Dear Community Members,
The Houston ISD School Board and Superintendent Carranza are discussing a proposal to overhaul Magnet school designations in our district. The magnet program has needed revision for some time, and the fact that our board and superintendent are tackling this difficult issue is something to applaud. We support the goal to ensure equitable access to school throughout our district. We also believe that the review of programs must be conducted through a lens of quality, public demand, and effectiveness. This proposal has the potential to greatly impact children at Garden Oaks Montessori Magnet and Wilson Montessori as well as students across the City of Houston.
By calling for the removal of magnet status and therefore associated funding and bus transportation for our current Montessori Magnets, this proposal could mean the end of public Montessori in Houston. While we have heard some mention of a school choice program option, no details on how these schools will be supported have been shared. Montessori is a magnet theme under the national Magnet Schools of America organization. The HISD School Board and Superintendent need to understand that, without additional funding, the implementation of Montessori is absolutely not sustainable.
Garden Oaks Montessori Magnet and Wilson Montessori have approximately 60% magnet transfer students, and over two thousand students on the waitlists. These programs are some of the most popular magnet options in the district drawing students from all over HISD and area private schools. In fact, the recent feeder pattern expansion of a Montessori program as a pathway within Waltrip High School underscores the increasing demand for a Montessori option at all levels. With the district discussing ways to market HISD to the public, it would be better served by using those funds to fully support the two successful Montessori magnet programs and a growing feeder pattern option already attracting a large number of students. These programs have resulted in academic success for students and reflect the diversity of Houston. Montessori magnets that are supported by HISD magnet funding and transportation are accessible and equitable as they allow ALL students, an opportunity to receive a Montessori education.
Friends of Montessori asks you, our friends and neighbors in the community, to contact the HISD school board members and district administrators and let them know how critical proper funding for our Montessori programs is to our children and district. Go to our webpage at fomhouston.wordpress.com, follow us on twitter at @FOM_Houston, and visit our Facebook page- Friends of Montessori for further information.
Friends of Montessori Board of Directors
For More Information
Please Join Friends of Montessori for an Open Meeting
January 29th at 6:30pm at Waltrip High School