The Woodlands Edition | January 2021


2 0 2 1 P R I VAT E S C H O O L G U I D E

John Cooper students engage globally


The John Cooper School is now partnering with Global Online Academy, a nonprot consortium of more than 90 schools around the world, to provide online interna- tional learning for students. According to Academic Dean Rebecca Brady, the program launched in summer 2020 and includes 63 students in grades 10-12 through the spring semester. “GOA courses enable Cooper students to pursue their interests, enrich their skills and expand their knowledge on a larger scale,” school Director of Communications Deb Spiess said. The courses, taught by experienced faculty from peer

After recentmove, center eyes future on- site expansion Students enjoy outdoor activities as part of the curriculum at the Center for Teaching and Learning.


The John Cooper School oers international learning.

independent schools worldwide, include topics such as psychology, computer science, cybersecurity, lmmaking, microeconomics, criminal law and others, Brady said. Spiess said the response to this option has been exceptional, with students enrolled in GOA summer, fall, spring and yearlong courses.


The Center for Teaching and Learning moved from its location on Kuykendahl Road to a renovated equestrian center on Hufsmith Road in Tomball at the beginning of the 2020-21 year and is eyeing future expansions to its high school, school ocials said. Established in 2014, the nonprot private school currently enrolls grades pre-K-10 in areas including The Woodlands. According to Linda Ellis, the founder and head of the school, the center’s leaders wanted to establish it in a permanent location with space to grow, and it is now located only four minutes from the previous building. “It’s good to ... nally have our own home,” Ellis said. “We’ve been leasing for the last six years; this is our seventh year as a school.” Ellis said the center has plans to continue expanding by adding 11th and 12th grades in upcoming years by converting the former barn areas. “Right now we’re looking at expanding the next horse barn—Barn Five—into a high school. ... Our plan is that we will be ready for school for next year because we expect that our middle school and high school will grow,” she said. The school’s maximum capacity is limited, so it will remain a small school, but she said she believes that is part of its appeal. “We know each other well, and we operate as a family at this school, so we want to stay small,” she said. The school oered online learning in March through May but has been in person while following Centers for Disease Control and Prevention guidelines since then.

Xavier Academy expands opportunities



Students at The Woodlands cam- pus of Xavier Educational Academy have been visiting the school’s Greenway campus in Houston to expand their interaction and experiences during the challenging 2020-21 academic year, school leadership said. “[We are] looking at things that benet our kids socially and give them a chance to do something outside,” founder Richard de la Cuadra said. “We have to do it in a smart way to socially distance but to continue to explore ways to meet that need for social interaction.” The school, which is in its third academic year at its Grogan's Point Drive location in The Woodlands, has 150 students across three Houston-area campuses. The Woodlands campus has about a dozen students, many of which have been learning online this year, ocials said. De la Cuadra said the academy will likely bring students from the Houston campuses to The Wood- lands as well to take advantage of some of its unique features, including outdoor activities such as shing. Candace Runaas, the school director for The Woodlands

Students work on their online classwork at independent stations.

campus, said another way the campuses are collaborating this year and encouraging social interaction is in eorts for community out- reach. The Woodlands campus has a partnership with Abundant Harvest Kitchen to work with its food pan- try, and the school has worked to gather supplies for hurricane relief for 30 families in Louisiana. Runaas said it has been a chal- lenge to keep students connected when many are experiencing isolation this year, but the feedback from students has been positive. “We actually had a student start yesterday [online] … and she commented after her rst day that this was a great experience for her because she felt so at ease, calm and relaxed,” Runaas said Jan. 6. “I’m really proud of that that we can develop a sense of community online as well as in person.”





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