Kathleen Leitch, founder and head of Renaissance Montessori School, opened her first school, a small, one-room Early Childhood Montessori school in Bonita Springs, Florida in 1992. Kathleen did not realize when she began Bonita Montessori School, with those first seven children, that she was laying a solid foundation for the incredible school that Renaissance is today and is still in the process of becoming.
Within a year, the Bonita Montessori School had 30 young students and had established itself as an excellent school with a strong community spirit.
Soon, there was considerable interest in expanding the program to include elementary students.
Kathleen, together with faculty and parents, began to create a vision for their dream school.
The Bonita facility did not have room for expansion and so the search for a suitable space began. When the search began to move beyond Bonita Springs, it became apparent that a new name was needed for the school.
In 1995, Kathleen established a professional board of trustees, restructured the school as a not-for-profit organization and gave it the name Renaissance Montessori School.
Renaissance Montessori School was now able to take the first step in implementing the vision of creating a self-sustaining school with the potential to serve thousands of children and families in Southwest Florida for years to come.
The Barkley Circle campus was acquired in 1997, enabling Renaissance to add a toddler program and two more primary classrooms.
Finally, with this solid base of early childhood students, we were ready to begin our elementary program.
In the Fall of 2000, the first lower elementary classroom was opened.
The Barkley campus continues to house our toddler, primary, elementary programs as well as our administrative office.