When you are looking for a quality Montessori school as either a parent or prospective teacher it is important to keep in mind that schools are operated independently and are either privately owned or run by a non-profit association. The name “Montessori” is not copyrighted and so any school can claim that it is offering an authentic Montessori program. Therefore anyone can open a school and call it Montessori. The vast majority of schools calling themselves "Montessori" do offer a high quality and authentic Montessori program but a little research on your part can ensure you are making an informed choice for you and your child.
It is often the case that a Montessori school administrator will encourage parents to observe at the school before enrolling their child. This is an excellent way to assess if the school will be an environment that will suit the developmental needs of your child. You will be invited to observe in a classroom setting while the children are in attendance. Typically you will be offered a brief history of the school, program offerings and school policies. It is important to enquire about the training and experience level of the teachers and whether parent education evenings are offered. You might also consider asking if the school has an affiliation with a provincial or national Montessori organization.
Global Television presentation about Choosing a Montessori School
MONTESSORI QUALITY ASSURANCE
Committed to Principles of the Association Montessori Internationale
In Canada, Montessori Quality Assurance is a program to help parents identify the schools that are adhering to principles and practices of the AMI (Association Montessori Internationale). Trained AMI Consultants visit the schools to promote ongoing professional development and high quality, authentic Montessori programs.
Schools meeting all of the Essential Characteristics of AMI Environments in support of the full development of the human being will be identified as AMI Recognized Schools. They will receive a certificate of AMI Recognition and will be identified as an AMI Recognized School on the Montessori Quality Assurance website.