- Next month, Delaware Met, a new charter school, will open in Wilmington with a focus on a personalized model known as "Big Picture Learning."
- Students will participate in an internship at a local business or nonprofit twice a week and take core classes the rest of the week — but in ways that are suited to their chosen interests and career path.
- So far, 264 students have enrolled in the school.
A handful of other schools — 52 nationwide — have adopted the Big Picture Learning model, including Mapleton Early College High School in Colorado, Bronx Compass in New York, and Beacon Academy in Indiana. It’s part of a larger move toward more flexible learning structures that allow students to chart their own course and focus on career earlier. The changes have gained traction in some charter schools but have not been widely adopted yet.
“Everybody talks about personalized learning, but nobody does it,” said Patricia Hunter, Delaware Met’s Head of School. She says the school will allow students the flexibility to switch interests and career paths while still diving deep on each one.
One interesting aspect of Delaware Met is the physical design of the school. Set up in a former bank training facility, its spaces are being renovated to facilitate collaboration between students and foster conversation. And the school offers physical education and sports, a split from many charters that struggle to find gym space or time in the day.