Culture and Curriculum at Capitol Collegiate
We believe that a strong culture and strong curriculum are the foundations for student achievement. At Capitol Collegiate, we focus on these two areas to ensure students are successful.
Cohesive Culture: Creating a Community of Learning
A cohesive culture is critical to the success of Capitol Collegiate. Schools that produce exceptional results from their students attribute a large part of that success to the high expectations they carry for the student community, the enthusiasm and caring they demonstrate for their students, and the systems that promote efficiency and focus all attention on the joy of learning. In having a strong, supportive, and pervasive culture of achievement and caring, Capitol Collegiate ensures that we are able to maximize the instructional time that we have with every student attending our school as well as build their self-esteem and self-efficacy. The elements that we have identified as contributing to a cohesive culture include:
- Leadership: School leadership ensures the school is always working toward its mission to prepare students for success.
- Expectations: Our expectations both for behavior and academics are clearly outlined for students, families, and school staff. We know providing clear expectations helps pave the way to success and supports our students in reaching their potential
- Systems: We believe that creativity thrives when there is clarity in expectations and structure. In order to accomplish this, the school must have strong systems in place to support students and staff.
- Families: If both a student’s parents and teachers have high expectations for the student’s academic performance, then the student generally exceeds expectations. Our partnership with parents includes: a) welcoming families into the school; b) regular communication about student behavior and ways to become involved in their children’s education; and c) developing and fostering relationships of respect, trust, and clarity. In doing so, students will be better supported in their academic pursuits.
- Citizenship: Students learn about different nations, languages, religions, economies, and governments in an effort to be informed about the world around them and their place in it. Additionally, students are given a strong character and social education as they begin to recognize and apply the principles of sound global citizenship to their own choices.
Challenging Curriculum: Creating a Community of Learning
Schools need to develop and promote both high expectations as well as a developmentally appropriate curriculum that they intend students to master. Students of all abilities learn more in difficult courses than in low-level courses and are more likely to master difficult material if adequate support is provided at the instructional level. We provide this challenging curriculum through the following components:
- Focus on Literacy: Literacy is the absolute key to accessing an excellent education. In order to address the need for a focus on literacy, Capitol Collegiate devotes a significant amount of the school day to different forms of literacy instruction.
- More than 150 minutes of direct literacy instruction for kindergarten through grade four
- Small group literacy instruction
- Focus on phonics in the early grades and comprehension and critical thinking in the middle-school grades
- Accountability for Measurable Results: We believe that frequent and continued assessments are required for an informed teaching staff and for stronger, more relevant curriculum.
- More Time to Learn: In order to reach the very ambitious goals that we have set for students and staff, Capitol Collegiate realizes the need to have much more time scheduled in the regular school day. This extended day is accompanied by an extended year, providing over 4,400 additional education hours to students attending Capitol Collegiate over the course of the full kindergarten through eighth grade.
- High Expectations in Every Classroom: Capitol Collegiate establishes a college preparatory curriculum highlighted through an extended day and year model. This curriculum features coursework in Reading, English, Writing, Problem Solving and Procedural Math, Science and Social Sciences/History. This coursework, in addition to enrichment coursework, provides students with a complete, challenging, and college preparatory education delivered in every classroom for every child.
- High Level Instruction: Capitol Collegiate believes that the success of its teachers is subsequently the success of the school. We provide teachers with opportunities for professional development, time to plan and discuss curriculum and student achievement with each other, and feedback to continuously improve their effectiveness.