Business: Inspire Kids Montessori
Owner: Diana Darmawaskita
Address: 4425 E. Agave Road, Building. 8, Suite 144
Hours: 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. weekdays
Phone: (480) 659-9402
Website: http://inspirekidsmontessori.com, or on Facebook under "Inspire Kids Montessori"
Q: Where are you from and what did you do before opening your business?A: I'm originally from Indonesia. My education background is rather unusual: I have a bachelor of science degree in civil engineering and an MBA in operations management. My career started in the commercial construction management area in Asia for several years, and when we moved to Arizona, I ended up working in the semiconductor sector for a few years.
Q: Why did you open your business in Ahwatukee?
A: I chose to open my business in Ahwatukee because it is a community that is oriented toward young families. My family and I also live close by and are very familiar with the area.
Q: How did you get the idea to open your business?
A: When we had our own children, my interest changed to early childhood development. After doing a lot of research, I finally decided that Montessori is the right future for me. I left the corporate world to become a Montessori teacher. After I completed my American Montessori Society training, I taught a 3- to 6-year-old class for a couple of years here in the East Valley area. I really found my passion in teaching. I always enjoyed seeing my students flourish with their new skills and knowledge, as well as the interactions with the parents.
Q: What type of merchandise/services do you sell?
A: My school provides Montessori education for children ages 2 to 6. Specifically, we have two classes: a pre-primary class for children ages 2 to 3 and primary class for children ages 3 to 6. We offer summer sessions from July 6 to 23. Our fall semester starts on Aug 9 with a new parent orientation on Aug. 4 from 5 p.m. to 7 p.m.
Q: What does your business offer that no one else does?
A: All of our teachers are certified by the Association Montessori International or American Montessori Society with a bachelor's degree or higher in early childhood/elementary education. We offer a highly academic and well-balanced program, including a Spanish tutor and a music instructor. Our classrooms are also twice the size of regular state-mandated rooms, and our shelves boast of all new Montessori materials as well as their extensions.
Q: How have residents of the community responded to your business?
A: We have had a great response with our first open house and have generated a lot of interest for our summer program. We will be holding another open house for the fall enrollment, which will be from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. every Wednesday and Thursday in July.
Q: What does your business have in store for the future?
A: Our business' main focus at present is offering a quality education that young children deserve. We believe by keeping the school small, we can provide not only a nurturing environment but also one-on-one attention to each child.
Q: Anything else you want the community to know about you or your business?
A: We are a close-knit, family-owned business. Most of our teachers are parents themselves and understand the concerns and needs of our clients. When our parents and children step through the door, they become our extended family.