Alternatively Exceptional


Daniel Reilly

Alternative schools provide a non-traditional educational path while still keeping the fundamentals of an educational environment. Village School is a New York State alternative school located in Great Neck, New York. Since the 1970s, Village has remained a successful establishment, and has become a second home for many of its students. Students from all over Long Island are welcomed into the school, creating a diverse learning environment for all attendees.

Village School is ungraded, relieving most of the pressure that comes from the constant number and letter grades given out in a traditional school. Report cards are substituted through Credit Boards, which are a staple of the school year. At the end of each semester, a group of students and teachers come together to determine the amount of credit distributed to every student for each one of his or her classes. This tradition allows for each individual to speak for himself and share his learning with Credit Board in order to make a case for what he believes he has earned for the semester.  

Each semester is broken up into 3 modules, adding up to 6 modules in a year. This allows for more opportunities to assess the progress of the student during the semester, and to prepare for the next marking session by fixing any problems. When a student enrolls at Village, he or she is paired with an advisor, who is a member of the loving staff of Village. Twice a semester, advisors meet with the student and her parents to check in on stats for each class and get the student’s perspective on his academic and social experience. The advisor remains with the student throughout her whole high school journey, creating a bond throughout the four years.

Village School has created a welcoming environment for students of all backgrounds. It is a great place for students to learn as well as prepare for their futures. The loving staff and students come together to create a great learning and social environment for everyone in attendance. Village School will continue to be a place that teaches self-advocacy for as long as it exists, and there is no doubt that its reputation will remain for years to come.