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Impact, new online education program, to launch Aug. 24

A new online and outside of the classroom program for 9th and 10th grade students on Maui, Oahu and Hawaii island is being launched on Aug. 24. 

The Impact program was created by longtime educators, including Robert Landau, who was most recently interim head of school at Maui Preparatory Academy. The program will allow students to fulfill common core requirements but also allow students or “agents” to explore and expand their passions and interests outside of a classroom.

Common core studies will be conducted online through nationally accredited distance-learning high school academies Penn Foster and James Madison, according to a news release.

Impact educators or “guides” will assist students with coursework and ensure they stay on track. Students can work at their own pace and schedule. 

Students in the for-profit school program will engage in five academic pillars — culture and identity, civics and social justice, stewardship and global issues, innovation and entrepreneurship and internship and apprenticeships.

Students will create their own project learning experiences to gain more in-depth knowledge, understanding and application of what they learn. 

For example, a Maui Impact cohort may learn about coral bleaching and decide to tailor their lesson plans and school work around trying to find a solution. They may decide to meet with experts, learn to Scuba dive, testify at County Council meetings and other actions. 

“The concept behind Impact has been brewing long before COVID,” said Landau, the co-founder and chief executive officer of Impact. “However, the need and rationale for breaking free of campus-based and course/schedule-driven school has been heightened by the current unprecedented and challenging situation. Hopefully, this moment will allow a variety of models to take root.”

The school will not have any physical buildings or classrooms; Landau said they want to see students in the “real world most of the time.”

“That’s where the authentic learning and acquisition of skills take place,” he said.

Up to 20 9th and 10th graders will be selected per island to join the inaugural class. Applications may be found at www.impact-bound .com.

Candidates may apply through Aug. 21

Annual tuition for the 2020-21 school year is $7,500.

For more information, send email to info@impact-bound .com or see www.impact-bound.com, where interested students and parents can register for webinars Monday, Tuesday and Thursday.

* Melissa Tanji can be reached at mtanji@mauinews.com.

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