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What To Expect On a BASIS Charter School Tour: Upper Grades

It was approximately 8:45 a.m. when I walked onto the BASIS Peoria campus for a school tour. I was surprised to hear the chatter and laughter of students before I even entered the building. School wasn’t even starting for a whole week!

Checking in, it was clear that something was going on. I was informed that that the grade 5 students were there for BASIS Organizational Study Skills (BOSS) Camp, a program that serves as an introduction to BASIS Charter Schools upper grades. That morning, the students were learning how to use their lockers.

From my place in the lobby, I could hear the metal clang of the locker doors, the excited chatter, and the teachers’ voices instructing them how to use a combination lock. Oh, if I had a dollar for every time I had forgotten my combination! They were hunkered down, busily spinning the locks, and opening and closing the metal doors.

It was great to be able to be back on campus to experience that energy (with appropriate safety precautions) at a school tour.

Close to 9:00 a.m., a family walked in with three boys who looked to be very close in age. As it turns out they were triplets, and they gave our tour group some much-needed energy as I was basically a “fly on the wall” and only observing.

Alisa Fields, the school’s registrar, joined us, and we began our tour in the administrative hallway. 

Business as Usual

We got the “business” stuff out of the way and became familiar with several important locations:

  • The Head of School and Head of Operations’ offices
  • The peer tutoring office
  • The technology office where students can receive help with the tablets they use
  • The academic programs office for scheduling

BASIS Charter School students receive a lot of support, whether it be administrative, or tutoring, and the staff is there to encourage them the whole way.

Ready for Class

After having some fun checking out the décor of the grade 5 lockers (they were more than happy to show off their efforts) we got down to the classrooms:

  • First stop was a science classroom quickly followed up by one of the labs which looked far more professional than anything my middle or high school ever had. All middle and high school students at BASIS Charter Schools are learning biology, chemistry, and physics concurrently to provide them a broad base in the sciences.
  • Fine arts programs are a big part of the BASIS Charter School STEM-infused, liberal arts curriculum. The music room was a huge hit with its gong, and we got lost in the colorful clutter of the art classroom! The gorgeously pink-haired art teacher welcomed us and discussed the various fine arts programs available including performance art, and music.
  • One corner classroom, with its unfettered view of the desert, housed the college counseling program. College counseling is a unique offering at BASIS Charter Schools and prepares students for the rigors of college admissions. Learn more here about the process here.
  • Physical movement is an important part of education at BASIS Charter Schools, and the gym provided a little physical release. Let’s just say more than a few baskets were made!

Questions Welcome

During the entire tour, Ms. Fields gave the group plenty of opportunities to ask questions, and it felt more like we were chatting with a friend than being on a formal tour. Teachers were milling about and stopped to say “hello” and “welcome.”

By the time we had made the full circle back to the lobby, I had a fuller appreciation for what the BASIS Charter School network accomplishes, and a fervent hope that the triplets would move up on that waitlist!

If your curiosity is piqued, I encourage you to take the leap and check out the BASIS Charter School network. With 37 schools in 4 states, you and your student are sure to find your educational home.

Follow these easy steps to schedule your own school tour:

  1. Visit our website to find your local BASIS Charter School
  2. Go to tours/events for a schedule of events
  3. Select your school
  4. Choose an available date
  5. Click on tickets, and register with your information

Once you have completed all the steps, you will receive an email confirmation, and you are all set!

Find out what one BASIS Peoria student has to say about the culture of BASIS Charter Schools!

Amy Licht

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