When does Liberty Leadership open?
Liberty Leadership, a private school in Bel Air, will open on September 4, 2018.
How many students will you have?
Each studio (i.e. Elementary School, Middle School, etc.) will not exceed 36 students. The only exception is if we need to expand slightly to accommodate students already enrolled in Liberty Leadership the previous year.
How many teachers will you have?
We actually don’t refer to them as teachers, but rather we refer to them as Guides. In the first year, we will have 3 Guides and expand as needed.
If the students govern the school, how does anything get done?
On one end of the spectrum is the philosophy of hierarchical control and strict adherence to a top-down plan. This philosophy treats members of an organization (to include a school) like widgets; it is demoralizing, it stifles creativity and innovation, and is very innefficient.
On the other end of the spectrum is the idealistic utopia where everyone does what they want, and things just magically get done. This often results in anarchy, and is also very ineffective.
In the middle is the philosophy referred to as the “levers of control”. The Liberty Leadership model is built on this philosophy. Students are given tremendous freedom, but there are clear boundaries; boundaries they themselves will help tailor and enforce. There is a clear belief system, work performed is meaningful and tied to student personal goals, and there is a clear diagnostic system in place to reward effort.
How much is tuition?
Tuition is determined using a sliding scale based on family income. The tuition amount is identified using School and Student Services (https://www.solutionsbysss.
Do you offer discounts for early enrollment?
Yes. Feel free to contact us for details.
Where is Liberty Leadership located?
We are located inside the Freedom Church building located at 1705 Conowingo Road, Bel Air, MD.
Does Liberty Leadership offer financial aid?
Yes, financial aid is based on need, and it is first come first serve.
How is Liberty Leadership unique from other private schools?
Liberty Leadership is an Acton in Bel Air built on the model that has evolved since 2009. There are no bells ringing, and there are no lectures. Students are in control of their own learning. Differences include:
- Student-driven, self-paced learning
- Real-world projects and apprenticeships
- Multi-age/grade classes
- Student self-governance
- Exploration and assessment of skill levels, learning styles, aptitudes, personality traits, and interests
- Guides rather than teachers
- Socratic discussions rather than lectures
- Mastery learning and student portfolios of achievements rather than grades
- No homework
- No teaching to the test
What grades do you offer?
For the 2018-2019 school year, we will serve children from Kindergarten through 5th Grade. In the 2019-2020 school year, we will expand to Middle School (Grades 6-8) and Pre-K.
Do you offer before and after school care?
If enough applicants need before and after school care, we will add it in 2018-2019. However, there are many certified Child Care facilities in Bel Air that provide transportation to school in the morning and transportation from school in the afternoon. We do, however, expect to offer our own services by the 2019-2020 school year.
Do I need a laptop or other supplies?
No, we provide all students with Chromebooks, office supplies, and materials needed.
Are you equipped to handle children with learning disabilities?
With the exception of extreme cases, we are equipped to handle ADHD. Because of the way we provide young learners with the ability to move around, the ability to customize their learning envrionment, and guidance decomposing complex tasks into smaller ones, children diagnosed with ADHD typically perform just as well as those who have not been diagnosed with it.
We expect to be able to serve children with dyslexia at the start of the 2019-2020 school year, and we will continue to work with Acton Academies around the world to perfect our methods in serving young learners with other disabilities.
Is Liberty Leadership a Montessori School?
We respect and incorporate Maria Montessori’s philosophy but, we are not a Montessori school. We also use the latest interactive technologies, hands on projects and the Socratic Method for discussions.
Since Liberty Leadership doesn’t have grades, how will I have a transcript when I go to high school?
Although we don’t have grade levels, all core curriculum work is tracked, managed, and saved, by our guides. We are always able to provide you a transcript.
Do you perform standardized tests?
Liberty Leadership administers standardized tests twice a year. One at the start of the school year, and one at the end. However, we only use this as a means to demonstrate progress. We do not waste time preparing for the tests.
How do students in the Acton model typically compare to students in the traditional model?
The average student progresses two and a half grade levels in their first 10 months, and they are typically five grade levels ahead by middle school.
What do you mean by a Hero’s Journey?
We believe that each of us has a special calling in life, and a series of trials and tests that must be faced with integrity and purpose, in order to live a satisfying and fulfilled life. Our mission is to prepare your child for his or her special journey.
What is an “independent learner”?
Someone who can research questions, follow instructions, solve problems—admit that they don’t know something and figure out a solution when they hit a roadblock without asking an adult for help — participate in discussions, and strive for mastery.
What do you mean by a “running partner”?
Running Partners are classmates who meet together regularly to set goals and hold each other accountable for meeting those goals. Running Partners encourage and inspire each other by asking good questions, listening and providing affirmation.
Will Liberty Leadership help me get into college?
Our promise is to have you well prepared for any selective university where you can score high enough on a standardized test to gain admittance.
Universities are changing so rapidly that it’s difficult to imagine what a college education will look like in ten years. Unfortunately, many colleges still place a great deal of importance on standardized tests, which are little more than IQ tests, and are difficult to improve on once you understand basic test taking tricks. That said, students within the Acton model are still performing extremely well from the perspective of college acceptance and scholarships.
Once you get over the test taking barrier at the university of your choice, your portfolio and critical thinking skills will be a big boost during the application and interviewing process.
Most importantly, you’ll be well prepared to shine in the real world, whether you choose to go to college full time, part time or not at all.
What do you mean by “every child can change the world”?
We believe each of our students will find a passion — something they love and have a gift to do. They will use this gift to serve others and fulfill a need they are passionate about in the world. This may be by becoming a shoe-shiner who tells stories and makes people’s day just by doing his job with love and vigor; it may be by becoming a coach who sees the light in a child’s eyes and guides her to pursue a dream; it may be by becoming a father or mother who leads a family on a Hero’s Journey; it may be becoming an entrepreneur or business leader guided by compassion and integrity; or it may be by becoming an artist or writer who brings beauty to people’s lives.