We know there is no more helpful reference point about a school community than a fellow parent. One of our middle school parents graciously agreed to be interviewed by a local radio station. We wanted to share with you what she had to say about her school selection process, why her family chose BASIS Independent Silicon Valley for middle school, and what changes she has seen in her two students since starting in our program in grades 5 and 6.
Please tell us a little about your background, your children, and what you looked for in a school.
"We began our BASIS Independent Silicon Valley journey when our eldest child was looking for a middle school. We looked around the Bay Area for a school that would provide more of a daily challenge in the classroom. My eldest is an avid book reader, but he would often end up reading in his classes because he felt they were so basic. We discovered they were teaching just enough to pass the state standardized test. He would self learn via Khan Academy after school. It was completely backwards of how it should be! He would say “I’m so bored, Mum!”, about his school day.
Walk down any of our campus hallways and you will experience wonderful views of student artwork, rich in creativity and passion. This fall, students across all grade levels have brought their exploration of the arts to life, with support and guidance from our two Subject Expert Art Teachers, Dr. Charuhas and Ms. Jones.
We invite you take a virtual walk-through of just a sampling of some Bobcat creations.
Grade 5 Studio
Students in grade 5 began the year with inspiration from Aboriginal dot paintings to practice the use of color schemes. They used watercolor, acrylic paint, and q-tips to form their Australian animal of choice.
We invite you to join us at our Fall Open House on Saturday, November 2.
Attending an Open House is the best way to discover our middle and high school Subject Expert Teachers, classroom difference, learn about our advanced liberal arts and sciences curriculum, tour our campus, and meet current students and parents!
Middle and High School Start Times
On Saturday, November 2 we will host our Open House for Grades 5-12. This special event begins at 10:00 AM and concludes at 12:00 PM. We recommend joining us by 10:00 AM.
Please join our Head of School, Mr. Toby Walker, as he shares insight into the creation of our incredibly successful Teacher Mentor program.
I have often noted that one of the challenges we face when considering professional development opportunities for educators, is that the best PD examples are regularly happening in the classroom next door. I am a firm believer that we can all improve through observing others. This is especially the case with classroom instruction. Too often, administrators and professional pedagogy ‘trainers’ are too far removed from the classroom to provide authentic feedback based on experience. Essentially, for teachers, fellow professionals are regularly the best resource to support professional growth and improvement.
"BASIS Independent Silicon Valley students are passionate, urgent, thirsty for knowledge, focused committed, determined, and self-motivated." -Dr. Zhao
BASIS Independent Silicon Valley’s girls varsity volleyball team competed in the San Jose Bulldog Volleyball tournament this past weekend. Last year they placed second at the very same tournament. This year the Bobcats emerged victorious as tournament champions!
At BASIS Independent Schools, we are constantly looking for ways to optimize our program while staying true to our foundation of academic excellence.
SPORK is an exciting new tablet-based math textbook program implemented at BASIS Independent Schools this year. The program, which offers many useful applications and learning tools, was initially tested last year at a few of our campuses as a new tool for BASIS Independent students and teachers in select math courses: Pre-Algebra, Algebra I/Geometry, and Algebra II/Geometry. Keep reading to learn more about how this initiative is elevating our curriculum.
In planning for a new school year, there is one task that feels especially important to our Head of School, Mr. Toby Walker. Choosing themes for the upcoming year is done carefully, with a lot of focus placed on the needs of our Bobcats. Themes in recent years have included continual improvement, community engagement, and well-roundedness.
Here, Mr. Walker shares insight into this process, as well as the three established themes for the 2019-2020 academic year at BASIS Independent Silicon Valley.
At the start of each academic year I work with the school leadership team to identify themes for the year. I find it helps to focus our approach and pay attention to specific areas for growth and improvement in our school. As many of you will know, the themes set out for this year are threefold: research skills and methods, inclusivity of diverse opinions, and a renewed focus on promoting academic honesty. I would like to take some time to discuss all three and to encourage faculty, staff, parents, and students to do the same.
The Admissions Team offers a number of events throughout the admissions season. We provide a variety of opportunities, different in scope, so that families can experience a broad overview of the BASIS Independent experience and difference.
We are so proud to announce that 24 of our students have earned places as Semifinalists in the 2020 National Merit Scholarship Program. Roughly 16,000 students across the nation have qualified as Semifinalists, and we are thrilled to have continued representation on our campus. 71% of our senior class was recognized this year including National Merit Semifinalists and Commended Students.
Of these Semifinalists and Commended Students, Head of School, Mr. Toby Walker gushed, "We are immensely proud of the National Merit Semifinalist and Commended Students this year. They have achieved so much as high school students and this recognition is no surprise to anyone. Please join me in congratulating each and every one of them."
As the new school year begins for our five BASIS Independent Schools campuses, we’re seeing all of the crucial elements of our program and classrooms come together after a summer of brainstorming and meticulous preparation.
Inspired by the blissful feeling of uncovering connections, our blog Eureka! Silicon Valley is about sharing moments that capture the essence of what it is to be a BASIS Independent student, teacher, administrator, or family.