Welcome to Ross Valley Charter

Developing life-long learners by giving students the tools and support to follow their natural curiosity.

Welcome to Ross Valley Charter

Thank you for visiting our website!

Our mission at RVC is to encourage curiosity and inquiry, foster cultural competency and social-emotional learning, and develop a confident love of learning. Our program goes beyond project-based education by using inquiry, exploration, and hands-on, immersion-based experiences. The multi-age environment creates strong bonds between students and teachers, and a solid foundation for exploration.

Curiosity is the heart of our program. Our teachers and staff look for ways to allow students to follow their curiosity and have agency in their education. While our students are doing deep-dives into topics like ocean animals, the solar system, immigration, and native plants, they're building strong academic skills and expressing themselves through art, music, and poetry.

At RVC, our focus on learning by doing prepares students to work effectively together in teams, think critically, seek information to solve problems, and be lifelong learners and culturally competent members of our diverse global community.

 

Ready to find out more?

Learn more about how inquiry-based, multi-age education creates strong foundations for confidence and growth.

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"We honor each child's best approach to learning -- doing, writing, thinking -- each is different" 

 - Rebecca Wicker, Founding Teacher

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Arts elementary school in West Marin
Sudents in elementary school showcase progressive education in Marin County

Our Philosophy

At Ross Valley Charter, we continually reimagine education to keep up with the evolving needs of our students. Our mission is to craft and share an inquiry-based educational approach that not only nurtures academic excellence but also kindles the flames of creativity, cultivates deep human connections, and ignites an unquenchable thirst for knowledge.

In the spirit of our unique vision, Ross Valley Charter strives to create a  joyous education that equips students to thrive in a rapidly changing landscape. Our commitment extends to shaping adaptable thinkers, collaborative solution-seekers, and fearless pioneers of innovation. Within this tapestry, we balance the mastery of academic knowledge, the cultivation of self-awareness and social intelligence, and the nurturing of creative thought.

At RVC, we celebrate each student as a remarkable individual, valuing their distinct qualities and contributions. Our classrooms are vibrant canvases where every child's voice finds expression, and their presence is cherished as a gift. We diligently foster an environment that empowers them to unfold their unique perspectives and articulate their thoughts confidently.

The spirit of inquiry, the symphony of collaborative exploration, and the celebration of individuality converge at Ross Valley Charter. We are dedicated to cultivating a space where learning transcends boundaries and students emerge as empowered, compassionate, and imaginative citizens of the world.

RVC Stands for music in Ross Valley - Kindergarten, first, and second-graders explore music with xylophones and percussion instruments.

At Ross Valley Charter School, We Believe...

  • Students learn best when constructing their own knowledge in a social context that offers rich and challenging content, collaboration with fellow students and parents, and teachers acting as facilitators of this process.
  • Student voice, choice, and engagement are critical to supporting student agency and knowledge construction.
  • A thriving and joyful learning community has inclusive decision-making structures that foster teacher and parent engagement, collaboration, and shared ownership of the committed work of graduating students who are critical thinkers and creative problem solvers prepared for the 21st Century.

Beliefs Put Into Practice

At RVC we put our core beliefs into practice with the following techniques:

  • Multi-age Classes—Two grade levels are together in one class, allowing teachers and children to enjoy a two-year relationship, and giving students the opportunity to alternate being the younger and older student in their class. Because each student has the same teacher for two years, it allows a deep relationship between teacher and student and an understanding of how best to help the student thrive.
  • Inquiry-based Learning —Curriculum rely heavily on project- and problem-based learning, long-term units of study integrating many curricular areas, going in depth and examining a topic from many angles, and increasing students’ engagement and interest.
  • Deep Learning Through the Gift of Time—Students are given long blocks of time in which to work on projects. Teachers have in-depth weekly meetings in which to collaborate, discuss student progress, and engage in professional development.
  • Educating the Whole Child—The focus is not just on academic growth, but also physical and social-emotional development.
  • Connected Community—Students, teachers, staff, and parents are all considered integral parts of the school community. Teachers focus on developing a strong community within the classroom as well as within the whole program, and will encourage students to see their role as a member of the larger community as well.
  • Authentic Assessment—Students’ ongoing classwork and projects are assessed to show academic growth and progress toward Common Core State Standards, which reflect the importance of 21st Century skills such as problem solving, collaboration, and communication.
  • Collaboration and Collective Responsibility—Students have many opportunities to work with a partner or small group. Teachers spend time working together weekly to plan curriculum and events.
  • Differentiation—With two grade levels in one classroom, teachers focus on individual learning progress, customizing instruction and guidance to accommodate students’ needs.
  • Cultural Competency—Students learn about people from different cultures and backgrounds throughout history and contemporary society. Teachers and students model appreciation for differences and inclusion of all members of the school community.
  • Choice—Students have many opportunities to make choices about what they will learn, how they will learn it, what materials they use, and how they present their learning.
  • Service Learning—Each class completes at least one service learning project per year that the students help to identify, plan, and carry out.

For more about our program, click here or watch the beautiful videos about our progressive education approach created by an RVC parent.

Talk to us!

Want to know more about RVC? Drop us an email and we'll answer your questions or set up a time to talk with our staff and teachers.