Monday, March 30, 2009

Geoff's Story: Why I Go To Wellsprings

For me, Wellsprings is not an escape from public school, but a safe-haven from the stress of being in a high school that pushes its students so hard. My everyday life in public school was not so bad. I had great teachers and even better friends. But the stress was too much for me. Everyday I would be assigned hours of homework, on top of the difficult classes I attended everyday. I had no life outside of school.

After a while, the stress built up, and I broke. I dealt with a variety of illnesses, from migraines to horrible coughs. My constant illness caused me to miss months of school. And every year seemed to get worse. Multiple hospitalizations and surgeries convinced me I need to escape the terrible cycle I was in.

So I went on an adventure to find a new school, and discovered Wellsprings. Wellsprings stood out from the other schools. The people at Wellsprings were all kind to me, probably because everyone had also had some sort of bad experience that leads them to Wellsprings. The tight-knit community offered new ideas to me that enticed me. So I found myself going to Wellsprings.

Wellsprings still offers me much to learn. Everyday, I learn the basic knowledge needed for life, like math and literature, while at the same time enjoying myself. I learn other things. Everyday I am learning important life lessons. How to treat others and how saying something jokingly can be offensive to someone else.

I also learned new things about myself all the time. I have learned that when I accept who I am, others will be more respectful of me, even if I am a nerdy, video game playing teenage boy.

So Wellsprings draws me back everyday, offering me a safe-haven from stress, and new things for me to learn everyday.

-- Geoff ('10)
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Rebecca's Story: Why I Go To Wellsprings

Why I go to Wellsprings is that I wouldn’t make it socially or academically in a public school. In middle school I only passed math because my teacher was standing over me helping me with every problem and forcing me to do homework in class. A lot of times I felt like an outcast and that I didn’t belong anywhere except when I was alone in my room.

In 8th grade I started reading books so I could escape. Everything in my life sucked even if it was for a little while. But since coming to Wellsprings I have mostly A’s. I want to come to school which is weird for me. My math is doing better than it ever has for the first time in my life.

I feel like I have a place where I belong now and get along with people. I actually like and get along with my teachers. I’m happier than I’ve been in a long time. And I learned that I can get along with people if they want to get along with me; that if they don’t, I don’t even try to get along with them.

My life has really turned around since I started going to Wellsprings Friends School.

-- Rebecca (’12)
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Friday, March 13, 2009

Our Colorful Modes of Transport

Affectionately known as the "blue bus" and the "green bus," our two buses are used by teachers to transport students to places around the community for classes and events. These well-used 14-passenger buses (vintage early 1990's) have been a challenge to maintain over the years but are very important to our overall school program.

Last week, teacher Eva took her Spanish class to a Latino Market to give students the experience of using their new Spanish language skills for selecting (and eating) foods of another culture. Since we have no space or equipment for physical education at school, every week students are transported to various locations for hikes, Aikido, bowling, and other physical activities.

From time to time, three teachers might wish to take their classes out on field trips but one of the three will not be able to do so. Other times, often on a Friday afternoon, we take all-school field trips, which now requires using both buses and several cars to transport everyone--an inconvenient and anti-ecological necessity. (Depending on where we're going we sometimes can, and do, travel by public transportation.) So our "wish list" includes adding a new low-maintenance bus to our colorful "fleet." Our course, there has been some speculation about possible choices for its name ... "the red bus" ... or Eugene's favorite, "the tie-dye bus" are among them (not much interest in "the yellow bus").

We've made some efforts to get grants to support the purchase of a new bus but to no avail as yet. Additional grant proposals will be submitted this year and suggestions are invited from readers about sources of funds (and small buses) to meet the transportation needs of our school.
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