Even though Becca Gulino's daughters, Ava and Adele, graduated from WMS in 2010 and 2012 respectively, she still jumps at the chance to lend a hand to support WMS events and activities. Most recently, she spearheaded the Alumni Amazing Race in December 2017, which brought together more than 30 past WMS students.
"I do pretty much anything they ask!" she said.
Becca's continued involvement at WMS is a testament to the loyalty to WMS many parents maintain well after their children graduate. "I have as much nostalgia about [WMS] as my daughters," she said.
When it came time to enroll Ava in preschool in 2002, Becca started to research local schools. A friend recommended WMS, where her son attended at the time. Becca scheduled a tour and knew immediately it was the right place for both her and her daughters.
"I toured and that was it - I didn't give a second thought [to other schools]," she said.
She quickly became immersed in WMS through co-op opportunities, including organizing many skating and dance parties, and enjoyed connecting with other Montessori parents in the process. She also led the WMS-based Girl Scout Troop 177 - a group made up of students from the classes of 2010 and 2011. Years later, she is still in close contact with many parents whose children attended WMS with her girls and counts many of her closest friends among them.
"You're never so happy to hear that one of their kids is doing well, because you helped raise them," she said. "It makes you a better parent to be a Montessori parent."
Becca values the love of learning WMS teachers helped instill in her daughters. She said teachers never shut down any students' ideas and encouraged them to research the things they wondered about.
Now a junior at Bates College in Maine, Ava will return to WMS in June as the featured graduation speaker. Adele is a freshman at Ithaca College in New York.