From Our Head of School


Dear Friends of Hilltop Montessori School,

Hilltop Montessori School was founded in 1996 by Cindi Stehr with the goal of offering a high-quality, authentic Montessori education to Birmingham students of all interests, backgrounds and abilities. Our mission is to address the needs of the whole child, academically, socially and emotionally, by providing a high-quality Montessori education in an environment that fosters a child’s love of learning and respect for self, others, community and the world. This mission is what drives our community and our philosophy of education as we prepare our students for exemplary secondary education experiences and for a lifetime love of learning and academic success. A solid history of accreditation and success speak for itself; Hilltop is accredited by AdvancED, SAIS, SACS/CASI and its early childhood program is accredited by The American Montessori Society. We are proud to say that we are the only school in Alabama with all three accreditations and the only private school in a LEED certified building. Our alumni include 6 National Merit Scholars, numerous honor society students, national winners in science, foreign language, history and achievement and numerous other awards as noted on our alumni page.

Interestingly, many current instructional practices in education complement the foundation of Montessori education – hands-on instruction through concrete materials, multi-age groupings, team teaching and individualizing education – permitting each learner to be empowered to explore academics to his or her fullest potential. These best practices of education are fundamental to the Montessori philosophy, which has been practiced for one hundred years and forms the core of our school community. We also commit ourselves to the integration of current instructional practices and methodology, offering daily foreign language, critical thinking, music, fine arts, age-appropriate integration of technology and environmental education.

We invite you to explore our website, visit our beautiful campus and consider a Montessori education for your child. We look forward to working with you to help your child reach his or her fullest potential.

Michele Wilensky
Head of School


  • Michele's Blog

    • Construction Update

        We are so excited about the plans that are coming together on our Phase Three changes! Shelby County has our plans now and we are hoping that permitting will be ready soon! Once construction starts, we will be working closely with JohnsonKreis Construction to keep our little ones safe ... Read more →

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    • HMS Featured in SAIS Article on Outdoor Environments

                    With such a continuing emphasis on the benefits of play and its importance to the learning process, we are thrilled to be featured in this SAIS article: ... Read more →

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    • Faculty Appreciation Week

      We are so excited about our faculty appreciation week on Monday. Although our teachers always know that they are appreciated and loved, this is a special time to show them how much they mean to us. One of the biggest benefits of the Montessori philosophy is the very close bond ... Read more →

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    • Strategic Planning-Important for any Accredited School

      Hilltop continues to push forward with our strategic initiatives in conjunction with our two year progress report to The Southern Association of Independent Schools. While much of our goals for the future center around the phase three expansion, we also have many other tasks that are being completed in the ... Read more →

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    • Growth and Change

      Hilltop will be so fortunate next fall to celebrate its 20th birthday and the completion of our Phase Three Expansion. It’s an exciting time at Hilltop and we are proud to be able to offer an even nicer learning environment for our students. We might be biased but we think ... Read more →

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