Meet the team
Kaye Boehning, M.Ed.
When Miss Kaye’s oldest son was two, she went to a Montessori school to see whether she might enroll him to give him a kick start on social skills. “I walked in and saw all these cool toys they had for learning, and I saw the way they were teaching, and I wanted more.”
She began volunteering at the Montessori school, eventually landing a full-time job.
“I was the nap attendant. I was the bus driver. I was the bunny poop carrier. I had all the yuckiest jobs you could have there,” she says. “I started work at 11, but I would sometimes go in early and just sit there and watch the kids work because it was fascinating to me.”
When she relocated to Huntsville in 1996, Miss Kaye had a goal in mind: train in Montessori teaching and open her school. She wanted to make a difference and pursued her goal with a single-minded determination for more than a decade.
She found an old frat house, rented it, and managed to get a carpenter and an inspector to bring the house up to code in three weeks. She started with three paying students and her youngest son.
The school grew, slowly at first, then expanding dramatically in 2000, when she purchased two houses on Old Houston Road, and three years later when she added another building. “I believe it’s been my mission,” she says. “This is what I’m supposed to do. I could teach in the public school system, but the place where you make the most difference in a child’s life is the first six years.”
The transformation into a non-profit to expand access to Montessori education
As the school developed, Miss Kaye saw the possibility of doing more good by becoming a non-profit organization. She gave up ownership of Tomorrow’s Promise in favor of a board of directors.
“We are a charity,” she says, “Like the United Way, Red Cross, or YMCA. We would love to have some donations because if we had more funding, we could have a sliding tuition scale for parents who need it. It wasn’t started as a charity, but I changed it over so that we could get grants and expand our reach.”
Teaching since 1991 and managing Tomorrow’s Promise since 1997, Miss Kaye still finds rewards in seeing the impact of her work.
“I love when you see the light bulb go on in a child’s head when they get it, or you have a parent who thanks you for taking a child that was kicked out of another school and helping them.”
“I love my job. I don’t look at it as work. Dr Montessori said children’s work is to become like us, so we call the materials they use work. We don’t demean it by saying, ‘play with this.’ So, as adults, we should enjoy our work, we should have a fun life; this is not work to me.”