CHI Montessori Academy officially opened its doors as a home school in College Park on September 8, 2009. Two years before, it started as a dream when several educators began a conversation about an ideal school. The creators of the school, Sharon Suitt and Elizabeth Bland, were both retired Atlanta Public School educators who believed in the importance of an early childhood education and parental involvement. In November 2007, Sharon received her Montessori diploma from North American Montessori Center (NAMC), and her Montessori training for the Primary Class at Kennesaw State University under the direction of Feland Meadows, Ph.D. Dr. Meadows the founder of the Pan American Montessori Society. CHI Montessori continued to operate as a home school for 4 years in the home of Ms. Sharon. As the waiting list for openings outgrew the available space, Ms. Sharon was encouraged to search for a center location to accommodate several families with infants and toddlers requesting Montessori education for their young children. Since August 2018, the Providence Missionary Baptist Church, located at 2295 Benjamin E. Mays Dr., has been home to CHI Montessori Academy.
Montessori education is based upon a profound respect for the individual child and the contribution they can give to humanity. It involves a process that seeks to guide the child to their own natural potential through the child’s “absorbent mind” using special materials that reinforce a more permanent learning. The carefully prepared Montessori environment recognizes the spontaneous urge of the child to learn, allowing him to choose his own daily work from a broad curriculum of botany, zoology, geography, art, language, math, and cultural subjects. The child exercises intellectual, physical, and psychic freedom within the controlled Montessori classroom. This environment helps the child to achieve self-discipline and confidence at an early age and is the very foundation for his role as a happy, functioning member of a social community.