photo of Montessori sensorial shelves

Montessori Examination and Accreditation Board (MEAB)

Our current MEAB inspection report

We are one of only two accredited Montessori preschools in Orpington. The Montessori Evaluation and Accreditation Board (MEAB) gave us accreditation status in 2015. We were successfully re-accredited in 2019.

What is the MEAB?

The MEAB is the Montessori Accreditation and Examination Board. It is part of the UK Montessori Schools Association which is run by the St Nicholas registered charity. The purpose of MEAB accreditation is to ensure that all MEAB accredited schools using the Montessori name offer high quality education and care to children.

The MEAB is in the process of changing it’s name to MAI, Montessori Accreditation International.

Accredited preschools in Orpington

This web page list preschools that have attained MEAB accreditation:
Only two preschools are accredited by the MEAB in Orpington:
Orpington Montessori Preschool
Rushmore House Montessori Preschool
(Note: this information was last checked for accuracy on 15th August 2020)

Why is MEAB accreditation important?

Anyone can use the Montessori name, it is completely unregulated. This does happen, the word “Montessori” on the website, a couple of dusty pieces of Montessori equipment in a cupboard and a few, if any, qualified Montessori teachers, may be the only connection with Montessori teaching. At Rushmore House Montessori preschool and Orpington Montessori preschool we are committed to providing high quality Montessori preschool education. This needs qualified Montessori staff, well equipped Montessori classrooms and a deep commitment by the preschool managers and teachers. This is not an easy path to follow, however it is the only way to achieve a truly high quality Montessori preschool. MEAB accreditation validates what we have achieved and deliver each day.

Is the MEAB independent?

The MEAB is an independent organisation. The MEAB is part of the UK Montessori Schools Association which is run by the Montessori St Nicholas Charity, a registered charity in the UK. 

Where does MEAB fit in with Ofsted?

​The MEAB inspection is complementary to the Ofsted inspection, it does not replace it. The Ofsted inspection assesses the statutory compliance involved in running a preschool. The MEAB inspection looks at how a setting delivers the Montessori principles.

What are the benefits of MEAB …
… for parents?
The knowledge that an accredited school:

  • fulfils the criteria of high quality Montessori provision
  • is expected to meet national regulatory standards
  • demonstrates effective links with parents.

… for children? 
Accreditation is awarded to schools that:

  • trust and respect a child’s need to learn through freedom of choice
  • have a prepared learning environment that supports a child’s natural path of development
  • acknowledge each child’s individuality within the context of their own family.
  • acknowledge each child’s individuality within the context of their own family.

What is the accreditation process?

Accreditation is a three step process:

  1. Completion of application forms
  2. Initial inspection
  3. Final inspection

Inspection handbook:
Application forms
This involves a detailed self analysis of how the preschool delivers the Montessori curriculum.

Initial inspection
The assessor spends a day in the setting. They will observe, talk to children, parents, the owner, manager and staff. They check the preschool policies and procedures and documents. At the end of the visit the inspector gives feedback and makes verbal recommendations for improvement. A written initial report follows shortly afterwards.

Final inspection
The final inspection follows the same process as the first and includes a re-assessment of any items of improvement identified in the first inspection. The final report does not have a grade, but does contain standard statements with varying levels of qualification.

The setting provides an education in accordance with the principles of the Montessori approach and environment … and merits accreditation by the Montessori Evaluation and Accreditation Board.

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