The Pennsylvania Montessori Alliance (PMA) was incorporated as a 501(c)(3) in December of 2017. PMA was created to bring together all Montessori schools and Montessorians in the state of Pennsylvania under one Alliance to speak with a united Montessori voice in the area of advocacy. The Alliance is specifically interested in overseeing issues in public policy, regulations impacting the Montessori community, and grass-roots advocacy in the state of Pennsylvania. PMA’s goals include:
- recognition of the Montessori teaching credential by the Pennsylvania Department of Education and the Department of Human Services (OCDEL)
- encourage accommodations in licensing regulations for Montessori pedagogy
Montessori advocates participated in the Think Tank formed to revise the Keystone STARS quality Rating System in 2016-17. All Montessorians in the state of PA were invited to give feedback via online survey. Input by Montessorians enabled recognition of AMS accreditation and AMI/USA school recognition as equivalent to a 4 star rating in the alternative pathways to STARS ratings, and helped assure congruency with Montessori pedagogy in the STARS standards.
Networking meetings were held in January 2017 and April 2018 to discuss policy issues affecting Montessori education and PMA goals.
The first annual PMA conference was held in April 2018 to provide a first-ever state-wide Montessori conference in Pennsylvania. A second conference was held in the fall of 2018 and future professional development events are being planned.
The PMA board has been reviewing the proposed amendments to Chapter 49 of the PA Teacher Certification code and working with the state board of education to have MACTE accredited Montessori Teacher Education Programs considered as alternative program providers in the state of PA. See our Advocacy page for more details.
Mission, Vision, and Purpose
Mission: With a collaborative and unified voice we promote, support, and advocate for Montessori education in Pennsylvania.
Vision: To Promote Policies to Recognize the Montessori Certification and Protect Authentic Montessori Implementation in the State of Pennsylvania.
What We Do: PMA provides a forum for outreach and education, networking opportunities and professional growth in the Montessori community. It is an evolving professional organization, unified in its vision, purposeful and inclusive.
Our Purpose is to:
- Advocate for authentic Montessori education;
- Adhere to the principles and philosophy of Maria Montessori;
- Seek public recognition of Montessori as a proven educational approach;
- Promote Montessori educational research;
- Support professional development among Montessorians;
- Ensure equitable treatment for public and private Montessori educators;
- Build mutually beneficial relationships among Montessori, legislative groups, and other communities;
- Foster increased opportunities for teacher preparation and certification;
- and thereby Expand the availability of Montessori education for all children.
PMA Board Members & Staff
Diane Force, Head of School, Bala House Montessori, Bala Cynwyd, PA
- Vice President
Erin Conway, Head of School, Montessori Cottage, Fallsington, PA
Marie Conti, Head of School, The Wetherill School, Gladwyne, PA
Kortney Gipe, Lower Elementary Assistant Teacher, Montessori Academy of Lancaster