Public interest in preschool sought

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TRAINED early childhood educa› tor Rose Cardoso is passionate about opening a Montessori preschool in Invercargill.
Now she wants to find out whether others share her dream.
She has organised a public meet› ing later this month where parents can find out more about the educational philosophy and ask questions.
If there is enough support, Mrs Cardoso hopes to have the new centre operating early next year, but said she was not ready to commit to that step yet.
‘‘I am passionate about having one here — about giving parents a choice.
‘‘But before we make that mass› ive investment — it will probably cost around $1 million — Iwant to see how many parents are inter› ested.’’
Mrs Cardoso is southern business manager for BestStart, a charitable trust which operates 250 early childhood centres throughout New Zealand, including four in Invercar› gill. The trust runs 15 Montessori preschools, the closest in Mosgiel and Arrowtown.
An Invercargill centre would be run within the BestStart umbrella and would cater for a maximum of 50 children aged 3 months to 5, she said. A heritage house set in park› like grounds had been identified as a potential site.
The centre would be staffed by Montessori›trained teachers, who complete a one›year postgraduate programme on top of a degree in early childhood education.
Mrs Cardoso said she had always been interested in Montessori edu› cation, which she said had a ‘‘really useful philosophy’’ based on caring for and nurturing children and enabling them to learn at their own pace rather than being led by classroom routines.
Í Montessori preschool public meeting, Tuesday, April 26, The White Heron function centre, Tweed St, 7.30pm. For more information phone 027 452 2432.

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