The Sycamore School
The Sycamore School
To cultivate engaged, independent lifelong learners who can think critically and apply their knowledge to real-world experiences in order to achieve personal success and contribute positively to their community.
To provide a dynamic, nurturing and personalized education that inspires a passion for learning, self-discovery and connection to the community.
Description of School:
The Sycamore School is an independent non-profit secondary school in Arlington, Virginia serving middle and high school students. We provide personalized, engaging and experiential learning, helping students make connections across content areas and to the real world. Our inaugural class serves 6-8th grades and we will expand with our students through 12th grade. We’re intentionally small and will cap enrollment at 24 students our first year and expand to 90 students in middle school and 120 students in high school by 2023. The Sycamore School is located at the Arlington Center 4600 N. Fairfax Drive Suite 300 Arlington, VA 22203.
We offer middle and high school students a different type of learning community that actively engages students through providing:
- Small classes in a safe, nurturing and inclusive community
- Self-paced competency-based learning
- Engaging “hands on” and cooperative learning opportunities
- Curricula that incorporates student interests and connects to life outside school
- Student choices of how they engage with the curriculum and display mastery
- Tools to increase self-awareness, self-monitoring and mindfulness
- Real world learning experiences
The Sycamore School integrates academic development, social and emotional learning, and civic engagement. We create a meaningful learning process, whereby teachers personalize instruction according to students’ interests, needs, and aptitudes. Teaching focuses on cultivating transferable skills in students that apply to various jobs or tasks across settings, such as effective communication, collaboration, critical thinking and creativity. We want to partner with parents and the community to design experiences in and outside the classroom.
Our target population of students includes:
- Students who would thrive in a small, personalized and engaging learning environment
- Students with a Montessori or international background would acclimate well to TSS
- Students who are becoming disengaged and disenchanted in their current school setting and not performing up to their potential.
- Student who would benefit from movement and choice of activities throughout the day
- Students with at least average academic ability who are curious and want to be actively engaged in their learning
Our goal is to provide high-quality personalized, inquiry-based experiential learning to a cross-section of students. Thirty percent of our applicants qualify for need-based financial aid. To date, we have provided over $40,000 in need-based scholarships. We can accommodate students who have a specific learning disability, ADHD and social skills deficits. However, we are not a school specifically for students with learning struggles. We intentionally want to attract a cross section of students who reflect the diversity that is present in our larger population.