Neillgreatly influenced the spread of similar democratic type schools such as the famous Dartington Hall Schooland Kilquhanity School both now closed. Currently there are two democratic primary schools, Park School and Small Acres, and two democratic secondary schools, Summerhill and Sands School.
For some students, alternative high schools fit their personality and learning style much better than traditional high schools, and they can be a way for these students to achieve success.
What are alternative high schools? How are they different from traditional high schools? Is attending one the right choice for you? How can you find the right alternative high school? Read on for answers to each of these questions and more.
What Are Alternative High Schools? This is a very broad definition, and, because of that, alternative high schools can vary widely.
They can be public or private and can include magnet, charter, and online schools although not every school in these categories would be considered an alternative high school.
Classes at online schools are conducted primarily or completely over the internet. However, today students attend alternative schools for a variety of reasons which are discussed in more detail below.
In general, alternative high schools exist to give students who do not do well in a traditional academic environment an opportunity to succeed in high school and earn a high school diploma. As mentioned above, there can be large variations between alternative high schools.
Smaller classes allow teachers to give students more individual attention and make it easier to tailor Alternative high schools to specific student needs.
More Flexible Schedules and Graduation Requirements: Some alternative high schools offer classes at night, which can be helpful for students with jobs or children. Others have flexible graduation requirements and give students more choice in the classes they must take as opposed to one math class, one science class, one English class, etc.
This can give students the opportunity to study a subject of particular interest to them. Wider Variety of Teaching Methods: Alternative high schools often use numerous teaching methods that emphasize creativity and interaction.
This can help students who struggle with sitting in a classroom and taking notes all day. Others offer academic credit for work experiences or internships.
In addition to addressing academic needs, alternative schools often have additional resources, such as counseling and support groups, available for students. You can also research specific alternative schools to get a better idea of what they can offer.
Students complete projects and papers which are added to their portfolio, and they spend about half of each week at an internship instead of in the classroom. One former student of an alternative high school credits the school with saving her life.
Even if you never wanted to show up to class at your old school, an alternative high school may have teaching methods that work for you. There are multiple reasons why someone may begin attending an alternative high school, but they usually relate to the student not thriving in a traditional school.
They may have learning disabilities that make it challenging for them to sit in a classroom all day, they may struggle to retain information learned this way, or their classes may interest them so little that they have no desire to attend school or complete homework.
They can benefit from the smaller classes of alternative schools as well as the increased access to counselors and support groups. Alternative schools often use a wider variety of teaching methods, including hands-on, interactive, and self-directed work, which can benefit you.
Social or Behavioral Difficulties A student might also have issues with classmates or teachers. This can include being bullied, struggling to make friends, befriending the wrong crowd, or coming into conflict with teachers and students.
Difficult Life Circumstances Additionally, some students have experiences that make attending traditional high school challenging. These can include pregnancy, serious illness, family problems, and more.
Circumstances like these can make it difficult for a student to concentrate on classes, and they may need more individual support and flexible scheduling.
So, should you attend an alternative high school? The answer varies depending on the person, but, in general, if you are very unhappy or performing poorly at your current high school, some major changes need to happen for you to get on track to graduate high school and set yourself up for success in the future.
The new school, teachers, and classmates can help give you a fresh start with high school. If you do decide that attending an alternative high school is the right choice, or even if you just want more information on what your options are, read the next section on how to select the best alternative high school for you.Alternative education types include, but are not limited to, the following: alternative classrooms, school-within-a-school programming, separate alternative schools, and second or last-chance schools for disruptive students.
Alternative high schools for at-risk students have some commonalities with some of the other school options, particularly charter schools. The location of an alternative high school may be within the existing high school (school .
NYC Alternative High Schools NYC Alternative High School District offers curriculum and teaching methods that are nontraditional. Alternative schools were created due to the fact that poorer school districts do not have enough special education funding.
alternative high schools in your area. Often times alternative high schools simply are smaller, more intimate ways of approaching the same paradigm of education, but with interesting twists. A quick internet search will reveal alternative schools in you area.
Ballou STAY Senior High School was established in as an alternative high school for students ages 16+, who require an alternative setting from that of a traditional high school.
The Ballou STAY HS offers a full menu of service of educational programming. Alternative high schools can be a great, and even life-changing, option for students who haven’t thrived in traditional high schools.
A wide variety of alternative high schools exist, but, in general, they use more non-traditional methods of teaching and are able to be more flexible in accommodating student needs than traditional high schools.