Mentoring and Special Events Programs

General Details

The AMI/USA Mentoring and Special Events Program is designed to meet the following distinctive Montessori community goals.  First, Ayize Sabater, Ph.D., AMI/USA Executive Director is a dynamic keynote speaker. He is available to inform your national, state and regional constituents about the innovative work that is moving the AMI/USA organization forward, the  important collaborative programming that is being offered with other influential Montessori organizations, the future AMI/USA strategic plans and initiatives that are underway, and many more topics relevant to Montessori education.

Sheri Bishop, M.Ed, the AMI/USA Human Rights and Social Justice Advisor is able to offer Montessori School communities training, support and guidance as they strive to achieve a culturally prepared environment that views their mission, policies and practices through an anti-bias/anti-racist (ABAR) lens. This mentoring opportunity will offer whole school training, guidance and support to community mentees and/or other appointed stakeholders. The “work” of the mentee will be to strategize and coordinate school efforts to embed the Montessori principles of  Justice, Equity, Diversity, and Inclusion (JEDI) and AMI standards in their overall school identity and pedagogical approach. Further facilitation to implement transformative changes will create another opportunity for collaboration with the AMI/USA mentor.

AMI/USA Speakers, Mentors and Facilitators

Ayize Sabater, Ed.D – speaker for keynotes and presentations at Special Events

Dr. Ayize is a dynamic social-entrepreneur, educational researcher, author and twenty-year educator. He earned his doctorate at Morgan State University in 2018. Dr. Ayize has co-founded several organizations, including a Montessori Public Charter school in D.C. He is an honors graduate of Morehouse and Wesley. Ayize has been featured as a powerful keynote speaker for American University and is a 2010 educational excellence award recipient, presented by First Lady Michelle Obama at the White House and he has spoken internationally. Some of his research interests and publications include: family engagement (Black Child Journal, 2017), culturally relevant pedagogy (Tellin’ Children our Story, 2014), and Montessori for Black people (Montessori Public, 2019). Dr. Ayize helped to co-found The Black Montessori Educational Fund (BMEF) & is currently the Executive Director of AMI/USA. 

 

Sheri Bishop – coaching and mentoring for Montessori with JEDI, ABAR, DEI work

Sheri has 8 years of experience in Montessori classrooms, with 5 years of experience as a Lower Elementary guide. She holds an AMI 6-12 diploma from the Montessori Institute of Atlanta, a Masters in Montessori Elementary Education from Loyola University in Baltimore, MD, and an AMI 3-6 diploma from the Montessori Institute of North Texas. In 2017 she was elected to be one of the founding members of the original Montessori for Social Justice (MSJ) Board of Directors and served until 2019. She currently serves as a member for the Board of Directors for the Virginia Montessori Association and Montessori on the Move, LLC, Williamsburg, VA. Sheri has presented numerous and various workshops for teacher in-service trainings and regional and national conferences including MSJ, the AMI Elementary Alumni Association, Montessori Institute of North Texas (MINT), and Montessori Northwest. Since the pandemic, she has adapted offerings to suit an online presentation format. In addition to AMI/USA, Sheri currently is contracted by MINT as a faculty member and offers JEDI/ABAR training for student cohorts and staff. 


Mentor Program 

The Mentor Program process is divided into three phases: 

  1. Before meeting—the Mentor and Special Events Request form and required fees must be submitted. Then a confirmation letter will be provided for your signature. Once the visit is confirmed, a preliminary phone interview will be conducted to clarify goals and objectives for the mentor meetings. 
  2. Online meeting—one-hour zoom meeting at requested frequency, or 
  3. In-person meeting – choose from two-hour, four-hour, or six-hour format.
  4. Written reports—a mentor’s summary report is sent to the mentee after the conclusion of the meetings, or on request.

Mentoring Program Policies

  • Mentoring cannot be scheduled when there is a recognition consultation required at the program level for the same school year. 
  • Please indicate any special needs, and the request will be honored if possible. 

Mentoring Program Format Options


Special Events

You may want to have our Mentors/Presenters share their experience and knowledge by scheduling a Special Events. All Special Events carry an additional fee (see Billing and Payment Information). Therefore, it is important that there is clarity between the mentor and the mentee when making these arrangements.

Special events can take the form of:

  • Presentations to families, parents and wider community
  • Teacher workshops and staff meetings 
  • Meeting with the school board of directors and other stakeholders

Special Events must be arranged and confirmed in advance. Please indicate your interest in scheduling a Special Event on the Request for Mentoring and Special Events form. Please note: In-person Mentoring Meetings and Special Events may require a minimum of two night’s lodging. 


Scheduling Procedures

Request for Mentoring and Special Events Form

It is important to complete the form with accurate and current information. Once the required forms and payment are submitted, the internal scheduling process will begin.

Mentoring Meeting and Special Event Confirmation

Preliminary agreement of meeting dates and mentor or special event date will be followed by written confirmation, which includes the mentor or presenter’s profile and contact information. The confirmation letter must be signed and submitted as soon as possible, to agree to fees and confirm the meetings or special event. The arrangement is then confirmed in writing with the mentor or presenter. It is very important to be aware that confirmation is a firm commitment. Any changes become necessary after dates are confirmed may result in increased charges.

Hospitality

Because the mentor or presenter is traveling to your city and is usually unfamiliar with the location, it is important to make this transition an easy one so that they may relax and concentrate. Attention to details such as airport pickup and comfortable, quiet lodging including a restaurant, internet access, and other amenities, must be considered when planning mentor meetings and special events.  

In all instances, hotel accommodations are required, and hotel arrangements should be made and paid for in advance of the meeting or special event date. Airfare, ground transportation, meals and any other related expenses, such as parking fees or a Saturday night hotel stay if required due to schedule are also required. Make sure to be aware of and honor any special dietary requests.

Checklist

At Least Two Weeks Prior to the Meeting/Special Event:

  • Mentor/Presenter contacts you with specific travel information, dates needed for lodging, and dietary considerations. 
  • Discuss and plan the schedule for the meetings or special event. 
  • Arrange and pay for airfare, local transportation, hotel accommodations, and meals. 

On-Site During the Meeting:

  • Provide all necessary transportation for the mentor/presenter and discuss all meal arrangements. 
  • Provide refreshments and meals during the meeting or special event day. 

Following the Meeting:

  • Receive copy of a report from mentor, if applicable.
  • Complete evaluation forms within two weeks.
  • Receive invoice from AMI/USA for any outstanding expenses. Prompt payment is appreciated.

Billing and Payment Information

AMI/USA team will create an invoice based on the programming and budget needs. This will be site specific and catered for each site. The fees will include preparations, meetings or presentation, and administrative costs of the program for non-AMI/USA member schools. For AMI/USA member schools who are seeking mentoring, there is a 10% discount. Please submit payment online.

The fee structure for AMI/USA Mentoring and Special Events is as follows (due with request form): 

+ $80 non-refundable application fee

+ Mentor or Special Event fees (please refer to chart below)

+ $250 deposit toward expense reimbursements

Optional:

+ $99 per AMI/USA member*

* All are welcome to join AMI/USA as members. 

Requests for Mentoring and Special Events are processed after the payment is received. Invoices will not be sent in advance. After payment is confirmed, a detail receipt will be sent. 

Billing Procedures

Following the in-person mentor meetings or special event, mentors/presenters submit an expense report to AMI/USA for any outstanding expenses. Then, an invoice is sent, with payment due upon receipt. Please pay online or make checks payable to AMI/USA. Overdue invoices may incur penalties and interest. 

Travel and Other Expenses:

  • Airfare
  • Local transportation: includes all transportation needed including transportation to and from the airport in the mentor/presenter’s city and in the arrival city, and to and from the hotel
  • Food: includes meals en route
  • Accommodations

Additional Policies

  • Please be advised that the mentor/presenter may need to schedule the return flight on the day following the visit.
  • Any changes to travel plans, after a meeting or special event is confirmed, may result in increased charge (i.e., airfare cancellation, change penalties or lodging expenses).

Code of Ethics

AMI and AMI/USA are organizations whose regulation of conduct is limited to pedagogical matters. All those connected with AMI and AMI/USA are expected to conduct themselves lawfully and to both exemplify and support the propagation and furtherance of the ideas and principles of Dr. Maria Montessori for the full development of the human being.

Limitations of AMI/USA Mentoring

AMI/USA Mentoring concerns pedagogical matters within the classrooms and does not assess other aspects of the school’s operations such as state licensing requirements and financial and/or administrative matters. 

Questions?

If there are any questions surrounding scheduling, fees or payment, please contact the AMI/USA office by phone at 571-302-5284 or by email montessori@amiusa.org for further clarification.