Thursday, April 9, 2009

Chartwell on the Hill

I was at Chartwell school a couple of years ago. Around that time Both our California Governor Arnold and President Bush gave this school an award for being one of the greenest schools in the United States. That particular day I was visiting a Science Fair there. One of the things I like about this school is that all students over a certain age participate in the Science Fair. There is no stigma to participating in a science fair at this school so kids mostly love figuring out what their science project is going to be about and then doing a fine job on it.

This particular science Fair was visited by many Chinese representatives from the Education department of China. They were researching the feasibility of creating about 15,000 schools like Chartwell in China because of the green campus and the best education known at present for learning difference and non-learning difference kids.

For example, though many kinds of learning difference are addressed at this Private school, my daughter is dyslexic. However, after 5 years at Chartwell she was prepared to go to another mainstream private school where she is now an A student there. When one realizes that 40% of all children worldwide have some kind of learning difference and that the normal shaming process taught in American public schools only destroys learning difference kids confidence one realizes just how very important these kinds of schools are not only for the 40% with learning difference but in opening all children to their true potential as young adults and adults.

Chartwell School is located in Fort Ord, California on a hill. All its water is pumped with solar trickle into a main holding tank and it sells whatever electricity it doesn't use generated by solar back to the grid. Almost all the wood used in building the school is recycled wood from wine barrels and from bamboo etc. The buildings are also designed to maximize lighting from outside the buildings and for ease of heating. It is really thrilling to see just how efficient a school can be from the building design all the way to the sophisticated methods of teaching.

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