Springfield, MO 65806
Located in downtown Springfield and using the city as an extension of the school, u.school operates under the following ideas:
Growing self-directed learners who are confident, competent, and caring human beings.
Each and every student brings unique life experiences, has signature strengths, and learns and develops at their own pace.
Humans learn best in an environment that favors authentic learning.
Learning Authentically involves…
Passion, play, and purpose
Curiosity and questions
Meaningful relationships with peers and adults
Self-reflection and self-direction
An authentic audience
Individual agency in deciding the who, what, when, where, why, and how of learning
Connecting with the community outside of the school walls
Micro school: Keep the school small to favor relationship building and flexibility so that each student can have the school they deserve.
Democratic School: A truly student-centered school means that students have agency in their learning community.
Connected School: Students should learn from each other, from their local community, and from the greater world.
SDE Optimizing Conditions
- Responsibility – Our school is modeled after other democratic and free schools utilizing a consensus driven school meeting, student run committees (Judicial Committee, Graduation Committee, and Admissions Committee). No grades or credits. Students portfolio.
- Freedom – We operate use self-directed learning principles. Students set their own goals and learn at their own pace driven by passion, curiosity, creative expression, and interest.
- Access to Tools – Students have the option to participate in authentic projects like DWNTWN magazine (glossy print magazine covering downtown Springfield), u.talks (public talks on any topic), First Friday Art Walk (u.school space turns into a gallery once a month)
- Nonjudgmental Support – Two full time adults are always available as well as part-time specialists, volunteers, and as needed instructors. Students have access to adults for support, tutoring, direct instruction, and counseling.
- Age Mixing – We accept students between the ages of 11 and 18. Students aren't segregated by age in any way.
- Healthy Community – Communitas (our weekly democratic meeting) guides all day to day decision making. All students, faculty, and parents are part of General Membership that approves the annual budget, nominates and elects the Board of Directors.
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