What We Believe

We believe that an excellent learning environment is one in which all community members feel free from racism, sexism, classism, homophobia, misogyny, and other forms of intolerance. To this end we as teachers address these issues in every subject area and offer an intensive film studies/equity studies class for both grades.

We believe that an excellent learning environment is one in which the community is committed to peace. To this end we teach conflict resolution skills and use the conflict resolution process to solve issues between community members. A commitment to peace also necessitates a move away from punishment and reward systems towards a style of interaction based on clear expectations, logical consequences, restitution and the development of healthy relationships through the use of active listening, presence of real choice, and acknowledgement of our differences.

We believe that an excellent learning environment is one in which a caring community balances the rights and freedoms of the individuals with those of the group. Awareness and empathy for others is critical to the development of our community. To this end we do community outreach to many social service agencies at several times throughout the year and organize action days like December 6th.

We believe that an excellent learning environment is one in which the students are empowered to be decision-making members of the class, the school, curriculum assignments and evaluation. To this end we support students in leading class meetings, organizing their own events, sitting on a problem solving council, and focusing their studies in personally relevant ways where possible.

We believe that an excellent learning environment is one in which the community is encouraged to think critically. We are interested in helping students learn the skills required to analyze their environment and make their own decisions based on carefully reasoned thought process.

We believe that an excellent learning environment is one in which the community has a wide variety of options for extra curricular activity. More than two-dozen guitars are available during free time. School trips include theatre, skating, skiing, rock climbing, and extended camping trips. Students are encouraged to propose and help organize their own clubs based on their interests.