Welcome to The Riverseed School! A DC Wildflower Public Charter School Site

The mission of DC Wildflower Public Charter School (DCWPCS) is to create liberatory, culturally affirming, community-embedded learning environments that seamlessly connect students’ homes, schools, and communities. We are creating an ecosystem where students, families, and teachers can grow and connect deeply with one another, always learning and growing through life’s unfolding journey. The Riverseed School, is the first school opening as part of DCWPCS, and will serve families East of the River.

Our school is being designed by teachers in community, to directly serve the Ward 7 neighborhood we seek to embed in.

About The Riverseed School

The Riverseed School is the vision of two teachers, designing the school [we] want to teach in. We are experienced DC educators who prioritize the wellbeing of the whole child: mind, body, senses, and spirit. As teachers, we are committed to education that empowers children to be active participants in their own learning. This is achieved through respect and trust of children. We believe this a revolutionary path to personal liberation for Black children, the children most represented in the neighborhood we seek to embed in. A central guiding question of our work is: what does school look like as a place you go to heal, rather than a place you must heal from? Our students are connected to a larger community. Our regard for the entire community; children, educators, families, and neighbors, as whole is how we will heal, grow, and learn, while experiencing joy and harmony.

What does this look like in practice?

As educators, we employ a framework that prompts us to “follow the child”. A common misconception of this approach is the doubt of children to lead. As Montessori adults it is our duty to provide children with a safe space to learn and construct themselves. This safety relates to the accessible learning environment we curate for children as well as the boundaries we enforce as they grow. In our model, we believe discipline to be most powerful when fostered as an eternal force of regulation rather than something to be implemented upon a child for the sake of maintaining control.

What does it look like to control free people? Why would we endeavor to find out? 

Our Name Story

The term “river” has significant cultural and geographic relevance to our school mission and school site. A river symbolizes many things. It can symbolize water’s life giving powers, it can symbolize a life’s path.  It can also symbolize a boundary line.  The Anacostia River has historically been a topographical boundary line that separated  the city of Washington D.C..  “East of the River”  references  the communities of wards 7 and 8.  A seed symbolizes life, growth, and potential. Our school will be located East of the River, and we intend our school site to be a seed, to show the beauty, potential, and power of our community, which is nurtured by a river, a symbol of  our region of Washington D.C.

Our Teacher Leaders

Zani Dalili-Ortique

Founding Teacher Leader

Zani is a Ward 7 D.C Montessorian with over 15 years of teaching experience in the pre-school and elementary levels. She holds an M.ED and Montessori Elementary certificate from Loyola University, Maryland. Zani is committed to sharing educational excellence in the communities she serves.

Ebony Marshman

Founding Teacher Leader

Ebony is a D.C. educator, and artist who believes imaginations must be nourished. Her career as an early childhood educator spans 8 years, and her teaching practice is rooted in anti-bias, anti-racist (ABAR) principles. She is an AMI certified Primary Guide, who also holds an M.ED. in Montessori Education from Loyola University, Maryland.

School Details

Full Day

Monday – Friday 8:30 am-3:30 pm

Extended Day Program

Monday – Friday

Before-Care will run from 7:30 am-8:30 am

After-Care will run from 3:30 pm-6:00 pm

On teacher professional development days
[TBD]

Primary Sample Schedule (3-6 year old children) 

8:15 am – 8:30 am Arrival
8:30 am – 8:45 am Drop off/Beginning of Work Cycle
8:30 am  – 11:30 am Work Cycle
11:30 am – 12:30 pm Recess
12:30 pm – 1:30 pm Lunch
1:30 pm – 3:00 pm Nap
3:00 pm – 3:30 pm Community Time/Preparation for Dismissal
3:30 pm – 3:45 pm Dismissal
3:30 pm – 6:00 pm Aftercare

Calendar To Be Announced The Riverseed School Will Open Fall 2022

Winter Break  
February Break  
Spring Break  

Additional days off include:

Indigenous Peoples’ Day  
Veterans Day  
Thanksgiving  
Martin Luther King Day  
Memorial Day  

[Transportation and Drop-off Pick-up Information: coming soon][Information about public transit, busing, drop-off and pick-up policies: coming soon.]

[Lunch and Snack Information]

[TBD]

Enroll Now

Attend an Information Session

The application process begins with attending an Information Session where you will learn about The Riverseed School Montessori and the Wildflower Network.

Complete an Application

We are enrolling Pre-k 3 and Pre-K 4 students for the 2022-2023 school year. The Riverseed School will grow with our students through 5th grade.

The Riverseed School will participate in My School D.C, the common application and lottery used by DC public and charter schools. View The Riverseed School’s My School Dc Profile here.

My School D.C Application Dates:

December 11, 2021 EdFest public school fair
December 13, 2021 My School DC lottery application opens
January 6, 2022 The Riverseed School Open House  Register Here
January 27, 2022 @ 12:30pm The Riverseed School Open House Register Here
February 16, 2022 @ 12:30pm The Riverseed School Open House Register Here 
February 16, 2022 @ 6:00pm The Riverseed School Open House Register Here 
February 24, 2022 @ 12:30pm The Riverseed School Open House Register Here 
Sunday February 27, 2022 @ 2pm – 4pm The Riverseed School Playdate and Meet and Greet at RFK Register Here!
March 1, 2022 Application deadline for Pre-k 3-8th grade
May 2, 2022 Enrollment deadline for matched students

Non-discrimination Policy

The Riverseed School Montessori School is a nonprofit organization and does not discriminate by race, color, national or ethnic origin, creed, religion, sex, disability, age, marital status, sexual orientation, or status with regard to public assistance. Furthermore, The Riverseed School Montessori School admits students of any race, color, national and ethnic origin to all the rights, privileges, programs, and activities generally accorded or made available to students at the school. It does not discriminate on the basis of race, color, national and ethnic origin in administration of its educational policies, admissions policies, scholarship and loan programs, and athletic and other school-administered programs.

News & Events

Community Events

Please join us at EdFest, D.C’s public school fair on December 11th, 2021.

Information Sessions

Contact Us

Wildflower Schools

The Riverseed School is a member of the Wildflower Schools Network

Wildflower is an ecosystem of decentralized Montessori micro-schools that support children, teachers, and parents. Our schools aspire to give all children and families the opportunity to choose high quality, beautiful learning environments as they follow life’s unfolding journey.

About Wildflower Schools

Wildflower is an ecosystem of decentralized Montessori micro-schools that support children, teachers, and parents. Our schools aspire to give all children and families the opportunity to choose high quality, beautiful learning environments as they follow life’s unfolding journey.

Our aim is to be an experiment in a new learning environment, blurring the boundaries between home and school, between scientists and teachers, between schools and the neighborhoods around them.Our schools are small and teacher-led, with deep parent engagement. At the core of Wildflower are 9 principles that define the approach.

Our network is supported by a foundation that works to build capacity, systems, tools and research to grow and strengthen the network.

Learn more about our story.

Our Principles

Blurring the boundaries between home-schooling and institutional schooling, between scientists and teachers, between schools and the neighborhoods around them. At the core of Wildflower are 9 principles that define the approach.

Read about them here.

Our Network

After the first Wildflower school was created in January of 2014, there was intense interest in the school and the approach. This interest led us to open-source the model and help other family groups and teacher-leaders to create new Wildflower schools. Each teacher-leader at each Wildflower school serves on the board of at least one other Wildflower school, creating a community of schools that are linked by both a shared philosophy and a network of shared relationships.

View our network.