At The MEG School, students work closely with their academic advisor to build a journey through schooling that is personalized to their background, interests, passions, and goals. Our curriculum structures support each student in developing a completely unique school experience. With each subject and credit connected to the student’s identity and goals, our students never need to ask why do we have to learn this?
As students learn their strengths and develop their career and life goals, we connect them to educational opportunities outside of the classroom. We reach out to local resources to provide a rich academic experience—internships, entrepreneurship, political activism, volunteering, fieldwork, cultural experience, academic collaboration, and contact with the community and the outside world. We ensure all students have opportunities for meaningfully-contextualized, real-life learning and doing during their time at The MEG School.
Our Academic Tracks
Students at The MEG School learn traditional subjects (math, science, history, English) through the lens of different tracks that align with student interests, teacher expertise, and real-life applications. In the Creative Arts track, students develop academic skills through their passions in the visual arts. For example, learning biology in a unit on Vision, they study the anatomy of the eye and the physics of light in tandem with color theory. In the Emerging Technology track, students tackle academics through the lens of engineering and computer skills. For example, mastering algebra through programming in Python. In the Outdoors and Sustainability track, students explore the academic curriculum embedded in their local environment: For example, reading Appalachian literature while learning the skills for hiking in mountainous terrain.
In each track, students take on a year-long exploration of themes related to their passions, while learning skills and information from the standard high school curriculum. Our curriculum models are rigorous, immersive, and combine students’ interests directly with the skills in the humanities and sciences they need to master for graduation.
Students at The MEG School can choose to pursue one track throughout their high school career or combine coursework and activities from multiple tracks.
Our Academic Schedule
Learning at The MEG School is not organized around school subjects. Instead, we structure student time around core learning experiences and types of instruction. Each student schedule will include:
- Direct instruction (STEM and HUM): This time is dedicated to teacher-led instruction in STEM (science, technology, engineering, and mathematics) and the Humanities. Instruction methods vary – a lesson might include a lecture, a class discussion, or guided problem-solving. Students focus deeply on learning new material, taking notes, and working as together in a classroom with the other students in their track.
- Academic Support period: During this time, students work independently on assignments. Student goal-setting and time management is supervised closely by learning support staff, who make sure that students are building healthy work habits and getting the help they need. All teachers are available at this time, working with students one-on-one or in groups to help reinforce skills and answer questions. The learning support team helps direct teachers where they are most needed to guide student success.
- Mindfulness and Mentorship workshop (M&M): In these short periods, student advisors check in with students, lead mindfulness practice (such as meditation), and allow peer mentors to meet.
- Academic Elective hours: For five hours a week, students sign up for academic electives supervised by their teachers, which give them a chance to pursue their passions in depth! Students meet to watch and analyze classic films, learn how to play a new sport, study a programming language, or participate in a camping trip. Students must plan out their time each week with their academic advisor, and they need not necessarily do 1 hour/day: For example, students in the Outdoors and Recreation track might go on a geology hike on the weekend that covers all their elective hours for the week.
- Foreign language classes: Students take classes in the foreign language of their choice.
- Experiential Learning days: Each week, all students participate in an experiential learning day—fieldwork, learning excursions, laboratory work, project-based learning, or all-school activities—that are organized by teachers as essential parts of the curriculum development.