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Country's Best Magnet School Succeeds by Building Student Character

 Country's Best Magnet School Succeeds by Building Student Character

The Breakthrough Magnet School of Hartford, Conn., was the recipient of the Magnet Schools of America's annual award for best magnet school in the United States, and attributes beating out 319 schools across the country to its ability to use its values to strengthen and build the character of its students.

According to the Hartford Courant, the award is given to "the one magnet school in the country that most exemplifies a commitment to diversity, high academic standard and curriculum innovation."

At the MSA'S 33rd national conference, the award was given to the school's principal, Julie Goldstein.

"Goldstein said that the school she’s led for the last two years has been successful because of its focus on what she calls 'character education,'" according to a recent segment on WNPR.

The school defines its values with the acronym 'BRICK:' Breakthroughs, Responsibility, Integrity, Contributions, and Knowledge.

Guided by these values, students are immersed in a curriculum that teaches them to be active participants in the school and the community. In the schools, students help manage the student-run store and build rooftop garden. Outside of school, students are responsible for participating in community service. In fact, older students must complete at least 60 hours.

Some of examples of the school's resulting accomplishments "include the creation of a Leadership Club, a Nobel Peace Laureate affiliated group called Peace Jam, and an award winning classroom-based community service project called Crayons for Cancer, as well as a new partnership with the Charter Oak Cultural Center," the Courant said.

The school of 350 students represents 25 different countries and is "one of the highest-performing in the region."

Read the full story here and comment below.

Article by Nicole Gorman, Education World Contributor

05/04/2015

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