Educational Program

3.1. Overview of Content
‚Äč3.2. Teaching Methods and Pedagogy
3.3. Special Needs  

3.1. Overview of Content

SVRCS has adopted a curriculum model which integrates traditional subject matter and skills with activities appropriate to each child's stage of development and learning modalities. While maintaining the highest academic standards, rigor, and expectations, SVRCS embraces an integrated process that places learning, ideas, and experimentation in a real life context that requires interdisciplinary thinking and applications. The home, school, community, and the global community become the frame for these endeavors. SVRCS promotes the reciprocal bonds that tie home, school, and community to breach the confines of theoretic learning, and expands learning into tangible, hands-on applications that accentuate the rich diversity of local resources.

3.2. Teaching Methods and Pedagogy

SVRCS articulates three basic premises which undergird teaching philosophy and practice.

Premise: Young people are powerful learners.

Positive affirmation will enhance students' abilities to develop their own learning style at their own pace, while concurrently supporting and encouraging independent, creative, and thoughtful learning

Practice: Young people will be viewed and affirmed as capable, intelligent and powerful learners. As much as possible, young people will be empowered to direct and design their own learning, both individually and in groups.

Premise: Authentic learning excites "perpetual curiosity".

Young people learn best when they are actively involved in meaningful pursuits.

Practice: Learning will be active and "hands-on"; young people will pursue real research and applications in a relevant context as much as possible.

Premise: Maintain a learning community.

Learning is solidified and enhanced when many adults, (teachers, parents, and community members), model and participate together with young people. All are immersed in the continuing process of growth and learning.

Practice: Learning will be cooperative and interactive; students, teachers, parents, and community members will participate as learners together.

3.3. Special Needs

At SVRCS, inclusive classrooms start with a philosophy that all children can learn and belong in the mainstream of school and community life. Diversity is valued; it is believed that diversity strengthens the class and offers all its members greater opportunities for learning. SVRCS upholds the conviction that every child has special needs and that every child possesses giftedness and unique talents and abilities.

It will be the obligation of every adult - parent, staff, and community member - to ensure that the unique and special needs of each student are met. To accomplish this, an individual plan, (Help-Holistic Education Learning Plan) will be developed for each student. The student, teacher, and parent or guardian will be involved in the development of this plan. Progress toward goals will be assessed at Parent/Teacher Conferences. These meetings will occur at a minimum of three times yearly. Students will participate in these meetings as deemed appropriate, along with any other SVRCS staff or advisors they or their parents/guardians may request.

SVRCS will use a variety of teaching methods to ensure mastery of appropriate skills, ideas, and knowledge for all students. However, it is essential to detect marked learning variances to identify areas that require more support or greater challenge. Regular assessments integrated with the curriculum will help determine how students are learning.

SVRCS is dedicated to challenging and stimulating every child. A modified program including flex time opportunities, will be provided for those children with diagnosed disabilities or those requiring greater challenges which indicate adjusted teaching strategies or definitions of success, all within the frame of stated education goals.

Adherence to all federal and state regulations governing special education benefits the quality of education received by students at SVRCS. All staff will be made aware of resources available within the scope of the school and community to provide services and support for students with special needs. Any necessary accommodations will be made. Certified special education teachers will ensure that all legal mandates are met. Each teacher will be responsible for facilitating every effort to fully integrate students into the life of the classroom and the school. Children who enter SVRCS with IEPs in place will receive adaptations and services articulated in the document at the time of receipt. Parents and teachers will reserve the rights to review and make appropriate changes to meet needs and goals within the new setting.

When proper arrangements are present, inclusion works for all students with and without special needs in terms of mutually held positive attitudes, gains in academic and social skills, and preparation for living in the community. A fundamental purpose of education is to facilitate and assist the learning and adjustment of all students; and a part of this process is to value diversity and welcome the differences among all people.