Kids like it here.
It’s a school that students want to attend. The climate and atmosphere is best described as “open/responsible”. While students are invited and encouraged to be themselves, the organizational culture expects them to live up to their responsibilities displaying integrity, within an international educational community. IPS students want to come to school because it’s fun, it’s safe – it’s a place that allows middle school students to be themselves.
We are aware that boundaries and freedom within those boundaries are particularly important in the middle school years when kids need to grow their independence (but with the support of adults). Some of the ways we achieve this:
- We are a small school
- Students quickly earn the privilege of calling teachers by their first names
- Students understand what we are trying to accomplish
- We provide encouragement finding that sweet spot of student discipline between freedom and responsibility
The learning community at Island Pacific School is actively committed to ensuring all individuals are valued, safe, and have a sense of belonging.
We create this atmosphere by adhering to our established Equity, Diversity, Inclusion (EDI) Standards wherein our staff, students and families are treated equitably based on their individual need, background and history. Our EDI Standards are expressed through the following actions:
We are creating a culture of belonging at IPS by ensuring that the members of our community have regular opportunities to be and feel heard. We have active strategies in place to ensure that our community members remain confident to contribute their ideas and perspectives, received and explored through a positive feedback framework. Establishing this framework sets a clear intention that these new and emerging perspectives will drive positive change;
We work hard to foster, embrace, and place significant value and attention to our culture of belonging because we understand that to honour the individual we must succeed in creating an environment where everyone feels as though they truly belong. We challenge ourselves to appreciate and find strength in differences so that we are ready to distribute resources and support based on those needs;
We challenge our individual bias and in this way are able to focus on the principles of respect in the name of equity; The celebration of diversity at IPS is represented in the unique dimensions, qualities, experiences, and characteristics we individually possess. In this environment, we regularly meet to examine IPS principles of inclusivity to meet a high standard where safe culture and environment is the standard.
Things Kids Like at IPS (We asked!)
- Having their own full kitchen
- Meeting new friends
- Having a locker
- Not needing a lock on their locker
- Calling teachers by first name
- Having more than one teacher
- Hanging out with kids of all ages
IPS feels more like a home than a school. It’s a place where everyone, students and teachers, are treated as equals. The teachers are involved with us and genuinely care.
– Quinn C, Student.
The Integrity Lesson.
How should we deal with things when we make a mistake? We have the luxury of being able to teach this lesson in the safety of a close-knit, small community.
- Take responsibility
- Make amends
- Understand that there will be consequences
- Learn from it
- Move on
Student Discipline & The Integrity Lesson
- Small coaching moments:
- Stand up and apologize
- Sorry for being late
- Culture of respect for others and their needs
- Student discipline progression
- 1-5 scale
- NB: we spend all our time on 1-2, so we do not have to get to 4-5