Who We Are
Geist Montessori Academy provides an academically, socially, emotionally, and culturally rich educational environment that allows children to explore using their natural curiosity and become lifelong learners in the process. Academics are infused with character building and community awareness to develop the whole-child and prepare our students for life.
Geist Montessori Academy began as a private Montessori preschool. As the founding students grew older, their parents desired an affordable Montessori education for children in the community. In 2006, the school became a tuition-free, public charter school authorized by Ball State University.
Today, the school is home to close to 300 students ranging in age from pre-k through eighth grade. and remains a tuition-free, public charter school for Indiana students.. During the 2015-2016 school year, the state of Indiana granted Grade A status to Geist Montessori Academy for academic excellence. Students at Geist Montessori Academy enjoy hands-on experiences in every subject through the use of Montessori materials. Teachers offer input and guidance in this process to help students achieve mastery of state academic standards. Kindergarten through eighth grade are funded through our public charter. Our pre-k program offers full and half day options, and is tuition based.
Additionally, Geist Montessori Academy values parent involvement. Our PTO is a vital part of our school’s success and provides many opportunities for parents to get involved in a wide variety of ways.
ESSER III Return to Instruction Plan
A Montessori Education
The Montessori Method is based on years of patient observation of the nature of children and has proved itself of universal application. Schools all over the world have adopted this way of teaching successfully. The method is based on the child’s imperious need to learn by doing and has a profound respect for the child’s personality. It enables the teacher to work with each child individually and/or in small groups in each content area.
Flexibility & Freedom
At Geist Montessori Academy instruction is individualized to meet the needs of each learner. Our lead teachers provide small group lessons for students based on the academic needs of each individual. Our students learn to be self-directed to work independently and manage their time effectively. This allows students to move through content at a pace that is appropriate for them – some at an accelerated pace and others at a pace that takes a bit more time.
We encourage each student to enjoy “freedom with responsibility” as they move around the classroom. Learning can occur spontaneously and individually or with a small group of friends. The child is not asked to perform at the level of his or her peers and the child’s peers are not asked to perform at his or her level. Thus, the child is freed to develop and learn things wholly, instead of too quickly or too slowly.
Lifelong, Joyful Work
The Montessori Method has revealed the young child as a lover of work – intellectual work, spontaneously chosen and carried out with immense joy. The child, at the age of three-years-old, begins this work using hands-on materials. The child’s journey is continued throughout the years, instilling a lifelong love of learning, not hindered by rote memorization and meaningless repetition.
Respect & Peacefulness
The Montessori Method is based upon a profound respect for the child and his or her personality. The individual treatment of each child begets harmony and rids the child of the struggle so often associated with competition. Feelings of inferiority are absent from the Montessori classroom, allowing endless opportunities for mutual help to be peacefully exchanged by peers and teachers alike.
The Montessori method embraces and develops the whole child, not just their intellectual faculties. Hands-on practical life activities such as knitting, woodworking, gardening and doing dishes nurture a child’s self-direction and discipline. These activities increase a child’s ability to focus for long periods of time and continue tasks precisely until completed. These skills are then easily applied by the child in their learning.
GMA School Board
Geist Montessori Academy is a tuition-free public charter school, funded by the state of Indiana. Parents of children from anywhere in the state may complete an open enrollment form and enter a lottery for open slots in the school, held in January or February as deemed necessary by the administration. Students of Geist Montessori Academy Pre-Kindergarten are given access to priority enrollment for Kindergarten before enrollment is open to the public.
Geist Montessori Academy Board of Directors
Debi Dobbins – President
Erika Radford – Secretary
Lorrie Ramsey – Treasurer
Melanie Linder – At-Large Member
If you have interest in serving either on the Board or one of its Committees, please complete the attached form. (GMA Board Nomination Form)
Calendar & Meeting Minutes
The Geist Montessori Academy Board of Directors meet once a month every third Wednesday evening (unless otherwise posted). For an up-to-date annual calendar, please check below links to our monthly meeting schedules. To review the monthly Board Minutes, please go to the following links:
February Board Meeting
January Board Meeting
December Board Meeting
November Board Minutes
October Board Minutes
September Board Minutes
August Board Minutes
The Board encourages students and parents to discuss their concerns, inquiries and complaints through informal conferences with the appropriate teacher, principal, or other campus staff. Concerns should be expressed as soon as possible, and when possible in writing, to allow early resolution through Montessori methods such as peace tables with the appropriate contacts with immediate knowledge. If an informal conference requires additional leadership involvement, the student or parent may initiate our more formal process to the administration or board. Even after initiating a more formal process, students and parents are encouraged to seek informal resolution of their concerns. A student or parent whose concerns are resolved may withdraw a formal inquiry at any time.
Students or parents can use the below forms to involve leadership:
LEVEL ONE: SENT TO EXECUTIVE DIRECTOR
LEVEL TWO: SENT TO BOARD
Download the forms to your computer. Open the forms in Adobe Reader and use Fill and Sign. Save them to your computer and then email them.
As of 2021, the Pre-K program and governing body is managed by the GMA Board of Directors and Geist Montessori Academy Administration.