DREAM SCHOOLS for
Dreams by Hunter Brucks & Chuck Alkazian
Imagine a world where every child attends their "Dream School."
Gone are the archaic schools of yesteryear where children are instructed to conform and comply, taught to think narrow mindedly and where memorization was valued more than understanding.
A Dream School is an extraordinary place that opens up the universe of experiences, knowledge and wisdom for children every day preparing them to be successful world citizens, creators and leaders.
One common thruline with all Dream Schools is how they view their role in student learning. School is an ecosystem where students are limitless in their development through forming healthy and powerful relationships with each other and with others and relevant real-world learning and experience while gaining expertise through exposure to the very best in the field.
What makes a Dream School different?
Dream Schools' goals are different. Their goal is to educate the whole child to prepare them for a successful life. They recognize that test scores on a narrow set of academic subjects are not enough. They want students to be successful in life and prepared for some of the best future careers, some of which are yet to be originated. Success is more than strong academics. It is crucial to develop powerful and healthy relationships and have the ability to explore, create, expand and pursue one's interest, passion and life work.
Dream Schools teach differently. Dream Schools teach using the best researched, proven practices that highlight how people learn most effectively. They minimize dependence on the ineffective and boring lecture-memorize-regurgitate-test format. Instead, students learn by doing. They engage to solve real-world problems through project-based learning. They learn through student-driven questioning, creation, exploration and experimentation. Dream Schools personalize the school and learning experience for each student based on their needs. They know each student deeply, their interests, passions and challenges and meet them where they are at to take them to the highest level of achievement.
Dream Schools feel different. When you walk into a Dream School, there is a strong sense of purpose and focus by everyone, students and adults alike. Everyone knows each other well - by design. Dream Schools believe having a healthy purpose-driven school culture of relationships built on trust, respect and responsibility is essential for great learning and creation to take place. These relationships transcend the school walls into the home and into the community.
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Experience a Dream School
How are Dream Schools performing?
Some Dream Schools are now over 20 years old and we know the impact these schools have had on the lives of students. What is exciting is that students from all socio-economic backgrounds who attend Dream Schools are doing better than their peers going to traditional schools in almost every measure: Not only are Dream School students graduating at higher rates, they're being accepted into colleges and universities at higher rates, attending better colleges and universities, and graduating from them. Furthermore, Dream School students report that their school experience continues to make them feel more equipped for their future studies, work and careers and in their lives.
Click below for outcome reports for a few school designs:
Why every community needs to transform their schools over the next 10 years.
FACT: Around the country, less than 25% of children today are getting the education they need that will qualify them for middle-class paying jobs when they enter the workforce. If this trajectory doesn't change within the next 15 years, 75% of American citizens may not be able to pay for themselves - that's our next generation of voters.
ONLY 25% of Students in today's education system who are getting the education they need to qualify for a middle class paying job
10 Year Goal: Transform the learning experience of the majority of children.
To accomplish this, we must reach a tipping point - where one-third of all schools in each community are transformed within 10 years into demonstration sites. In the U.S., this means 6,000 schools will become demonstration sites. Each school then influences and helps to convert 3-5 other schools. This creates system-wide transformation.
Two Ways to Transform a School
Each school can choose which path is the mostly likely to help them be successful:
Path 1: Adopt a Proven Replicable School Design
There are a growing number of school designs that have a successful track record of over 10 years and assisted communities of all types (urban, suburban and rural) to expertly replicate their school designs.
Path 2: Invent a New Design
This path is not for the faint of heart. However, there is a very small group of innovative and entreprenueral educators who are up for this task.
To be successful, it is important to: (a) study the best school designs in the world that have withstood the test of time and have been able to replicate to more than a few sites, (b) develop a design that is even more innovative, better implemented and replicable than these benchmark school designs, and (c) implement the design in one or more pilot sites along with the development of a system to replicate it.
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Dream Schools Launched
How to Get Started
Set a community goal to transform at least a third of your community's schools within the next 10 years.
Visit the best replicable school designs.
Select which pathways and school designs are the most appropriate for your community.
Our role at the Right to Succeed Foundation is to help you be more informed about the school transformation process - the conditions for longterm success and common points of failure. We can connect you with the best organizations who have been the most successful whether they are school designs that are replicable or regional community organizations that have orchestrated the transformation of their schools using one or more of these replicable school designs.
For Policymakers and Education Board Members