How important is a well-rounded education for your child? - East Valley Tribune: Education/Campus

How important is a well-rounded education for your child?

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Posted: Monday, March 10, 2014 8:45 am | Updated: 8:50 am, Tue Mar 11, 2014.

Bright Beginnings Charter School Offers Accelerated Curriculum for Student Success

With Arizona ranked 49th for its education system, it begs the question: What is missing in our education system that places us so far below the rest of the nation? A well-rounded curriculum that focuses on growing the entire student and fosters critical thinking, problem solving, creativity, and social development may be the answer.

While math and science are vital components in academic achievement, research shows that students who study fine arts are four times more likely to be recognized for academic achievement, including higher standardized test scores.

Research published by the Center for Fine Arts Education shows that students regularly involved in fine arts classes test higher on their SATs and college exams than their counterparts, which is why Bright Beginnings, a Chandler-based kindergarten through eighth grade charter school, offers an accelerated curriculum focused on not only on the core subjects, but fine arts, as well.

“Arts education plays a crucial role in a child’s development, both academically and socially,” says Kati Lipscomb, middle school art teacher at Bright Beginnings Charter School. “Arts teach children important life skills at an early age and continue to grow those skills including, decision making skills, problem solving, verbal expression, confidence and collaboration with others. We want to provide our students with all of the necessary skills to set them up for success throughout the entire academic career.”

All Bright Beginnings’ students take art class, drama class and music class multiple times per week at both the elementary and middle school level, while also offering an accelerated curriculum utilizing a unique STEM-based math and science curriculum to educate the whole student.

“Our math and science curriculum focuses on developing proficient students using a balanced approach of conceptual understanding and procedural fluency. Critical thinking, problem solving, and real-world application are the backbone of our curriculum, helping to ensure our students are prepared to excel in high school and beyond,” says Brenda Konicke, curriculum director at Bright Beginnings Charter School.

Along with an accelerated and well-rounded curriculum, Bright Beginnings offers smaller class sizes compared to district public schools, which can have more than 25 students per classroom. Bright Beginnings has a 12:1 student-to-teacher ratio, with a full-time aide in each elementary classroom, as well as a middle school aide for additional classroom support. While smaller class sizes are a common characteristic of many private schools, these schools are tuition-based. Bright Beginnings is tuition-free and continues to maintain low numbers in classes, which provides students with a hands-on learning approach and a personalized education.

Bright Beginnings is ranked as one of the top charter schools in Arizona and is currently enrolling students for the 2014-2015 school year.

To learn more about Bright Beginnings or to enroll your child, call 480-634-8867 or visit

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