Who We Are

Glossary of Terms


Authentic Learning

Authentic Learning exposes students to real world problems and opportunities that adults work on in their professional lives.

Charter School

A charter school is a publicly funded school that operates independently of other schools but is held to the same state and federal standards as any other public school.

Ecological Literacy

The Environmental focus at ECS is designed to help students draw connections between content areas through problem seeking and problem solving authentic learning experiences.


Enrollment is the process of completing and submitting an enrollment form, entering the lottery, and entering ECS.

Guiding Principles

The ECS Guiding Principles are the core of what we believe and were developed from a collaboration with our entire community.

Instructional Pillars

The ECS Instructional Pillars help us to make decisions about learning that occurs in our schools.


Content integration is the use of varied subjects in one space.


Looping is a practice where teachers follow students from one grade to the next. ECS has four different looping teams; K/1, 2/3, 4/5, and 6/7/8. A student has the same teachers within each loop.


ECS holds a random drawing each year of names students that have submitted enrollment forms. The lottery determines what students will fill open slots at our schools.

Specialized Teaching

Students at ECS are taught by teachers who focus on one content area and rotate to different teachers throughout the day. While common at the high school level this practice is unique in the elementary level and has proven a valuable component of the ECS experience.

Systems Thinking

Systems Thinking is a process of considering how things relate to one another as a whole.

Whole Child

Educating the whole child recognizes the complexity of each student’s intellectual, emotional, and physical development. Staff at ECS aim to ensure students are healthy, safe, engaged, supported, and challenged, in addition to meeting rigorous academic learning goals (based upon Association for Curriculum and Development Whole Child campaign).