Dawson will emerge as a beacon school for Challenge Success where student voice is the fabric of the culture. Our goal is for the community to adopt a cohesive climate of care where the definition of success, engagement and life satisfaction is authentic to the individual experience.
Challenge Success at Dawson
At the Alexander Dawson School, we are challenging the traditional definition of success by believing the following:
Success should be defined on an individual basis - and go beyond grades and accolades
An individual's emotional needs fuels their individual growth
Student voice must drive decision making about how schools can provide a well-balanced experience
Research on schedules, projects, assessment, climate of care, and community education should absolutely influence the design of a well-balanced student experience
Schools cannot be afraid to adapt and must be willing to change
This past September, I had the privilege of attending the Challenge Success Fall 2018 Conference at Stanford University as a Dawson parent representative. Ask any of my friends or family members: After returning, they jokingly thought I had joined the Challenge Success cult. Why am I so excited about what I heard there? It’s because I could not wait to share the eye-opening insights I heard from experts about common-sense approaches to the struggles our students and children face today, from both a social-emotional and an academic perspective.
At Challenge Success, we provide schools and families with the information and strategies they need to create a more balanced and academically fulfilling life for their kids. We work with teams of educators, parents, and students at schools to identify problems and implement best practices and policies in areas such as curriculum, assessment, homework, school schedule, and a healthy school climate. We provide support to parents by giving them the tools to help their children regain their balance, strengthen their sense of self, increase their motivation and critical thinking skills, and learn how to deal effectively with the inevitable challenges of life. And we conduct, collect, and synthesize research, so that the public can make informed decisions that will enable all children to thrive.
At Challenge Success, we believe that our society has become too focused on grades, test scores, and performance, leaving little time for kids to develop the necessary skills to become resilient, ethical, and motivated learners. We partner with schools, families, and communities to embrace a broad definition of success and to implement research-based strategies that promote student well-being and engagement with learning. After all, success is measured over the course of a lifetime, not at the end of a semester.
Read Stanford University’s latest White Paper about how high school students need to value fit over selectivity and challenge the traditional definitions of what a successful college search process and its outcomes look like.
The “Do You Know” resource page offers facts from relevant research in the fields of health, education, and psychology. Challenge Success reviews data on topics such as sleep, cheating, mental health, media, play, and more. Visit the website for a few sample facts and download the corresponding PDF file to read all the facts along with source citations.
Challenge Success was founded in 2007 by Madeline Levine, Ph.D and Denise Pope, Ph.D. Leaders in the arena of education and adolescent development, Drs. Levine and Pope have researched and written extensively about education and adolescent development. Click here for a list of books written by the founders, board members, Stanford colleagues and conference speakers.
The Alexander Dawson School at Rainbow Mountain, an independent school located on 33-acres in the community of Summerlin, is Nevada’s first Stanford University Challenge Success partner school for students in early childhood through grade eight. Utilizing the unique Challenge Success framework, Dawson uses research-based strategies and programs that emphasize student academics, wellbeing, and a healthy school-life balance to create more engaged, motivated, and resilient learners and leaders. At Dawson, students achieve their individual potential while savoring life and meeting the challenges of the world.