Bilingual Montessori achieves new success

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By Kirsten Laskey

Since opening Bilingual Montessori School in June, Odalys González Fernádez has experienced many accomplishments in less than a year. Not only did she fulfill her dream of operating a school, but enrollment has climbed up to 30 families.

Today, González Fernádez is heading to the Capitol Building to be recognized for a new accomplishment.

She is one of 20 Small Business Development Center clients to earn a 2008 success client award.

“We feel great of course,” González Fernádez said. She added they “feel honored,” to receive the award after being in business for only a short period.

“She was chosen because we worked with her to see her business come to fruition,” Venessa De Los Santos, business advisor, said.

De Los Santos said González Fernádez worked with the University of New Mexico-Los Alamos Small Business Development Center for two years to open the school.

“She just had the dedication to keep going,” she added.

Bilingual Montessori School, according to its website, combines Montessori and Spanish language education to develop young minds. The school employs five teachers, an assistant and a volunteer to teach students and combines an exclusive curriculum based on Montessori and bilingual education with childcare services.

Enrollment is open to 3-month-olds to 6-year-olds. González Fernádez said the school offers everything from infant massage and exercise to arts and music.

“It’s a very loving care facility,” she said.

At the Small Business Development Center, De Los Santos said, “we provide free confidential business counseling.” This is available to business owners, people starting up a business or people interested in becoming entrepreneurs.

“We help bring up other questions. We help evaluate … we can do everything from helping them with business plans, finding the right resources (to) marketing and helping current business owners with problems that may come up in the business,” she said.

In addition to the Small Business Development, González Fernádez thanks the community for its support, adding she is grateful to receive this award. “This is an honor,” she said.