Community Updates

30 November 2022

Thank you to our Montessori community. It’s been a transformational year for Montessori Australia!

Your many ideas and suggestions over the past year – gathered from personal site visits to early childhood centres, schools and aged care facilities, meetings with educators and leaders, surveys, interactions and feedback – have all been invaluable in helping us better understand your needs. Your feedback has allowed us to refine our services to better suit the changing needs of a modern, post-Covid workforce. Although its fundamental principles remain as powerful today as they did a hundred years ago, we believe that Montessori must adapt to the times to stay relevant and to take the movement forward.

Below are some highlights from our efforts to collaborate and innovate. Montessori Australia has achieved the highest level of community support in its 15-year history as the national peak body with nearly 65% of all Montessori programs in the country, including 84% of all schools, now members.

Quality Standards for all Training Traditions

We have brought globally recognised standards for Montessori training to Australia through our accreditation with the Montessori Accreditation Council for Teacher Education (MACTE). Over the last 25 years the Montessori community worldwide has increasingly come to recognise MACTE accreditation as a sign of quality Montessori training and we are proud to represent MACTE in Australasia. 

Quality Standards for all Schools and Centres

Now in its second year, the Montessori Quality: Authentic Practice program (MQ:AP) is reinvigorating the quality improvement process for centres and schools through a self-reflective process that is now more in line with Montessori principles. 

Connections with Like-Minded Education Organisations

Many of our workshops, conferences and professional development programs are now accredited with NESA and ACT for Professional Learning hours. Montessori Australia has also sought to increase the exposure of the Montessori movement by making connections with other educational organisations, including the establishment of Transforming Education Australasia (TEA), a new collective for promoting the common agenda of alternative education organisations.

Advancing Montessori Across Australia

In response to your calls for increased advocacy, visibility and marketing, we have held ongoing discussions with ACECQA, NESA, ACARA, and ISA, among other regulatory bodies. Montessori Australia has been working with ACECQA to provide articles, resources and assessor training. Our video Why Montessori? has been used widely to promote Montessori to new schools, services, and is available to centres and schools to use for their own promotional purposes. Traffic on the Montessori Australia website is currently increasing at an average rate of about 12% monthly with unprecedented high click rates on pages in Australia, US, Canada and the UK! We have also sought to showcase Montessori to wider audiences through our conferences and professional development programs, which we have begun to market outside the Montessori community. 

Fostering Australian Research

Montessori Australia has liaised with independent researchers to showcase their work, and supported those embarking upon research in Australia through discussions with several universities. Our website now highlights some excellent contemporary Australian research. Working with you, the community and leading academics in the area, the Early Childhood Focus Group has compiled research on floor beds and has conducted a review of data management systems, two issues of high need for early childhood centres across Australia. Montessori educators, parents, and alumni took part in the second phase of a research project with UNSW to begin to consider and examine alternative outcomes of school success with an invitation to come to take part in the next phase of research with UNSW’s Alternative indicators of school success project. Stay tuned.

Grassroots Work in Focus Groups

We have also become an organisation of unity and inclusion within the Montessori community in Australia. Our action-based Focus Groups are open to everyone, no matter their training background. If you have an interest in participating in any of these focus groups please contact us at [email protected]

Mentoring and Networking

Montessori Australia has also supported the Montessori community by honouring experienced Montessorians in the community and connecting them with younger educators with two dozen interviews with Montessorians from a range of backgrounds on our bi-monthly Zoom program Montessori Lives! 

Montessori Australia has actively promoted networking within the Montessori community and between Montessorians and the wider educational community with live conferences. Our Early Childhood Best Practice Conference will be on 11-12 March 2023 on the Gold Coast, packed with an impressive lineup of speakers, fun and engaging entertainment and long-missed networking opportunities.  Save the dates for our 2023 events.

Join Us and Get Involved!

We are YOUR peak body. Montessori Australia welcomes everyone with an interest in the Montessori community to get involved at whatever level they are comfortable with. We welcome Montessori educators and leaders of all levels and training traditions. With nearly 65% of all Montessori schools and centres around the country as members, we offer tangible benefits and services. Click here for membership options or to inquire about getting involved with a Focus Group, email us at [email protected].

Montessori Australia...Transformational