Dear Parents and Students of The Bay Academy

As you know, Hout Bay Montessori, Mymontessori Ecoschool and The Academy Hout Bay are now together The Bay Academy. We felt that more frequent communication with you about this process would help to reduce confusion, allay any concerns and answer any questions you might have.

Who are we?

We are The Bay Academy. An all through school, encompassing a Montessori Primary School and an International High School. The seamless transition between which is managed by a Montessori-inspired Middle School curriculum.

The fundamental vision is a fusion of Hout Bay Montessori’s and The Academy Hout Bay’s established visions. Such was the compatibility and similarity of these two organisations, that this required the merest tweaking of our wording.

·        To provide an authentic Montessori education from Preschool to Matriculation; partnering with parents to prepare your children for life.

·        To always strive to create the absolute best quality learning environment that discovers and develops the unique potential in every child.

·        To develop content, independent, tenacious, and brave young adults, equipped with the skills required to make a positive contribution to a just, fair, and ecologically sustainable society.

Management Structure:

The Bay Academy has a flat management structure with a team of five individuals working together. Daniel Landi and Abi Landman as Head of Teaching and Learning (High School and Primary School respectively); Jacqui Brown as the Finance and Examination officer; Matt Tyrel as the Operations Manager for both campuses; and finally, Neal Saunderson as the Business Manager.

Between them, these dedicated, experienced and passionate individuals strike a balance to ensure we are a school first, and a business second, while acknowledging that without a healthy business, there can be no school.

Managing Change:

While it might seem that there have been significant or fundamental changes in the marrying of three schools, in fact, beyond the disruption of changing campuses and branding, there has been little fundamental change, besides ownership (see below). Our vision and mission remain fundamentally the same. We have the addition of a Grade 7 class to ensure the smooth transition from the Primary school and to create further opportunities to enhance and develop the Montessori approach in the High School; we have building development plans in process to adjust the Primary campus to better serve the Montessori approach, and we continue to effectively position current staff and recruit the best to ensure the success of the school. Perhaps managing perception is the greater challenge.

Parental Support:

The greatest change for parents of The Hout Bay Montessori has been the move from a parent-run NPO, to a privately owned Limited Company. While we are already seeing the benefits of having a generous and astute investor, we firmly acknowledge your concerns with this change.

To this end we are establishing both a Parent-Teacher Association and a Board of Governors. Between them, the needs of all stakeholders will be represented.

What next?

  1. We have a new brand and will prioritise rolling this out, including signage outside both campuses, and on all communications.  This will begin to develop our sense of identity.
  2. We will elect the PTA and the Board of Governors as soon as possible with a clearly communicated remit.
  3. We will conduct individual interviews with Senior Primary Parents to facilitate their children’s move into high school.

We feel that much of this confusion could have been the result of announcing the merger, only to have various delays to the branding and new website allow time for confusion to spread. We hope that this communication serves to clarify our position and the actions describe above cement your confidence in your future with The Bay Academy.

Yours sincerely

The Bay Academy Management Team.