Belvidere School District 100
The Belvidere School District provides a quality education to more than 8,000 students who reside in Belvidere and parts of Caledonia, Poplar Grove, Garden Prairie, Cherry Valley, Loves Park and Rockford. Its philosophy is that the educational process is a shared responsibility among students, families and community, to be offered in a positive and safe environment that encourages learning and personal development.
Through its elementary, middle and high school facilities, it offers a strong core curriculum across all disciplines, along with a host of athletic teams, extra-curricular programs and special interest groups that help to create a well-rounded, socialized student. To accommodate and challenge all levels and types of learners, Belvidere School District also offers special magnet programs that each focus on a particular subject area or skill.
In the Dual Language program, offered at Lincoln and Seth Whitman elementary schools, students learn a second language, from kindergarten through grade 5. With an even mix of children from both English-and Spanish-speaking homes, daily instruction is given equally in both languages. The goal is to create students who are bilingual and biliterate, with a multicultural awareness.
Washington Academy, with three science labs, one STEM lab, four technology classrooms and two library media centers, focuses on a STEM (science, technology, engineering and math) curriculum, which is integrated into all subjects. STEM students have daily experiences with science, math at least an hour a day, 125 minutes weekly in technology class, and daily project-based learning where they apply engineering skills.
For middle school students, Project Lead the Way offers an activity-, project- and problem-based curriculum. Students get the opportunity to apply classroom concepts in real-world situations, to identify problems and find unique solutions.
Through a partnership between Belvidere School District and Rock Valley College, Belvidere juniors and seniors can get a jump on their college education through Running Start. With this program, qualified students attend classes on the campus of Rock Valley College during their junior and senior years, and receive dual credits that meet the requirements for a high school diploma and an associates degree simultaneously. Students of Running Start don’t pay for tuition at RVC, and can still participate in after-school athletics and extra-curricular activities. Students may take dual-credit courses on-site at both high schools.
To improve workforce readiness skills, the district has worked with local employers to identify skills that are lacking in the workforce, such as critical thinking and problem-solving, and beginning next school year, Belvidere will require all freshmen take a course focusing on soft skills. This course is the beginning of an overall Career Magnet concept under development that includes curriculum for health care and trades-related fields, and possible future coursework in the technology and manufacturing sectors.
The Belvidere School District offers a variety of unique and traditional programs for learners of all ages and abilities. Through partnerships with local organizations and colleges, curriculum is always evolving in order to provide students with the knowledge and skills they need to be successful after graduation.