Changes at Bentley High School introduced last year which were geared towards propelling the school towards being a major player in today’s competitive educational arena will be tweaked and improved next year.
Recently principal Lane Moore and vice principal Stephen Lush met with parents at the school to discuss modifications which will be made to the personalized self-directed learning philosophy introduced last year at the school.
“It has been good to see the year-end survey results and the positive feedback. We have also had a number of other schools and districts interested in our direction and we have done numerous presentations about it.
“The years of sitting in your desk every day, for an eighty-minute class has changed,” he added. “We have leveraged technology to help create a classroom setting where students can take more ownership and move ahead or slow down based on their needs.”
Moore said such an educational structure will allow students to work anywhere and at any time, all under the guidance and instruction of the teacher.
“Students come to class to get the main concepts, then practice and work on the assignments, when not in their scheduled classes.”
The school took the leap last year to move from the traditional classroom/teacher setting to a personalized, self-directed learning philosophy.
While Moore remains excited about the new path the school is following, he said the name appears to be misleading as students and parents thought that they would be on their own to learn without teacher support or instruction.
“This couldn’t be further from the truth so a rebrand to a personalized blended learning environment was needed,” he said. “This definition better suits the educational structure we are creating.”
Blended learning combines traditional teaching methods with additional instruction that allows for digital content, personalized learning and interaction with other students.
Also happening next year will be ‘response to intervention Fridays,’ a strategy which will help identify students who need extra support and formalize programs to assist them.
PRIDE projects which include student leadership, mentorship, community volunteerism, work experience or special projects will be developed next year.
A couple examples of projects already discussed are an outdoor lunch area and an indoor living classroom.
The personalized blending learning environment is being expanded this year to include grades six to eight.
Moore noted that any change can leave room for uncertainty, but he is confident his school is heading in the right direction.
We understand that this educational structure is a work in progress and we will need to continue to modify as it grows. We believe that the educational structure we are creating will ultimately meet more students’ needs and prepare them for the real world.”