Heärt Montessori, a vegan preschool and kindergarten, is opening next year in Cincinnati, Ohio. The private school will promote self-care, empathy, compassion, and sustainability, while simultaneously focusing on core academics.
Children will be provided organic, plant-based lunches and be empowered with “the understanding of how food fuels their bodies,” according to the school’s website.
In addition to teaching children to make healthy choices for themselves, the school will also arrange animal sanctuary visits and focus on kindness rather than performance.
The school, which was founded by Mother Caroline Caldwell, Anna Ferguson, Brett Hornberger, Nayana Shah, and Mark Stroud, will follow the mindful teaching techniques developed by Italian educator Maria Montessori. These teachings emphasize building self-esteem and compassion through meditation and yoga.
“It’s not that other schools don’t teach empathy and compassion, but we wanted it to be the focus,” Cadwell said. “Optimally, we’ll be cooking food that we grow in season. We’ll have healthy, plant-based meals that are organic and amazing.”
Students will also be encouraged to interact with rescued animals at the nearby Jubilee Animal Sanctuary, which houses rescued horses.
Heärt Montessori is not the first of its kind. California-based MUSE school, opened by director James Cameron and his wife Suzy, became the first school in the nation to go fully vegan in 2015.