The Social Impact Report 2019

Social Impact Report Nov 2019

Social Impact Report 2019 2019 has been an exciting year for the Montessori Group. We have been celebrating 100 years of Montessori training in the UK, and to mark the occasion the Montessori St Nicholas Charity has undertaken a variety of ambitious and innovative projects to create social impact where it is needed most.

Montessori Bursary Schemes

Our Birts Bursary Programme helps students who need financial help to study at MCI, ensuring they are able to reach their full potential and pursue their Montessori career.

  • 54 bursaries offered in 2019, the highest number of bursaries ever offered to our students in one year

To celebrate 100 years of Montessori training in the UK we launched the #100for100 Bursary Scheme campaign earlier this year where we invited and received 100 applications for bursary support, the highest number of applications we’ve ever received, demonstrating the demand and commitment of students wishing to study with us.

We have also launched the Barbara Isaacs Bursary Fund to celebrate the 70th birthday of our Montessori Global Ambassador. Barbara has worked at Montessori Centre International since 1991, and is well known throughout the Montessori community as a passionate, inspiring leader, and champion of all children.

Centrepoint Partnership In April 2019

We welcomed five Centrepoint young people onto our training courses, to help them build a new career in Early Years education and find a permanent route out of homelessness.

Our partnership and friendship with Centrepoint is a demonstration of our shared commitment to helping individuals reach their full potential, and live their lives as happy, independent and confident members of society.

Jane Goodall Institute

Our collaboration with the Jane Goodall Institute perfectly demonstrates how integral respect for nature and the environment is to a Montessori education. We have been working closely with the Institute this year, at a time when the message to care for our planet and all life within it is so important.

  • Launch of Roots & Shoots programme, which involved creating and providing Montessori lesson plans and supporting resources to 4,000 primary schools in the UK
  • We devised 3 different lesson plans to help teachers educate children more effectively about the environment.

State Primary School Training

It is our belief that the Montessori approach is suitable for every child, and that all children deserve the best start in life regardless of financial circumstance. By working with hard-working teachers from different schools and education providers we are helping them bring the Montessori philosophy to their own classrooms, and reach even more children.

Funded by the Charity, our tutors have delivered Montessori teacher training for teachers in two state primary schools this year; 

  • Aldersbrook Primary School, Redbridge, London- 5 teachers
  • Fawbert and Barnard Primary School, Sawbridgeworth, Hertfordshire – 15 teachers

V&A Museum of Childhood  Collaboration

We have had a strong and rewarding partnership with the V&A Museum of Childhood since 2010, offering free workshops on Saturdays for parents and collaborating with the Museum on child-friendly materials to make the most of their exhibitions.We have shared several successes with the Museum in 2019 and look forward to continuing the partnership into 2020.

Some examples of successful activities we ran with the Museum in 2019 include;

  • Annual Play Day for Parents in June 2019, which was attended by approximately 25 families
  • UCL Play Festival in July 2019, where we contributed to the festival and focussed on outdoor play. It was attended by approximately 100 families.
  • Toddler Play Sessions, which have been held monthly since January 2019. Each session was attended by 10 families and supported by staff and students from MCI.
  • Six Week Parenting Courses
  • Delivered for free for the 8th year and attended by 20 families
  • Play Conference in November 2019, where we offered workshops focusing on the work of pioneers of Early Years education.

Free online courses

Our mission to spread the Montessori message and reach as many children as possible is helped by our provision of free online courses to be accessed from all over the world.

In 2019 we offered three free online courses which cumulatively received 1,970 sign ups from over 75 different countries.

  • “Education for Peace” – 1,250 sign ups from over 75 countries
  • “How to Choose a Nursery” – 270 sign ups from 48 countries
  • “Welcoming a New Born the Montessori Way” – 450 sign ups from 60 countries

Montessori Organisation Collaborations

A key mission of the Montessori St Nicholas Charity is to promote collaboration, shared learning and working together to help spread the Montessori message across the world. In the year we are celebrating 100 years of Montessori training in the UK, we are proud to have achieved this by delivering the first joined up Montessori conference with other UK training providers in September 2019. We welcomed 750 delegates to the Queen Elizabeth II Centre in London and built new relationships with others who shared our passion for quality Early Years education.


The promotion of peace and respectful relationships is another priority of the Charity and a key characteristic of the Montessori approach. Working together to educate and promote tolerance and understanding, as an organisation we are keen to lead by example.

In August and September, together with 30 children from the Gower School, we supported the Ship of Tolerance, a collaborative art project in which the children designed sails for the Ship. The Ship remained accessible to all visitors outside the Tate Modern for a month.

Women’s Rights

Dr Maria Montessori was a scientific pioneer of her time and fierce advocate of women’s rights. Her motivation for establishing the first children’s house was to support working women, recognising their vital role in the community and providing them access to education too. To celebrate her brave work in promoting rights for women and mothers, the Montessori St Nicholas Charity supported the 209 Women Exhibition at the Houses of Parliament in March 2019, coinciding with International Women’s Day.

Chelsea Flower Show

In May the Montessori St Nicholas Charity won a Gold medal for our Montessori Centenary Children’s Garden at the Chelsea Flower Show. The Garden played a huge part in spreading the message of Montessori, and received widespread media coverage and attention for the duration of the Show.
– 131 articles with a circulation of 605 million
– 6000 shares on social media
– 6 billion cumulative online readership across the world

Montessori & Dementia

Whilst providing the best standard of education for children, we also believe the benefits of Montessori reach far beyond the Early Years, particularly for elderly people suffering from dementia, owing to its approach in encouraging independence through self-teaching and practice of everyday skills. The Montessori St Nicholas Charity is keen to explore this further, backed by scientific evidence and research. In 2018-19 the Charity commissioned academic research through the University of West London to examine the effectiveness of a Montessori approach in dementia care. The results of this study will have significant impact on elderly care and influence our own future plans to make the Montessori approach accessible and open to all.