Northern Light School is committed to providing a high quality education for children from all socioeconomic and cultural backgrounds. The faculty and staff create an atmosphere where every child can grow academically, emotionally, physically, and spiritually, to become healthy, productive members of their families and communities. The focus is on academic excellence as well as non-violence, acceptance of differences, respect for the environment, and the moral advancement of humanity—so that the children develop an understanding that they have a responsibility to make a difference in the lives of others.
We are a Tribes School
Northern Light is a Tribes School. Tribes is a group development process that begins with agreeing how we will behave and treat one another. Tribes builds community through three stages of group development (i.e., Inclusion, Influence and Community) using Four Agreements among the students and adults who work together at Northern Light School.
The cornerstone of Tribes is the Four Agreements and all the encompassing attitudes. The Agreements are:
Mutual respect is affirming the value and uniqueness of each person; recognizing and appreciating individual and cultural differences; and offering feedback that encourages growth. Students are expected to treat one another with respect. Mutual respect also applies to things…desks, pencils, supplies and general order and neatness in the classroom.
Attentive listening is listening with one’s eyes, ears, head and heart; giving the speaker undivided attention; respecting the expressed opinion though you may not agree with it; and listening to the words as well as the feelings behind the words. If attentive listening is really going on, then there are no blurt-outs or interruptions. Students are raising hands (or using some other signal) to be included in the conversation, and taking turns to speak, rather than speaking over one another.
Appreciation (No Put-downs)
Appreciation is treating others kindly; appreciating others for their unique qualities, gifts, skills, and contributions; and avoiding remarks, name-calling, gestures and behaviors (subtle as they may be) that hurt, ridicule, or diminish a person in any way.
Active Participation (Right to Pass)
Active participation is having the right to choose when and to what extent one will participate in a group activity; observing quietly if not participating actively; and choosing whether to offer observations later to a group when asked to do so.