Watershed School announces a new initiative that links its academic program to the Coalition of Essential Schools, established by Ted Sizer at Brown University.

By joining the Coalition, Watershed affirms and puts into practice the 10 Common Principles that shape the teaching and learning at some of the best schools in the nation. These principles include: Learning to use one’s mind well, less is more: depth over coverage, goals apply to all students, learning that is personalized, student-as-worker, teacher-as-coach, demonstration of mastery, a tone of decency and trust, commitment to the entire school, resources dedicated to teaching and learning, democracy and equity.

“Asking questions is as important as answering them, and this philosophy drives the academic program,” according to Will Galloway, Head of School. "For example, a chemistry class will ask, why is the Penobscot Bay water warming five times faster than the rest of the ocean? What evidence demonstrates this to be true? And what are the implication for marine life and for the rest of us in the midcoast region? Most importantly, what can we do as young people to address this? Questions like these lead to deep learning and meaningful change. For example, students can participate in expanding the region’s capacity to monitor ocean acidification, or provide early warnings of algae blooms to the shellfish industry.

Affiliating with the Coalition of Essential Schools also means that our faculty and students have access to extensive research and professional development resources that keep Watershed at the forefront of a movement for educational reform characterized by high levels of student engagement, project-based learning that connects the classroom with community, and performance-based assessment to support demonstrated mastery of essential skills for lifelong learning."

Stay connected with Watershed School and the Coalition for more news about this new venture at watershed-school.org.

For further information about the program, please contact us at 230-7341 or by email info@watershed-school.org. Watershed is a non-profit 501c3 organization and is accredited by the New England Association of Schools and Colleges.