Mission Statement:North Pole Elementary, in partnership with its parents and community, strives to cultivate students with a strong sense of community, kindness, and critical thinking; we seek to create literate, independent thinkers that will be effective citizens in American society.The "Why" Behind our Mission Statement:North Pole Elementary's vision statement is founded on the principle that the greatest responsibility of the American public school system is to prepare students to be citizens in a democratic society.At birth, American children are not given a box of democracy that makes them democratic citizens; they have to learn democratic skills from somewhere; for America to continue passing on the legacy of democracy from generation to generation, we have to actively teach our children democratic skills. From the founding fathers to modern theorists, many people have realized that the school system is the best place for our young citizens to learn democracy. This is a very old idea.At North Pole Elementary, we have decided to focus on three key concepts that will help our students become effective democratic citizens: kindness, community, and critical thinking. These three concepts are often cited by democratic theorists as key democratic skills.Kindness. Our students need to learn to get along with each other. In a democracy, people have to talk and interact positively to discuss and understand differing opinions. It is very important to listen to and respect all opinions, viewpoints of the majority or minority, viewpoints different than your own. We need students that respect each other and who truly listen to each other, students who are willing to consider new ideas.Community. Early observers of American society noticed that Americans were much more involved with community organizations and social engagement than other societies. These observers made the connection that community involvement was part of what drove Americans' strong sense of democracy. For the bottom line is that, when people are involved in their community, they are invested and informed regarding what happens in their community; this is essential for civic engagement in a democratic society. Sadly, people have also observed that Americans' community involvement has been declining in recent years. We need to keep community involvement alive in our schools to keep democracy alive.Critical Thinking. If we have a system of government in which individuals matter, in which individuals vote to have a say in their society, then we need to produce the most intelligent, reflective, and thoughtful citizens possible. We do not need to have our children merely understand things by memory or recall; we need them to be able to analyze and support their opinions with clear evidence, to present logical, reasoned arguments. It is essential that we teach our students intelligently about what they read.Kindness, community, and critical thinking. When we think of these ideas at North Pole Elementary, we are thinking of positively impacting our students far beyond the walls of our building. We are thinking about building a better school and a better society. Yes, these are big, ambitious ideas, but so is the idea of democracy.
Address250 Snowman Lane
North Pole, AK 99705
Students: 9:30 am - 4:00 pm
Office: 9:00 am - 5:00 pmMark Winford
(907)488-2286 x39501(907)488-1232 [fax]