As a result of the strategic plan developed during the 2019-2020 school year, Emmons decided to make character development and social emotional learning a top priority. Our Social Emotional Learning Committee initiated the implementation of the Ron Clark House System as the first phase toward this priority. The Ron Clark House System provides a structure for staff and students to develop healthy and meaningful relationships across grade levels and with adults from all areas and in varying roles in order to create a strong sense of belonging for all. Additionally, this system will allow our older students to engage in leadership opportunities by organizing and facilitating our House meetings and events with the support of their adult House leaders.
To prepare for this initiative, four teachers from the SEL Committee visited the Ron Clark Academy in Atlanta, Georgia this past summer. The staff members were trained and provided the necessary tools to plan for the January, 2022, implementation of the House system at Emmons School. The teachers came back very excited after experiencing the House system, first hand, at the academy. The committee spent half of this school year planning and training the staff and preparing for the launch of the program. In early January, Emmons held a schoolwide event and students were randomly sorted into the six Houses. Each student was celebrated as he/she blindly picked a bandana from the sorting box.
Students and staff will remain in the same House for the duration of their Emmons career, and it is our goal that the learning community develops strong bonds over the years with all their House members. The House system will be embedded within the instructional program using a positive behavior program, hosting friendly House competitions, participating in color war days, and attending monthly House meetings.
Our Emmons’ motto has now become: Six Houses, One Family!