West Nottingham Academy recognizes that all students learn differently. The Chesapeake Learning Center (CLC) provides direct services to students with learning differences in our small boarding and day school environment. While WNA has a history of providing individualized attention to its students, the CLC recognizes the need to provide specialized support from faculty with a deeper understanding of educating exceptional students. Students who work with the Chesapeake Learning Center have wide ranging needs and may or may not have a diagnosed learning disability. Students work in small groups or one-on-one with learning specialists to strengthen their executive functioning or increase their content knowledge. The learning specialist works closely with families to ensure the best accommodations for each student and navigate the application process for accommodations on standardized tests.
The CLC program recognizes the strengths of each student and empowers students to understand their challenges through regular self-reflection. The mission of the Chesapeake Learning Center is to provide developmentally appropriate instruction through partnership with students and faculty while equipping students with the tools and skills they need for academic success.
The CLC program is proportional to the size of the school; approximately 10 percent of WNA students receive CLC services on either a part-time or full-time basis. The CLC offers an array of services as appropriate for individual students, including:
Enrolled students are contracted through admissions to participating in an academic skills course with the learning specialist. The class meets every other day for 60 minutes in a small group or individual environment. The goal for each student is to develop academic independence that comes with self-awareness and cultivating goal-oriented behaviors. Appropriate correspondence with advisors and family are fostered weekly, empowering students to self-advocate and exercise flexibility when encountering academic challenges.
A part-time option is available for previously full-time CLC graduates. This part-time course meets for 60 minutes each week with the learning specialist. It is designed to reduce support, ensuring consistency and transfer of learned skills from the full-time CLC course.
Students requiring peer-tutoring fill out a weekly form and pick a day/time/topic they would like tutored. Most tutors are flexible and are fluidly matched with students in need each week. Some seasoned tutors are matched with the same student for a regular weekly appointment. Students are welcome to sign up for as many sessions as they would like, up to two times a week.
West Nottingham Academy’s Math Peer Tutors consist of academically successful and committed students that have volunteered to help with peer-tutoring. Tutors receive three to four hours of specialized math training before working with other students.
West Nottingham Academy’s Peer Writing Center is composed of talented students to whom other students can go for additional help brainstorming, revising, and polishing written work for any subject. All students who participate benefit from increased writing proficiency and the development of peer relationships and independent academic skills.
Newly accepted students are matched with WNA Peer Mentors to create connections. The role of the peer mentor is to welcome new students and support them as they adjust to the WNA community. Mentors receive training from the Assistant Head of School, Dean of Students, School Counselor, and the Director of the CLC.