Caritas Professional Development Center

The Caritas Training Center
 A  Montessori Training Program providing teacher certification in the Montessori Approach is available to early childhood educators dedicated to the full development of the pre-school children in their care.

The mission of the Caritas Training Center is to return Maria Montessori’s vision to its roots; to offer a quality education to the poorest children of our communities; and to aid all children in reaching their full potential by training the teachers who serve the children and families of these communities.

Applications may be requested from:

The Caritas Training Center
38-11 27th Street
Long Island City, NY 11101

Tel.: 718-937-7640
Fax: 718-392-7928    

Applications may be received at any time during the year. Acceptance letters are sent to prospective students in August. Classes begin the week after Labor Day and end mid-June.

Under the Federal Head Start Performance Standards, Delegate Agencies  are mandated to choose the curriculum which they will use in their Head Start and day care programs. Catholic Charities Brooklyn and Queens, a multi-service not-for-profit agency which has served Brooklyn and Queens since 1899, chose the Montessori Method in 1996 for the over 2,000 children in the 19 early childhood programs under its sponsorship. Two Montessori Teacher Trainers were hired, an affiliation was formed with the Montessori Institute of America for Montessori Teacher Certification, and an experimental training program was begun to train the 300 plus education staff in the day care and Head Start programs.

By the year 2000, the Caritas Training Center for Early Child Care and Education was officially named and the program was evaluated and accredited by National PONSI (Program for Noncollegiate Sponsored Instruction) under the New York State Board of Regents and the State University of New York.

The two-year Montessori Teacher Training program is recommended for 24 college credits with 6-9 additional optional credits. These courses are accepted by the New York State Department of Education toward teacher certification in early childhood from birth to second grade.

As of 2010, over 320 education staff have received Montessori teacher training with at least 20 of that number representing private schools and programs independent of Catholic Charities. The training program is sponsored by Catholic Charities and funded by grants and foundations. For employees of Catholic Charities, the training is offered free of charge. For students from private schools, tuition is required. For information, call the Caritas Training Center at 718-722-6032.

The program remains affiliated with the Montessori Institute of America in Kent, Washington, and is a Training Program member of the International Montessori Council.

Course Requirements
Under National PONSI guidelines no credit is given for the course until the entire course is completed. Unofficial transcripts may be requested upon completion of a course, but official transcripts are not issued until all work is complete.

  1. Each student completes their own album of presentations, evaluations, essays, and illustrations for each course.
  2. The Practicum/Field Study requires observations/evaluations by supervisors during the year, a monthly intern diary, and a monthly update of a child study.
  3. Each graduate receives a Montessori Teacher Certification from Birth to Seven Years through MIA, a certificate from Catholic Charities showing their two-year participation, as well as an official transcript of their grades.

Additional transcripts may be requested at no cost. Transcripts and course outlines may be prepared for NYS Teacher Certification upon request.

The two-year program consists of:

Year 1 (Classes are held one day per week from 9 a.m. – 4 p.m.)

Fall Semester
Child Development: Birth through Middle Childhood, 45 hrs/3 credits

Practical Life/Sensorial Materials, 45 hrs/3 credits

Spring Semester
Classroom Management: Observation, Evaluation & Assessment, 45 hrs/3 credits

Math & Language Materials for the Preschool Montessori Classroom, 45 hrs/3 credits

Late Spring Short Semester
Cultural Subjects: Science, Geography, History, Music & Art, 45 hrs/3 credits

Year 2 (Internship Year)

Family and Community (Monthly), 48 hrs/3 credits

Practicum/Field Study (Internship)    (40 days; Sept. – June)/6 credits

A print-out of the course descriptions is available online under NPONSI cooperating programs: Catholic Charities Neighborhood Services.

NYS Accreditation for the Infant/Toddler Curriculum Course is pending.

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