learn / 2015

Sequoyah High School

Sequoyah High School

Idea submitted in the My LA2050 Maker Challenge by Sequoyah School

Sequoyah school is establishing a new high school that will challenge the prevalent model for high school education in both public and private schools across the country and accelerate reform in secondary education. This new high school will be focused not only on cultivating and expressing academic achievement, but will be a place where students learn how their individual success can make a difference for their communities.


In what areas of Los Angeles will you be directly working?

  • Central LA
  • East LA
  • San Gabriel Valley
  • San Fernando Valley
  • Sequoyah School, Pasadena-enrolling students from above areas.

How do you plan to use these resources to make change?

  • Expand a pilot or a program
  • Advocate with policymakers and leaders
  • Expanding an existing K-8 school to new high school.

How will your proposal improve the following “Learn” metrics?

  • HS student proficiency in English & Language Arts and Math
  • College matriculation rates
  • Student education pipeline (an integrated network of pre-schools, K-12 institutions, and higher education systems that prepares students for seamless transitions between high school, higher ed

Describe in greater detail how you will make LA the best place to learn.

Sequoyah is establishing a new kind of high school situated in one of the most demographically diverse regions of the world, with a program focused on developing a student’s leadership skills to address social issues across cultural and economic contexts. The curriculum is informed by the principles of social entrepreneurship and attention to the skills needed to become successful in a 21st century global economy.

The school’s purpose is to ignite and develop a student’s passion for service and social change. As part of their course of study, students attending Sequoyah will be challenged to identify and explore issues important to themselves and their communities, and will fulfill a requirement for the design of a viable proposal for solving a societal problem of their choosing. In doing so, students will have the opportunity to work alongside professionals experienced in the management of public, private and nonprofit organizations and they will acquire the skills, knowledge and determination to assume the responsibility of active citizenship and culturally competent leadership.

The school intends to structure a learning environment that will guide adolescents in balancing ambitious academic achievement with patience, persistence and equanimity. The past few decades of theory and research in educational psychology underscore the importance of non-cognitive skills, dispositions or habits for learning. Students who are coached in how to identify their own strengths and challenges, set realistic goals, use support systems and persevere, find greater long-term success as learners.

Please explain how you will evaluate your work.

In the years ahead Sequoyah will assess the experience of our alumni to determine if the school has fulfilled its purpose. To do so it will develop an alumni program that will keep our graduates involved and the school informed. It will also be important to understand the experience of our social innovation program partners to determine if our students are constructively engaged.Sequoyah will establish an administrative staff position to facilitate social innovation program partnerships and assess the effectiveness of community outreach.
In addition, Sequoyah’s board of trustees will annually evaluate the success of high school program. Their assessment will include among other concerns the following objectives: student enrollment goals – including metrics for socioeconomic diversity, recruitment goals for faculty and staff who fit mission and vision; summer institute enrollment and conference outreach ; college matriculation and financial sustainability.

How can the LA2050 community and other stakeholders help your proposal succeed?

  • Money (financial capital)
  • Publicity/awareness (social capital)
  • Network/relationship support