- When was SBA created, and why?
- What type of students do you serve?
- Tell me more about who provides daycare and is it free?
- Do you have after-school programs?
- What classes do you teach at SBA?
- Do you have a mission statement, or set of goals?
- Who can attend SBA; please explain the application process.
- Explain how your online courses work, and what they offer.
- How do you measure student achievement?
- Can students get a high school diploma from SBA?
- How many students have you served, and how many attend per year?
- Describe the cultural environment of your school.
- What might make someone choose SBA over another alternative high school?
- How else to you measure student achievement?
- Why would a student want to attend? Why should they switch?
- Tell me about your staff – what’s their background?
- What’s the student/teacher ratio?
- Do you enroll term by term, or for the whole year?
- Is your school housed in a building near the district office, or high school – what does it look like?
- Why did you name it after Sam Brown, local pioneer/senator (1821-1886)?
- Where can I get more information about SBA?
SBA’s history began with Douglas Avenue Alternative School established in 1999 as a Teen Parent Program. This school became the Samuel Brown Academy in 2013, reflecting an expanded program in a new building that required a name change. This program has seen a lot of growth over the last 3 years.
- Want to finish high school early
- Are on the verge of dropping out, but want to finish school
- Are pregnant and parenting (day care provided right next to the school)
- Need a smaller adult to student ratio
- With medical conditions such as high anxiety, arthritis, cancer
- Just need a different setting for success
Do you have after-school programs?
Yes, we provide a variety of fun, enriching activities after class, and SBA students can participate in team sports through our school district. We also provide after-school tutoring in math and family literacy classes.
What classes do you teach at SBA?
Samuel Brown Academy has a full selection of courses, including excellent career/technical education. See the list here. Our Computer-Aided Design (CAD) course offers college credit.
Do you have a mission statement, or set of goals?
Our motto can be summed up in one word: Perseverance! We strongly believe that no matter what background or challenges our students have, they WILL succeed!
Who can attend SBA; please explain the application process.
We serve grades 6 to 12, so anyone who falls into these age groups, with a few exceptions, are welcome to apply. Students register for Samuel Brown Academy at the Gervais School District Welcome Center at 150 E. Douglas Ave. or call 503-792-3803 ext. 2234. We meet with you to make sure everyone – student, parent and staff – agrees that our program will help the student succeed.
Explain how your online courses work, and what they offer.
The online program is through Edmentum. They have a full selection of courses necessary for graduation. We run a proficiency model with 70% being the minimum score on any work. Generally:
- The course is opened for a student and they take a pre-test;
- From the pretest, required submissions are assigned by the teacher;
- Each student works with an assigned mentor teacher;
- However, the teacher that is endorsed in the course the student is working in will correct and comment on the work;
- When a student is ready for a midterm or final exam, they work with the teacher to set that up. (It is preferable that the student test on site but if they are distance learners, we can set that up as well)
How do you measure student achievement?�
Student achievement is measured using 70% as a minimum score on coursework and test. Other work, such as writing or textbook based courses require a proficiency level using the appropriate rubric.
Can students get a high school diploma from SBA?
Yes! SBA offers a regular high school diploma as well as modified diplomas and certificates of attendance for special needs students. We also offer GED readiness and Early College Program. SBA students also can participate in team sports through our school district.
Describe the cultural environment of your school.
We have a very unique, supportive environment. Each student has their own reason for attending SBA – yet they are all supportive and do not make fun of each other. We don’t experience “bullying” among students. If a new student shows any of these tendencies, other students will help them understand these are not acceptable behaviors. Staff find it inspiring, in fact, to see students encourage each other and celebrate their differences and successes.
What might make someone choose SBA over another alternative high school?
SBA is a better choice for many students because we are flexible; we can meet individual needs. Students may attend daily, 2 or 3 times a week, or work totally online. We are able to accommodate their school hours for personal needs or work schedules. Some students prefer textbook-based curriculum in the alternative setting and we have that as well. Many students do a combination of online and text-based classes.
We have childcare and counseling for pregnant or parenting students. We encourage parent participation and offer a very popular “communicating successfully with your teen” class that teaches easy strategies to use at home. We have received fabulous feedback from parents and students about this program, based on the book, The Identity Crisis of Parenting by a former alternative education teacher Terry Gregory. The author also teaches the class!
We give each student what they need to develop academically, emotionally, and as a citizen with a focus on future learning and planning.
Why would a student want to attend? Why should they switch?
Our staff work with a student until we find a plan that works for them. Students have many different learning styles and issues in their lives. Our flexibility allows us to adapt to change – all in a non-judgmental atmosphere. We just want to help each student succeed! If your student has not been successful or wants a fresh start, we are a great place to start. We begin with easy wins – so if a student hasn’t found success, we find something quickly to help them succeed and gain confidence and interest in learning … then build from there. In a short time you will hear more positive feedback from your child about school, guaranteed.
Tell me about your staff – what’s their background?
We have wonderful teachers, a principal and two instructional assistants! Learn more about each one here. Also read the message from our principal here.
Do you enroll term by term, or for the whole year?
Students may enter or graduate the program at any time. Since each student has individual goals and may be working on different courses and at their own pace, we do not have to schedule students like a traditional high school.
Is your school housed in a building near the district office, or high school – what does it look like?
SBA is its own school located at 340 First Street in Gervais—right next to day care and the administration office. However, students may take classes at the high school based on space and academic need. It is a new building with new landscaping. We have four classrooms, all designed for specific programs.
Why did you name it after Sam Brown, local pioneer/senator (1821-1886)?
We’re named after local pioneer Samuel Brown (1821-1886) who found gold in California and moved here with his wife to become a state senator. Our school reflects the “can do” attitude and pioneering spirit of our past. The Browns accumulated 1,000 acres. His house, built in 1857 on the Peter Depot Land Claim in French Prairie, served as a stage coach stop and housed three generations. It was believed to be the first in the area to be built by an architect. Samuel Brown’s son Sam Brown was also a state senator and unsuccessfully ran for governor in 1936.
Where can I get more information about SBA?
Call 503-792-3803-ext. 2341 or ext. 2467. About SBA