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Students Come First at the Social High School

February means Spring is around the corner and that means it’s time for the always exciting mid-year community event and exhibition at the Social High School.

On a sunny Friday morning in early February at the school campus just south of Akko, a crowd of 400 people could be seen learning, listening to music, going through an interactive exhibition displaying a range of projects including self-published books, photography and robotics, and of course, enjoying great food. All 400 people who came to enjoy the day were given insight into the of the interactive, informal and highly participatory atmosphere that is the way of doing things at the Social High School.

At SHS there are no tests or grades. Instead, the school adopts the social-project-based-learning (SPBL) method where students learn through working on projects that encourage them to explore, discover and work together. This method allows students to develop the independence, knowledge and practical life skills which are so critical to their development. At the end of each semester, the students at SHS put on an exhibition to display all the projects they have been working on. The school also holds a community event where students present their works to family and friends and members of the wider public. This event also allows the students to give a taste of the school spirit to their guests, who are invited by the students and educators to take part in workshops and activities led by the students themselves.

The Social High School was established by Dror members, including educators from the Akko Educators’ Kibbutz, in 2014 near Haifa and has run since then along an alternative educational axis of dialogue-based group learning. The educators at SHS experiment with a range of pedagogical innovations which are designed to put students’ health and happiness first while committing to giving them the skills and tools they need for a future of fulfilment. This year the Akko Educators’ Kibbutz sent four members to work at the school and be a part of pioneering the future of education.

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