All aspects of The Sojourner Truth School are anchored by our design principles: honor self development; pursue justice everywhere; design for positive impact; and challenge the mind, body and soul.
Truth’s teaching method stimulates students’ natural curiosity about the world and provides a carefully constructed environment to ignite their natural drive to learn. Students, teachers, and parents work together to make Truth a strong community of adults and teenagers who respect each other. We provide an opportunity to contribute to a real micro-economy by engaging directly in a hands-on work enterprise in middle school and then with off-site internships in high school.
Truth middle students attend STEM and Humanities sessions each day and also have blocks of personalized learning time with a small advisory cohort facilitated by a mentor guide. Academic units are explored in 5-week terms, and students engage in one passion-project per term that is then presented to families and the rest of the school community during our Passion Project Fairs.
Student work is assessed with a skill-specific competency rubric that gives students and their families specific, detailed feedback on student strengths and also distinct areas to target for growth. To support holistic development, this feedback is provided not just for traditional academic skills but also for skills such as goal-setting, cultivation of joy and self-worth, and fulfillment of responsibilities. In addition, parents are given the opportunity each term to work with their student’s mentor to identify a personal and individualized goal - academic, social, or otherwise - to monitor for growth over the next five weeks and then to appear on the next report card.
"It has become a common and unfortunate trend in our society to think about achievement out of context. In other words, the goal of performance has become all-important and little attention is paid to the means to that goal. The means to quality education and achievement are the very things that research in Montessori adolescence programs finds: improved motivation, flow, interest, teacher-student relations, peer collaboration, and self-directed and active pursuits in the classroom."
-Dr. Kevin Rathunde
"The pedagogical discussion often seems to be a contest in which everybody wants to prove that his theory is better because it describes better the (mysterious) child's mind. Montessori flies higher, and she seems to tell us that a better school is possible if one reverses his mind and starts from the children's needs."
-Dr. Benedetto Scoppoloa
"There's not one formula, not one rule that works for all students or all teachers. Students figure out what works for them, where their strengths are, where their weaknesses are, and then learn to capitalize on them."