The "Montessori" name is in the public domain; therefore any institution can claim to offer a Montessori education.
So how can parents tell whether a Montessori school is authentic?
Association Montessori Internationale
The original organization founded by Dr. Maria Montessori.
The AMI school recognition program was initiated for the benefit of parents to assist them in making choices about Montessori schools and classrooms. It only awards Montessori schools that follow Dr. Montessori's principles in their authentic integrity and completeness.
An AMI Certificate of Recognition indicates the school upholds the highest standards in Montessori education. It provides credibility to a school’s status both within the Montessori community and throughout the international educational scene.
To receive AMI Recognition, each classroom in the school must have:
- A fully-trained teacher who has completed both a college undergraduate degree and AMI's year-long full time training program;
- A complete set of authorized Montessori classroom materials;
- A three-year range of ages within the single classroom;
- An uninterrupted three-hour work cycle each morning.