We will be moving in August 2023 and will be in our new facilities beginning with the 2023-2024 school year.

For 40 years, The Banner School has rented or leased property.  Many boards have attempted to secure a permanent location, because of how development is happening in and around Frederick, we had to find a new location.  We made the choice for this move to be the school's permanent location.

The Banner School Board of Trustees instituted a Facilities Committee to perform due diligence on a number of locations in the area. Locations that were school year ready were prioritized and the Dill location met these criteria as an active school location that was also available in our given time frame.

The previous owners of our North Market Street location chose to void our purchase contract and sell to a developer instead. Our current location is in need of many costly repairs which were neglected by our prior landlord.  Between replacing three slate roofs, three boilers, all refurbished windows and doors, and refurbishing rooms currently in use as learning spaces, it would cost far more than the school could reasonably raise over the next 5 years.

Our full administrative leadership team was able to attend an initial site walk-through tour of the building Jan. 20th. Since then, members of the Banner Board of Trustees have been meeting with the Montessori Board of Trustees to develop a working plan and timeline for future visits to the site. Due to the nature of their ongoing school operations, frequent large tours are not likely to be available during the remainder of the school year. However, we have contracted with a firm to provide us with a full floor-plan layout with and visual images of the facility by the end of February. We look forward to being able to share this information with our larger community in early March.

The Dill Avenue property has been operated as a school for over 17 years and is the current location of the Monocacy Valley Montessori Public Charter School.  With their need for expanding into a high school, they have outgrown this space.  With this new location, we can increase our enrollment from 160 to 250 students and have adequate classrooms for all.

Our teams are currently exploring options to create suitable and safe greenspace/outdoor play area for our students. We plan to leverage the closer proximity to Baker Park and other local green spaces and play areas.  We are also considering options to repurpose outdoor spaces on the new property to have modern play and outdoor classroom space. There are many exciting plans that center around nature-based education that are being vetted. 

Dill Avenue was fully inspected during the purchase Feasibility Study. We have estimates previously provided to the current owners for repairs and updates to various systems. Additionally, we will conduct infrastructure tours with licensed contractors to ensure we have a full understanding of electric, plumbing and HVAC needs. As we determine the need and schedule for maintenance, repair, or upgrade of any system, the work will be managed as part of Facilities operations.

Banner does not anticipate major changes to the layout of the Dill Avenue facility prior to the start of the 2023/24 academic school year. That said, we do plan for the building to be fully cabled for Internet and Wi-Fi, security cameras, and to have exterior door access security panels. Those activities are considered Near-term Building Improvements and tracked on our Move Plan.  

Improvements which require building extensions, new construction or repurposing of adjacent properties are efforts requiring additional vision, planning and fundraising.

We do not anticipate an increase in tuition related to the move. 

We are available and more than happy to discuss any of your questions or concerns involving our upcoming transition to this new location.

Please use our form to ask a question or make a comment. Melissa Conner, Associate Head of School Business and Operations or Tatiana Papantoniou, member of the Board of Trustees, will get back to you as soon as possible.  Just click the button below:

Banner has, intentionally and strategically, begun our occupancy on Dill Avenue as a lessee for the first year. This allows the school that year to implement our Capital Campaign. The Campaign will be necessary to add to our purchase deposit and contribute to our down payment. Capital fundraising is separate and distinct from Annual Giving, which is designed, as it is for all independent schools, to make up for yearly gaps in Operational spending.  

More information about the Capital Campaign will be shared when the fundraising is officially launched. The prior Capital Campaign provided the funds for the purchase deposit. Duffie Companies has made an early donation to our new phase of fundraising in the amount of $25,000.

Banner is committed to maintaining our model of small class sizes.  If enrollment increases, we anticipate opening multiple classes for a given grade, similar to that last few years, instead of expanding our class sizes. We will continue to hold to the average class size maximum of 15.

The 2023-2024 School year will begin on Tuesday, Sept. 5th, 2023.

Yes! We will be conducting our 2023 summer camp program on our current campus, and registration has already opened! Please visit here to sign up and register.

Once we are in our new location, we anticipate continuing our successful Summer Camp program in 2024 utilizing the wide variety of opportunities and partnerships in downtown Frederick.

The Board held an initial Q&A session on Jan. 4th at 7pm, and will continue to offer monthly meetings to provide updates to our community.  We will also continue to update this FAQ page with new information as it becomes available, and you can access prior communications sent out regarding transition updates HERE

Our monthly Coffee & Contacts is also a regular opportunity to engage with members of the Board and Administration and discuss your questions, ideas or concerns.

The Annual State of the School meeting will be held in-person on the evening of February 28th, 2023.  Updates regarding the transition will be included in the presentation by the Board, and there will be opportunities for questions and discussion afterwards.

Banner, like many independent schools, has a long history of asking for volunteer help. Aside from financial support, we invite our families and supporters to consider contributing their time to help us plan for, and make this exciting move into our new home. Our transition committee will be coordinating resources to guide and oversee the process and assisting in the planning for initial operations and set up within our new home.

We anticipate several opportunities to help sort, pack, and label items here on North Market Street. We will be happy for hands to help move and unpack on Dill Avenue!

 A sign-up is in the process of development and will be added to our website for easy access. We look forward to parents and community members identifying their strengths and offering their expertise as we build teams for outdoor experiences, short- and long-term vision, fundraise and move between locations.