Welcome from the Head of School

Late in her life, Lillian Ratner traveled to Italy to meet Maria Montessori. Lillian had developed an interest in the Montessori philosophy and, like the lifelong educator she was, Lillian decided she needed to go straight to the source to learn more. That meeting inspired a vision: a Montessori school in Cleveland that was grounded in universal Jewish values, but open to all. This vision came to fruition in 1963, when the Lillian Ratner Montessori School opened its doors. Under the guidance of board chair (and Lillian’s sister-in-law) Betty Ratner, the school grew and evolved, and here we are today, welcoming you to The Lillian and Betty Ratner Montessori School.


Our faculty and staff truly know each student, and each student grows to know themselves by working with teachers to develop their individual Ratner EDGE (Education Design for Growth and Empowerment) plan. Using the Ratner EDGE plan, each student identifies strengths, areas for growth, and special interests or passions, and then sets goals and evaluates progress, allowing them to take ownership of their learning.


The Ratner Montessori mission states that we empower a diverse community of students to find joy in learning and to become their best selves – take a tour, meet students and teachers, see our Montessori classrooms in action, and discover the school designed for the creative, curious child. I look forward to meeting you!


Mike Griffith

Head of School