Will Smith Starts New School [Mod Edit] New Will Smith Scientology School tracklist in BN: post all new articles here: Tracklist: Will Smith Scientology School News Articles - Enturbulation.org Activism Forums and discussion here: http://forums.whyweprotest.net/7-general-discussion/will-smith-opens-scientology-school-14380/ for moar organised HARPOONS :flowers: [/Mod Edit] Does any of this sound like it may be Scientology related? Will Smith has started his own private school in Calabasas, California for children from pre-kindergarten to grade 6 called the New Village Academy. It emphasizes learning by doing, technology and individualized instruction. According to the school’s website, which makes no mention of Smith, they will provide every child with a laptop computer, including pre-k students, and serve an all-organic low-fat sugar-free menu. It will cost $12,500 a year for grades 3-6 and $11,500 for K-2, with financial aid available for families who qualify. Smith homeschools his two younger children, Jaden, 9 and Willow, 7, and told People Magazine last year that he wanted “to design the system that revolutionizes public education.” Now Smith has paid about $890,000 to lease an existing school for three years, and classes will start this year, according to the school’s website and the May 26 edition of The National Enquirer. I have a masters degree in education and many members of my family work in the school system. While the concepts on the website for Smith’s school are well described and sound like a good approach, it’s hard to know how they’ll be executed or if the school will be any good. What’s more is that Smith has made some arguably controversial statements about education. He doesn’t have a bachelor’s degree and never went to college, which is certainly not a requirement for starting a school and he’s been wildly successful in other endeavors in life. He is getting help from qualified experts, and even held a roundtable discussion with education leaders to help come up with ideas for the school. I know I started my son on computer education at a young age, and I do agree with Smith’s general concepts. It might be a decent school. Smith told Reader’s Digest in an interview in 2006 that he could learn anything he set his mind to and that formal education was not necessary: RD: Have you ever thought about going back to college? Smith: The things that have been most valuable to me I did not learn in school. Traditional education is based on facts and figures and passing tests — not on a comprehension of the material and its application to your life. Jada and I homeschool our children, because the date of the Boston Tea Party does not matter. RD: But there are some basics in education that need to be taught. Smith: Of course there are. Reading, writing and arithmetic, because those are the languages of our country. RD: When you say you homeschool, do you mean you actually teach them? Smith: No, we have hired teachers who teach what we feel is important. For example, Plato’s Republic — kids need to know that. Why is that not taught in first grade? RD: You think kids in elementary school should read Plato’s Republic? Smith: Yeah. You cannot be an American without reading it and Aristotle’s Politics. That is what the forefathers of this country read, and they used them to create what I believe is the finest system of government that has ever existed. RD: So, you don’t see any reason to go back to a formal education yourself? Smith: I know how to learn anything I want to learn. I absolutely know that I could learn how to fly the space shuttle because someone else knows how to fly it, and they put it in a book. Give me the book, and I do not need somebody to stand up in front of the class. RD: They put physics in a book, but I know I could never be a physicist. Smith: The first step is you have to say that you can. [From Reader’s Digest via ICYDK] The website for the school doesn’t say much about religion, except that it is tolerant of all beliefs, backgrounds, and cultural differences. Will and Jada may be closet Scientologists, but you hope that none of that will be pushed on the children in their school. It will be headed by Jacqueline Oliver, Ed.D, that former head of Gillispe private day school in La Jolla, CA. She has no ties to Scientology that I could find. Will Smith is shown with his two children, Willow and Jaden, at the Nickelodeon’s Kids’ Choice Awards on 3/29/08, thanks to WENN. Thanks to the National Enquirer for alerting us to this story.