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Pathways Profile for Success

Robinson School meets the needs of its students with learning disabilities through a classical, yet flexible curriculum, which provides an inquiry based, in depth approach to learning and teaching. We emphasize students’ creativity, exploration, and self-expression. Group discussions, project-based activities, and hands-on sessions are common instructional approaches. Classes are small by design, and instructional groups are formed by balancing chronological age, ability, socio-emotional development and learning pace.

A School within our School

The Pathways Program is composed of a diverse group of learners with average to superior intelligence and a mild learning disability. Our curriculum, teaching methods, and learning strategies have been developed for those who will benefit from a very small group setting, additional organizational support, and assistance with specific compensatory strategies. Our program is designed for students who are ready and motivated to do the work that is given by the teacher. We do provide education in Spanish for our youngest learners, with the goal of moving them to the English program within a few years. For all of our students, we focus on a college preparatory curriculum that will provide the foundation necessary to be successful in college and beyond.

Robinson School’s Pathways Program is dedicated to the principle that all children can learn and that each is a unique individual with his/her own learning style. Pathway’s goals are as follows:

• To assist each student in learning how she /he learns best and how to use different strategies so that she/he can become an independent learner who is not reliant on others to succeed.
• To help the student become a self-confident learner who is willing to actively engage in learning situations and is able to visualize success.
• To mainstream students to the regular education setting when possible.
A student with a mild learning disability will be most likely to succeed at Robinson if:
• The student demonstrates emotional stability
• The student’s intelligence is above average
• The student possesses a strong work ethic
• The student’s learning disability is managed, medically or therapeutically, in such a way that the student completes assigned work, maintains focus and works independently
• The student’s parents accept the diagnosis and support the need for intervention or additional assistance.

We review each child’s background on a case by case basis. Children with a learning disability and Attention Deficit Disorder may be accepted into our Pathways Program, but only if they have a diagnosed learning disability as their primary challenge. The following types of learning disabilities are illustrative of those we may be able to serve:

• Reading disorders
• Poor reading comprehension
• Written expression disorders
• Mathematical disorders (calculation, reasoning)

It is important to Robinson School that our parents trust our curriculum, our program choices, and the professionalism of our staff. Parents should demonstrate patience and realistic expectations for their child in the learning process. We seek parents who share our common goal of educating the whole child spiritually, academically, socially, physically and emotionally.

Elementary School

The Pathways Elementary School program offers a complete skill based curriculum in all subjects. Our set of courses, teaching methods, and learning strategies have been developed for those who will benefit from a very small group setting, additional organizational support, a strong teaching of reading and writing skills, and the teaching of specific compensatory strategies. Our Pathways Program faculty have teachers trained in reading programs such as Lindamood- Bell, Orton-Gillingham and Landmark School.

Students are arranged in small groups of up to eight students. Unique to our program is our “tutorial period” in which students receive intense, highly focused instruction in decoding, fluency and reading comprehension skills. These sessions are geared to providing our students with the necessary tools to compensate for their language based disability. To complement tutorials, educational therapy is also offered during the school day to students that need the service.

All students are fully integrated into “specials,” which include music, art, technology and physical education. In addition, students share homeroom period, break, patio and lunch with their peers. Students can also join their peers throughout the school day by joining clubs, participating in school activities and becoming part of our sports teams. This approach allows all children to get to know one another within a safe environment.

Middle School

The Pathways Middle School program is designed to ensure that middle school students with learning differences experience a successful transition from Elementary School into Middle School.

Along with the Middle School Program, Pathways takes into consideration seventh and eighth-grade students’ social and academic development. To ensure continuity of services, key faculty members follow our students into the Middle School program and continue teaching them language arts. A specific course in critical reading skills is also offered.

Upper School

The Pathways Upper School Program is designed to facilitate effective learning through strong academics, a low student-teacher ratio, educating the student about his or her own learning style, and creating an educational space where students feel safe and competent. Student’s strengths are continually developed, while they receive the proper academic instruction in a college preparatory environment.

Among the traditional curriculum and electives, Pathways students receive during their high school years a course in Study Skills. Its goal is to effectively develop reading comprehension, organizational skills, note taking and an array of strategies that teach students to be active learners. During their senior year, an Advocacy course prepares them to understand their learning differences, strengths and weaknesses, and better advocate for their learning style once in college.
At Robinson School, we teach our students to understand their own learning styles and how best they acquire information. This metacognitive approach to education helps our students excel in secondary school and beyond.