Aldea Montessori is the vision-become-reality of Donna and Michael D’Hoostelaere. Donna and Michael wanted the children of Phoenix to experience the full spectrum of Dr. Maria Montessori’s program, from Toddler through Elementary, much as their two sons had done. They were committed to building a school of excellent quality—in the facility, in the staff and in the program offered—according to Dr. Montessori’s standards as set forth in the Association Montessori Internationale tradition. Aldea received its first accreditation with AMI in the spring of 2002 and has maintained that certification ever since.
Ms. Donna opened the first Primary classroom in August of 2001 with four students. The Toddler House was added in 2003 and the expansion began. In 2006, Casa 2 opened and brought the total enrollment to 60.
With the opening of Casa 2, the original building was fully occupied. In order to grow, a new facility would have to be built or bought. As with all the other answered prayers, the property behind the 40th Street location became available at just the right time. The family of the lovely couple who had owned the home helped make it possible for Aldea to complete the purchase of the property.
The Brill Campus, named for the couple, opened in August of 2009. It houses the Elementary classroom and Casa 3.
Aldea Montessori is now the vision of not only Donna and Michael, but the dream-come-true of 70 families and 14 staff members. It is a home-away-from-home for 80+ children from 18 months through 9 years. With the help of the community at large, Aldea will continue to grow and thrive for many years to come.