A Time For Change

The world-renowned theoretical physicist Albert Einstein taught us, “If you always do what you always did, you will always get what you always got.” Yet year after year, decade after decade, much of how we teach and engage students remains unchanged. As tragic as the pandemic has been it has revealed how unprepared we were as educators to educate our students in any way except what we know and have always done.

 

"How Are The Children?"

If education is going to change the narrative for underserved students, we must consider how we might activate their student agency, partnering with families, staff, and the entire community to reach the students where they are. To do this will require us to focus the attention of all SABA stakeholders on the success of each student. To place the center of attention on the students the SABA community will start by building a village mindset. Such a mindset can be found in the traditional greeting of the Masai tribe when they ask; “And how are the children.” Even warriors with no children of their own would always give the traditional answer, “All the children are well.” SABA will place the necessary importance on the well-being, and education of ALL students thus changing the educational narrative from day one until graduation.

 

Our school will place emphasis on the word ALL, focusing on the success of every student in the school. You will find this focus in SABA’s mission statement, vision statement, and in how we engage the students every day. SABA will start by recognizing opportunity gaps, knowledge gaps, and learning gaps which will lead us to identifying achievement gaps. SABA will close the achievement gaps for culturally and linguistically diverse boys using non-traditional instructional approaches, thus breaking the cycle of doing what we have always done.

 

Effective, Innovative Curriculum

SABA will bridge achievement gaps through the use of culturally responsive teaching and learning, appreciating and valuing each student for who he is and what he brings to school daily. Teachers will be trained in the use of Advancement Via Individual Determination (AVID) strategies, teaching students more effective ways of how to do school. SABA will integrate an arts-focused curriculum through the implementation of the North Carolina A+ Program that will specifically increase opportunities traditionally not afforded to all students. Research has taught us that children learn in different ways and at different rates. No single approach works for all students. As educators we must teach the way students learn and not expect students to learn the way we teach. SABA will use Howard Gardner’s Theory of Multiple Intelligences to identify how each student processes information, paving a pathway for deeper, richer, long-lasting learning.

 

Every student deserves access to and the opportunity for a premier educational experience regardless of race, ethnicity, zip code or background. SABA will implement systems that fight traditional educational inequities and provide the rigor necessary for students to succeed in college and life. As a life-long educator it is with great pride and excitement that we bring SABA to the Chatham community. We invite you to come and see what is new and different at SABA.

- Mr. Robert Logan, School of the Arts for Boys Academy Board Chair