Rigor and Discipline

by Nicholas Forcier - Director of Admissions & Enrollment

When I talk to families who are considering The Albany Academies, or when I ask families who are new to our community why they chose Academies, one word comes up all the time: rigor. Our families want their children to be educated in a way that prepares them to lead a rigorous life.  
We often equate “rigor” with “more” and “harder.” Author Todd Stanley wrote persuasively about how to reevaluate our definition of “rigor” so that we achieve the goal of making school more rigorous in a meaningful way. He frames his thinking around Bloom’s Taxonomy, an educational framework that begins with basic memorization and recall and ends with the creation of new and original work. 

I would add that a key element of rigor is discipline. At The Albany Academies, we teach our students that preparation is instrumental to success. Our teachers help students develop systems that produce successful outcomes. Those systems can include time management, essential research skills, adhering to a writing process that includes:  note-taking, outlining, drafting, proofing, etc...Adhering to those systems with discipline takes practice, but as the writer and innovation guru Seth Godin says, “If it matters enough to be careful, it matters enough to build a system around it.” 

Developing those systems for each student begins with personal attention. And it results in students who never stop seeking opportunities to learn and grow.

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