After attending this year’s ERB Conference, I was struck by the fact that educators, business professionals, leaders, and families are ALL asking the same question? What should we teach and how should we measure outcomes? As we embrace new jargon like “21st century skills” or “design thinking” we will need to connect the classroom laboratories with leaders in business, non-profit work, philanthropy, and education. SGS learning experiences are often described as that “rare class” where academic content is used to develop students’ core competencies, where complex, multi-step problems are regularly featured, where students seek multiple solutions that require creativity and imagination; and where success requires team work.
Our academic vision keeps Four Essential Questions at its core:
- What should we teach? 21st Century Skills informed by Common Core Standards (http://www.corestandards.org/ )
- How should we teach? Student and team-centered, by doing, by constructing meaning through expert teachers who guide and question.
- How should we assess? Outcomes
- For Students – Hard and “soft” data supporting the Graduate Profile
- For Staff – Annual Performance Planning and Evaluation
- For the School – The Accreditation Cycle
- How do we embed this vision? Transformational Leadership at all levels
Our vision is “Future-Focused” and recognizes shifts that are already happening in education today. Doing is becoming more critical than Knowing. Teacher-centered classrooms are becoming more and more Student-centered. The Individual finds greater success within The Team. Consumption of Information is being replaced by the need to Construct Meaning. Schools are fast becoming part of local and global Networks. Crowd Sourcing (Wikipedia) has already replaced Single Sourcing (Encyclopedia Britannica).
I invite you to take a look at a presentation that provides a high level look at the SGS academic vision, a vision that is responding to an evolving landscape for teaching and learning.