Traci Filiss, one of the co-founders of Taos Academy, created a successful online learning school before Taos. However, she felt that that school lacked student energy and community. She created Taos Academy knowing that there needed to be some structure for students and for teachers, and that there were best practices that she felt would work in a blended school.
Implementing support systems for kids was challenging in the beginning. Originally, the school was much more reliant upon students staying engaged with the curriculum. Now, there are more support systems in place to help students who are different kinds of learners. For example, the school how has Fridays set aside for individual support and more live-taught classes, which give students more opportunities to ask questions.
Stay flexible and open to new ideas. "The K-12 education is stuck in systems that are very old," Filiss says. "You have to break out of that mold and realize that it can be done differently."
Also look into leadership programs that help support the implementation of blended learning environments. If the leaders aren't 100% sure of what they're doing, it will be much more challenging to run a successful school.
Taos Academy shows leadership in its Early College High School program. It also demonstrates leadership with its unique model, which it is hoping to scale soon to a large Santa Fe public school.
We are a State Charter public school offering a dynamic and innovative educational delivery system. It is our privilege to provide 5th-12th grade students with engaging and rigorous core curriculum, highly motivating elective classes, leadership and career training, college preparation and community involvement through our state-of-the-art 21st century learning environment.
At Taos Academy, we hold the belief that every learner deserves access to excellence in educational opportunities regardless of his or her abilities or location. Our hybrid educational delivery model uses a unique combination of direct classroom and digital instruction with proven curriculum to address each learner’s individual needs. Flexibility in scheduling allows for the student to work in our technology labs or wherever a high-speed internet connection is available. Students attend the Taos Academy facility for tutoring, workshops, and classes in our media arts lab or in our science/math/engineering lab.
Highly qualified and experienced licensed teachers conduct classes both on-site and from remote locations. Each student is assigned an instructional advisor for consistent contact, guidance, feedback and encouragement. Tutoring is available for students in need of additional support. Teachers will also provide support for leadership training, outdoor education, and community service learning projects.
Students are enrolled at Taos Academy through a lottery system. Visit the enrollment page for more info. Each accepted student will complete an application and have an interview with an administrator or instructional advisor. During the interview process, educational and career plans will be developed through the collaborative efforts of the student, parent, and instructional advisor. The student will also undergo academic assessment to determine the appropriate course placement. We look forward to providing students one of the most innovative and effective educational experiences available anywhere.
Contact: Traci Filiss
Contact Title: Founder
Taos Academy Charter School
110 Paseo del Cañon West
Taos, New Mexico
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