Aurora School’s mission is to nurture children’s love of learning by cultivating academic excellence, emotional intelligence and social engagement.
In 1988, Carol Smith, an Oakland educator, and a community of families, faculty and staff dedicated to progressive education founded Aurora School. Together they realized their vision of multi-graded classes, hands-on, developmentally appropriate learning, and a commitment to academic and social/emotional learning. Aurora began in Carol Smith’s living room with 20 students spanning grades K – 3.
Aurora’s Core Values
We are progressive educators committed to the idea that learning is an active, social, integrated, and developmental process that requires all children to construct meaning and knowledge of the world around them in a setting that fosters risk-taking, individual challenge and cooperative exploration.
By definition, progressive education is academically rigorous. Teachers guide students to do their personal best in all areas. Our teachers create a learning environment that fosters active learning, curiosity, enthusiasm and collaboration. Perseverance, professionalism and high standards inform every aspect of our school experience.
Thoughtful communication, self-awareness, and sensitivity to others are critical to our social-emotional curriculum and the development of culturally competent, successful human beings.
Aurora is a community that actively works to be inclusive. We celebrate diversity, appreciating and encouraging each person to contribute his or her unique values. We are strongly committed to all types of diversity.
We reach beyond our doors to share our mission, energies, and passion. Students and adults at Aurora engage in both service learning and community service at all grade levels on a consistent basis.
Families are integral partners in their child’s education and family involvement is strongly encouraged in all aspects of the school, from the classroom to special events, continuing education, and school governance.