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Vision in Action: The ASCD Whole Child Award is designed to recognize schools that have gone beyond a vision for educating the whole child to actions that result in learners who are knowledgeable, emotionally and physically healthy, civically active, artistically engaged, prepared for economic self-sufficiency, and ready for the world beyond formal schooling. This award acknowledges those schools that have changed the conversation about education from a focus on narrowly defined academic achievement to one that promotes the development of the whole child: a child who is healthy, safe, engaged, supported, and challenged.
Jason Lee Middle School was announced as the 2016 Vision in Action: The Whole Child Award recipient at the 71st ASCD Annual Conference and Exhibit Show. One of the many areas in which Jason Lee excels is in supporting students entering middle school and preparing them for what comes next. Incoming 6th graders attend a four-day orientation camp in August where they are connected with 7th and 8th grade student mentors. These older students provide guidance to their mentees throughout the school year, modeling a safe, responsible, compassionate, and respectful Bobcat (the school's mascot) to align with the school's whole child pillars.
Recent evaluations have demonstrated Jason Lee's impressive gains in student success, both academic and otherwise. After just one year of implementing the Tacoma Whole Child Initiative, the school has seen a 21 percent decrease in unexcused absences along with increases in the number of students who pass various subjects. In addition, students are demonstrating their depth of conceptual knowledge, engaging in self-reflection, and improving interpersonal interactions—all of which reflect a well-rounded learning environment.
To learn more about Jason Lee Middle School and its approach to a whole child education, listen to an episode of the Whole Child Podcast featuring Jason Lee staff and read the full press release.
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