Providence Country Day School is committed to ensuring that each student is given the opportunity to achieve personal and academic success. Toward that end there are multiple opportunities for students to receive the support they need—whether it is a nudge to stretch beyond perceived limits, extra help from a classroom teacher, regular sessions with a learning specialist to hone study techniques, opportunities to meet with affinity groups to share common experiences, or the resources of our school counselor for a special concern.
If a child's needs are not met through one of our regular channels of support, parents are encouraged to reach out to the student's advisor to make appropriate arrangements for assessment and next steps.
Advisors are an essential strand that runs through every PCD student experience. Every PCD student is assigned an advisor who knows your child across all areas of school life, and provides support, oversight, and guidance, to help each student make the most of his/her PCD opportunities. Over time, advisory groups (typically about seven students) become a core of peers, who navigate shared experiences and explore community themes together.
In the Middle School, every student is a member of an advisory group which may be single or multi-grade and is led by a middle school teacher, who understands the subtle differences among the three middle school years.
In the Upper School, ninth grade students are teamed with advisors who are specialists in this pivotal, transitional year. In 10th grade, students are assigned new advisors who provide consistent guidance through graduation.
Advisors play an important role in a student's school life. New students meet their advisors on their first day of school and continue to see them each day during homeroom—a convenient time to "check in," as well as during regularly scheduled advisory meeting times. Advisory groups offer one-on-one time to review academic progress and discuss specific questions and needs, as well as group time to discuss school-wide issues (course selection, the student handbook, community service day projects, etc.). Advisory groups also work together on community curriculum activities and to discuss community themes. Additionally, and perhaps most importantly, advisors know their students from multiple perspectives and are always available to help students think out loud, strategize, organize, or just chat.
Advisors help students select a rigorous curriculum that takes into account individual interests and strengths, and provides the strongest possible preparation for college. Often the advisor is the faculty member who knows the student best, from the most diverse perspectives, and can be the student’s strongest advocate for success across multiple venues.
The advisor is the first point of contact between families and the school. Conferences are conducted twice a year between advisors and parents, but advisors are available throughout the year to address concerns and refer parents to those in the community who can offer additional support as needed.
Some students need support above and beyond the regular classroom experience and benefit from the expertise of the learning specialists in The Learning Center.
The Learning Center faculty work with students to identify individual learning styles and provide the necessary tools to support academic success. PCD's learning specialists prepare a profile for each student to help classroom teachers develop appropriate teaching strategies. Learning Center instruction is planned in coordination with each student's classroom teachers. Depending on the student's needs, either individual or small group sessions are integrated into the curriculum and focus on strengthening basic skills in reading, language development, written expression, math, reasoning, and study techniques.
Instruction is designed to help students maximize strengths and understand their unique learning styles. Structured, multi-sensory techniques are used to help students discover their strongest channels for learning and to develop skills to use those channels effectively.
PCD's faculty includes a licensed social worker who, in addition to running programming specific to the health and well being of all PCD students, is available for consultation and support as needed. The school counselor's role in this capacity is one of assessment and referral, rather than treatment. In the event of a school emergency, the counselor oversees the emotional health of all involved.
PCD's full-time school nurse is available for all manners of student health, including, but not limited to: administration of approved medications, assessment of illness and injury, emergency response, health instruction, and management of student health records. She works in concert with the school counselor and the athletic trainer, to ensure the safety and well-being of the entire PCD community.
Both the middle and upper school divisions have time built into their daily schedules, during which all teachers and students are available to meet for extra help, review, and practice. Because this dedicated community time is a part of the schedule, there is no conflict with other commitments. Read about the Atlas to learn more.