Our Facility

Tucked in the gentle hills of Basking Ridge, our school is a beautiful, serene setting for your child to begin his or her education. We are located at 173 Madisonville Road, just steps away from the Basking Ridge Country Club and conveniently located near Routes 287, 202, 124 and 78. The inside of the colonial style building is bright and bustling with activity, while the grounds provide a cool green space for outdoor play, exploration and fun.

History of Somerset Hills Montessori

Somerset Hills Montessori School was founded by Anneliese Glusa and Rosemarie Walsh in February 1978. After Ms. Walsh’s departure, Ms. Glusa continued to oversee SHMS. The school began in a local church basement in Basking Ridge, then later relocated to nearby Cedar Hills School. After a brief stay there, SHMS moved to Madisonville Road in Basking Ridge, where it still resides today.

The Values of Somerset Hills Montessori School

Somerset Hills Montessori is guided by the Montessori Philosophy:

“To cultivate his or her own natural desire to learn in a safe peaceful environment.”

—Dr. Maria Montessori

Our Mission Statement as a community-driven school is to devote ourselves to our core values. These core values are to instill in every child a sense of who they are by creating a safe loving environment and nurturing the growth in every child with the fundamental key proponents, to excel academically and emotionally. We teach our children to respect themselves and others, and to value the world in which we live.

We work as a team to create and nurture in every child emotional, social, physical and intellectual skills needed to become successful in the future. And, we work with every parent to empower each child to work towards becoming a confident, independent, responsible and respectful individual. We also inspire and challenge our teachers to be fully committed to their “Early Education Montessori” teaching careers, by pursuing the path to continuous Educational Workshops. They embrace the Montessori Vision because it has been a great success for children all over the world.

The Road to Success

Somerset Hills Montessori School is proud to be the early childhood learning center of US Women’s National Soccer Team player Tobin Heath, who has won two FIFA World Cups and two Olympic gold medals. Miss Heath’s achievements are an example of how our school prepares children to excel in everything they do while also encouraging teamwork and social skills that are crucial for success in life. Here are more of the world’s most renowned Montessori students:

  • Larry Page and Sergey Brin, Founders of Google​

  • Princess Diana, Prince William, and Prince George of England

  • Jeff Bezos, Founder of Amazon

  • Jacqueline Kennedy Onassis, Former First Lady

  • Yo-Yo Ma, Musician

  • Helen Keller, Author, Activist, Lecturer

  • Julia Child, Chef, Author

  • Joshua Bell, Musician

  • George Clooney, Actor, Director, Producer

  • Anne Frank, Author

  • Sean “P Diddy” Combs, Musician, Producer, Entrepreneur

  • Taylor Swift, Singer

  • Gabriel Garcia Marquez, Author

“The land is where our roots are. The children must be taught to feel and live in harmony with the Earth.”

—Dr. Maria Montessori

The SHMS family has been instrumental in the personal and educational development of my three children. I can’t speak highly enough about the overall educational and social teachings the school provides to the children. The staff is very caring and I have witnessed firsthand how the children thrive on the personal enrichment that is given to each child.

Simply AMAZING! Our daughter is in the kindergarten class now and has been with the school since she was 2. She can’t wait to go to school each morning and doesn’t want to leave. It never ceases to amaze us how much they teach her, not just academically but socially as well. The teachers have all been there for years and are truly committed and passionate about what they do. We had visited many day cares in the area before, but SHMS really stood out for us. We are so glad that a friend recommended this school to us. Our younger son is also there now and we are confident that he will get the same strong foundation that the school provided and continue to provide his sister. To top it off, it is very reasonably priced. WE LOVE the school and can’t thank the teachers enough for what they have done and continue to do for our kids.

The team at SHMS was like a second family for my children. The atmosphere was fun, caring and fostered academic, personal, social growth and development. The Montessori education allowed my children to learn at their own pace and by the time they entered Kindergarten they were much further along than many of their peers. My children looked forward to school every day.

This is an amazing group of genuine caring women who go above and beyond on a daily basis. The school operates like a ballet without a beat missed. I am truly grateful to have each one of these women in my son’s life and mine! It is a wonderful thing knowing my son is growing and learning in trusting and loving hands. I love SHMS!

Our 3-year old daughter attends Somerset Hills Montessori School. The school is truly a “home away from home” for her. The teachers are exceptional and the personalized attention that she gets is unmatched. We’ve seen growth in her vocabulary and learning more everyday. We are so grateful to have found this school and truly appreciate everything the teachers are doing for her each and everyday.

We have two children who attended SHMS in both the Kindergarten and the three-year old classrooms. The teachers are wonderful… not only they are great at inspiring learning in our kids but they are also very care while they teach. The Montessori method is by far the best for our family, my children are far ahead of any academic expectations we had initially at the beginning of our time at this school. This is because they aren’t forced to sit at a desk all day but are encouraged to follow their individual interests while they learn. I appreciate that the school is smaller in size and more like an extended family, even teachers that are not ours are familiar with our kids and their personalities and needs. I also appreciate that children are taught mutual respect between classmates and with adults, manners are reinforced and kindness is the key theme that carries across schoolwork and playtime. I would highly recommend this school to anyone looking for a caring, intimate and nurturing environment that also does an equally excellent job at providing a place where children enjoy learning.

Visit our school and meet our teachers!