Oak Hill Blog

OHA’s holistic approach

Maslow’s Hierarchy of Needs is a theory of human motivation familiar to most educators. The pyramid model image represents the range of human needs. To boil it down, Maslow’s theory suggests that for people to become their best selves, they need to be nourished, safe, loved, and valued. Obvious, right? But this notion has deep implications for the education of children. Schools need to determine how academic achievement fits into these layers of need. The answer differs for each student, but one thing is clear. Social and emotional health are foundational to meaningful academic gains.

At Oak Hill Academy, much effort goes into creating a holistic environment conducive to healthy adolescent development. Grades, test scores, and college acceptances are the tangible outcomes of our students’ classwork here. But we also structure life outside our classrooms with an eye toward human growth. And everything we accomplish here is part of our curriculum.

Our school is 100% boarding, which means Oak Hill Academy is custom-made to address students’ social and emotional needs–needs which many other school environments can’t address consistently. Our faculty and residential life staff engage our students daily through dorm gatherings, advisory sessions, peer mentoring, smaller classes, and meetings with our guidance/counseling department. In short, Oak Hill uses every opportunity to help students take real steps to becoming their best selves.

Our campus environment spans study and leisure, community and reflection, and struggle and affirmation. So our students get a glimpse of what awaits them as adults. We thoughtfully shepherd our students through these formative years. As a result, our graduates are well prepared for the road ahead.


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