In its second year, the Maguire Innovation Fund for Progressive Education continues to be a transformative resource and inspiration for GFS, supporting new, creative ideas and approaches to education.
The fund's mission is reflected in the school's strategic vision, which outlines goals for GFS to serve as an incubator for innovation in teaching and learning, providing invaluable educational experiences and catalyzing positive change within the field of education. The fund is already bringing this vision to life. We are excited to share that the Algebra Enrichment Program, the first Maguire-funded project, will continue on as a permanent part of the school's programming, demonstrating GFS' broader commitment to education in our community. GFS is pleased to have this opportunity to engage with talented students from all over the city as they prepare for high school and college studies.
Please take a moment to read about the great work that will be taking place throughout the 2019-20 academic year, thanks to the support of this important endowed fund.
2019-20 Awards include:
Design Lab Working Group
Recipients: John Henderson, Karen Cherubini, Sarah Detwiler, Heather Chu Marvill, Andrea L'Tainen, Eli Scearce, JT Waldman, Andrew Wraith, and Sarah Zwerling
The Design Lab Working Group consists of a team of faculty and staff who determined a need for a safe and inclusive dedicated space for hands-on creative expression through materials and technologies. Once created, the lab will support curricula across many departments, including science, math, art, and theater. Ultimately, the lab will also be used to enhance GFS community partnerships and outreach. In support of the initial phase of this initiative, the Maguire Innovation Fund for Progressive Education will provide professional development focused on leadership and facilitation.
Recipients: Susan Robinson, Karen Cherubini, Jeff DeHart, and Tommy Victor '20
The creation of a greenhouse and outdoor classroom will support the science curriculum, particularly Lower and Upper School Biology; science clubs, including gardening and aquaponics; and various student Directed Independent Studies. The lab also has the potential to be used in connection with the GFS food service team and to build community partnerships.
Funding will be used to purchase materials needed for a successful lab, which include a shed, greenhouse, tables, picnic tables, and a covered outdoor planting and multi-use space.
International Theatre Collaboration
Recipient: Jake Miller
Jake Miller identified an exciting opportunity to deepen international knowledge-sharing through theatre. The vision for this collaboration includes the formation of a theatre company featuring students from GFS and St. George's School in Edinburgh, Scotland, one of the GFS Global Studies partners. The goal is to have the company perform at both the Edinburgh and Philadelphia International Fringe Festivals. Funding will support the exploratory phase of this project. Jake will visit Edinburgh to attend the Fringe Festival, and work alongside his theatre counterpart at St. George's to build a framework for this unique learning experience.
Mathematics in Residence
Recipients: Diana Gomez and Sharon Askew
In a second-year pilot, Diana and Sharon will build upon the Mathematics in Residence program, which will launch this summer. Guided by renowned math educator Cathy Fosnot, this program doubles as a teaching lab for local math faculty and an enrichment and remediation opportunity for GFS students and those from neighboring schools. Teachers will receive intensive professional development on-site and sessions will be videotaped for use in Professional Learning Communities. The program structure may be used as a model for similar work in literacy, social studies, art, or music, and can be replicated by other schools. The award will fund research, planning, curriculum development, and marketing.
Peer Writing Advisors
Recipient: Sara Primo
In its second year as a pilot program, Peer Writing Advisors continues to serve two important roles: to encourage the notion that writing is a process, and to teach students how to provide support and feedback respectfully. This accessible program serves as an ongoing resource for grades 6 through 12, with students helping students improve as writers and express their ideas more fully. Funds will support the development and distribution of course packs and books, advertising materials, and a student-led, public writing workshop in the Friends Free Library.
Philadelphia Youth Film Festival
Recipients: Kate Garrity, Sarah Detwiler, and Henry Farnham '20
Led by a group of faculty advisers and student leaders, the Philadelphia Youth Film Festival (PHYFF) continues to grow as a GFS student activity and J-Term course, and as a local, national, and international platform for young filmmakers to advance in their craft. This free event allows any creative student to share their art without the barrier of a program fee, age restriction, or access to high-quality equipment. PHYFF also offers a unique opportunity for students to learn from industry professionals, network with fellow filmmakers, and exhibit their work at a concluding workshop. The Maguire Innovation Fund for Progressive Education support will be combined with sponsorship dollars raised by students to provide a valuable experience for budding high school filmmakers, free of charge. This year, students and faculty leadership will develop a sustainability plan for this important program.