Students Get Unique Education in Your Town Weston

Everyone learns at their own pace and at a school in your town Weston, it's designed specifically around that concept.

Idea Charter School, which is part of the D.C. Everest School District is in its 3rd year running.

Meet 15-year-old Peyton Medick.

"I want to attend the University of Alabama," Medick said.

Meet 15-year-old Kelsey Phelps.

"I'm going to go to UW-River Falls with a degree in veterinary science," Phelps said.

Meet 15-year-old Jacob Eckmann.

"UW-Madison or University of Minneapolis," Eckmann said.

These students are driven, focused, eager and very young.
They aren't students trying to survive in the classroom, they're students trying to thrive in their own cubicles.

"This definitely isn't for everybody," 10th grader Medick said. "You have to be self motivated or you'll learn to be self motivated."

The students at Idea Charter School in Weston learn through a project-based curriculum.

There's no bells, no desks or even structured periods in the day.

"It's very liberating way to learn because you feel like you are discovering things instead of learning from a text book or having it fed to you," 9th grader Eckmann said.

The students learn online in their decorated cubicles, and they have one-on-one "weekly personal learning plans" with advisers, also known as teachers, to keep them on task.

"If you're not caught up, the fault is completely on you because this is self motivated," Medick said.

"Our kids have one-on-one technology," Adviser Sue Thompson said. "The purpose is to give them what I refer to as the 21st century skills."

Thompson said the structure works.
Students take standardized tests and since it's online, Thomspson said teachers get concrete results on students' progress.

"The kids in our advisory are grades 6-12, and I know people think 'oh! Six graders through twelfth graders it works beautifully," Thompson said.

Thompson said employers want students who can problem solve and critically think. There's no doubt they know what they need to thrive in the real world, but they also know what they want so they can succeed.

One of Idea Charter School graduation requirements is that every student has to have a letter of acceptance to a next step, whether that's military, a tech school or 4-year college.

Idea Charter School is scheduled to hold informational meetings Dec. 16, Jan 9, Feb 25 and April 14 at 6:30 p.m.

For more information, call 715-359-1040.

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