Progress Reports are ready to view. Information about how to access them is included at the end of this message.
Last week, we had the pleasure of hosting former students for our Alumni College Panel. They are so much themselves and how we remember them, though even more themselves now - confident, funny, engaging, grown. They about the progressive education they got here and what it has meant to take that education with them to their colleges and universities and about the joys and challenges of being on their own away from home. Our alumni are uniquely impressive in their sense of themselves and the world. Our students grow up to be the best kind of adult - thoughtful, brave, kind, insightful, dedicated, curious. If you would like to watch the panel, the video is here
Listening to these former students illuminates what we already know, but don’t always observe directly - that every middle schooler is on a journey, working on getting closer to the person they will eventually become, and away from the person they won’t. Being someone who works with middle schoolers means embracing this constant experimenting and evolving. It means happily and steadily providing opportunities to reflect, transform, and change directions. It means celebrating the struggle and the awkwardness and being willing to see students in a new light from one day to the next - sometimes from one hour to the next. I love this about middle school. It’s so dynamic, so hopeful.
Progress reports are now ready (see the instructions below) and I encourage each of you to read them in this spirit - as a portrait of your child’s journey toward their best self. Remember that while we all want them to do well, the ultimate goal is that they stretch and grow towards their courageous, creative, funny, insightful, strong adult selves - and they can’t do that without taking some risks, and experimenting with new skills and habits. Mastery is sometimes elusive and sometimes easy. When you talk with your child about their report, talk about what has been accomplished, but also what is in process, and what is hard. As psychologist and author Carol Dweck has pointed out, students with a growth mindset - who know that skills and abilities are developed through persistence and are not fixed traits - far outperform their peers with a fixed mindset. As the adults in their lives, we can help them develop this understanding by praising effort, risk and dedication above skill.
As always, our middle school progress report comes in two parts: narrative comments available on Connect, and a PDF of Jumprope scores that arrive by email. To access the narratives on Connect, log in and click on your child (in the upper-left corner). You will see a menu called 'Progress'. When you expand that menu, click 'Report Cards' and then below that, two reports - the Midterm Curriculum Update that you read before fall conferences and the latest report. Click 'T1 Curriculum Statements And Comments'. If you have any difficulty, don't hesitate to reach out.