Jumping off from a January visit by Boston University professor Carl Hobert, who also serves as Lawrence Woodmere Academy’s global education advisor, the Woodmere school will be the first one on Long Island school to offer students a global scholar certificate through an educational program that concentrates on international learning and dovetails with the requirements for a diploma.
The Global Curriculum Initiative will begin being offered next fall in its Upper School — grades nine through 12 — and take four years to complete. The current ninth-graders will have the opportunity to finish the program in three years. Learning Spanish will begin in preschool and LWA will also offer students a non-Western language.
Hobert, who created the global school program that is now in 21 schools nationwide, worked with teachers on Jan. 27 and the following day sought to develop the students’ global perspective, which is the prime motivator behind the program, according to Headmaster Alan Bernstein.
“Our Global Curriculum Initiative recognizes that our students need to expand their minds through an understanding of world languages, global problem solving and experiential learning that will enable them to feel the connectedness of our world,” Bernstein said.
LWA was created through a 1990 merger of Lawrence Country Day School, founded in 1891, and the Woodmere Academy, established in 1912. All the schools have been successful in educating their students, Bernstein said, but looking forward is what is needed today, said Upper School Director Cynthia Webb.
“LWA’s Global Curriculum Initiative demonstrates our commitment to educating students for the future they will live in, instead of relying on the education of the past,” Webb said.
With students from 51 ZIP codes and five countries, LWA is a wellspring of diversity. LWA Antics student columnist Nicole Engleman noted in last week’s “Broadening our global perspective” that “contrary to the common teenage belief, the world does not revolve around us.”
If that thought is understood by LWA’s students, then the school’s new program is off to a good start.