Imagine a classroom of teens sitting in a circle while sharing life’s difficulties and celebrations with peers who are actively listening and willing to publicly offer a hug or a pat on the back. Yes, a world where adolescent behavior is the goal, not a punchline.
One of Tennessee’s highest performing charter school networks is receiving national acclaim for its implementation of a robust social-emotional effort called Valor Compass. During a time when children are seemingly experiencing trauma at higher rates, Valor Collegiate proactively integrates into the culture a system that honors the student’s heart and soul, a human development component aligning one’s actions with their purpose, while balancing the heart and mind.
Valor Collegiate is a Nashville network of racially and socio-economically balanced charter schools in grades 5-12 nationally celebrated for its intentional diversity and high performance and is a new grant recipient from the Walton Family Foundation. Valor Circle, a component of Valor Compass, has recently earned the attention of the Chan Zuckerberg Initiative, an organization focused on inclusion, justice, and health founded by Priscilla Chan and husband Mark Zuckerberg of Facebook fame.
Circle is the heart of our experiential learning approach to human development. It is where the community comes together to support themselves and each other in their Compass development work. Student Circle takes place weekly in small mentor groups which are intentionally diverse, single-gender groups leds by a faculty mentor. Staff members also participate in Faculty Circle once per week.
Nashville is fortunate to have Valor Collegiate, a network of schools deeply committed to educating and honoring the whole child.
PLEASE invest ten minutes of your day with this video of Valor students and teachers in Circle. Be like a Valor scholar and thank me later.