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The Paideia School

Framework of Values

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Every school is a complex social community with the assigned task of passing onto the younger generation some of the knowledge and skill acquired by the older generation. It is especially important to us at Paideia that we examine what we are teaching in addition to academic knowledge: how we view the larger human community, how we treat each other as individuals, how we relate to the physical environment, how we view the process of learning. We need to examine what we teach as part of the way we live and interact with each other as a community of adults and children.

We presume that families choose Paideia in part because they perceive that the school shares many of their values. While the primary teaching of values belongs to the family, the school is in the unique position of being able to mediate between a more impersonal social order and the intensely personal family experience. It is the school's responsibility to help prepare children for a place in the society; we also hope that the school environment can have some of the personal depth and meaningfulness of family life. We hope that our students will be prepared not only to live in the world but to improve it.

These principles already exist at Paideia, and they will continue to be expressed in the life of the school. We list and define them because we recognize the importance of saying out loud what we treasure:

Above all else, a good school should be a good place for people to be. It should exemplify qualities of human interaction that we would wish for people everywhere. One should feel valued. A great many interesting things should be going on. One should be learning a lot - and especially learning how to better learn. School should be a place one looks forward to going to in the morning and is somewhat reluctant to leave at the end of the day. The school as a center for learning should have things going on in the evenings and on weekends involving parents and people from the community as well as students and faculty.”

Dr. Newt Hodgson, Paideia Self Study, 1980