Outdoor education has a long and distinguished history in private-independent schools. Whether it involves an annual trip or is a yearlong component of the curriculum, administrators cite various benefits to these programs: personal growth, development of social skills and self-confidence, health and fitness, teamwork, whole student education, fun and recreation, and enhancement of a positive school culture.
As you develop, expand, or assess your school’s own outdoor education program, determine how effectively you address these fundamental areas.
Summer programs are often run as completely separate educational programs regarding budgeting, scheduling, planning, curriculum, and staffing. Although part of your schools culture, and commonly sharing its mission, these programs typically don’t share budgets or administrative support. For the Summer Program Director with full-time responsibilities as part of the faculty or Administrative Team, the burden of the summer camp silo can be an overwhelming one.
The first months of a school year can be rough, as everyone re-adjusts to more regular sleep schedules and greater expectations. Sometimes, you just need a reminder why you bothered to begin this career path in the first place—and we can help you there.
Many schools—public, charter, and private alike—offer The College Board’s “rigorous” Advanced Placement (AP) program to their most driven pupils. Students take these courses for the educational challenge and (they hope) the “advanced” standing they’ll receive from secondary institutions in the form of college credits. However, a new study has recently shed doubts on whether these AP programs mean greater success for students at the collegiate level.
Student handbooks contain all the policies, rules, and regulations that outline expectations for everyone at your school. However, they’re often notoriously dry documents that can be dismissed by folks not paying attention. Sure, you can send home a “contract” stating that the student (and his or her parents) have read the handbook and will abide by the policies, but that’s hardly a guarantee of painstaking attention to every detail.
So for our September 2016 issue of The Source for Academic Leadership, let’s take a moment or two to discuss your school’s plan for policy dissemination to your students.
For a comprehensive approach to the faculty hiring process, include the advising role you require of your middle- and upper-school teachers. Your advisory program and advising role(s) should be not merely included but also highlighted in the process. Candidates should walk away from their campus visits with a clear sense of the role, some understanding of how it supports school mission, and, ideally, some enthusiasm for taking it on. Failure to inform (even inspire) prospective teachers in this way implicitly undermines, from the outset, a sense that the role is taken seriously at your school.
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