TAMPA, Fla. — Hillsborough County Schools announced on Wednesday that the district will open a Montessori magnet program and it will be the first such program in its history.
The hands-on learning solution will open at Essrig Elementary School for the upcoming year and will be offered to 3-year-old, 4-year-old and Kindergarten students. The district said new grade levels will be added each year.
A special application window will open May 18-27 for parents across the district to apply. The district said 54 students will be accepted. Families can apply here when that window opens.
Interested parents can attend an information night Tuesday, May 17 from 6-7 p.m. in the Essrig Elementary school cafeteria.
The district said the one-of-a-kind classroom is designed to be a "school-within-a-school" and will offer hands-on learning opportunities. Teachers in the program undergo "rigorous training over the course of an entire year, to ensure they are well-equipped for empowering students’ exploration of their interests and modes of learning that suit them best," the district said.
“The Montessori Magnet Program emphasizes independence and provides our youngest learners with the ability to develop their natural interests. This program focuses on student-paced instruction and fosters all aspects of their development – cognitive, emotional, social, and physical. The district anticipates an overwhelming response to this program and is already looking to add more Montessori programs at other schools to meet the growing demand,” said Hillsborough County Public Schools Superintendent Addison Davis.