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December 26, 2021

The Beaverton Academy of Science and Engineering

Portland’s Passion for Specialized Education: The Beaverton Academy of Science and Engineering

 

An especially rigorous and specialized academy located in the greater Portland area, the opportunities they provide, and what it takes to get in

It’s no secret the past couple of years have been WONDROUSLY revolutionary in Portland’s education system. They’ve taken measures in revitalizing their take on education by unlearning ideologies that hinder the future of our society from breaching the societal confines of race & ethnicity to instill unity. 

Portland has received quite the amount of attention for taking a progressive stance on converging ethnic studies within schooling. They believe that EVERY and all students of varying backgrounds deserve an unbiased chance at pursuing their passions and achieving great success. 

A prominent example of this motif is the wide acceptance and enthusiasm some of Portland’s niche schools inhabit. A great example lies in Hillsboro, OR; in the Beaverton school district is a school known as the Beaverton Academy of Science and Engineering (BASE).

 

What is BASE?

Ranked as both Niche’s TOP public AND magnet high school in the entire state of Oregon, BASE strives to provide diversified community opportunities to succeed in innovative and collaborative work so they’re best prepared for the world beyond secondary education.

The BASE is a magnet program rooted in math, technology, and life science. It’s a learning option for grades 9 through 12, however, they do have a middle school curriculum for grades 6 through 8. Their middle school program was crafted to introduce many of the topics offered in the high school; they formulated a nine-week rotational system for the sixth and seventh-grade students to explore Computer Science, Engineering, Biomedical Studies, and Art. Eighth grade is when they start to partake in semester-long classes so they have a more solidified idea about their passions to fully embark on in high school.

In the high school program, there are three pathway options: Biomedical Studies, Engineering, or Computer Science. All in all, despite the chosen pathway, the institution has an Expeditionary Learning (EL) approach. This means students “experience expeditions (real-world, in-depth studies both inside and outside the classroom), share their learning and achievements with authentic audiences through public exhibitions, and belong to a Crew (EL’s advisory vehicle for fostering relationships and the habits of scholarship that every student needs to be successful)”.

The BASE does have quite intensive educational avenues. Aside from their foundational pathways of learning and core curriculum, coursework such as Advanced Placement and AVID are offered to align with the specialty of their magnet program. They even have intensive summer programs for those who want to move at a quicker pace and prepare for the next course!

The school’s emphasis on academic intensity requires quite an amount of academic integrity to support it. They encompass the importance of understanding plagiarism and how it negatively affects one’s education both in and out of the classroom. Not only that, they do require a certain level of dedication and consistency in attendance; the coursework is so accelerated compared to traditional education, a student’s presence is key to maintaining optimal learning retention.

But not to worry, BASE has loads of resources for students like academic support & counseling to ensure they receive all they can for success. Upperclassmen have the luxury of being offered College & Career based counseling so they feel validated and encouraged to make the decisions best for themselves and their future.

Outside of their academic life, BASE is a very tight-knit community. There’s an assortment of student clubs & organizations to allot time for extracurricular interests! Because this is a magnet school, there are no athletic teams for the students to join. Instead, they are allowed to try out and/or join their neighborhood teams! They must contact or research their neighborhood school’s athletic department for more information on how they can participate in sports.

Contrary to popular belief, this school does have an artistic side. There’s a program known as BASE Productions where students can explore their curiosity in art and film production! Celebrating and applying their creative skills serves as a great outlet to strengthen their communication as well. The film aspect of this program ties into the focus of technology at BASE, too!

If you want to explore everything BASE offers, check out their website..

 

How to Enroll in BASE

Due to the competitive nature of being a magnet program, BASE encourages all prospective students to go through their application process.

The application process is only open for a certain amount of time and involves different due dates for parts of the application.

A selection committee requires information and exemplification of the well-roundedness and the prospective student has to offer. They aim to make this just as beneficial of a match for the school as they do for the student themselves. 

To apply, a student must provide previous transcripts, grades, basic information, and answer a series of questions. There is also a possibility of requiring letters of recommendation from educators who interact with the student candidly and constantly.

It’s beneficial to attend, or in the case of COVID-19, watch the open house BASE offers to fully encompass their mission and who they are as a school. They also have a virtual tour of the school grounds to get a sense of what the future of the prospective student may hold!

If you have particular questions about BASE, you can contact them!

December 10, 2021

A Universe of Education

The Top Public AND Private Institutions in the Portland, OR Area

Amidst the years of educational evolution, the Pacific Northwest has become a centralized hub of wealthy knowledge and activism for a revolutionized approach to schooling. One of their more popular focal locations exemplary of this movement is Portland, Oregon!

Portland has proven to be more on the progressive side. They prioritize a positive relationship with nature, the people, and most importantly the deep understanding of diversity to establish comprehensive inclusion efforts. Historically, Portland has become a home for a multitude of unique schools that signify this mission.

There are private, public, boarding, and even religious institutions that all strive to give their student body the best resources and learning possible for a fulfilled life.

Who are some of these outstanding schools? Well, take a look!

Ten of the BEST Schools in the Portland Area

Catlin Gabel School: Catlin Gabel is an exceptional, nationally recognized, progressive, independent day school; it was declared as Niche’s 2022 Top School in Oregon! They defy the traditional academic standard by utilizing an inquiry based style of learning, which means they foster creative thinking through the deliverance of experiential learning. They do this through They claim that they “educate for democracy” and incorporate discussions about power and privilege into their classwork.

Oregon Episcopal School: Much like Catlin Gabel, OES offers an inquiry-based education to “prepare students for lifelong learning”. As a K-12 school located in Southwest Portland, they’re very much a “learning-by-doing” institution; they believe action is the best way to retain knowledge! With small-sized classes and year-long research projects, OES cultivates a seamless and connected education for their pupils.

Jesuit High School: This is a nonprofit coed college prep school a part of a 450-year Jesuit educational tradition! They combine their holistic view of learning with educational philosophy focusing on the WHOLE of the student rather than just their intellectual talent. They do use the seven themes of Catholic Social Teaching as well as the Four  Universal Apostolic Preferences to guide their devout Jesuit work.

Beaverton Academy of Science and Engineering: BASE is a specialized academy passionate about creating a collaborative learning environment for real-life innovation. They’re focused on biomedical, engineering, and computer science education for future expertise! They craft pathways for each of the subjects taught to ensure the student receives the most integrative education possible so they enter their desired fields with profound life skills and advanced knowledge!

Northwest Academy: NWA is also ranked as a Niche 2022 Top School in Oregon! They emphasize the cultural impact of various influences, particularly their urban location AND expression through the arts. They have an entire corridor dedicated to showcasing Portland’s cultural resources! The school also exemplifies a passion for performing and visual arts; their academics consistently incorporate artistic disciplines to nourish more balanced and creative thinkers.

St. Mary’s Academy: St. Mary’s is Oregon’s oldest continuously operating secondary educational institution! It’s a Catholic all-girls college prep school in the hub of Portland that nurtures both the spiritual and cultural development of every student. Because of their close proximity to a number of popular locations in the city, including Portland State University, the young ladies are encouraged to utilize their surroundings to apply their education grounded in the Catholic faith.

Valley Catholic School: This is another, more religious option for schooling within the greater Portland area! They offer education from PreK through grade 12, but begin college preparatory efforts beginning in the middle school grades. A particularly interesting and unique education Valley Catholic offers is a music school! They offer private lessons for both children and adult amidst the school year!

International School of Beaverton- High School: ISB centers their education our intercultural respect as well as intellectual rigor for the most prepared of pupils for their future lives. They are recognized by the International Baccalaureate Organization as an IB World School, which means they have a worldwide curriculum able to cater to all diverse backgrounds. They offer both Middle School (grades 6-10) and High School (grades 11-12) programs.

Central Catholic High School: Integrating a Catholic worldview with an arduous education creates a strong community for learning and faith. Aside from their 14 honors courses and 13 AP courses, theology is deeply ingrained into the experience. Students partake in courses such as Scripture, Church History, Sacraments, Liturgy & Prayer, Moral Theology, Social Justice, and Christian Relationships.

Lakeridge High School: Ranked in the Top 5 PUBLIC High Schools near Portland, Lakeridge is a comprehensive four-year secondary academy crafted to strengthen and nurture college-bound students. They have an alternating schedule with lengthy allotments for fewer courses in a day to give them the attention and rigor necessary for optimal retainment! They do provide extracurriculars and subjects beyond the norm to ensure all passions of the student body are recognized and validated.

May 13, 2021

Summer Academy

Welcome to the Tutor Portland Summer Academy. The Summer Academy is a program which allows our members and new clients to enroll in private courses over the summer. For example, we offer courses such as Algebra 1 and Geometry. Your student will work privately with a tutor. With this one-on-one instruction, your student will move through the course material very rapidly. This is a great idea for students who are struggling with a subject or simply want to get ahead. For example, we offer families the ability to enroll in an Algebra 1 course over the summer as a way to prepare them for the next year. Imagine that. Picture having Algebra 1 in the fall, after already having taken the entire course in the summer! Of course you are going to do well in the course, likely even ace it. 

This strategy is actually something I used myself in my own learning. In college one year I had to study organic chemistry. Organic chemistry is widely considered to be the most difficult course offered to undergraduate students. I was a little worried about my ability to do well in the course because “o-chem” was so hyped. I really wanted to do well in the course. One day I happened to read through the course catalog at Portland State University. I discovered that they offered a rapid – full year of organic chemistry – over the summer months. It was divided into three terms, each four weeks in length. I told myself I was going to sit in on those lectures, learn some o-chem, and get a head start on next year. My goal was to sit through the entire course, to even take the exams if possible. I wanted to do the homework. I was going to simulate taking the course, to practice before the scores started to really count. 

I showed up in the summer and started taking o-chem. It went fast. But I started picking a lot of things up. For some reason, I was a bit busier than I had expected and so I didn’t quite live up to my entire goal. I didn’t complete the homework. I just showed up to class – which was about three hours per day – and took notes. I ended up learning an incredible amount from this. I knew what organic chemistry was about. I had a solid framework in my mind for exactly what we were going to study. It was like I had this giant picture of the material in my mind. 

The strategy worked very well for me. When fall rolled around – even though I hadn’t made it through the full three terms in the summer – I was very ready. I was so confident because I knew exactly what they were going to be teaching us that first term. I knew the direction we were headed. I knew about arrow pushing and electron movement. Other people had no idea this was coming. I remember sitting in class and looking all around me. They have no idea what we are about to learn, I thought. When the lectures started, some students began asking questions. I was quickly able to pick out which questions were irrelevant or lacked importance. Since these students didn’t know where the overall course was headed, they were getting bogged down in the details and asking questions about things that weren’t relevant to the core of the course.