St. Francis School (Goshen, Kentucky)
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St. Francis School is a progressive independent dayschool in Goshen, Kentucky, serving students in preschool through grade 8, from the greater Louisville area. Founded in 1965 as an Episcopal day school, today St. Francis is officially non-sectarian and ecumenical. The school retains its original name in recognition of the patron saint of the environment, an advocate of respect for all living creatures, and an early champion of the equality of women.
Serving students of average to gifted ability, St. Francis School is housed on two campuses: the Preschool in Harrods Creek and the JK-8 program on 65 acres (260,000 m2) wooded in neighboring Oldham County. The Goshen campus's unique open-classroom building was executed in 1970 by innovative architect Jasper Ward in association with architect Fred A. De Santo.
While deemphasizing grades and standardized tests as adequate measures of student achievement and potential, St. Francis does assign grades, in addition to narrative assessments, beginning in middle school. The school also administers the Stanford 10 test at two strategic levels with consistently excellent results.
St. Francis students of all ages are engaged in the school's environmental curriculum and each grade participates in the cultivation of an organic children's garden. The curriculum features several outdoor programs culminating in a week-long wilderness camping trip to the Big South Fork National River and Recreation area for 8th graders. The school serves only healthy food, providing organic and locally-grown products whenever possible. The St. Francis Board of Trustees has identified the pursuit of sustainable institutional practices as a core value.
In 2005, John Delautre became the tenth Head of St. Francis School. A Louisville native and 27-year veteran of independent education, he served previously at The Town School (New York, NY), Kent Place School (Summit, New Jersey), The Marymount School of Paris (France), Miami Country Day School (FL), and The American Boychoir School (Princeton, New Jersey). On July 1, 2012, St. Francis merged as one school with three campuses - Downtown, Harrods Creek, and Goshen. Alexandra Thurstone became the head of the newly merged St. Francis School on July 1, 2012.
St. Francis School is fully accredited by the Independent School Association of the Central States (ISACS), and is a member of the following organizations: the National Association of Independent Schools, the North American Association for Environmental Education, the Kentucky Association of Independent Schools, the National Association for the Education of Young Children, the Elementary Schools Heads Association, the National Middle School Association, and the National Association for Gifted Children.