At Shorecrest, progressive education is not kept behind classroom doors, but something that is shared with the greater community. One could see a prime example on Saturday, January 27, as the School hosted the 3rd annual St. Pete STEAMfest. The outdoor, educational festival is centered on the study of Science, Technology, Engineering, Art and Math (STEAM). Over 1,000 students and families from all over the Tampa Bay Area experienced more than 40 exhibits and activities at the free admission event. There were robotics demonstrations, arts and crafts, design activities and engineering challenges. Local research and educational centers including Busch Gardens, Clearwater Marine Aquarium, MOSI (Museum of Science and Industry), Great Explorations, iD Tech, and Mathnasium hosted exhibits.
At Shorecrest, we care very much about the safety of our students. This includes not only physical safety, but emotional and psychological safety, especially when it comes to allowing students to show up as their “full selves.” I also believe this should be a privilege afforded to staff and faculty. One of the ways that I am reminded of who I am is by reaching out to build community - whether it be with service partners, parents or other educators.
This past summer I read a thought-provoking article by Paul Barnwell in The Atlantic titled, “Students’ Broken Moral Compasses: The pressures of national academic standards have pushed character education out of the classroom.” While Barnwell’s primary targets are public schools, where standardized testing and the Common Core have created less room for educating the whole child, there are still important takeaways for independent schools like Shorecrest.
Remarks from Convocation 2016 -
Let me put forth an early disclaimer. This is not a political speech. I am not advocating for a particular candidate. When I was thinking about what I wanted to say to you as we begin this academic of year of such great promise, I was genuinely conflicted. On the one hand, the ugly political climate that we have all witnessed thus far, coupled with the concern that any comment I make about the presidential race could be construed as either supporting or denouncing one of the candidates, made me not want to touch this topic with a ten-foot pole.
Here is a joke for you. What do you call someone who speaks three languages? Trilingual. What do you call someone who speaks two languages? Bilingual. What do you call someone who speaks one language? American.