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January 25, 2016 10:50 AM

Prince George isn’t just a trendsetter when it comes to fashion.

Since the 2-year-old future king started preschool on January 6 at Westacre Montessori in Norfolk, more people than ever are interested in the Montessori approach to education.

The educators behind the training of George’s Montessori teachers report that there has been a huge 65 percent increase in parents signing up for “information about our schools” compared to the same period last year, Louise Livingston, director of training at the Maria Montessori Institute, tells PEOPLE.

Westacre Montessori School
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Not surprisingly, “many of those calling are interested in our new site in Holland Park,” says Livingston – which isn t far from the Prince William and Princess Kate‘s London home of Kensington Palace.

Moreover, there has been a 45 percent upswing in those looking to attend information sessions for teachers, says Livingston.

George is now in his fourth week at Westacre Montessori school in East Walton. He is attending the little school in a converted chapel on a part-time basis whenever the family is at their country mansion, Anmer Hall.

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“As soon as the first week in January hit and the news of George joining the nursery, inquiries have been almost constant,” says Livingston. “We’ve been hearing from a lot of people who want to be a Montessori teacher. We have an open afternoon every so often where people can come and observe students, and those events have been booking full. Before they weren t fully booked.”

As for the uptick in interest among aspiring teachers, “That was almost instantaneous,” she adds. “People might have thought about working as a nursery teacher and might not have realized there was a specific training for Montessori. We have certainly noticed more awareness with that.”

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