Welcome to Alsion Montessori
Alsion Montessori Middle/High School offers a three year program of education specifically designed to meet the academic and social needs of adolescents (ages 12 through 15.) With an enrollment of fewer than fifty students, we can focus on the individual needs of each adolescent as he or she undergoes the critical transformation from child to young adult. While Alsion covers grades 7, 8 and 9, the School has the teaching expertise and resources to advance motivated students well beyond State of California standards for these grade levels.
Alsion's Early College High School program enables our students to achieve two years of college credit at Ohlone College while earning a high school diploma at Alsion. Alsion’s Early College’s college acceptance track record is exceptional: Since its inception, 85% of our Early College graduates have been accepted by the University of California with advanced standing. During the past three years, 20% of Alsion Early College graduates qualified for the National Merit Scholarships. Due to limited space, enrollment in Alsion's Early College program can not be offered to students who have not completed at least the eighth grade in Alsion Middle/High.
Alsion Montessori Middle/High is accredited by the Western Association of Schools and Colleges.
"Alsion" was the name of the Ohlone Indian settlement now known as Mission San Jose. We are located in the Mission San Jose District of Fremont, California, adjacent to Ohlone Community College, directly across the street from the College's Smith Center for the Performing Arts. On Mission Boulevard, turn East at Anza Street.
The complete address is:
Alsion Montessori Middle/High School
P.O. Box 3296 • 750 Witherly Lane
Fremont, CA 94539 • (510) 445-1127
At Alsion, all grade levels and ages are combined into a single learning community of 35 to 45 students, with roughly equal numbers of boys and girls. About half of our students attended Montessori elementary and preschool programs.
Although our doors open at 7:30, Alsion’s instructional day begins at 9:00, an hour later than most schools; our instructional day is two hours longer, ending at 5:00 rather than 3:00.
Unlike larger schools that rotate their students through classes taught by different instructors every 55 minutes, Alsion keeps its students with the same team of full-time teachers for three consecutive years. In that span, each student develops a close working relationship with the same math, English or science teacher. Instructors take a close personal interest in their students’ progress. No student is ignored or “falls between the cracks.”
Alsion’s school day is two hours longer than a typical school day. With this additional uninterrupted block of time, our students can undertake projects that otherwise must be put away when the bell rings. They are therefore able to immerse themselves in their subjects. With the longer school day, more field trips, cultural events, internships and community-service activities are possible.
Classes at Alsion are small, making the students’ academic environment interactive and experiential. Working from a lesson overview provided by their instructors, students work in groups of three or four. Their task each week is to research and report on an assigned topic. A written report is submitted in tandem with an oral one. Students must field questions and defend their work during the latter. This means every student will make an oral presentation once a week. Students eventually abandon their fears of speaking in public and become very confident orators and leaders.
As in college, Alsion students are given a syllabus at the beginning of a term that outlines assignments, due dates and exam dates. The skills-based subjects like math and foreign languages, like math and foreign languages are taught in smaller classes based upon ability at either advanced or beginner levels. Although teachers begin with overview lessons ,work is assigned to study group teams of three or four students. Their task each week is to research and report on the assigned subject. Reports are written-up by individual team members, but the entire team makes an oral report before all students at the end of the week. The team members must then answer questions and defend their positions before their peers and teachers much in the same manner as a doctoral candidate defends his thesis. This means every student will make an oral presentation before the entire school once a week, 36 weeks every school year during three consecutive years. Students eventually abandon their fears of speaking in front of a group and become confident public speakers presenters. Working on student lead project teams during the three years they attend Alsion gives our students practice in making a contribution toward and leading group effort, a very important capability to have in a twenty first century skill set.
Alsion moved from its previous location on Washington Boulevard, which it shared with Montessori School of Fremont, to its own campus adjacent to Ohlone College in September 2008. The new facility has three components. The main building houses the Junior High program. The administrative office and Early College Study Center occupy the adjoining building. The third component is an all weather, multi-sport court for basketball, volleyball, badminton, etc. A shuttle bus brings students from the Washington Boulevard campus, takes them to their apprenticeships/ internships after class, or to other nearby venues within the Fremont/Newark/Union City Area.
|Alsion’s new campus looking east at sunset
Alsion Early College is "home base" for
Alsion high school students attending
Ohlone College less than 100 yards away.
First time visitors to the new campus usually comment on the view. The front of the School commands a sweeping view of the San Francisco Bay Area, which on the clearest days extends all the way to the Golden Gate. For Alsion students enrolled in the Early College High School Program, the walk to Ohlone College's main quad is across the street and less than 100 yards away.
While the original Alsion building dates back to 1957, the recent renovation incorporates the latest instructional technology. For example, every student has access to the internet, network printers, and interactive projection systems through each of Alsion’s two WiFi networks. Our school subscribes to on-line resources for learning foreign languages, math placement testing and Advanced Placement high school courses offered by the University of California. From a fire and seismic safety standpoint, the facility exceeds all current codes for schools.