On Friday, February 15th at the opening of the 2019 Refresher Course, AMI/USA Board President, Gretchen Hall, and MAA Board President, John Churn, announced plans to consolidate into one organization.
Questions? See below:
AMI/USA and MAA Consolidation FAQ
Following years of active collaboration to consider more opportunities for improved services and efficiencies among the affiliates of AMI in the United States’, MAA and AMI/USA have reached an agreement to enhance support for administrators through a consolidation of activity within one organization. On 1 March 2019 the functions of MAA will be transferred to AMI/USA. MAA will close all operations as of the transition date. AMI/USA will provide a continuity and amplification of the existing supports for school administrators, previously provided by MAA. This consolidation will also increase the focus of the work of AMI affiliates in the United States to support all Montessori schools, teachers, and parents.
This document aims to answer some anticipated questions about the consolidation. If you have other questions, please reach out to AMI/USA at email@example.com.
- What will happen to my current MAA memberships?
Current MAA members will become members of AMI/USA; the dues amount that they pay will stay the same at $99/year. Current MAA members will renew with with AMI/USA as AMI/USA Administrator Members. AMI/USA will take over planning and running the Summer Administrators Retreat in partnership with former MAA trustees.
- How will this affect my current and future dues payment with MAA?
There are no planned changes to the membership dues with MAA. Your current member dues cover your membership through the end of your membership period. When your membership is due to renew, your will renew through AMI/USA.
- What if I am an administrator who is already a member of AMI through AMI/USA, but not a member of MAA?
All members of AMI/USA will have an option to change their AMI/USA membership status to Administrator Member and gain access to the additional benefits including the online forum and the administrators document vault. The AMI/USA Administrator Member rate is $99/year. To make this change in your membership, send an email to Director of Membership, Denise Wanits (firstname.lastname@example.org).
- What if I am a member of both MAA and AMS?
AMS members who are currently members of MAA become members of AMI/USA on March 1, 2019. Membership in AMI-USA provides Administrator Members with all of the benefits currently available to MAA members plus benefits provided to AMI-USA members such as newsletters, member rates at events, and publications.
- How does AMI/USA include, connect with, and support members who are not AMI trained?
AMI/USA is an organization for everyone interested in Montessori. AMI/USA, NAMTA, and MAA have been open to everyone to join! Having earned an AMI diploma is not a requirement for being a member of AMI, nor is it a requirement for attending most of AMI/USA’s current annual professional development offerings.
- How will administrators benefit from this consolidation?
Simpler memberships: the consolidation of MAA with AMI/USA will provide all of the resources now available within both organizations to be available within a single membership. Additional offerings: the increased capacity provided by the consolidation will also increase resources to allow expanded membership benefits in the future.
- Will the MAA Online Forum be the same?
Yes (and we plan for it to get better)! The Google Group is currently one of the most popular benefits of being a MAA member. This benefit will have no interruption through the consolidation process and will continue to provide continued support for Montessori administrators by allowing us to share resources, advice, support, mentorship and laughs that we all need in this job.
- AMI/USA holds in high regard the pedagogical standards for high-fidelity Montessori practice. Will this change with the merger?
No. We believe the merger will only act to enhance the opportunities for all Montessori administrators to run the highest quality Montessori schools. It is an approach of inclusivity, acknowledging we are stronger together.
- Will all AMI members now have access to the MAA online forum and document vault?
No. Through the spring and summer of 2019, the MAA online forum will be only for members who were MAA members as of February 28, 2019. New AMI/USA members who join in the spring of 2019 as Administrator Members, will get access to the administrators’ online forum and to the administrators’ document vault. AMI/USA members who have not joined as Administrator Members under this new membership plan will not have access to the Administrator Member benefits unless they change their membership status to Administrator Member.
- As a current AMI/USA member, what benefits will consolidating with MAA offer me?
If you are not a current MAA member, you can receive access to the online forum, Administrators’ document vault, participation in the administrators’ mentorship program, and an invitation to attend the annual summer retreat by changing your AMI/USA membership status to Administrator Member ($99/year). To change your membership status, send an email request to Director of Membership, Denise Wanits (email@example.com).
- Will all of the functions of MAA be retained under AMI/USA?
All the current MAA functions will be retained and managed by AMI/USA. These functions are: the summer retreat, online forum, document vault, mentorship program and support for the administrators workshop at the AMI/USA Refresher Course. No MAA services for administrators are being discontinued in this transition.
- How will the governance of AMI/USA change with this consolidation?
AMI/USA has added two new trustees to help ensure the success of this consolidation. The two selected trustees, James Moudry and Michele Shane, are former MAA board members who have helped MAA grow and be successful since 2012.
- Who will be responsible for making sure administrators’ needs are being met?
AMI/USA will take this on for all the Administrator Members. Part of the agreement in the consolidation between AMI/USA and MAA is the addition of two representatives from MAA to the AMI/USA board to ensure the focus on administrators continues. In addition, there are currently three members of of the AMI/USA board of directors that are current or former school administrators, including the Executive Director, Debby Riordan. There is a lot of focus on supporting administrators at the AMI/USA governance and leadership!
- I work at an AMS school. With MAA consolidating with AMI/USA, where will I get continued support as an administrator? Can I continue to belong to MAA?
As a current member of MAA, you will experience no disruption of support or services during this consolidation. There is no issue in working at an AMS Member school and belonging to AMI/USA (or working at an AMI Recognized school and belonging to AMS). Your MAA membership will transition into an AMI/USA Administrator Membership on March 1, 2019. The goal is to offer even more support and services for Montessori school administrators after the transition! AMI/USA will provide all the support and professional development that you received through MAA. When your membership changes over this spring, AMI/USA will continue that connection in all the same ways you enjoyed as a member of MAA.
- What about the other AMI affiliates?
The other affiliates of AMI in the United states, EAA and NAMTA, will continue in their current capacities. They will continue their collaborative work with each other and with AMI/USA.
- What’s next?
This spring, MAA will consolidate all of its functions within AMI/USA offices and AMI/USA staff will take over the support of school administrators. Former MAA trustees will be instrumental in this transition, ensuring that there is a seamless continuity of programming and support for all MAA members. Through the spring, AMI/USA Administrator Members will continue to receive information and updates about the Summer Administrators Retreat.