St. Catherine’s Montessori

Sisters Edna Ann Herbert and Shirley Owens founded St. Catherine’s Montessori (originally named Dominican Montessori) in 1966 and are affiliated with the Association Montessori Internationale.  Before moving to its current location in 2006, St. Catherine’s was hosted by St. Agnes Academy’s old building.  The school then was hosted by the Holy Rosary Parish and Bering Memorial Methodist Church.  In 1983, St. Catherine’s occupied a 20,000 square foot building on Westridge.  St. Catherine’s works with students age 14 months to ninth grade.

St. Catherine’s Montessori

9821 Timberside, Houston, TX 77025                                                        Ms. Susan Tracy, Head of School

713-665-2195                                                                                       Ms. Laurie Farris, Director of Admissions

Religious Affiliation

St. Catherine’s is part of the Catholic Diocese of Galveston-Houston and incorporates the Catholic faith with Dr. Montessori’s educational system through the “Catechesis of the Good Shepherd.”  The school holds an atrium where students gather and interact with spiritual objects as a sensorial experience of the Catholic faith.  The school’s spiritual goal for its students is “…to offer a pervasive element of Catholic study and experiences within the educational setting.”  St. Catherine’s is also a member of the National Catholic Education Association.

Location and Facilities

St. Catherine’s 7.4 acre campus is located near the 610 Loop and is between Stella Link and South Main.  The school includes a gymnasium, sports field, and gardens.  St. Catherine’s is Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design (LEED) certified, which is the current rating system for the operation of “green” buildings.  “Green” features of St. Catherine’s include water use reduction, storm water management, energy from 100% renewable resources, use of recycled materials, construction waste management, and green housekeeping.


In order to receive an application, parents must complete a tour (parents only) and classroom observation, in that order.  Tours are generally scheduled on Tuesdays from 9:00 to 10:00 AM.  Once the tour is completed, the classroom observation is scheduled, usually on Wednesdays from 9:00 to 10:00 AM.  Applications are considered in February, giving greater priority to 1) siblings of current St. Catherine’s students and 2) transfer students from other Montessori schools over other applicants.

Students coming from a non-Montessori background are eligible on a space available basis in first and fourth grade only.  Applicants for seventh through ninth grade must be a transfer student from a Montessori school with at least three continuous years of experience.  St. Catherine’s also requires the student’s most recent report cards, progress reports, and achievement test scores.  The school will schedule a visit for the student and one of the school’s guides will perform an informal evaluation.

Academic Tracks and Curriculum

St. Catherine’s curriculum follows the educational methodology implemented by Dr. Maria Montessori in 1897.  In accordance with Dr. Montessori’s multi-age classrooms, the school groups its students together in threes: 14 months to age 3 (Toddler), age 4 to age 6 (Primary), first through third grade (Lower Elementary), fourth through sixth grade (Upper Elementary), and seventh through ninth grade (Adolescent Community).  While the Montessori Method was designed for up to sixth grade students, St. Catherine’s continues to employ the method and incorporates traditional American education elements in seventh through ninth grade.  The Adolescent Community studies History and Civilization, Science, English/Language Arts, Mathematics, Theology, Physical Education, and Music.

Special Needs

No information provided.

Foreign Languages

For the Adolescent Community, St. Catherine’s offers Spanish I, Spanish II, and Spanish for Native Speakers.


Students attending St. Catherine’s have the opportunity to study liturgical music and participate in the Upper School musical production.  Students may also join the school’s band and orchestra programs or dance class.


No information provided.

Extracurricular Activities

St. Catherine’s offers a number of after school activities for Primary students and up.  Primary students may participate in Construction Camp and Natural Wonders.  Elementary students may join Junkyard Wars Junior and Super Science Sleuths.  Primary students and older may participate in Gymnastics.


St. Catherine’s hosts after-school athletics programs for Primary through Adolescent Community students.  Students may participate in soccer, volleyball, basketball, and track and field.  St. Catherine’s is a member of the Greater Houston Catholic Athletic Association, which is made up of 52 Houston-area Catholic schools.

Parent Involvement

Parents are members of the school’s Parent Service Organization (PSO), which supports cultural programs, field trips, projects, and teachers. The PSO organizes school-wide events, such as Fall Festival and Spring Flings; social events, such as morning coffee and movie night; book club; and Parent Education programs. The Booster Club is a parent-organized program that supports athletics.

St. Catherine’s Montessori Fast Facts

School Type Religious, Montessori
Religious Affiliation Catholic
Uniforms No
Date Founded 1966
Endowment N/A
Grades Served Age 14 mo. – 9th
Enrollment 155
     Grade 9 5
     Grade 8 10
     Grade 7 16
     Grade 6 14
     Grade 5 14
     Grade 4 14
     Grade 3 13
     Grade 2 22
     Grade 1 21
     Kindergarten 26
     Pre-Kindergarten 85
Student to Teacher Ratio 10:1
Faculty with Advanced Degrees (#/%) 4/10%
Minorities in Student Body 52%
Academic Tracks Offered Montessori
Advanced Placement Courses Offered N/A
Languages Offered Spanish
Calendar (Semester / Trimester / Other) Semester
Interscholastic Sports Programs 4
Prime Entry Points Toddler, 1st Grade, 4th Grade
Toddler $8,002
Primary (full day) $9,553
Elementary (grade 1 – 6) $10,358
Adolescent Community (grade 7 – 9) $11,149
New Student Fee $450
Application Fee $125
Tuition Deposit $750
Lower Elementary Fees $150
Upper Elementary Fees $775
Adolescent Community Fees $1,950
Students on Financial Aid N/A


Excerpted from General Academic’s publication, “Houston Private & Select Public Schools: Survey, Analysis, and Research, 3rd Edition.”

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