Short for the Francis W. Parker Charter Essential School.

Parker is a progressive high school located on a former army base in Devens, Massachusetts. It follows a charter approved by the Massachusetts Board of Education, which allows Parker to follow their own curriculum and use their own techniques of administration.

Children who would typically be in grades 7-12 are eligible to enroll at Parker. Once within Parker, grades cease to exist and are replaced by three divisions, each taking approximately two years to complete (based on a student's performance.) Instead of grades, all feedback is given in the form of written assessments, based on a rubric for that field of study.

To pass through to the next division, a student must gateway by assembling a portfolio full of high-quality work and good assessments, and then giving a gateway presentation to a group of his peers and teachers. To graduate, a student must spend several months working on a senior project, which can consist of pretty much anything they are interested in. They must then present this project to the general public with a satisfactory degree of skill.

The Parker School was originally founded by Ted Sizer, a major figurehead in modern education reform. The school was founded in 1994, adding one grade level per year until reaching maximum capacity in 1999. Sadly, most students and teachers agree that the school functioned better in theory than in practice, and are disappointed with the result.

Fear not, however, as veteran teacher Peter Garbus is departing the Parker School to found his own school in Lawrence, MA.

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