June 22, 2017

$4.8M for UHart, Montessori degree

PHOTO | Steve Laschever
PHOTO | Steve Laschever
Walter Harrison, president of the University of Hartford.

The University of Hartford and the Montessori Training Center Northeast say they have been awarded $4.8 million from the Walton Family Foundation to establish an undergraduate Montessori education degree by 2022.

The partners said Thursday they will launch the bachelor's degree program on campus this fall for both early childhood and elementary education with a Montessori concentration. The Montessori bachelor's degree would become a UHart tuition-based program by the end of 2022.

In addition to its bachelor's degree program, UHart will conduct research about Montessori educator preparation over the next five years. The two institutions have partnered for decades and successfully collaborated on a master's degree in education curriculum that incorporates Association Montessori Internationale teacher training into that program, UHart President Walter Harrison said in a statement.

For the new bachelor's degree, the funds will be used to set up the program, provide tuition assistance to eligible students who show commitment to degree completion, and conduct research to evaluate the effectiveness of the new program.

"Expansion to a bachelor's program will allow our partnership to create a research-based model for Montessori teacher preparation in the Montessori community worldwide," said Paige M. Bray, director of Montessori Studies at UHart.

Training with the Association Montessori Internationale (AMI) at the Montessori center in Hartford will be incorporated into the curriculum so that graduates will earn a bachelor's degree and an internationally-recognized AMI diploma.

Currently, the university and the Montessori center, managed by the Capitol Region Education Council, offer the only program in the Northeast that combines Association Montessori Internationale (AMI) teacher training with a graduate degree.

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