation is a key to Montessori philosophy and practices, Adult Learners receive both academic content of observation tools and techniques and opportunities for observation. Montessori Curriculum (Foundational)

(Course begins in Part I and continues in Part III)

This foundational course provides Adult Learners with an overview of Montessori curriculum, materials, and lessons for all levels of Montessori education from birth to Secondary.  Those who already have a Montessori credential in one or more levels will still benefit from this important course as it provides specific information for the Adult Learner in their role as head of school.  For those without a Montessori credential, this course offers an exciting experience of the layered connections and threads of Montessori curriculum, as it moves from birth through secondary. Learning to assess and evaluate the Montessori curriculum provides the school leader with skills necessary to support the success of their own Montessori programs. Montessori Philosophy (Foundational)

(Course begins in Part I and continues in Part II and Part III)

This foundational course is key to the Adult Learner’s understanding of the history of Maria Montessori, her life, work and relationship to current research in child development and education and the continued relevance of her work today.  Topics include planes of development, Montessori concepts and theory, including peace and cosmic education.   The importance of personal growth though self-evaluation and on-going professional development is experienced through the transformational effects of participation in this course. How to clearly articulate Montessori philosophy provides the school leader with skills necessary to implement and develop their own Montessori programs. Educational Leadership

(Course begins in Part I and continues in Part II and Part III)

What makes a great leader?  What qualities of leadership can be developed?  How do we support ourselves in our leadership role?  This inspiring course offers Adult Learners the opportunity to engage personally and professionally to identify their needs and articulate their aspirations, and assists them in honing and refining their leadership skills and style to meet their goals. The learning is practical to better prepare each Adult Learner for the challenges and opportunities available to them -- whether they serve in a public, independent, or charter school, or a child care center. Led by some of the most dynamic leaders in the Montessori community today, topics include:  Leadership styles, leading and managing individuals and groups, communication skills, modeling, and mentoring. School Operations

(Course is divided between Part II and Part III)

In order to run a successful school, the Adult Learner needs to be comfortable, competent, and capable in all aspects of school operations.  For those with a background in teaching, school operations often pose the most challenge; yet, these essential elements are not only necessary to smooth operations, they can transform a school.  The course is presented by lively and energetic Montessori leaders who teach much needed real-life skills in the following practical aspects of school operations:  financial management, marketing, enrollment, recruiting hiring, termination, legal issues, strategic planning, and fundraising.  Whether the Adult Learner serves in a public, independent, or charter school, or at a child care center, this course provides tangible and attainable practices to help each meet their own aspirations for themselves and their school community.


Paula Polk Lillard:  Maria Montessori – A Modern Approach, 1973, Schocken Books, Inc., NYC

Maria Montessori:  From Childhood to Adolescence, 1973, Schocken Books, Inc., NYC

John Chattin-McNichols:  The Montessori Controversy, Delmar Publishers, Inc., Albany, NY

Rita Kramer:  Maria Montessori: A Biography


Peter Block:  Flawless Consulting, A Guide to Getting Your Expertise Used:

Susan Cain: Quiet: The Power of Extroverts

John Chattin-McNichols:  The Montessori Controversy (Delmar, NY)

John W. Gardner:  On Leadership, 1990, Simon and Schuster, NY

Daniel Goleman:  Primal Leadership – Realizing the Power of Emotional Intelligence, 2002, Harvard Business Publishing, Boston

Daniel Goleman: Social Intelligence, The New Science of Human Relationships, 2006, Bantam Dell Div. of Random House, NY

Margaret Howard Loeffler:  Montessori in Contemporary America (Heinemann, NH)

Jane Roland Martin:  The Schoolhome: Rethinking Schools for Changing Families (Harvard, MA)

Andrew Solomon: Far from the Tree (Random House, NY)


CME|NY prepares our Adult Learners to be proficient in the following AMS competencies for the Montessori Administrator specialist:

  1. Demonstrate an understanding of Montessori curriculum, its implementation, and expectations for Montessori teachers
  2. Demonstrate an understanding of and an ability to communicate to parents and faculty the sequence of a Montessori curriculum and a rationale for the materials used in Montessori classrooms
  3. Demonstrate observational techniques in order to assist and evaluate the quality of the Montessori program, the teaching staff, and its effectiveness with children
  4. Demonstrate effective evaluation procedures for working with Montessori staff
  5. Demonstrate a strong understanding of the Montessori philosophy and child development
  6. Demonstrate an ability to communicate Montessori philosophy to parents, community, and other educational professionals
  7. Demonstrate an ability to communicate program goals to staff through professional development in-service programs
  8. Demonstrate school leadership in all areas of operation
  9. Develop a comprehensive and fully-functioning Montessori community
  10.  Demonstrate knowledge of school/child-care governmental regulations

Center for Montessori Education|NY
785 Mamaroneck Avenue
White Plains, NY 10605

914-948-2501 (p)
914-597-2779 (f)

Our office hours are Monday-Thursday 9:30 am - 5:30 pm.
Please call to set up an appointment if you wish to meet with us in person.