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Affordable Choice Program

Harrisville Elementary School Offers an Affordable Choice Program to Non-Residents

The “Affordable Choice Program” provides an option for families looking for the best educational fit for their children. The tuition for a non-resident student is $6,000, which includes access to either the Before or After School Program, Project EdVenture. Conveniently located halfway between Peterborough and Keene, and 15 minutes from each, Wells Memorial School is just one mile from Route 101 near the Dublin - Marlborough town line.

“The primary purpose of the Affordable Choice Program is to increase enrollment at Wells Memorial School”, said former School Board Member Earl Horn. “We recognize we have available capacity in our school. Our exceptional teaching staff, longstanding record of student achievement, and strong curricular offerings, combined with a very affordable tuition rate for families, make Wells Memorial School an attractive option for families throughout the region.”

Wells Memorial offers a kindergarten to grade six elementary program and is recognized regionally for providing superior education for the whole child while maintaining high academic standards. Full day kindergarten provides a balance of play-based curriculum while introducing basic literacy and math skills. Spanish is taught in all grades, four times per week. Students leave Wells Memorial School with a strong grasp of the Spanish language, a language that has become increasingly important for the 21st Century.

Wells Memorial School is located on a state road in the attractive rural New England setting of Chesham Village. The science curriculum is designed to take advantage of this location by using the surrounding landscape as an extension of the classroom. In collaboration with the Harris Center for Environmental Education, teachers at Wells Memorial design place based science lessons that emphasize inquiry-based learning.

WMS faculty, staff and students actively foster a sense of community by following Responsive Classroom social curriculum, maintaining an experienced and supportive staff, encouraging parent involvement, and providing class sizes appropriate for its multi-age classrooms.

In addition to the academics at Wells Memorial School, the students in grades four to six participate in the New Hampshire Dance Institute (NHDI). NHDI conducts weekly classes beginning in the fall, in preparation for a culminating performance with 10 area schools at Keene State College in late May.

Wells Memorial students are well prepared for success after graduation, often scoring above the school averages on assessments at the Keene Middle School and at Keene High School, where they are also actively involved in a broad range of extra-curricular activities ranging from sports to performing arts, music, as well as academic enrichment programs.

WMS is unique among many schools in the region in offering a vibrant Before and After School Program available to students and their families. The program provides excellent opportunities for children beyond the school day and maintains hours to accommodate the schedules of working families. Activities in this program range from rock climbing activities, chess, photography and cooking clubs, and sports clinics. In addition, the annual Wunderland Circus production by the WMS After School Program is innovative in its approach to after school care. This exciting production attracts students from several surrounding communities including Marlborough, Nelson and Dublin in addition to WMS.

Wells Memorial School is no stranger to opening its doors to families looking for the best educational match for their children. In the fall of 2005 Wells Memorial became a School of Choice under the federal “Monadnock Regional Public School of Choice” grant program. This innovative program offered a unique opportunity for children from surrounding communities to begin learning Spanish as early as kindergarten. The families participating in this program came from Swanzey, Roxbury, Hancock, Marlow, Fitzwilliam, Keene, and Gilsum.

Melinda Mosher, the parent of a current 4th grade student who started in the Wells Memorial School kindergarten as part of the School of Choice Program, describes her family’s experience this way: “Having the opportunity to choose WMS enabled our daughter grow in the early years when children develop the foundation for who they are and will become. Our home district school was fine, but we found the Spanish language curriculum, small class size and WMS school community to be a great fit for our student. Once timid and shy, our daughter has blossomed."

The choice program has been successful on many levels, providing families with a better educational fit for their children, and enriching the WMS school community as well.

For more information about the Affordable School Choice Program or to inquire about application materials and procedures, please contact Kate Abbott, Principal, at (603) 827-3272.