- features a personalized approach to learning, blending online tools with a variety of collaborative and project-based learning activities to best meet the needs of each individual student.
- provides students with a range of options in fulfilling high school graduation requirements, including a wide range of Honors and Advanced Placement courses.
- fuses academic rigor with innovation and exploration. (Highly motivated AISU students will have opportunities to design their own large-scale projects, participate in internships, and work towards obtaining an associates degree in conjunction with their high school diploma.)
- offers Utah students the chance to learn side-by-side with students from across the globe in a unique and personalized learning environment.
HIGH SCHOOL / MIDDLE SCHOOL
What makes AISU different?
Success coaches ensure that every student succeeds. Students meet, one-on-one, with a Success Coach once a week. In these sessions, students design their own Personal Learning Programs according to individual needs and interests. Students also work with tutors and guest professionals. At AISU, the student-mentor ratio is far lower than the state average, and students receive consistent, individualized attention.
A World-Class Staff
Most of AISU’s teachers and administrators have advanced degrees, many from Ivy-league schools. The performing arts director has worked on Broadway, several faculty members have professional engineering experience, and the Director of Project-Based Learning has served as the manager of STEM-related Middle School Programs at MIT. AISU students will have access to some of today’s brightest and most innovative minds.
Each trimester, AISU students participate in two-week elective courses called “intensives” which extend learning beyond classroom walls and allow students to delve more deeply into areas of personal interest. 2014-15 intensives might include anything from a chamber music festival in Bulgaria to the chance to write and film a movie on set to a robotics project or a ballroom crash course.
What will a typical day look like at AISU?
Instead of sitting in a classroom listening to a teacher lecture, students will find themselves immersed in workshops, personal projects, and design studio experimentation and creation. Teachers, tutors, and success coaches will serve as facilitators and will be available to provide one-on-one instruction.
Students will utilize online and computer-facilitated instructional programs to individualize learning, moving through material at their own pace and demonstrating mastery before advancing. This just the first step in AISU’s learning model; once students have demonstrated competency, they will delve into more meaningful, hands-on learning experiences, preparing them for life in college and beyond.
AISU will support student efforts to acquire second language proficiencies (Arabic, Mandarin Spanish) and to learn more about the cultures and peoples that speak those languages. A Utah student may help a student from Beijing master English while she helps him master Mandarin.
The arts will also feature prominently in AISU’s curriculum, providing students with opportunities to harness the emerging technologies and cultural eclecticism of the 21st century to become active agents in defining the future of creativity and artistry.
Similar programs for grades 6-12 include California’s Summit Public Schools: www.summitps.org
For grades K-5, AISU will draw heavily from the model created for Acton Academy in Austin, Texas: ActonAcademy.org