North Star (education)

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North Star in the old Russell Street School

North Star: Self Directed Learning for Teens is a center for community-based education in Hadley, Massachusetts, founded in 1996. Founded by two middle school teachers, North Star's mission is to help teenagers find ways to learn and excel outside of traditional high school. North Star has over 350 alumni from all over the Pioneer Valley and beyond.

North Star was founded by Kenneth Danford and Joshua Hornick. After reading Grace Llewellyn's book The Teenage Liberation Handbook they decided to create a center that would make what Llewellyn described possible for teenagers in their area. Using homeschooling as a tool to get out of school, families create curriculum plans that are supported by North Star's center, staff and teachers.

They are housed in the old Russell Street School on Route 9 in Hadley. They currently have over 50 members. They are run like a YMCA or club; each member pays a tuition and can use North Star's resources as they wish. They have a policy of working with every family, regardless of ability to pay the tuition.

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Coordinates: 42°20′30.3″N 72°35′22.7″W / 42.341750°N 72.589639°W / 42.341750; -72.589639