Here is Dr. Jesse Meeks’ presentation and notes from the 2013 Agency Based Education conference. Dr. Meeks brought an interesting perspective to the classroom as a chiropractor for 15 years who started a private school, and then went into teaching to find his true love, helping students grow. His topic was “Agency Based Education in a public school.”

Why do I teach?

So my students will become great human beings!

I tell them, no pressure, I only expect that they will change the world!

  • Help them understand they have a unique mission / purpose, and help them discover it!
  • How to think – independently and creatively
  • How to create personal value systems based on fundamental, foundational, time-honored principles
  • How to look to their families and core-books to find truth and to compare the information they receive, study, learn, and are exposed to those things
  • How to innovate and solve problems
  • How to have courage and act
  • How to be organized
  • How to listen to their moral compass, inner light,   celestial fire
  • To ask questions, and temper research with their Core Book(s).
  • To not stop until the job is done excellently
  • To follow their passions
  • Delayed gratification
  • To be positively discontent
  • To join the great debate!


Twenty-five critical skills are seldom taught, tested, or graded in school.

  • Adapting
  • Analyzing and managing risk
  • Applying economic, value and governing models
  • Behaving ethically
  • Being a leader
  • Building and nurturing relationships
  • Communicating
  • Creating or process reengineering new actions, processes, and tools
  • Developing security
  • Efficiently meeting complex needs
  • Gathering evidence
  • Identifying and using boards and advisers
  • Maintaining and practicing stewardship of important systems and capabilities
  • Making prudent decisions
  • Managing conflict
  • Managing projects
  • Negotiating
  • Planning long term
  • Prioritizing tasks and goals
  • Probing
  • Procurement
  • Scheduling
  • Solving problems innovatively
  • Sourcing/buying/procuring goods and services
  • Using containment strategies

-From Clark Aldrich Unschooling Rules Chapter 4


The Teacher needs to –

  • Help the student reveal – mission / purpose that is unique to them
  • Create the environment, master discipline and classroom management
  • Constantly improve their teaching skills
  • Listen to student feedback (they are our client)
  • Constantly study and expand their knowledge of the material they are teaching
  • Teach time management
  • Teach goal setting


In the Classroom – Have the students:          

  • Memorize
  • Teach the class
  • Do special presentations
  • Do projects
  • Invite, secure, greet and introduce speakers
  • Job shadow
  • Write and re-write
  • Annotate
  • Give speeches
  • Plan and execute events
  • Apply topics to current events
  • Get a job or internship
  • Mentor each other
  • Participate in competitions – Model U.N. Competition, Speech Contests, Debate, Mock Trial, Sports, Music, Drama
  • DO STUFF – THINK – ASK ?’s
  • Actively Solve Real World Problems


The Ideal School

  • A foundational curriculum of classics – new and old
  • Strong foundation in Reading, Writing, Math, Speech, the Arts, Foreign Language, Health and Physical Education ….steeped in practical application
  • Student choice of a number of subjects
  • Find the mentor program
  • Personalized curriculum
  • Much of the learning based in project, application, and current events
  • 2 hour classes
  • Students can move as fast as they want
  • ½ day in “school”
  • They can stay all day and work and be mentored or they can leave
  • Travel / Adventure / Serve
  • Schools can easily get rid of students who do not contribute to the learning culture
  • The most important position in the school is the teacher of teachers and teachers are required to constantly improve and become master teachers.


Dr. Jesse Meeks on ABE in Public Schools

| 2013 Conference | 0 Comments
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