For parents who want an option for their children that is free of state testing, that includes them in the content, and that focuses on specific student needs rather than generic or arbitrary standards, this is the recommended option.
Parents only have to supply a laptop, pencils, paper, and lunches.
Every year starts with a 1-on-1 parent/teacher meeting where we plan together what your child should focus on for the year and what your child needs to best progress towards our goal of success. We will talk about what you would like for them to learn and create a personalized plan that best fits the needs of your child.
This meeting is usually completed in August during the second summer break--see the calendar.
The basics of math, history, English, and science will be covered using the curriculum provided by Time 4 Learning which will be broken up into 36 weeks worth of work plus one more week for final projects and final year presentations totaling 37 weeks of school. The education program will be personalized to your child's needs and your desires.
Grades 4-12 will complete a research project customized to their interests and academic level which will then be presented to parents either in a group presentation or digital presentation--also by choice of parent and student. These presentations will happen the first week of August.
The research project will include a written research paper with brainstorming, sources, and professional formatting which will vary in length based on student skill. It will also include a digital slide-show presentation and a speech given either digitally or physically to a group. The content of the project will vary between science, history, or other approved academic content that is appropriate.
The benefit of this project is it will prepare students in a wholly unique way for college and act as the demonstration of the skills mastered in every core course except for math which will have a final exam.
The school will give 10 weeks off pre-scheduled to cover regular holidays and breaks. Then parents will have 6 weeks of flexible "vacation" where, with notice given at least the Thursday prior, they will be able to take off for their child. This will be flexible vacation to be used any time except for the month of September and the first week of August.
September is orientation month, and we ask all students to be present the whole time. The last week of August is the final presentations and exams, and we ask students to be present that whole week as well.
At this school, we believe one of the most useful and important skills that students need to succeed in life is the skill of reading critically and writing professionally. As a result, every day that a student comes to our school, they will be asked to read and write.
We also believe that reading should be flexible and parents who want to have a say should have a say in what their child reads. For that reason, we offer a library that contains various fiction and nonfiction texts OR we will work with any book that is school appropriate the parents want to send to the school for their child to use. We encourage regular nonfiction reading--this can be historical, science, or religious studies in content--as well as classical literature such as Shakespeare and Bronte.
For children in K-2 who are not reading yet, we will work through a program called Writing Road to Reading which focuses on phonics and the basic building blocks of the English language. It is a thorough program that will teach reading, spelling, and handwriting simultaneously. We will work on that program 2-3 times a week depending on the child's needs.
Also, we have the goal that by the end of second grade, students have mastered print and cursive writing. In third grade, we will ask all students to write in cursive.