Avenues’ global headquarters in New York City will provide central and support functions for Avenues’ system of schools. One advantage of a system of schools (versus a single-site school) is that certain core competencies can be built up at a system level that would be economically difficult, even impossible, for a single school to develop. These provide meaningful benefits to both students and faculty. Here are three examples of the value of a headquarters (HQ) function:
Most schools have department chairs, teachers who “double” as coordinators of subject areas such as history or mathematics. Avenues does this as well, but these campus-based chairs will, over time, be supported by full-time departmental experts at the HQ level. For example, HQ will have a system-wide expert on languages to assist each school in selecting its language faculty, coordinate the selection of language courseware, conduct the professional development/training programs for language faculty worldwide, generally stay abreast of cutting-edge work in language acquisition, and conduct ongoing research and development on language studies. Imagine similar “system-wide” positions in mathematics, the World Course, science, early childhood education, the arts, fitness and athletics, and so forth.
Avenues will build a two-part college counseling and admission function. As with every top school, there is on-site college counseling for all upper grade students. In addition, there will be an HQ function related to college counseling and college/university relations. This team, which will be headed by someone who has previously held a senior post in the admissions function of a top college or university, will provide advice and support to all on-campus college counseling teams. Equally important, HQ staff will meet with senior admissions officials at the world’s top colleges and universities both to stay up-to-date on what each institution offers and to ensure that these admissions offices know the attributes of an Avenues graduate. Few single-site schools are able to support such wide coverage of higher education options and maintain research about them.
Study abroad capabilities are housed at HQ. Working closely with school leadership and faculty, this team develops all summer abroad studies programs (first in programs supervised out of New York and later in programs offered at other Avenues campuses). It will also design and coordinate the semester abroad programs. A core objective of this group will be to ensure that every Avenues student has, during the course of his or her Upper Division years, multiple overseas opportunities that are highly integrated into the “home campus” curriculum.
These are just a few examples of the support functions at the Avenues HQ. Such capabilities will expand with each campus opened, and over time they will become a uniquely powerful part of the quality of an Avenues education.
December 8, 2017
Yayoi Kusama Festival of Life show was such a special experience for our pre-K students as they wandered through her “infinity rooms.” The first room in the show is an immersive experience for everyone who visits, and our 4 and 5-year-olds really seemed to connect with it.
December 5, 2017
Last week, having almost completed all high school math curriculum, a group of 12th graders set foot to find beauty outside the classroom. This time, they looked for patterns not in a sequence of math problems, but ones hidden in the works of artists. As a prelude to their yearlong math-art project, students visited galleries in Chelsea. One of the stops was home to works by artist Ruth Asawa.
December 1, 2017
In 5th grade, students take a weekly one-hour class called Fab Five. The Fab Five classes consist of Drama, Journalism, Public Speaking, Creative Computing and Wellness. In the Creative Computation class, students learned to build a computer from scratch.
November 29, 2017
We asked the kids to share what they know about emotions, and then generated a list of all the feelings we know. One child made a quick connection and said, “Hey! Emojis, emotions. They’re like the same thing!” We used this observation to help us draw facial expressions for our own class emojis and then thought about how and why we feel the ways we do.
November 28, 2017
In Spanish class with Profesora Valeria, 8th-grade students are working on the topic “City Life.” Through language study, they make connections with other content areas; compare the language and culture studied with their own; and participate in home and global communities.