What’s the first priority when you start a new school? Your students need to love being there.
Acton Academy runs on an (almost) year round schedule, with five or six week sprints, followed by a week off for Eagles and their families. This isn’t a week off for Guides, who are busily preparing curriculum for the next sprint, but I thought I’d use the time to reflect on “lessons learned” so far.
Lesson number one: incarceration is a poor motivator. That means in is that buy-in from students and their families is critical; and especially buy-in from the students. We are blessed to have courageous families who believe in what we are doing, and are willing to live with a “trial and error” approach that corrects mistakes as fast as they (inevitably) occur.
Laura, Abigail, myself and the other Guides do believe that each and every one of our students is a genius, a hero on a hero’s journey, and we’ve taken every opportunity to show students we believe in them.
Students have created the “rules of engagement” and governance procedures for the classroom and contributed many good ideas on scheduling and curriculum. They take pride in knowing that the learning experience belongs to them.