Greater Atlanta Christian School opened its doors in 1968 as a high school for 150 students on a two-lane dirt road in rural Gwinnett County, Georgia. Recognized as a Blue Ribbon School of Excellence by the U.S. Department of Education, this private, co-educational Church of Christ-affiliated school today attracts more than 1,900 K-12 students who travel daily from 44 cities and towns to embrace the educational and spiritual opportunity the school embodies.
In 2005, four GACS teachers had their first exposure to All Kinds of Minds’ philosophy through a Schools Attuned course in Atlanta, and by summer 2010, all classroom teachers will have been trained on how to integrate the neurodevelopmental framework into their teaching practices.
Principal Norma Miller explains, “We believe in a holistic educational process providing students with a variety of instructional approaches to support their learning. Because of its perfect alignment with our mission, we have fully integrated All Kinds of Minds’ approach into our classroom curricula and school life programs. All our students are given the chance to become more successful learners because we understand their learning profiles from a neurodevelopment perspective.”
Elementary teachers create a portfolio for each student built around All Kinds of Minds’ Attuning a Student process, containing specific information about each student’s learning profile, affinities, strengths, and weaknesses, along with personalized teaching suggestions. Teachers are planning to hold “Learning about Learning” workshops for parents, so they can become more knowledgeable about the All Kinds of Minds approach and terminology.
In addition, second grade teacher Jill Baker, the school’s in-house leader and trained facilitator, holds focus group meetings on a monthly basis with all trained teachers to enhance their knowledge of the neurodevelopmental framework. Jill says, “Our school has gained powerful tools through our Schools Attuned to All Kinds of Minds experience. The program has guided our thinking about how to meet the needs of our diverse student population. Our teachers are excited to help students become their own advocates by allowing them to identify their personal strengths and affinities, as well as any areas that may need more development. Schools Attuned has also given our faculty a common language to use when making decisions that shape our curriculum, our expectations, and our plans that lead to student success.”