FAQ - Hill Pointe School


What is a Public Charter School?

What is a charter school?

Charter schools are independently operated public schools that have the freedom to design classrooms that meet their students’ needs. All charter schools operate under a contract with a charter school authorizer – usually a university, intermediate school district or government agency – that holds them accountable to the high standards outlined in their charter. Each charter school is unique – both inside and out. Some focus on college prep, some follow a STEM curriculum, and others integrate the arts into each subject. The possibilities are endless, but charter schools aim to provide a range of options so that parents can choose the public school that best fits their child.

Do charter schools charge tuition?

No, charter schools are tuition-free, public schools.

Are charter schools public schools?

Yes, charter schools are independently-operated, public schools. Charter schools provide a high-quality education option to public school students, upholding high standards that meet and often exceed the district and state metrics.

Are charter schools non-profit?

Yes, every single charter school in the state of Michigan is a tuition-free, public entity with nonprofit status. 

Many charter schools work with external for-profit organizations, such as management companies and other service providers, like Choice, to operate their schools - just like traditional public schools that work with vendors to provide things like school lunches, books and accounting services. However, these partnerships in no way affect the nonprofit status of any charter school.

How do charter schools work?

Charter schools are public schools operating under an independent contract or “charter” with an authorizing agency—typically a non-profit organization, government agency or university.  The charter provides the school with operational autonomy to pursue specific educational objectives regarding curriculum, staff, and budget. It also holds them accountable to the same (often higher) standards of their district public school peers.

What is a charter schools authorizer?

Authorizers are the institutions that decide who can start a new charter school, set expectations and oversee school performance, and decide which schools should continue to serve students or not. Depending on state law, authorizers can be school districts, education agencies, independent boards, universities, mayors and municipalities, and not-for-profits.

What is an education service provider? (ESP)

Education service providers (ESPs), or charter school management organizations, are organizations that contract with new or existing public, charter, or private schools to help them implement comprehensive reforms. Education service providers offer schools and districts services such as the following: curriculum design, professional development, student assessments, financial and operational management, facilities management, human resources management and/or marketing and communications support.

Who supports charter schools?

Charter schools enjoy widespread support from parents, teachers, community leaders, and both Republican and Democrat elected officials across the country.

What is classical education?

Classical education embraces the concept of educating the whole child and the notion that children are more than their standardized test scores. Classical schools are unique among school choice options for three main reasons – a virtuous education, a content-rich curriculum, and a traditional classroom environment. This educational philosophy is transformational and promotes a love of lifelong learning and moral character. Classical educators believe that students need an intentional and consistent focus on virtue. At classical schools, high academic achievement, personal discipline, moral character and responsibility are consistently reinforced through the study of subjects in the classical tradition. Through a classical education, students learn about historical events, characters, stories, fables, myths, scientific facts, and mathematical proofs. They read whole literary works in great depth, and they learn to approach books both with moderation to learn and courage to question. A classical classroom prioritizes the authority of the teacher, and relies on their expertise to deliver instruction to the students. Students are not the passive recipients of knowledge, but active participants in the discussion, incorporating the Socratic method of engaging dialogue between the student and the teacher. Watch the video to see why bringing an authentic classical curriculum to our community is such a gift - http://bit.ly/BCSIVideo

What makes classical education different from traditional education?

At The Hill Pointe School, high academic achievement, personal discipline, moral character, and responsibility, focuses that are valued by the community, will be consistently reinforced through the student of subjects in the classical tradition. The emphasis of our research-based and proven curriculum is on the core disciplines of math, science, history, language arts, and foreign languages. Our curriculum is relevant to all students, regardless of their current path to knowledge. Beyond the curriculum, all students at The Hill Pointe School will be taught skills and characteristics needed for today’s student, including time management, organization, and note-taking, which are essential for building a foundation for further academic pursuits. Extracurricular options comparable to area schools will complement the curriculum. Our team will be intentional in meeting the needs of each student, which will lead to above-average academic achievement. The Hill Pointe School will provide increased capacity for demonstrated demand.

Curriculum and Extracurricular Activities:

Tell us about the curriculum.

The curriculum at The Hill Pointe School is anchored around the Core Knowledge Sequence. We supplement the Core Knowledge sequence with Singapore Math to fully prepare our students in mathematics. The Singapore Math Approach aligns well with the classical approach and has proven very effective. We also utilize the BSCI Hillsdale Program Guide, with more information at the following link: 

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How will The Hill Pointe School support students with special needs?

As a Michigan public school academy, The Hill Pointe School will be held to the same standards as every public school in Michigan. Even though a classical curriculum is rigorous, The Hill Pointe School will work to meet the needs of the individual students that attend each day. The Hill Pointe School will use a Multi-Tier System of Supports (MTSS) to meet the instructional needs of the students. If a student qualifies for additional programs and or services, the special education team at The Hill Pointe School would develop an Individualized Education Program (IEP). The Hill Pointe School will develop programming that is appropriate to meet the individual needs of the student.

My child is advanced, how will that work?

The classical model of education places significant emphasis on the role of the professional teacher. Embracing the Socratic method of instruction is a reinvigoration of how instruction was delivered 100 years ago. Yet, modern innovations, such as student intervention strategies, support the curriculum in a way that allows for accelerated student success. While most models of instruction embrace differentiated learning models, The Hill Pointe School approaches this on a personalized level. The curriculum is such that it flows fluidly to support each student where they are in the moment, engaging students in the instruction and “Inspire Wonder.”

Do the students take state tests?

Yes, our curriculum is not standards-based, but we intend to cover the required standards. Our school will not teach to the standardized test, we expect to prepare students for them.

What is expected of parents? Are there volunteer hours?

Parents will be expected to volunteer in the school for various programs and support their student’s learning while at home.

Will The Hill Pointe School participate in extracurricular activites (music, sports, etc.)?

Yes, the activities are yet to be determined, but we plan to offer music and sports.

What foreign languages will be offered?

The study of Latin begins in grades four and five.

Will there be field trips?

Yes, our school will have trips for the students to enrich their experiences. We are still developing a plan for what types of trips would be good at each grade level.

Will students learn computers?

The students at The Hill Pointe School will use technology less than typical public schools. Use of technology during the Grammar phase will be minimal, except for some of the state-mandated assessments and assessment preparations, then during each subsequent phase, the use of technology will increase. During the Logic phase, the use will increase as a tool to produce writing, then in the Rhetoric phase, the use will increase again as students research topics and ideas to defend and integrate their knowledge.