Trimester Break is Underway — Classes Start Again May 21

Here at the Eagle Rock School & Professional Development Center, we began our trimester break late last week, highlighted by the graduation of four students last Friday afternoon, followed a community meeting Saturday and a staff meeting that concluded earlier today.

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And while the staff break begins in earnest tomorrow (Wednesday), a number of our instructors, Professional Development Center staff, and other campus staff will be hard at work throughout the trimester breather. Many of our instructors will spend time planning classes for Eagle Rock School’s upcoming 75th trimester (ER-75), and the school’s Leadership Team is heading off to a meeting of the American Honda Education Corporation board of directors on May 3.

Two days later— on Saturday, May 5 — many Eagle Rock volunteers and staff will be in Estes Park, supporting the Estes Park Rotary Duck Race that benefits dozens of local charities and organizations each year — including, of course, our Graduate Higher Education Fund.

For our Professional Development team, there is no real break to speak of, with a schedule packed with program deliveries, meetings, and retreats throughout the country, including: Continue reading…

Eagle Rock Celebrates 25 Years Creatively

Six-word-story-eagle-rock-school-4This summer marks the 25th anniversary of Eagle Rock School and Professional Development Center, and as might be expected, an academic challenge is among the many events planned for this celebration of 25 years of reengaging youth in their own education.

But first, a word about the festivities planned for Saturday, June 30, here on our mountainside campus in Estes Park. While specific events for the day are still being firmed up, you can count on lunch, tours of many of the 26 buildings (including engaging activities with many of the spaces within the development zone of our 640-acre campus), the opportunity to reunite with alumni and meet current students and new and veteran staff members.

And speaking of games and activities, we’re asking current and past students and staff and friends in the Eagle Rock community to submit a six-word story that best describes their experience with Eagle Rock. Why only a half-dozen words? How can anyone define an experience in six words? By Continue reading…

Eagle Rock Teacher Lauded for His Impact on Student

If we’re fortunate in this lifetime, many of us can point to one individual who made a huge difference in our lives, whether that person gently steered us in an unexplored direction, or presented us with life-changing options that corrected the course in which we were headed.

Jon AndersonHere at Eagle Rock — an alternative high school designed to engage high school students who haven’t had success in a traditional educational setting — one such role model has been recognized for effecting change in his students by means of a unique style of teaching that is anchored on building meaningful relationships with each of his young charges.

Jon Anderson, a 16-year veteran instructor here at Eagle Rock School, is being recognized this month by Honored — a national nonprofit, nonpartisan organization dedicated to keeping great teachers in the classroom and inspiring a new generation of talent to pursue teaching.

It was while focusing on a teaching degree at the University of Northern California that Jon recalls being approached by one of his professors who suggested he might check out a nontraditional school up in Estes Park called Eagle Rock.

Jon did just that, and was hired as a student teacher in 1998, followed by an internship the following year. And after a stint teaching in nearby Denver, he became a fulltime Eagle Rock instructional specialist in 2002.

If you ask Jon, he will tell you he was attracted to Eagle Rock’s focus on students as individuals, which enabled him to not only build trust with each student, but work with them on issues specific to their future successes in life.

But what most impressed Jon was our Continue reading…

Eagle Rock’s ‘School Improvement Project’ Focuses on Common Assessment

Strategic-Planning-Eagle-Rock-SchoolEditor’s Note: “Vision 2020” is the name of the strategic planning process adopted five years ago by Eagle Rock’s board of directors. It helps ensure that our long-term goals coincide with what we do on campus on a day-to-day basis. The vision focuses on seven distinct areas — known as domains — that guide our board, administrators, instructors, staff members and students. One of these domains centers on our academic curriculum, focusing on creating a framework for normed common assessments.

In today’s post, Eagle Rock staffers Jen Frickey, director of curriculum, and Jon Anderson, outdoor education instructional specialist and this year’s instructional coach, address and update the work our staff is doing in the domain of academic curriculum.

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Eagle Rock’s ‘School Improvement Project’ Focuses on Common Assessment
By Jen Frickey (Director of Curriculum) & John Anderson (Human Performance & Outdoor Education Instructional Specialist / 2018 Instructional Coach)

This year, the theme for professional development within Eagle Rock School’s instructional realm, is a close scrutiny of our academic curriculum — specifically pinpointing our power standards. At Eagle Rock School, all students must successfully pass power standard classes on each of our 5 Expectations. These include:

  1. Leadership for Justice
  2. Expanding Knowledge Base
  3. Effective Communication
  4. Healthy Life Choices
  5. Engaged Global Citizen

Top of mind for our educators this year are the school’s Enduring Understanding and long-term learning targets for their own professional development. Enduring Understanding — also known as our 10-Year Takeaway — asks teachers to consider what it is that students will remember about their particular class and what they retained a decade from now.

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By creating and implementing schoolwide common assessments, instructors can improve teacher capacity, thus enhancing Continue reading…

Eagle Rock Students, Instructors and Staff Wrap Up Another Successful Year

It’s been a busy December here at Eagle Rock School and Professional Development Center, and as we wind down for the holiday season, we thought it might be helpful to post a schedule for the rest of 2017 and the beginning of the calendar year ahead.

First off, where we’ve been this month:

  • We graduated three of our amazing students with pomp and circumstance last Friday, with the rest of the student population heading back to families spread across the nation last weekend.
  • Our staff held a holiday party this past Sunday, wrapping up the trimester with a final staff meeting on Monday morning.

Many staff members will be gathering together to make plans for our 74th trimester (ER-74) this week, as well as put additional thought and work in on the planning for our 25th Anniversary Celebration, which is scheduled for June 30, 2018, here in Estes Park, Colo. And, of course, our business office and operations team continues to run the day-to-day tasks that recognize deadlines and schedules (in addition to holidays and celebrations).

Meanwhile, staff from our Professional Development Center are wrapping up the current trimester with several commitments in Wisconsin in support of our clients. These include visits with Continue reading…