Alternative Choices Education -

Introductory Data and Historical Context

Founder/Designer/Researcher – John Law – Foundations of Education/MS 1990 Hofstra University, with the primary focus on Alternative Educational Design, and secondary schools of Choice.  Associate Director of the Community School in Long Beach, NY.  An alternative program serving 120 students, with 16 faculty members, and a clinical component. Dr. Raywid led research on what made alternative schools effective.
We have developed through experiencial educational experiences, a common-sense pragmatic approach to creating constant modalities that successful alternative programs share.  We know what works, and we see the short comings of many design flaws created by mostly well-intentioned educators, that land short of the goal.  This has invariably led to the creation of multiple program designs, that either try to do too much, or too little.  This does not benefit our growing at-risk student populations. 
Successful programs have academic structure, shared responsibilities, family atmosphere, respect, and college and work skill components. They also have clear cut guidelines that students in these programs are respected by all because of the choices they have made, and not choices made for them by others.

There is no one size fits all in alternative education.  The best we can hope for is to design structures that work locally within the framework of proven success.  The real key with these programs, are the understanding and commitment of the staff to this population of students.  Utilizing an alternative approach to empower these students to develop new goals, plans, and open new horizons’.  I always say that if we can get the academics in order, everything else then has purpose, meaning, and success.   

We concentrate on doing it right the first time, by design. Every day is a new day with the opportunity to make the choices we can be rewarded for, and proud of.  The power of the program is in the design, and the understanding of the people implementing that design.

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