Specialized Instruction, Student Profile, Tuition, and More
Base tuition for the 2020-2021 school year is $28,000. Additional costs include a technology fee of $750 and an activities fee of $750, for a total of $29,500. Students can choose to participate in after school clubs for an additional fee.
Our 2019-2020 class includes 5-11th graders. We will expand to serve 5-12th graders in Fall of 2020.
The Arlington Center
4600 North Fairfax Drive, 3rd Floor
Arlington, VA 22203
This is in the Ballston area of Arlington, walking distance to the metro, the bike trail and at least 5 parks.
The Sycamore School is a good fit for:
- students are bright, curious and craving a more personalized, engaging and dynamic learning community.
- students with a Montessori or International schooling background.
- students who are currently "falling through the cracks " and feel ignored or overlooked in a larger school setting.
- students who are becoming disengaged and disenchanted in their current school setting and not performing up to their potential.
- students who need to move around and/or would like choices of how they work with concepts and demonstrate mastery.
We consider all students on a case by case basis. Some students with attention issues, learning struggles, and/or anxiety, would benefit greatly from our program. Our program is not a good fit for students with significant behavioral, cognitive or language struggles.
- Offer individualized instruction, student choice, and pacing options within a small learning community
- Cultivate school wide routines that promote executive functioning skills
- Incorporate social and emotional learning with academic instruction
- Provide scaffolding for larger assignments and regular goal setting
We have a deliberately small community with a 1:10 staff-to-student ratio; that small ratio enables us to flexibly group students.
For the 2019-2020 school year, we'll cap at 55 students. Our ten-year plan is to grow up to 20 students per grade in middle school and 10 students per grade in high school, for a maximum of 120 students, when we expand to 5-12th grade.
Why that number? Based on the Dunbar number, we’ll cap at 120 students, 80 in middle school and 40 in high school. The idea is that individuals can maintain up to 150 social relationships. We want to keep the school small, so that all the students and staff know one another. Also, for the type of learning we’re doing, the school has to stay small.
The Dunbar number – proposed in the 1990s by a British anthropologist Robin Dunbar. The theory is that humans can comfortably maintain about 150 stable relationships. Others have theorized the number is more flexible, between 100-250.
8:30 a.m.-3:30 p.m. with optional after school clubs from 3:30-5pm. Monday-Thursday.
No. We embrace an urban school model and will utilize public transportation and other resources that are within our community.
Accreditation is a multiyear process that can only be completed after a school has been open for at least two years. We have started the accreditation process with AdvancEd and plan to be fully accredited before our first student graduates high school.
Our lead teachers are certified. However, teacher certification is not our top priority. We welcome staff who are uniquely qualified to work with our students and our curriculum. They need to be creative, compassionate and adept at creating and integrating curriculum.
For the 2019-2020 school year, students bring their lunch. We do offer the option of ordering a lunch on Wednesdays and sometimes going out to lunch on Fridays. Our hope is to offer a catered lunch option daily during our 2020-2021 school year.
No. One of our values is protecting quality family and leisure time. We recognize that students work hard at school, so after school time should dedicated to other interests. In middle school, students will not be assigned homework. In high school, homework will be reserved for completing longer term projects.
We are using aspects of several research-based curricula, such as Mastery Based Learning, 21st Century Learning, Common Core, Universal Design for Learning, Next Generation Science, Discovery Math, and Mindful Schools.