I find it rather remarkable that a school with 363 students can offer 100 unique courses each school year, but that’s just what we do at College Prep. Students recently submitted their course selections for Spring 2014, which gave teachers of brand new courses a chance to discuss their classes during a “course shopping” period. Among the courses being offered for the very first time at College Prep are the two English seminars and two history seminars described below. Admittedly, I could read interesting course descriptions like these all day, but it shows the depth and breadth of the offerings at College Prep. Continue reading
Guest post by Head of School Monique DeVane, adapted from an article written for our bi-annual community magazine, PrepTimes.
Finding words that capture the essence of a school is complex. At College Prep, a place full of people who both love and are very particular about language, the challenge of writing a meaningful mission statement is that much greater. Our aspirations for our students are high and can sound idealistic, even as the earnest, earthy, lively, and awkward natures of our charges ground us. It is hard to come up with words that do justice to all that is College Prep! Continue reading
I always enjoy the start of the school year. Watching the new students integrate into the College Prep community with their energy and enthusiasm gives me great optimism for the future. But it’s not just the students that bring a sense of renewal and joy to campus. The adults play a large part, too.
Our first faculty meeting of the year was quite inspiring. What I enjoyed most was all of the innovation and creative thinking happening at College Prep. Continue reading
Awards and recognition for College Prep are often met with equal parts pride and indifference within our community. Just this week, we were named the sixth best private school in the country, following similar accolades from Forbes and The Wall Street Journal in recent years. Though the news was greeted mostly with shoulder shrugs, it is always nice to be recognized for the fine work we are doing.
Earlier this week, we received an award that I am unabashedly proud of. Continue reading
Edutopia is a fantastic resource for educators. It is supported by the George Lucas Educational Foundation, whose mission is:
To improve the K-12 learning process by documenting, disseminating, and advocating innovative, replicable, and evidence-based strategies that prepare students to thrive in their future education, careers, and adult lives.
College Prep was extremely honored when Edutopia approached us to help explore the topic of collaborative learning. Group work and collaboration have always been a big part of College Prep’s success. It’s not the only way we teach, but it is a core philosophy that teachers across all disciplines use. Among other benefits, collaborative learning focuses on process, builds accountability, and allows students to teach and be more in tune with one another. It leads to high levels of student engagement and creates the often-times electric atmosphere College Prep classes are known for.
For an in-depth examination of collaborative learning, I recommend you spend some time looking at the resources that Edutopia put together. To see College Prep’s unique brand of collaboration in action, please view the stunning video below!
We’ve got spirit, yes we do, we’ve got spirit, how bout you?
“How is the freshman class?” is a question I’m never sure how to respond to. Sometimes I answer with numbers, because I’m something of a data geek. In that case, I might say that this year’s ninth graders include 46 girls and 41 boys. They come from 38 different middle schools, including 20 students who are the only representatives from their middle schools. Sometimes I might describe the class by their shared passions. Before this school year began, I noted that the Class of 2016 had many very talented athletes, was super smart and curious (even by our standards), and was filled with kind, good-hearted young people. But the person behind the question “How is the freshman class?” is usually asking about their well-being. Now that they are here, I can say that this is a happy, joyous bunch. While it’s true that the novelty of starting high school hasn’t worn off, and there is much hard work yet to be done, I can practically feel the positive energy and excitement from this group. It all started off at the ninth-grade retreat in August. You can see for yourself what a good time they had!