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Santa Fe School for the Arts & Sciences

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5912 Jaguar Drive
Santa Fe, NM 87507

Phone (505) 438-8585

Fax (505) 438-0080


Bright Minds. Kind Hearts. Whole Child.

School News

New generation shows climate leadership

After Senator Martin Heinrich visited our middle school this spring to discuss climate change, he wrote an op-ed that was published in the Santa Fe New Mexican. Here's an excerpt:

"Last month, I sat down with some of these young leaders in a classroom at the Santa Fe School for the Arts & Sciences for a discussion on how we should confront the climate crisis. I was impressed with the students’ depth of knowledge on climate science and their observations of how climate change is already impacting their daily lives. Their eagerness for action at both the local and global level gave me great hope."

Read the full article by clicking More.

Santa Fe Talks 2019

George R.R. Martin and media personality Alexis Jones helped us raise money and awareness about service and literacy. As a school, service and teaching Citizen Scholars are central to our curriculum. On Thursday, February 7 at the Violet Crown, guests enjoyed an uplifting one-of-kind event that tells stories of service. A cross between TED talks, poetry slams and film festivals, the event featured young people committed to making our community a kinder place for all. Event proceeds benefit the Annual Fund at Santa Fe School for the Arts & Sciences.

Every dollar raised will be matched by George R.R. Martin, up to $20,000, with $17,529 raised so far, and the match will benefit the literacy work of Opportunity Santa Fe, a city-wide collective impact effort housed at the Santa Fe Community Foundation. Currently, the reading proficiency among third graders in Santa Fe is 26%.  Visit the Go Fund Me here!  Read an article about the event in Tumbleweeds!

Words of Wisdom from Our Students

As part of the Middle School's Expedition entitled "The Complexities of Othering," each class wrote and created a PSA or public service announcement. The 8th Graders reflected on times when people felt "othered" by something they said or did. They resolved to make changes.

The 7th Graders remind us that you don't have to stay silent when you see people being "othered." They give us all specific suggestions about how we can help.

These PSAs were produced as an arts-integrated collaboration of the Middle School's Humanities Class, Moving Images Program, and Life Skills Class. Our thanks to teachers Arin Dineen, Dina Jansen, Joseph Smith and Magdalena Karlick.

SFSAS featured in national video about arts and education

SFSAS had the honor of being a featured school in an EL Education video about arts integration; you will see some of our master teachers plying their craft with students. This video, which will be included in an upcoming EL Education book, will be shown to other schools to demonstrate how the arts can be an integral part of education.

Teaching in and through the Arts—Three School Case Studies from EL Education on Vimeo.

SFSAS ranked #14 in Top 50 Best Private Elementary Schools in the U.S. ranked Santa Fe School for the Arts & Sciences #14 in a list of Top 50 Best Private Elementary Schools in the Country. selected SFSAS, based on several weighted factors, including academic excellence, extracurricular richness, geographical and demographical diversity, and reputation.  “The news was a huge surprise,” said Geetha Holdsworth, SFSAS Principal. “We did not expect it because we didn’t do anything to apply for the ranking. It is exciting for our community and great validation for the passion, hard work and commitment of our board, faculty and staff. As an Expeditionary Learning school, we are committed to creating an academically challenging curriculum in a culture of respect and compassion.”  

According to the website, ranking criteria included:

● Schools must have at least three of the six grades (first through sixth)

● Have a reputation for producing students who are well prepared to take the next steps in their education

● Though they are organized as businesses, schools have a reputation for treating families with fairness and compassion

● Schools actively seek to treat parents as partners in the educational process

● Schools openly and regularly celebrate the students and their accomplishments

SFSAS teacher featured in EL/Harvard Illuminating Standards Project

A collaboration between Expeditionary Learning and the Harvard Graduate School of Education, the Illuminating Standards Project has two main questions: 

  • What do standards actually look like when met with integrity, depth and imagination?

  • How can we have a deeper, richer dialogue about state standards, particularly what they mean and look like in actual student work?

As part of the Illuminating Standards Project, Harvard graduate students were invited to produce short films that show what a close look at student work reveals and illuminates about Common Core and other standards, like the Next Generation Science Standards. 

Harvard 2015 Master's Candidate Elliot Dickson chose to feature Stargazer 1st/2nd grade teacher Chintan Kess and the expedition she designed called Original Physics Experiments. The film, which also featured SFSAS Alumni Kit Willey (Class of 2013) and Landon Tafoya (Class of 2014) was part of a Harvard Graduate School of Education Film Festival, featured in an  Education Week blog, and recently shown during an EL professional development online class.  The video can be found on EL's Center for Student Work.  Kudos to Chintan and her Stargazer scientists!

Our Middle School

Our middle school program is committed to supporting and promoting the academic and emotional growth of adolescents. Our curriculum gives students the blueprints for learning, invites divergent and creative thinking, teaches the skills necessary in the 21st Century, and instills and encourages the desire for further learning. We believe that students learn best in a diverse community and are committed to creating a student body who reflects New Mexico, our nation, and the world. 

What is Expeditionary Learning?
As an Expeditionary Learning school, Santa Fe School for the Arts & Sciences is committed to learning that is meaningful, in which students apply their skills and knowledge to real-world issues and problems and make positive change in their communities. Expeditionary Learning uses an inquiry-based, project-based approach to learning that challenges students to think critically, work collaboratively and present their learning to authentic audiences. We connect high quality academic learning to adventure, service, and character development.

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