Every student. Every heart. Every mind. Known. Inspired. Challenged.

Those nine words define who we are and clearly state what we stand for. If we are living our mission, then the competencies that are detailed in our Portrait of a BT Graduate should be easily identifiable in our students as they learn and grow.

A key part of the portrait is the adoption of a global mindset. This manifests in an inquiry-based approach to learning that positions students as practitioners rather than consumers. Flipping classrooms to a dynamic, interactive space, where conceptual learning is the focus, stimulates curiosity, critical thinking, and problem solving. Students of all ages respond to engaging classroom activities, collaborative opportunities, and assignments that force them to re-evaluate what they think they know. The principles and related practices guide every member of our community in how they can support learning that fosters global citizenship at every age and grade level.


At Brownell Talbot, teaching and learning is guided by principles, not constrained by rules. Our principles empower our teachers to grow individually as educators and apply their learning to what happens in the classroom while also honoring our collective learning system and BT’s mission and vision. These principles guide our daily choices in the classroom: 

Our shared learning principles translate into practices for learners, teachers, leaders, and parents/guardians. These practices help us create an environment that supports learning and student engagement and aligns our work toward our common goal of knowing, inspiring, and challenging every student’s mind and heart.The practices will evolve over time as we continue to challenge our students’ abilities to think critically and globally.

The practices are structured to address three critical areas of learning: 

  • Concept
    "We understand that..."
  • Competence
    "We are able to..."
  • Character
    "We can become more..."

Standards of Excellence

Each content area's curriculum is reviewed annually for minor modifications based on quantitative and qualitative data and feedback. However, a major review of each content area occurs every five years as part of BT's curriculum review cycle. Changes determined during the content area review will be implemented in the following school year.

Common Ground Collaborative

Common Ground Collaborative is an international collaborative where all institutional members are like-minded in their goal to identify the pedagogical practices that support the school’s common principles of learning at all levels - in BT’s case, age 3 through grade 12. 

Our primary process is conversation. When schools join the CGC, they do not adopt a fixed programme, they join a conversation. Together we puzzle out what is best for the school, or other organization, co-creating customized models in context, using the CGC’s acquired experience and practical models.

Kevin Bartlett, Founding Director


BT is a member of the National Association of Independent Schools (NAIS) and the Independent Schools Association of the Central States (ISACS) and is accredited by Cognia.

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