Beginning the School Year: Building a Strong Social and Emotional Foundation

Teachers' Letters to Bill Gates

Freedom to Teach, Freedom to Learn: A Year at Mission Hill

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Chapter 2: Beginning the Year

Dear readers,

As you will see in chapter two of A Year at Mission Hill, at the beginning of the school year the teachers devote a great deal of time and effort on building the social and emotional foundation for the school year. Mission Hill is a K-8 public school in the Roxbury neighborhood of Boston (note: since filming, the school has relocated to Jamaica Plain). The school’s student body – 170 enrolled – is a microcosm of Boston’s diversity.

Fostering creativity and community are cornerstones of the school’s philosophy. Students at Mission Hill are treated as citizens and participate in the decision-making process with regards to their education. They have a REAL voice, and teachers are given the autonomy and freedom to cultivate this type of learning.

After watching chapter two

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