(Lake Forest, CA, JUL 2020) – Guidepost Montessori is offering families across the country new childcare and education solutions with the national expansion of Guidepost at Home, a service that places vetted and trained Montessori nannies and educators in the homes of families searching for an alternative to brick-and-mortar daycares and schools this fall.
The at-home service originally launched a year ago in New York City as a nanny-sharing solution for children under the age of three. When the COVID-19 pandemic prompted school closures this spring, Guidepost Montessori expanded on its successful pilots in response to the urgent need to provide essential, safe at-home learning environments for more families across the country – as well as a need to provide continued employment in an adapted environment for educators.
Now, parents and teachers everywhere can apply for fall 2020 openings in Guidepost at Home. These openings go beyond infant and toddler nanny shares and extend into preschool, kindergarten and elementary “residential micro schools.”
“Catalyzed by the current context of the COVID pandemic, we see an opportunity to transform the way individual and small-group learning happens at home. We are excited to apply our understanding of human development to the home environment—by supporting stay-at-home parents and homeschool programs, offering trained nannies and residential micro-schools, and a range of other forward-thinking programs. Our goal is simple: to help provide continuity, stability, and exceptional pedagogy for children at home in ways that empower parents and caregivers to benefit from our understanding of Montessori pedagogy and practice,” said Ray Girn, CEO of Higher Ground Education and founder of Guidepost Montessori. “Guidepost at Home will better meet the varying needs of individual families and help normalize what has culturally been a long overlooked value – the need to honor learning as a natural part of our children’s everyday lives rather than something that only happens artificially in a school setting.”
While the program alleviates the need for parents to manage their child’s at-home learning with the placement of an in-home educator – which has surfaced as one of the biggest challenges for dual-working families who’ve been tasked with leveraging virtual school – it also appeals to parents wanting to homeschool or participate directly in their child’s home learning through an optional “parent-as-educator” program that includes overarching, philosophical parenting and education support. With that program, interested parents can join virtual cohorts of Montessori Education trainings, as well as access learning materials and ongoing mentorship and curriculum resources.
Additionally, a “Prepared Environment” team – the same one which sets up Guidepost’s classrooms – supports home set-ups for families, whether they enroll in the nanny share, learning pod, or parent-as-educator program. In partnership with suppliers like Monti-Kids, all families receive physical learning materials to support Montessori-informed learning.
“The ability to bridge my child’s care in-home with a trained educator not only nurtures my child on an individual level, but it also promotes growth for our entire family,” added Emily Greenberg, Director of the program and among the first cohort of parents to enroll in New Jersey. “We are able to see and experience firsthand the learning that is meaningful to our son with guidance on how to cultivate our home in an age-appropriate way. Additionally, being able to match with another family grounds us in that need for community that not only benefits our children, but also benefits us in our parenting. Together, Guidepost is ready to scale this service and meet more families who are looking for another option beyond the two existing pillars of traditional school and virtual school.”
The program supports family cohorts that are already formed, as well as educators who already have a cohort of families they are serving. But its focus is on supporting families who have not yet found a solution. Greenberg notes that families interested in being part of a home pod can expect an on-boarding timeframe of about 4-6 weeks, during which they are guided through the entire process of not only matching with other families in their area, but also matching up with the right in-home nanny or educator. Families in the program also gain access to priority placement at one of Guidepost’s more than 60 campuses around the world. Families who use Guidepost at Home do not have to worry about taxes or providing benefits like paid time off, which is taken care of by Guidepost Montessori. Nannies and educators are hired by Guidepost, not by the family.
All in-home guides have meaningful childcare experience either in private care or school settings, are up-to-date in CPR and First Aid certifications, are fully vetted through multiple interviews and assessments by Guidepost Montessori, and complete a targeted Montessori training with Guidepost that orients them to the Guidepost platform. As part of their offer, nannies and in-home guides can access career advancement opportunities including The Prepared Montessorian’s internationally-accredited MACTE programs, which are also now available in more accessible virtual cohorts.
- Interested parents can get started by visiting the website, athome.guidepostmontessori.com. There, families can sign up for upcoming info. sessions as well as pre-register for fall 2020.
- Interested nannies and educators can check the latest Guidepost Montessori employment opportunities by checking Greenhouse - https://boards.greenhouse.io/guidepostathome.
ABOUT GUIDEPOST MONTESSORI
Guidepost Montessori is the world’s largest dedicated Montessori network comprised of more than 50 schools that serve over 3,500 families from birth through middle school. Owned and operated by Higher Ground Education, Guidepost and Higher Ground are dedicated to bringing high-fidelity, next generation Montessori to the mainstream. Our world-class educators are trained in-house through an MACTE-accredited Montessori teacher-training institute, The Prepared Montessorian.
HIGHER GROUND EDUCATION
Founded in 2016 by an experienced team of educators and education entrepreneurs, Higher Ground functions as an idealistic pedagogical think tank that is at the same time a hyper-scaling, tech-enabled school operator. In addition to operating Guidepost Montessori and The Prepared Montessorian, Higher Ground also operates the Academy of Thought and Industry, a Montessori school network for middle school and high school. Higher Ground’s mission is to “mainstream and modernize the international Montessori movement, and thereby enable children across the world to realize their human potential as knowledge-guided, value-oriented, efficacious beings, so that they experience, undiluted and unimpeded, the joyous process of growing into successful, independent adults.” As part of this mission, the company seeks to elevate the work of other educators via a suite of offerings that ensure teachers have the training and tools they need to practice Montessori principles; schools have the infrastructure and resources they need to set up Montessori environments; and that parents have the support and partnership they deserve to meet the holistic needs of their children at school and home. Learn more about Higher Ground Education at www.tohigherground.com.