Keystone in the News

 

Edmond School Has An 'Innovative Approach To Learning'

Ali Brooks // News 9

August 29, 2018

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Fifteen years ago, three long-time educators weren't on board with what they call "the education system's departure from foundational and developmental learning."

So, they came up with Keystone Adventure School and Farm in Edmond, an innovative approach to learning.

“Basically, what I see is what looks like childhood. And what it's supposed to look like,” said John Duhon, Co-Director and Co-Founder.

Each school day starts with students learning to feed, groom, clean up, and love on the animals at their real working farm.

“When you're looking into a school, what you should be looking for is a place where your child can succeed as an individual and feel great about who they are,” Duhon said.

Keystone does not do standardized testing because they say each child deserves to learn as an individual.

However, they were recently accredited by AdvancEd, which is a non-profit group that certifies schools by how they tend to individuals.

Faculty and staff say their focus is not only the success of the student academically, but also the emotional and social well being of the student.

“This is our number one goal. That they would be lifelong lovers of learning,” Jenny Dunning, Co-Director and Co-Founder said.

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Press Release:

Keystone Awarded Accreditation by AdvancED

(Edmond OK – August 14, 2018) – In a time when education is driven by testing and scores, Keystone Adventure School and Farm focuses on whole child learning. The school’s unique, alternative approach to inspiring children with the love of learning is affirmed by its recent accreditation by the nationally recognized AdvancED organization.

“Accreditation demonstrates to our students, parents and community that we are focused on raising student achievement, providing a safe and enriching learning environment, and maintaining an efficient and effective operation staffed by highly qualified educators,” said John Duhon, co-director and co-founder.  

To earn accreditation, schools must meet AdvancED’s high standards, be evaluated by a team of professionals from outside the school, and implement a continuous process of school improvement and student performance.  

Jenny Dunning, co-director and co-founder, said that accreditation is important for families from a financial perspective. “Accreditation really broadens the availability of Keystone to more families by offering external sources of tuition assistance. We are excited to continue journeying with our children towards steady, progressive improvement on a whole child basis.”

Keystone Adventure School and Farm is a working farm and art-based elementary school located in Edmond, Oklahoma serving children from three years old to 5th grade. The school and farm is located on 16 beautiful acres, with horses, llamas, sheep, chickens, ducks, geese, homing pigeons, a pond, a creek, an organic garden and more.

Keystone believes that all children are capable learners when the environment engages their curiosity, when teachers and peers demonstrate care for them, and when they are learning at an appropriate developmental level. As experienced public and private school teachers, Keystone knows that a standardized test is not the basis for learning. At Keystone, whole child instruction is facilitated at individually appropriate levels.

Aubry Gragg, Keystone parent, said, “In addition to receiving an excellent education, my children are cared for in emotional and spiritual ways. I truly consider the teachers and staff to be partners with me in my child’s learning journey.”

AdvancED accreditation ensures that the school is meeting nationally accepted standards for quality and successful professional practice. 

Dr. Mark Elgart, President/CEO of AdvancED, stated, “Our accreditation is a rigorous process that focuses the entire school on the primary goal of creating lifelong learners.  Keystone Adventure School and Farm is to be commended for engaging in this process and demonstrating a commitment to continuous improvement.”

Parents and interested community members can learn more about accreditation at www.advanc-ed.org.

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About AdvancED and SACS CASI

Dedicated to advancing excellence in education through accreditation, research and professional services, AdvancED is the world's largest education community, serving and engaging 30,000 public and private schools and school systems in more than 70 countries and serving over 16 million students.  AdvancED is the parent organization of the North Central Association Commission on Accreditation and School Improvement (NCA CASI), Northwest Accreditation Commission (NWAC) and the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools Council on Accreditation and School Improvement (SACS CASI). SACS CASI is a non-governmental, voluntary agency that accredits nearly 13,000 public and non-public institutions throughout the world.


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