The Montessori Place has no year groups, no assessments, and students work in partnership with mentors to decide what to study

One student is completing a project on the rise of the emoji in modern culture. Another is making notes on the incubation of duck eggs, in anticipation of a hatching the next day. Others are outside in the garden, tending to basil, which will later be sold in a local shop.

This is the first Montessori school for adolescents in the UK. There are no year groups, no subject departments, no timetables and no assessments. There are also no teachers in the traditional sense: adults are “guides”, mentors who meet with students weekly or fortnightly to review their work and set a programme of learning. Students study in mixed age groups, learning from each other and working on topics that interest them.

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Teachers as 'guides': inside the UK’s first Montessori secondary school © Guardian News & Media Ltd


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