An excerpt from “How to Create a Culture of Achievement in Your School and Classroom” captures the sprit of our approach to teaching, learning, and assessing scholar progress.
“In creating a culture in which it’s never too late to learn, there are a number of organizational principles that can be operationalized through service cycles. To start, we have provided principles we have found effective. Of course, each school will need to customize this list and develop principles that guide its work.
- All students deserve high-quality instruction.
- Learning is not fixed in time. Learning should be the constant, with time being a variable.
- Learning is often like writing a letter—it may take several drafts to get it right.
- Perseverance is an attribute of success that will be supported and rewarded at our school.
- Recognize competence, not compliance.
- Rigor means students are challenged, but not frustrated to the point of giving up.
- Rally resources when students exhibit gaps in performance. In other words, “all hands on deck” when student competency is not demonstrated.
- Every adult in the school has an instructional role, including recovery and support efforts.
- Grades don’t teach—people do!
These organizational principles guide the interactions we have with colleagues, visitors, and students. In addition, we see these as critical to the long-term achievement of students because they provide flexible, just-in-time support while also ensuring rigor in the curriculum. When students understand that it’s never too late to learn, they are willing to take risks to push themselves and know that they can recover from the mistakes that they make during the learning process.”
Fisher, Douglas; Frey, Nancy; Authors, Ian Pumpian (2012-04-27). How to Create a Culture of Achievement in Your School and Classroom (Kindle Locations 1837-1842). Association for Supervision & Curriculum Development. Kindle Edition.