Fox Valley Montessori School Inc

aka FVMS   |   Aurora, IL   |  www.foxvalleymontessori.org

Mission

The community of Fox Valley Montessori believes in the child as a whole being.

We foster a community that builds global citizens through social and environmental responsibility,

creative and critical thinking, leadership and practical life skills.

Ruling year info

1969

Executive Director

Lynor Johnson

Main address

850 N Commonwealth Ave

Aurora, IL 60506 USA

Show more contact info

EIN

23-7011994

NTEE code info

Primary/Elementary Schools (B24)

Other Youth Development N.E.C. (O99)

Primary/Elementary Schools (B24)

IRS filing requirement

This organization is required to file an IRS Form 990 or 990-EZ.

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Communication

Programs and results

What we aim to solve

SOURCE: Self-reported by organization

Fox Valley Montessori School provides the cornerstones of the Montessori method: an individually focused, experience based learning environment that has characterized this approach to education for more than 100 years. FVMS students and teachers spend more time interacting and less time memorizing. More time discovering and less time following. The result is a learning environment that equips children to do more than pass tests. They develop the skills that equip them to live well.

Our programs

SOURCE: Self-reported by organization

What are the organization's current programs, how do they measure success, and who do the programs serve?

Toddlers 18 months through 3 years

The development of the child during the first three years after birth is unequaled by intensity and importance by any other period that precedes or follows in the whole life of the child. If we consider the transformations, adaptations, achievements, and conquest of the environment during the first period of life from zero to three years, it is functionally a longer period than all the following periods put together from three years until death. For this reason, these three years may be considered to be as long as a whole life." ~Maria Montessori.

This sensitive period of the child’s life has many physical and emotional needs that can be met in a uniquely prepared toddler environment. The space is beautifully designed to appeal to the child’s curiosity. The furniture is customized to allow for maximum independence.

The child is not served, but rather is allowed and encouraged to be a functioning member of the community. This leads him or her to a feeling of pride and dignity.

The professional staff offers the tenderness, warmth and patience so essential to this age. An emphasis on the importance of a peaceful environment with necessary nurturing and caring is characteristic of this program.

Population(s) Served
Infants and toddlers

Montessori is a unique educational approach that nurtures a child’s intrinsic desire to learn. Montessori focuses on the whole child—his cognitive, social, emotional, and physical development.

The Primary classroom is a specially prepared environment designed to encourage a love of learning and a sense of independence. The classroom environment unifies the social-emotional, physical and academic functioning of the child. This is accomplished by free movement within the classroom, where each child is offered a wide variety of purposeful materials and activities. The direct aim of the primary classroom is to facilitate a sense of order, pride in the classroom, self-discipline and ownership of responsibility within their classroom, school and community.

The Primary Program has seven key themes: Practical Life, Sensory, Language, Math, Geography, Science, and Art. Practical life concepts teach the children to care about themselves and the environment they live in. These key themes provide a foundation for learning through teaching independence, coordination, concentration, and order, while also providing a purpose to movement. The program also encourages critical thinking and problem-solving.

FVMS' program results in children who are able to think independently, love to learn, and have social awareness and respect for others.

Population(s) Served
Children and youth

The elementary classroom begins a new cycle of growth for your child as they expand socially, emotionally, and academically. Continuing to take advantage of the mixed age learning environments, students pursue studies based on individual interests in an environment rich with opportunities and experience. The elementary children learn in mixed-age groups (ages six through nine; ages nine through twelve).

The elementary program offers individualized instruction, which means that the child may work and be helped on an individual basis. Self-paced and group learning offer a variety of experiences for a variety of learning styles. Our elementary programs operate from the understanding that an important challenge at this developmental stage is for children to discover their places in a group and within society as a whole. Thus, many of the activities at the elementary level take place in a group, with children sharing, working, and exploring materials together.

The program permits a variety of approaches using dynamic and colorful manipulative materials, which materialize abstract principles. These beautiful concrete materials are used throughout the entire curriculum including math, language arts, geography, history, and science.

Studies are integrated not only in terms of subject matter but in terms of philosophical learning as well, resulting in appreciation and respect for life, empathy, and a fundamental belief in progress, the contribution of the individual, the universality of the human condition, and the meaning of true justice.

Population(s) Served
Children and youth

Where we work

Accreditations

American Montessori Society 2015

Excelerate Illinois- Gold Circle of Quality 2020

Goals & Strategy

SOURCE: Self-reported by organization

Learn about the organization's key goals, strategies, capabilities, and progress.

Charting impact

Four powerful questions that require reflection about what really matters - results.

FVMS is currently pursuing four goals:

1. Achieve a diverse and active community of staff, students, families, and friends of the school.
2. Share the work of Fox Valley Montessori School in the larger community of the Far West Suburbs and regionally.
3. Build a sound, sustainable, predictable and growing financial foundation to support the Fox Valley Montessori School vision and mission.
4. Develop a Long Range Facility and Infrastructure plan that supports the mission and vision while providing a safe and secure environment.

GLOBAL CITIZENS AND CREATIVE THINKERS

Achieve a diverse and active community of staff, students, families, and friends of the school.
a) Create and ensure structures that promote a diverse community are in place.
b) Create an Alumni Connection Community in order to the future to our FVMS heritage
b) Build the skill level of the Board of Directors to support the mission and vision of the school.
c) Build the skill level of the Team to support the mission and vision of the school.
d) Attract, support, develop, and retain highly skilled and dedicated teachers and staff who embrace the school's philosophy
e) Assure accessibility to a wide range of students which reflects the socio-economic and cultural diversity of the broader community of the Far West Suburbs.

GROW THE COMMUNITY

Share the work of Fox Valley Montessori School in the larger community of the Far West Suburbs and regionally.
a) Create and share a clearly articulated value statement explaining what makes FVMS important for children and families.
b) Seek representation and leadership roles in local committees on education, state and national organizations
c) Develop partnerships with local Universities/Colleges to provide a site for future teachers to observe best practices, conduct joint research STEM and SEL education.
d) Expand our leadership in best practices in early childhood and elementary education and Montessori principles to the community beyond the walls of Fox Valley Montessori School.

FINANCIAL WELLNESS

Build a sound, sustainable, predictable and growing financial foundation to support the Fox Valley Montessori School vision and mission.
a) Complete and maintain a disciplined, rolling planning process that supports sound decision making, predictable results and appropriate allocation of resources.
b) Develop an enrollment and retention plan that increases and stabilizes enrollment.
c) Create financial equilibrium by increasing unrestricted reserves and endowing long term goals.
d) Create a long range plan for financial wellness by enlisting respected financial advisors

FVMS JOURNEY

Develop a Long Range Facility and Infrastructure plan that supports the mission and vision while providing a safe and secure environment.
a) Develop a Master Site Plan to enhance and enrich the Fox Valley Montessori campus and enable the school to fulfill its mission.
b) Prioritize the safety and security recommendations of the Infrastructure Committee
c) Develop a Technology Strategy to support both the Administration and Student communities
d) Develop a long-range capital plan for renewal and renovation.
e) Develop a long-range master plan with campus expansion site scenarios (5+ years out)
f) Develop a long-range environmental sustainability plan for the FVMS campus

Sustain an innovative model of education that develops and supports children's creative and critical thinking skills, innovation, understanding of the global economy and collaboration.

a) Evaluate and enhance the curriculum to ensure developmentally appropriate activities that enhance children's appreciation of the global community.
b) Fully integrate and support individualized curriculum for every student across programs while ensuring continuity and coherence across and within program levels.
c) Demonstrate the innovative model for meeting and exceeding the evolving accreditation standards for American Montessori Society (AMS)
d) Fully develop the science, engineering, and technology curriculum integrating them into daily classroom instruction throughout all classroom environments through STEM
e) Evaluate and enhance the curriculum to incorporate SEL throughout all classroom environments
e) Expand our commitment to comprehensive professional development opportunities that inspire teachers and support an innovative model of education through STEM and SEL.

FVMS has accomplished its first intensive, rigorous process resulting in the achievement of the Accredited Member School of the American Montessori Society. It is now committed to retaining this status and to implementing the tasks and activities that will assure its ability to make impact in the nine areas critical to sustaining accreditation.

One specific goal that FVMS is pursuing is to determine the ownership of the school as this issue is not addressed in the original by-laws of the School.

How we listen

SOURCE: Self-reported by organization

Seeking feedback from people served makes programs more responsive and effective. Here’s how this organization is listening.

done We demonstrated a willingness to learn more by reviewing resources about feedback practice.
done We shared information about our current feedback practices.
  • How is your organization collecting feedback from the people you serve?

    Electronic surveys (by email, tablet, etc.), Suggestion box/email,

  • How is your organization using feedback from the people you serve?

    To identify and remedy poor client service experiences, To identify bright spots and enhance positive service experiences, To make fundamental changes to our programs and/or operations, To inform the development of new programs/projects, To strengthen relationships with the people we serve,

  • With whom is the organization sharing feedback?

    The people we serve, Our staff, Our board, Our funders, Our community partners,

  • What challenges does the organization face when collecting feedback?

Financials

Fox Valley Montessori School Inc
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Operations

The people, governance practices, and partners that make the organization tick.

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Connect with nonprofit leaders

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  • Analyze a variety of pre-calculated financial metrics
  • Access beautifully interactive analysis and comparison tools
  • Compare nonprofit financials to similar organizations

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Fox Valley Montessori School Inc

Board of directors
as of 2/10/2021
SOURCE: Self-reported by organization
Board chair

Joseph Hillenburg

Jessica Fese

Jessica Baer

Tracey Dawson

Kurtis Homan

Aileen Feigl

Randall Slade

Marisha Lewis

Board leadership practices

SOURCE: Self-reported by organization

GuideStar worked with BoardSource, the national leader in nonprofit board leadership and governance, to create this section.

  • Board orientation and education
    Does the board conduct a formal orientation for new board members and require all board members to sign a written agreement regarding their roles, responsibilities, and expectations? No
  • CEO oversight
    Has the board conducted a formal, written assessment of the chief executive within the past year ? Yes
  • Ethics and transparency
    Have the board and senior staff reviewed the conflict-of-interest policy and completed and signed disclosure statements in the past year? Yes
  • Board composition
    Does the board ensure an inclusive board member recruitment process that results in diversity of thought and leadership? Yes
  • Board performance
    Has the board conducted a formal, written self-assessment of its performance within the past three years? No

Organizational demographics

SOURCE: Self-reported; last updated 1/28/2021,

Who works and leads organizations that serve our diverse communities? GuideStar partnered on this section with CHANGE Philanthropy and Equity in the Center.

Leadership

The organization's leader identifies as:

Race & ethnicity
White/Caucasian/European
Gender identity
Female, Not transgender (cisgender)
Sexual orientation
Heterosexual or Straight
Disability status
Person without a disability

Race & ethnicity

No data

Gender identity

No data

 

No data

Sexual orientation

No data

Disability

No data