The SNACS Model: Making Learning a Community Effort
Expeditionary learning asks students to begin a journey of discovery. At the heart of every personalized project is an academic challenge that will spark innovation and develop critical skills. Our students thrive on these hands-on, self-directed learning opportunities because they are always surrounded by a supportive, caring community. Through the SNACS PLAY model, we strive for an innovative education providing personalized learning through choice, play, and exploration.
From our founding as Nevada’s first charter school, SNACS has always focused on bringing the small school community back to the neighborhood and you can feel that commitment across our campus.
The SNACS charter school community is diverse, multigenerational, and dedicated to creating an extraordinary learning environment for many different types of learners. Our community is wider than students, faculty and staff. Parent involvement is a critical part of our innovative charter school curriculum, as are opportunities to engage in hands-on, real world learning with businesses and organizations throughout Reno, Nevada.
The SNACS Model:
- Cultivates leadership
- Ensures a high-quality education
- Personalizes learning
- Supports growth
- Leverages technology
- Instills student responsibility and accountability
- Provides a progressive curriculum
- Assesses students supportively and thoroughly
- Uses data effectively
- Supports families
- Engages community
Hands-on expeditionary learning can take you anywhere in life. At SNACS, we travel together. Join us on our learning journey.
The SNACS Model: An Innovative Educational Model
The Essentials are essentials to the ethos of the school culture. We designed them to serve as key pillars to foster an innovative learning organizational culture that provides for clear pathways toward a P-20 pipeline. The Essentials are Student Focus; Academic Rigor and Robust Instructional Design; Healthy Habits; Innovation & Technology; Educators of Excellence; Global Opportunities; Strong Leadership and Systems Thinking; Family Engagement; and School-Community Partnerships.
Student focus places students at the center of everything education. Supporting, engaging, and challenging students is at the core of all work. Students are valued and respected for who they are, where they come from, and where they want to go. All students are capable of learning, regardless of socioeconomic status, ethnicity, and race. Students are the most important citizens in the school community. All students will have a Personal Learning Plan that is data-driven, monitored frequently, and fluid to the needs of individuals. The principle of student focus is primary to achieving the mission and vision of the school.
Academic Rigor & Robust Instructional Design
Rigorous academics are key to increased student engagement and achievement. An innovative educational design includes a dynamic instructional design, high-quality, standards-based curriculum & environmental design, and intentional articulation of robust activities and learning experiences, opportunities for the competency-based balance of formative and summative assessments, systematic analysis of and use of student data. The classroom culture supports academic rigor in a developmentally appropriate delivery system that tailors to the needs of individual students based on systems analysis.
The instructional model (IM) includes several key features that foster a school culture where student engagement and achievement are vital to promoting global citizenship. We designed the IM to leverage technology and promote student agency through innovative practices. The model promotes learning through play, choice, game theory, individualized, differentiated, and personalized learning, ability groups, blended learning curriculum, data-driven decision making, technology, social-emotional learning, cognitive and physical development, positive behavior, and intervention support, and family engagement opportunities.
The instructional model supports a standards-driven center-based learning educational climate where accountability is embedded within the daily life of the classroom. Successful development and implementation of the instructional model and associated technology will serve as a catalyst to change the current approaches in education.
Innovation & Technology
We view innovation as a catalyst for growth which is vital to a thriving school community. We leveraged technology to provide engaging and powerful learning experiences, content, and assessments promoting increased achievement in, authentic, and meaningful ways. Technology provides opportunities for innovation in education that are vital to a connected global world. Equitable access to multiple digital formats and modern-day technology is essential for all students.
Instilling healthy habits of the mind, body, and spirit are essential to student engagement and achievement. This includes incorporating social-emotional learning, character education, healthy nutrition and wellness, physical fitness, and spiritual opportunities to promote healthy habits.
Pathways in leadership, entrepreneurship, sports, the arts, & performance opportunities are essential to students discovering and exhibiting their potential as global citizens.
Excellence in Educators
It empowered educators to be change agents for students who foster student agency, health, wellness, and educational attainment. Educators are vital to the pulse of student success. Educators establish an effective and evidence-based delivery system of instruction and develop meaningful experiences for all children. Educators of excellence provide strong classroom leadership that drives results.
Strong Leadership and Systems Thinking
Strong leadership is essential to a dynamic educational model. Leaders who facilitate true learning organizations subscribe to relevant leadership models and theories necessary to operate a thriving school community. A vigorous leader promotes instructional and operational strengths, the change process, and is knowledgeable about and takes part in current research.
Six key principles outline family engagement: welcoming all families into the school community; communicating effectively; supporting student success; speaking up for every child; sharing power; and, collaborating with the community.
School-community partnerships are essential to bridge common goals for the socialization and education of children to minimize problems and maximize results. The school serves as a hub in the community. Building major long-term partnerships requires vision, commitment, collaboration, communication, and a cohesive plan where stakeholders reap the highest return on investment.
Social impact potential extends beyond the walls of the classroom setting. We systematically designed the Innovative Educational Model to promote a high-quality program and positive student outcomes. Positive outcomes lead to a direct return on investment and sustained social impact. Investing in education improves the economy, strengthens the middle class, the workforce, and reduces the deficit. There is a direct correlation to reducing social spending with a return on investment of up 7-10% per annum up to a 16% ROI through better outcomes in education, health, social-ability, economic productivity, and reduced crime. We outline the overarching outcomes for each essential pillar in the tables below based on Programs & Structures and Human Capital.