Peoria's shuttered Washington School will get new life

Jul 10, 2014

Washington School, at the corner of Garfield and Moss Avenue in Peoria. The School District 150 property stands empty in the Moss Bradley Neighborhood. But it could become a Montessori School by next summer.
Credit Tanya Koonce / Peoria Public Radio
The Montessori Children’s House of Peoria passed its first hurdle to purchasing the historic Washington School property. The Moss Bradley Neighborhood Association unanimously approved of the Pre-K to sixth grade academy becoming part of its neighborhood.

The Montessori program currently operates at St Paul’s Cathedral with about 75 children, and would like to double its enrollment at Washington School. The property costs 150-thousand dollars.

Second District Peoria City Councilman Chuck Grayeb is also a retired school administrator. He says the commitment of Montessori stands to make it a stable community anchor: 

“I believe it will be a good fit. I believe they have the financial heft to do it. And I believe they are relishing the opportunity to be in one of our city’s historic districts.” 

The Montessori program plans to rent studio space to like minded endeavors on the upper floors. The Peoria City Council votes on the Montessori agreement in two weeks. It also needs District 150 School Board approval.

The Montessori Children’s House would hold class at Washington School starting in fall 2015.