ALPHA Alternative Junior School (Gr JK - 06)
ALPHA is located in the old Brant Street Public School building, on Brant Street, in the heart of the Fashion District. ALPHA shares the building with OASIS Secondary Alternative School and the Brant Street Day Care. ALPHA has approximately 80 students who come from all across the city. ALPHA is the oldest alternative school in the City of Toronto.
Children stay with the same teachers for years
Each student from junior kindergarten on is encouraged to develop a personal sense of responsibility for her or his own learning. It follows naturally that students progress at their own individual rate.
What Makes ALPHA Unique?
It is the manner of learning, not so much the subjects learned, that sets ALPHA apart. At the core of the ALPHA philosophy is the recognition that children learn at different rates. No comparisons are made: there are no grades, and no competitions held.
There is no homework given.
Students are expected to do their work in school time - although, if they wish to take some home they may. And as they get older, many do!
Problem Solving - "Calling Committee"
Children are encouraged to resolve problems themselves through negotiation. If agreement can't be reached, the dispute is brought to the rotating student Committee. Five children listen to complaints and decide on consequences. All children take turns serving on the Committee.
Children take turns as Chair of these meetings that are held three days a week. Adults must wait their turn to speak like everyone else. And be careful not to talk loudly to your neighbour or another child, the Separator, will ask you to move.
Parent/child/teacher conferences are held at least twice yearly and more often if desired. Children are encouraged to set their own educational goals and to rate their own achievements.