At the center of Apex’s education program lies the premise that humans, especially children, are naturally curious. However, it is equally true that humans are not naturally good thinkers. This means there needs to be a purposeful and deliberate effort to train the mind to think well. For over a thousand years the classical philosophy of education was the predominant approach to public and private education. It was only just over 100 years ago with the advent of “progressive models” that it began to be supplanted.
The foundation of Apex’s pedagogy relies on evidence-based curricula delivered with rigorous, effective and engaging instruction. Most curricula are already aligned to the Common Core and the Colorado State Standards.
Apex’s instructional approach rests on three pillars: (1) systematic direct instruction, (2) high yield intervention with data analysis and tracking, and (3) a framework of multi-tiered systems of support through ability grouping, flexible scheduling and intervention blocks.
Pillar #1: Systemic and Direct Instruction
Research supports that a systematic approach has been found to be more effective than an analytic or non-structured sequence of instruction. A clear, systematic approach prepares students for mastery of content and skills, and allows teachers to quickly assess how to improve a lesson or reteach.
Pillar #2: High Yield Intervention with Data Analysis and Tracking
High yield intervention means that focus should be placed on the most effective structures and interventions for students. This effectiveness should then be regularly and appropriately tracked for effectiveness.
Pillar #3: Multi-Tiered Systems of Support
The multi-tiered systems of support (MTSS) determines appropriate groupings for students in multiple areas. The MTSS framework exists to improve specific groups of student outcomes through a curriculum or intervention. MTSS meetings will occur monthly to track student progress based on the interventions provided. For example, if a student or group of students excel with regard to their reading and comprehension skills, regardless of the assigned grades, the teaching team and an administrator are able to discuss the individual and/or group’s progress in order to determine the instructional changes needed to consistently promote ongoing growth, rather than tacitly restrain individual growth for the “greater good.” This process allows teams to personalize instruction as needed to benefit individual students.
Core Knowledge Sequence and Core Virtues Program
The educational premise of Apex relies on the combined benefits of a Classical Education, Core Knowledge Curriculum and Core Knowledge Language Arts (including Science, History and Social Sciences), Jump Math, Integrated Liberal Arts and a Core Virtues Program. The curricula chosen are evidence based and have been shown to be successfully applied to all student populations. Please visit our pages on Curriculum and Character Education for more information.