Montessori Advocate Seeks Public Support for Pre-K Expansion

One of the city’s leading advocates of early childhood education hopes to persuade the School Committee to support a pilot program that ultimately could bring pre-K to all children in Haverhill.

Janet Begin, the administrator and lead teacher of Marigold Montessori School, plans to present to the School Committee the outline of a private-public partnership to expand access to early childhood education.

The School Committee meets at 7 p.m. in the Theodore A. Pelosi Council Chambers on the second floor of Haverhill City Hall.

Also on the agenda is a public review of the budget for the next school year.

Begin’s Marigold Montessori is one of a string of Wildflower Schools, part of a network of small, storefront Montessori schools in Massachusetts, Rhode Island, Denver, Minnesota and Puerto Rico.

Marigold operates out of Trinity Church on White Street, in the city’s Acre neighborhood.

Begin hopes to open a second Wildflower school in the Mount Washington neighborhood, populated by 20 students -- 10 whose families pay tuition to attend, and 10 whose tuition is covered by public and private donations.

The school would require a minimum of $120,000 to cover the tuition for the 10 students from low-income families. Begin said she would like to see the city make a commitment to provide some of the funding.