Mission Hill K-8 School

  • Our small learning community emphasizes a project-based, collaborative curriculum, inclusive of all learning abilities. Experiential education is at the core of the curriculum. The school serves approximately 240 children and classes are multi-aged, with an average of 20 students or fewer. Whenever possible, there are two adults in each classroom. Students graduate when they can demonstrate that they have the skills, disposition, and knowledge needed to tackle high school and young adulthood. MHS was founded in 1997 by educator and author Deborah Meier and is modeled on democratic principles.

    Our classrooms are a combined art/engineering studio, science lab, carpentry shop, kitchen, and library. Each room includes a meeting area, a small library, and (for older grades) computers. Children work individually or in small groups on tasks related to a shared school-wide theme or project. Children also spend time each day on more traditional teacher-directed skill work, and on personally directed activities of their own inspiration.

    Several hours each week are devoted to wellness activities, outdoor play and exploration, art, and music. The school has an active library, External Affairs room (available for community meetings), an Assembly Hall, gymnasium, and large unstructured indoor space which may be used for activities ranging from a small play to our weekly all-school Friday Share.

    Special Features

    • A pilot school emphasizing active, project-based, collaborative learning
    • Multi-aged classes of not more than 20 students, with more than one adult present
    • Arts emphasized through much of the school day
    • Focus on three schoolwide themes each year
    • Graduation based on performance
    • Focus on Habits of Mind and Work
    • Use of multiple assessments, not just standardized testing, to measure student achievement
    • Home/school partnership sustained through family participation in ongoing exhibitions of student work
    • Partnerships with local universities and museums focused on learning
    • Sharing and learning from innovative educators locally and internationally
    • The school requires that families attend an informational meeting before their child can be officially accepted. This assures that families are making an informed decision and embrace the mission and vision of the school.

    Special academic programs

    • Full inclusion of general education and special education students

    Before and after school programs in our building

    • Before school, 8:00-9:15 am. Children of all ages may attend.
    • After school, 3:30-6:00 pm for students in K0-grade 6.
    • K0 children may only attend one program, either before or after school, not both.


  • Principal
    Valerie Lowe-Barehmi, Interim
    20 Child Street
    Jamaica Plain, MA 02130
    Phone: 617-635-6384
    Fax: 617-635-6419 
    School Hours
    9:30 a.m. - 3:30 p.m.
    Early Dismissal, the day before Thanksgiving and the last two days of school: 1:00 p.m.
    Grades: K0-8
    Level: K-8
    School Type: Pilot