What is American Classical Education?

Dr. Kathleen O’Toole is assistant provost for K-12 Education at Hillsdale College. Through Hillsdale’s Barney Charter School Initiative, the Hillsdale K-12 Education team partners with organizations across America to expand classical education.

Though most are familiar with the fundamentals of a classical education – core aspects of the education today’s parents may have received – many would not automatically attach them to this education model. O’Toole summarizes the basics well in this article, posted on The Classical Classroom.

“Key Characteristics of Hillsdale Classical Schools

  1. A curriculum that is content-rich, balanced, and strong across the four disciplines of math, science, literature, and history.
  2. Instruction in the Western tradition through history, literature, philosophy, and the fine arts.
  3. Study of the American literary, moral, philosophical, political, and historical traditions.
  4. Explicit instruction in phonics and grammar.
  5. The study of Latin as a requirement for all students.
  6. An approach to instruction that acknowledges objective standards of correctness, logic, beauty, weightiness, and truth.
  7. A well-educated and articulate faculty who use traditional, teacher-led methods of instruction.
  8. A commitment to use technology effectively without diminishing the faculty leadership that is crucial to academic achievement.
  9. A plan to serve grades K through 12 (even if the school must open with fewer grades) so as to provide continuity and a recurrent examination of subjects throughout a student’s career.
  10. A school culture of moral virtue, decorum, respect, discipline, and studiousness among both students and faculty.”

Click here to read O’Toole’s article in its entirety. To learn more about BCSI and Hilldale’s K-12 curriculum, visit here.