Legend High School’s immersive learning model prepares students for life after graduation

Debbie Rabideau, center, is an English teacher and mentor for the EDGE program at Legend High School

Debbie Rabideau, center, is an English teacher and mentor for the EDGE program at Legend High School

Legend High School’s EDGE program is an innovative project-based learning initiative designed to prepare students for post-graduation life by engaging them in an interdisciplinary curriculum. The program, directed by Mari Farley, was developed seven years ago after researching best practices from innovation schools nationwide. EDGE stands for explore, discover, grow, and engage, and integrates English, humanities, science, math, and technology education with practical experiences such as professional internships, travel, and skilled mentorships.

EDGE aims to maintain student engagement through real-world problem solving, such as projects on water conservation and ecology. It currently serves 275 students, with dedicated educators like English teacher and mentor Debbie Rabideau, who help design the program’s curriculum and guide students through educational pathways.

Senior student Summer Short, who has participated since her freshman year, testifies to the program’s effectiveness in fostering a sense of ownership and success among its students, providing them with crucial life skills like job interview preparation, college application processes, resume writing, and portfolio development.

The program’s experiential learning extends to outdoor activities and trips to colleges and major U.S. cities, further enhancing student engagement. With over 140 business partners, the program facilitates professional internships that offer immersive experiences, aiming to equip students to serve their communities and lead fulfilling lives. Farley expresses a hopeful outlook for the students’ preparedness to face the world, despite acknowledging that the dynamic and sometimes chaotic learning environment may not suit everyone. Legend High School supports the EDGE program’s distinctive learning style, reflecting its commitment to innovative education.