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About Our A+ School

Clarkton School of Discovery:   Mission Statement

We, at Clarkton School of Discovery, are committed to providing an enriching, nurturing environment and a challenging curriculum while educating the whole child through continuous improvement, self-reflection, and the ability to adapt to change. We will prepare our children to become life-long learners who function successfully in an ever-changing society..."We are all in this together!"

Clarkton School of Discovery:   Facts & Information 

¶  There are no performance measures, auditions, or tests required for acceptance into our school.  Any child entering Grades 6-8 may apply to attend.

¶  Our core classes are taught in the mornings and include Communication Skills, Reading, Math, Science and Social Studies.

¶  Academically Gifted courses are in place for those students who qualify and are identified.

¶  We offer a wide variety of elective courses, which meet the North Carolina Standard Course of Study requirements.  Elective courses vary each quarter and include such classes as dance, drama, music, visual arts, computer, technology, vocational education, physical education, science, social studies, math, and communication skills.  Most elective courses are nine weeks in length, although some last a semester and some last all year.  A student could potentially take 12 nine-week long courses during the school year.

¶  We sponsor a National Junior Beta Club, National Junior Art Society, North Carolina Scence Olympiad Team, North Carolina Quiz Bowl Team, Battle of the Books Team, North Carolina Envirothon Team, NCDOT Bridge Building Team, and the North Carolina Parent, Teacher, Student Association.

¶  Our extracurricular athletic program includes football, volleyball, boys' & girls' basketball, cheerleading, softball, and soccer.

¶  Our affiliations and sponsors include the NC Middle School Association, NC Congress of Parents & Teacher, Inc., Tar Heel Junior Historian Association, National Art Education Association, Magnet Schools of America, NC Farm Bureau for the "Agriculture in the Classroom" elective, Peace Grows Inc, for the "Alternatives to Violence" elective (we are the first school in NC to offer this as a stand-alone elective), NASA Earth Cam and NASA Connects, UNC-P, Smithfield, Starr Telephone, Campbell Oil & Gas, Dupont, and the Lions Club for the "Quest" elective, Project leadership elective and International Peace Poster Program.

¶  North Carolina A+ School (Kenan Institute for the Arts, one of 25 schools in North Carolina)

¶  North Carolina Governor's Entrepreneurial School in 1996.

What is an A+ School?     

Program Description:   CSD is has been part of the A+ Schools program since 1995. This means the teachers at CSD mix the arts with whatever they are teaching. The A+ Schools Program is a whole school reform model that views the arts as fundamental to how students learn in all subjects. The mission of the A+ Schools Program is to create schools that work for everyone. Grounded in the A+ Essentials™, the central vision of A+ is to create enhanced learning opportunities for all students by using arts-integrated instructions, which incorporate Howard Gardner's theory of multiple intelligences and other theories of intelligence.

A+ Schools represents a viable option for schools seeking a focus based on the arts and multiple modes of learning as the primary approach to the curriculum. A+ Schools cover the North Carolina Standard Course of Study through arts integration and hands-on, experiential learning, including arts instruction by arts teachers. A+ Schools also develop strong partnerships with parents and area cultural resources. The N.C. A+ Network currently consists of 45 A+ Schools from across the state, including CSD. As part of a statewide network of A+ Schools, teachers and principals participate in ongoing professional development.

The A+ Schools Program has enabled schools to use the arts to "re-form" their approach to "doing the business of schools"- educating children. Research evaluators have consistently found that A+ Schools have been able to respond to accountability standards in both effective and creative ways, meeting standards in N.C.'s high-stakes testing program and developing a school identity around the arts by deeply integrating the arts into the curriculum.

Brief History:    Established in 1995 by the Kenan Institute for the Arts, the A+ Schools Program began with 25 schools, representing the diversity of North Carolina. The resultsof the initial evaluation, and the subsequent evaluation in the eighth year, attributed the success and sustainability of the program to the use of arts in school reform, the professional development and the network created to support teachers and schools. On July 1, 2010, the A+ Schools Program moved to the administration of the N.C. Arts Council, an agency of the N.C. Department of Cultural Resources.

State and National Recognition:  The A+ Schools Program has been recognized across N.C. and cited extensively as an exemplary program in the N.C. Department of Public Instruction publication called A Balanced Curriculum.

The A+ Schools Program is now nationally recognized as an effective, research-based strategy for sustainable whole school reform with established partnerships and contracts with other state initiatives. Most recently, the program is the topic of the book Creating and Sustaining Arts-Based School Reform: The A+ Schools Program(2009, Noblit, Corbett,Wilson, andMcKinney).

Clarkton School of Discovery was sited as one of ten schools in the U.S. that is working in Third Space: When Learning Matters (2005, Arts Education Partnership)