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Developing a love of learning is just as important as mastering skills and acquiring knowledge. Part of what makes learning accessible for students is that they feel emotionally safe and secure in their classroom. We intentionally create “class families” and teach inclusion of every student as part of the curriculum. Everyone belongs, we don’t do “cliques” and we rarely have to redirect students for behavior challenges. This environment doesn’t happen by accident. We have a heart for our students and it shows in our H.E.A.R.T. Skills program created by our Principal, Joy Raboli in 2003.

H.E.A.R.T is an acronym for the values that guide our conduct, choices and actions:


We believe in doing the right thing, even when nobody is looking. We keep our word to our self and others. We strive for self-awareness and to have the courage of our convictions. We work to recognize and protect the rights of others and wholeheartedly understand our connection as human beings.


We lead with empathy. We value being aware of and sensitive to the feelings, needs and experience of others. Appreciating someone else’s point of view starts with being able to really listen. We value the skill of active listening, especially when we are learning together. As a culture, we practice gratitude and seek to make things a little better than we found them.


We believe in a strong sense of responsibility to our school community, environment and the world around us. We consider the consequences of our actions, and we accept full responsibility for them. We make mistakes and learn from them to help us set new goals. We believe in strong parent partnerships that support our students so that they can achieve their best. We set very high standards and our students leave our school as confident 8th graders ready to take on the world.


People are treated with dignity and respect here at Sherwood Charter School. You notice it in everything we do. We do manners here at SCS. We look out for each other and make sure each voice is heard. We know our own self-worth and we hold our school community in high regard.


We are preparing our students for the future, and that means being able to work as a team. We are committed to inclusiveness, cooperation, collaboration and healthy competition. We foster fair play and we peacefully solve conflicts. We share, come together and love helping our community.

These H.E.A.R.T. Skills are practiced every single day from our tiniest kinders to our tall middle school Leadership Academy students. We teach “keeping your word,” and looking out for your class family. When reading novels, we look to see how the H.E.A.R.T. Skills are being used. We notice our class family using honor, empathy, accountability, respect and teamwork because it is the Sherwood Charter School way.

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