Springhouse Community School

Floyd, Virginia

What if school looked like…

…building a boat and sailing it in the Chesapeake Bay?

…going on a weeklong trip to Montgomery, AL where you learn about the Civil Rights Movement, or on a 48-mile walking trip from your school to the nearest city?

…creating a banjo from scratch through an apprenticeship with a local luthier?

…a group of teens and adults dancing together on a Friday afternoon?

…learning about racism through songwriting as well as community events and collaborations with a local African-American church?

At Springhouse, this is what school looks like – and so much more!

General Information

Springhouse is a school for regenerative culture builders. It is an independent, accredited 4-year-old day school located in rural southwestern Virginia that serves teens ages 13-18 who long to live in regenerative, life-giving culture. With about 20 learners and 8 full-time adult staff members, Springhouse is a small but powerful place of intergenerational learning, vitality-centered education, and community.

At Springhouse, learners are not placed into specific grade levels dependent on age, and they are not given letter grades. Our curriculum is designed to empower learners with the knowledge, fortification, reflection, and practice that they need to cultivate the qualities of a regenerative culture builder and courageously respond to the world’s emerging needs.  

This kind of education is rigorous and life-giving. We are looking for teenagers who are…

  • Ready to work hard to make the world a better place
  • Self-reflective and motivated to know themselves more deeply
  • Able to think beyond themselves and their own needs
  • Excited to participate and grow in beloved community
  • Able to adapt to change and think complexly

Programs and Areas of Interest

A Network visitor will get the most out of their visit to Springhouse if they are immersed in the learning environment for at least two days. The following are aspects of this environment that visitors can expect to experience during their stay:

Vitality-Centered Education

http://ramblingfisherman.com/img_4875/ Education is not school. Education occurs constantly; it is how we learn and live. At Springhouse, school is where we learn how to be builders of regenerative culture in ways that bring us alive.

Learning at Springhouse is interdisciplinary, experiential, and rigorous. During their time at Springhouse, learners experience the following:

    • Chernyanka Main Courses that explore topics such as World Religions, Power and Political Systems, the Appalachian Ecosystem, Adolescent Development and Neurology, the Qualities of a Leader, and Climate Change and Regenerative Solutions
    • buy gabapentin without prescription Luminary Courses, focused on cultivating inspiration and often learner-led, in the following categories:
        • World Studies: Geography, Language, and Culture
        • Art
        • Adventure
        • The Earth
        • Innovation and Inventions
    • Cohort Advisory that supports learners in developmentally-appropriate topics such as nutrition, sexuality education, personal finance, and getting a driver’s license
    • The Apprenticeship Program
    • Community Work Block and daily Cleaning where everyone tends to the grounds and facilities
    • Math Power “Hour” focused on empowerment through consistent skill-building
    • Dance and Singing every week
    • Fitness focused on physical resiliency and collaboration
    • Three (3) All-School Trips each year
    • Three (3) Celebration of Learning Days each year
    • One (1) Community Presentation Night each year
    • Two (2) Reflection on Learning conversations each year
    • At least one (1) Network of Complementary Schools visit within the first two years of the program
    • Third Year Solo Excursion, which is a two-week to month-long trip taken during the school year
    • Final Year Capstone Project

To learn more about Springhouse’s Day School and to view a daily schedule, visit https://springhouse.org/day-school-program/.

Intergenerational Learning

At Springhouse, staff, as well as participants in our adult certificate program, learn alongside the teens enrolled in the Day School program. Course facilitators approach learning with as much curiosity as the learners, and they actively incorporate local community members, experts, and organizations/businesses into course activities. All who are involved with Springhouse see learning as a lifelong process and acknowledge that we all have something to learn from each other.

Singing and Dancing at Springhouse

The school week begins and ends with an all-school sing, and both teens and adults at Springhouse dance at least once a week together (This type of dance is not technical, and no prior dance experience is required). These community practices fortify us so we can live more joyfully and continually respond to the world and its needs with courage and compassion

Learner Leadership

All learners at Springhouse have opportunities to step into leadership in areas such as curriculum, fundraising, the restorative justice process, sustainability and carbon offsets, and other school-wide and staff-initiated projects.

Rural Campus

Springhouse is located just outside of the town of Floyd on about 11 acres of mostly forested land that is home to gardens, wooded trails, learner-built outdoor classrooms, a large barn, and the main school building, which overlooks the lush Appalachian mountain landscape.

Living Arrangements and Travel

Network visitors are housed in the homes of Springhouse families and staff. If preferred, there is a hotel centrally located in the town of Floyd and various Airbnbs throughout the county. Network visitors who have family or close family friends in the area may elect to stay with them (parent approval required) but should take commuting distances into account. Springhouse is located 15 minutes northwest of the town of Floyd.

Floyd is a small town (under 500 residents in the town center; roughly 15,000 people live in the county) nestled in the Blue Ridge Mountains in southwestern Virginia. It has a rich Appalachian culture and is the home of the Friday Night Jamboree at the Floyd Country Store where people from all over the world gather to experience old-time music, flat-footing (a style of dancing), and southern hospitality. Over the years, Floyd has become a home to many artists and artisans, families interested in homesteading, and a range of farms and agricultural businesses. The sense of community here is strong.

The closest airport and Amtrak station are in Roanoke, which is about 45 minutes from the town of Floyd. Please contact the host family and Springhouse about arranging transportation to and from the airport/station; this is not guaranteed but likely.

Application Procedure

Network visitors should complete the Network Student Information form and return it to their home school Network Advisor. All learners ages 13-28 are welcome, especially if they are interested in experiencing a school that is doing education differently.

Dates

All visits are individually arranged throughout the school year for the duration of two days to two weeks depending on the visitor’s preference and availability. Please note that all Springhouse learners participate in the Apprenticeship Program on Thursdays and are at placements both on and off campus. See Springhouse’s School Calendar for dates during which Springhouse is not in session or away on All-School Trips.

Advisor Name: H Leopold
Title: Head of Curriculum Design
Phone: 540-651-4673
Email: h@springhouse.org
Advisor Name: Roni Sutton
Title: Network Advisor
Phone: (540) 815-6618
Email: ronibluebrickbuilding@gmail.com