The Alpha Montessori School opened in April 2003 in the poor, densely populated neighborhood of Mandawali, on the southeast side of Delhi, India. The majority of people living in this low-income community are working class poor families who make a living as daily wage earners, street vendors, auto rickshaw drivers, painters, plumbers, dairy farmers, and street sweepers. The average family has 3 to 4 children and earns an income of only US $1000 to $1500 a year.
The building which houses Alpha Montessori School was purchased at the end of 2002, and remodeled to make the space more user friendly for the children. The school officially opened in 2003 with only three students and grew rapidly. It currently educates sixty underprivileged students, ages 3 to 14, with a waiting list of students who would like to attend.
There are currently three classrooms, a computer lab, and a future library room, across three stories, with a children’s garden on the roof. In 2005 the Montessori educational system was implemented in the nursery and kindergarten with much success. The Montessori system is now being implemented in higher grades with similar success.
This system has proven effective for the children of this impoverished community. It is very likely this system of education will be effective for students in similar communities throughout the world. The quiet, patience, respect, care for the school environment, and interest in academic learning shown by the children, has been truly amazing. In addition, these children take the lessons they learn home to their families and community.
High quality education with Montessori curriculum is used in nursery, kindergarten, and 1st grade classes.
Free medical services are offered to children and their families. Immunizations are offered through a Government approved Polio vaccination center.
Mothers' meetings are held regularly. These meetings provide mothers knowledge about hygiene, nutrition, body care, and guidance about their families' health, and their children's growth patterns and needs.
Parent orientation meetings emphasize the importance of quality education for their children. Methods that parents can use to effectively support their children's educational experience are explained, as are the other support services that are regularly offered by the school.
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