Financial Aid Opportunities

1. The MES Fund

AMI/USA established the MES FUND, INC., the first financial aid fund to benefit AMI teacher trainees, in honor of Margaret Elizabeth Stephenson, who devoted her life to AMI teacher training in the United States. The fund, which is administered and supported by AMI/USA, honors her legacy and extends her contribution to touch future teachers.

The fund awards partial scholarships in the form of tuition reduction towards AMI training in the United States to selected students. AMI/USA hopes, through their support of this fund, to ensure that qualified individuals seeking AMI training will be able to pursue that dream, regardless of their financial circumstances.

MES Fund Eligibility

Applicants who are U.S citizens or permanent U.S. residents and are planning to attend an AMI training center in the United States are eligible to apply.

Applicants to both academic year and summer courses are eligible.

Applicants must have a demonstrated financial need as evaluated by the College Board Scholarship Service (CSS) Financial Aid Profile.

Students who have already commenced training are not eligible to apply.

Applying for an award will not affect a student’s prospect for admission at an AMI training center.

Priority consideration is given to applicants who:

  • hold a college degree
  • have worked in an AMI school
  • plan to teach in an AMI school immediately following training
  • are assistants in an AMI school

MES Application Process Step-by-Step Instructions

  • Complete the MES Fund application and the required essays
  • Register with the College Board Scholarship Service (CSS)  and complete the Fall 2016- Spring 2017 Financial Aid Profile. There is a minimal fee assessed by the College Board to complete the Financial Aid Profile.
  • You must include the MES Fund, Inc. College Board ID Code (0186) when completing the Financial Aid Profile.
  • You cannot supply new information or update your Financial Aid Profile after it has been submitted.
  • After you complete the Financial Aid Profile you will receive an “acknowledgment” from CSS with a computerized printout of the information submitted. This is your proof that you have completed this process; keep this copy for your records.
  • Enroll in an AMI training program. (This is a separate step from applying for financial aid.)

MES Application Deadline

May 1st of the year your coursework begins both summer and academic course formats.

Application Checklist:

All of the above must be submitted electronically by the deadline; no extensions will be granted.

Neither AMI/USA nor the MES Fund, Inc. is responsible for misdirected applications.

MES Selection Process

The MES Fund, Inc. Financial Aid Committee adheres to recommendations and guidelines of the College Board Scholarship Service (CSS), a division of College Board. College Board is an educational services institution that offers a variety of programs and services to assist colleges, universities, and scholarship programs in the equitable distribution of financial aid.

Utilizing CSS reports, the committee reviews the following for each applicant:

  • Taxable and non-taxable income
  • Assets
  • Number and ages of dependents
  • Number of family members attending tuition-based schools and colleges
  • Outstanding debts and obligations
  • U.S. citizenship

An individual’s demonstrated financial need does not guarantee that he or she will be awarded aid.

MES Award Notification

The MES Fund, Inc. Financial Aid Committee will review applications and notify individuals of their application status within eight weeks of the application deadline.

2. School Sponsorship

Some schools participate in sponsoring trainees. Sponsorship guidelines vary by school.

Participating Schools:
CA | Pacific Rim International School
FL | The Learning Nest
MO | Chesterfield Montessori School

NY/India | CA Montessori Children’s Center
TX | Cedar Park Montessori School

Please review the most updated list (updated every fall for training courses beginning the following year)

This list includes the specific offerings by each school. For complete details, contact the school of interest directly.
Note the education levels listed on the website do not indicate AMI recognition status; they are levels available for instruction or that the school is currently seeking to sponsor. For AMI recognition specifications click here.

3. Loan Options

Some AMI recognized schools offer loan options for trainees. Check with each training center for their loan offerings.


Click here to contribute to the MES fund.

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“The MES scholarship helped me to complete my training in Montessori education – making possible my getting it done in a timely way! I look forward to beginning my career as an elementary guide this fall and could not be more grateful to have been a recipient of the award!”

-Sara Oaxaca, 2014 MES Recipient

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“The MES award was immensely helpful in my pursuit of Montessori training! My partner and I were both students this past year, which is a huge expense for any family. The MES award covered a substantial part of my tuition for Montessori Northwest, which was a great relief. In the fall I will take a permanent position as an assistant and co-teacher. I could not be more thrilled that I chose to pursue a career in Montessori education, and the MES award has helped me to do so. I am so grateful.”

-Katie Dunkirk, 2014 MES Recipient

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“The scholarship had a positive influence on my life in many ways. It has been a great help in providing financial assistance. I would have needed to get a loan to continue paying for my education. I am looking forward to influencing the lives of children and parents in a positive way. In the future, I will be donating to the MES program to help another person reach their goal in becoming a Montessori teacher.”

-Natali Sanchez, 2014 MES Recipient

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“The MES award made it possible for me to attend my 0-3 AMI training. Without it, I would not have been able to afford it. With this training underway, I have secured a great teaching position with opportunities for growth in my own career, while being in a unique position to greatly impact the community I work in. I am grateful for the assistance, and hope to be able to contribute in the future to others pursuing their training.”

-Whitney Harrell, 2014 MES Recipient

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“The scholarship from the MES Fund helped make it possible for me to step away from working full time in order to pursue my Montessori primary training. I am very appreciative of the tuition assistance and I’m happy to know that scholarships such as this exist for people who are passionate about becoming a Montessori certified guide.”

-Amanda Donigan, 2014 MES Recipient

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