Climate and Culture
Polaris is a K-12 expeditionary learning school in Poudre school district of Fort Collins. Polaris is the only expeditionary learning school in Fort Collins and is a choice school so that students outside of the near neighborhood have a chance of being accepted. In expeditionary learning schools, students learn through real-world experiences outside of textbooks to build mastery of knowledge and skills, character and high-quality products and performances that represent real work. At Polaris, students participate in what are called "intensives." Intensives are week-long experiences that have to do with specific subjects that students explore to gain a deep understanding rather than just covering several subjects to gain surface-level knowledge. Teachers at this school use a variety of tools to assess student learning such as self-assessments, portfolios, exams, and presentations of learning.
Overall, Polaris has an atmosphere that encourages students to express themselves and become their own individual person. This environment is created with the help of teacher-student relationships, student interest explorations, and community involvement.
At Polaris, parents are highly encouraged to be involved in their child's learning. Parents are invited to participate in intensives and fieldwork by providing transportation and chaperoning on trips. They also mentor students about their own experiences and careers. Sometimes parents are invited as guest speakers to inform students about their real-world jobs. There are also adventure trips outside of Fort Collins that parents are encouraged to attend.
Polaris also offers many resources in regards to student health. On their website, there are links that provide information about common health concerns in schools. Polaris also has a full-time Health Technician and a Nurse who visits the school weekly.
Two or more races- 3.9%
Free/discounted lunch recipients: 36%