Eagle Rock Students Wax Poetic at National Poetry Slam

A half-dozen of our Eagle Rock School students, along with three staff mentors, have just returned from a national youth poetry festival at the University of Houston in Houston, Tex., and while we didn’t walk away with any major trophies or prizes, the reward came in helping each of our students find and display their own voice.

Called the 2018 Brave New Voices International Youth Poetry Slam Festival, the annual event brings more than 500 young poets — along with their educator mentors — all joining up with some the nation’s leading spoken-word artists and cultural workers to take a deep dive into arts education, artistic expression, and civic engagement.

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Brave New Voices is a national youth poetry festival sponsored by Youth Speaks, an organization that has long championed what is becoming a global movement of young people finding safe places to discover, develop, publicly present, and apply their voices as creators of social change.

Participating students do this through the intersection of arts education and youth development practices, civic engagement, and quality artistic presentation.

Dan Hoffman, Eagle Rock’s Societies & Cultures Instructional Specialist — and a Ponderosa House Parent— did most of the heavy lifting at the local level, coordinating the Continue reading…

Celebrating the 25th Anniversary of Eagle Rock School and Professional Development Center

Today, we are celebrating the 25th anniversary of the Eagle Rock School and Professional Development Center.

We established Eagle Rock in 1993 after two years of research and study of existing educational options throughout America. The goal? To find new ways to reach and educate high school students who, for whatever reason, needed a new approach in their education. We started from scratch – constructing this tuition free, residential high school at the gateway to Rocky Mountain National Park near Estes Park, Colorado.

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From the beginning, our interest has not been simply in making successful students, but fostering engaged citizens who are willing and able to make a difference in the world. We determined to take a holistic approach, believing that intellectual growth is advanced through physical, mental, spiritual and social growth. This includes leveraging the Continue reading…

Student Stories Document Our Path in 25th Anniversary Magazine

As a part of our 25th Anniversary celebration on June 30 here in Estes Park, Colo., a number of students are writing news articles about what shaped our school’s quarter century of successfully bringing non-traditional education to underserved, but deserving youngsters — resulting in reengaging youth in their own education.

The writing is being created as a part of a class called All Who Dared, in which students are using the techniques of journalism to discover and uncover the history of Eagle Rock School and Professional Development Center. Through interviews with our founding administrators and educators, and by digging through archival-quality documents, students in this class are collecting and presenting stories that illustrate what it was that made Eagle Rock what it is today. These researched reminisces and news stories are being compiled into a digital magazine that will be distributed later this summer.

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Below, we have taken excerpts from three of these writings that will appear in the online magazine. These short outtakes illustrate the work being completed by some of our students as they attempt to document their take on Eagle Rock’s history — in writing.

First off is an article titled Inception by Eagle Rock student Emiliano M. Vivanco: Continue reading…

Sarah Bertucci Named Eagle Rock’s Director of Curriculum

Editor’s Note: You might recall earlier this year that we announced Eagle Rock was actively seeking a new Director of Curriculum to replace Jen Frickey. Following months of reviewing cover letters and resumes, as well as a lengthy interview process, we arrived at a candidate who shined throughout the entire process: our own Professional Development Associate Sarah Bertucci. Sarah begins in her new role work this summer — just in time for our 75th trimester (ER 75). Below is some information on Jen and Sarah, as well as an in-depth Q&A with both of these Eagle Rock veterans.

So, let’s start with Jen:

Jen-FrickeyJen Frickey began her Eagle Rock career as an intern in our Human Performance Center (HPC) during our 25th trimester (ER 25) back in 2001. She was quickly promoted to the Instructional Staff (assigned to the HPC) and became a Lodgepole houseparent the following year, leaving in 2008 to raise two kids in Canada. She returned in 2012 as Director of Curriculum and is and is now returning to Canada to focus on spending more time with her kids.

Eagle Rock: What were your proudest accomplishments in curriculum?

Jen: When I came into the role I took over a strong instructional team based on the work of Jeff Liddle and Michael Soguero, continuing the curriculum in the direction they had taken it with the previous Individualized Learning Plans update. During my time, I worked on getting our practices more aligned, dialed, high-quality, and consistent across the entire instructional team. Continue reading…