About GRS

Founded in 2004, Great River School is a Montessori school community of  students in grades 1 – 12, dedicated teachers and caring parents. It is a community where each member values every other member. A culture of civility frames the learning climate of Great River which is driven by inspiration and love of learning. The preeminent guiding principle of this community is a deep respect for and trust in young adults.

In 2002 when it was just an idea, GRS was one of five schools chosen by the Center for School Change at the University of Minnesota to receive a Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation grant to create a small and educationally innovative high school.  The result of that grant is a Minnesota public charter school that has evolved to offer a robust academic program with a Montessori focus for middle and high school students and in 2012, to offer a solid Montessori elementary program to students in grades 1 – 6.  In 2004, GRS started with 86 students and now boasts a solid enrollment of 416 students in grades 1 – 12 with a waiting list in most grades.

Academically, the program provides students with opportunities to learn in a prepared environment, both inside and outside the classroom.  Using Montessori principles that were identified by Dr. Montessori and interpreted by the faculty, all students have the opportunity to be successful.  Over 86% of our graduates have gone on to college.  In 11th and 12th grades, all students are enrolled in the International Baccalaureate program.  While some of those students go on to pursue the complete diploma, many students elect to test in a limited number of the subjects.

Our Authorizer

All Minnesota charter schools are required by the state to have an authorizer that maintains financial and academic oversight of the school and ensure the school adhers to certain standards in all areas of administration and academics.  Novation Educational Opportunities is the authorizer for GRS.

Our Mission

Great River School, an urban Montessori learning environment, prepares students for their unique roles as responsible and engaged citizens of the world.

Founded on leadership, service, and peace formation and shaped by the study of humanity and the environment, Great River School aims to meet the developmental needs and characteristics of adolescents. Great River School fosters independence, critical thinking, respect, and responsibility to self, to others, and to the earth.

Our Vision

Great River School integrates academic and social experiences in an environment of civility and trust. The Montessori philosophy and the International Baccalaureate diploma program inform the curriculum and pedagogy, inspiring deep questioning and peaceful action.

Great River School fosters self-expression in a supportive environment that values critical thinking and the richness and strength of a diverse community.

Great River School encourages students to seek new challenges and explore their abilities. Instruction through travel, practical learning, the arts, and micro-economic ventures provide relevant skills to meet the world with compassion and a sense of responsibility.

Diversity Statement

Great River, an outstanding school, a community of staff and students, strives to reflect the diversity of St. Paul. Variety in race, religion, ethnicity, economic means, and sexual orientation strengthens and enriches experiences and learning. Great River strives to prepare adolescents to take a positive role in society by consciously presenting a multicultural and international curriculum.

Minnesota State Report Card

The Minnesota Department of Education measures whether or not students are meeting the state math and reading academic standards, which are what they should know and be able to do in a particular grade. These results are published in the School Report Card from 2004 to 2010.  Beginning in the fall of 2011, more information began to be available to those wondering about the academic progress of students.  Click below to get this information.

Home Facts about Great River School - information about test scores etc. from 2009 – 2012 (note, this does not include information for the 2012-2013 academic year)

Department of Education – State of MN data

School Report Card 2004-2005
School Report Card 2005-2006
School Report Card 2006-2007
School Report Card 2007-2008
School Report card 2008-2009
School Report Card 2009 – 2010

Data for Parents – 2010-2011


More Information...