Montessori Preschool to Open Cobble Hill Campus Next Year

By Nikhita Venugopal on February 12, 2014 1:06pm 

COBBLE HILL — A California-based private school group is opening its first east coast campus in Cobble Hill next year, school officials said.

LePort Schools’ new Brooklyn campus, to open in early 2015, will offer classes for infants, toddlers, preschoolers and kindergartners based on the Montessori program.

With campuses in Orange County, San Diego and Los Angeles, LePort began its nine-month search for a building in Brooklyn after local parents expressed a need for more pre-K and kindergarten programs in their neighborhoods, said Heike Larson, vice president of parent outreach.

The school, which plans to welcome about 120 to 140 children in a proposed two-story building with a rooftop playground and second floor outdoor patio area, will host an inaugural informational session on Feb. 27 in Boerum Hill.

The school has not determined its final tuition rate but Larson said it would range from $2,500 to $3,500 per month for a 10-month or full-year program, which includes the summer.

The Cobble Hill school will be located near Court and Degraw Streets. Larson requested that the address be excluded since the school has not signed a lease as yet.

While LePort touts its focus on Montessori education, most parents who approach the school are more aware of its reputation rather than the program it teaches.

“They just want a great place for their child,” Larson said.

But when parents consider the kind of personality traits they would like their child to develop through education — independent thinking, persistence, a “can-do attitude” — “Montessori is really, really well suited,” she said.

Students of different ages are often placed in the same classroom at LePort. Infant classes can range from three-month to two-year olds. And preschool classes, including kindergarten, can serve three to six year olds.

“Children often learn a lot more from slightly older peers,” Larson said.

In keeping with a Montessori tradition, the school does not focus on test taking or cramming a rigid curriculum into the year. Instruction is tailored to each student so success in the classroom falls on the student’s efforts and not because the teacher demands it, said Larson.

“[Students] feel this tremendous amount of ownership over their work,” she said.

LePort is also eventually planning to open an elementary school at a separate campus in Brooklyn after its arrival next year.

LePort Schools will host an informational session for parents Feb. 27 at Roulette (509 Atlantic Ave.) from 7 p.m. to 8:30 p.m. to learn more about the school and its Montessori program. To RSVP, click here.

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