About Us

About Athena

Our Vision

It is our goal to provide a loving, diverse, holistic, educational, and experiential environment for children in order to nurture, stimulate, and cultivate healthy minds, bodies, and souls. We aspire to attain this vision through the direction of experienced Montessori teachers and strong role models and through an understanding and practice of healthy, active lifestyles. We are committed to extensive ongoing academic training and professional development for our teachers and staff. We seek to provide a rich community environment for the families and extended family of Athena Montessori Academy through community festivals and events, field trips, parent workshops, our Parent Committee, classroom observations, and extracurricular classes both for children and for our parent community.

What to Expect

At Athena we strive to ensure our students graduate with confidence, empathy, and compassion, a strong sense of self, resourcefulness with the ability to ask for what they need, social skills with the ability to make friends and set boundaries with their peers, and academic readiness for elementary school. Montessori education teaches intrinsic motivation, internalized ground rules and the ability to work with external authority, social responsibility, autonomy, creativity, and originality of thought. Integral to the Montessori curriculum is care of self, care of others, care of animals, and care of the environment. Twice nominated for the Nobel Peace Prize, Dr. Maria Montessori infused her curriculum with peaceful education, so that your child will learn to engage with peers and adults in their environment in a peaceful manner with grace and courtesy. You can expect to feel connected as part of a parent community and to be involved and and kept informed of your child’s progress and development. You will receive a commitment of excellence from the top down and can trust that all of our decisions at Athena are informed by what is in the best interest of the child.
    • Lisl


      Founder of Athena Montessori Academy

Athena History

From 1974 to 1978 Lisl Friday, Founder and Owner of Athena Montessori Academy, attended Athena Montessori School in Austin, directed by Leo Nitch and Mary Ann Torrence. These early years spent at the Montessori school shaped her academic, athletic, spiritual, and interpersonal life experiences. There will forever be fond memories and a bond between the community of children and families who shared the experience. After obtaining a Bachelor’s degree in Psychology from UC Santa Cruz and a Master’s degree in Education from the University of Texas, acquiring years of experience in business and education, and developing a strong network in the Austin community, Lisl pursued her vision of carrying on the tradition of Athena Montessori for a new generation of children and their families. With a dedicated team of teachers, friends, and family, and with permission from Mary Ann and her family to revive the name “Athena” for a new kind of school, the new Athena Montessori Academy was created in May 2006 to serve the children. (Other than the name “Athena” and fond memories of the Director, our school is not connected in any way to the original Athena school that was located in West Austin.) 

Athena Montessori Academy

“I couldn’t have asked for a better start to my son’s education. The loving guides at Athena taught him so much more than reading and writing– he’s learned how to take care of himself and those around him while navigating the social community of his classroom. I feel these life skills will serve him well as he graduates and enters first grade in the fall!”
- Rebecca O’Hara (Child now attending Eanes Elementary)