In the 1970s, a group of educators banded together to transform education using new fundamentals. They had observed that conventional schools were failing too many bright students. These educators were committed to making a difference. That difference is Delphian. At Delphian, you will not find teachers lecturing while students rotely take notes. You will find students actively engaged in learning, studying independently, and moving at the speed that is right for them.
You will see lively one-on-one and small group discussions on works of literature, art, business, science, or current events. You will see students creating clay models to explain and demonstrate a concept, a student giving a presentation on his apprenticeship experience or a topic he is just researched, and students heading to the science lab or out into the world to test or explore a theory. The Delphi Program is designed to help students relate what they are learning to how they will use it to succeed in life. Our students live their education from the moment they walk into our school.
Our faculty excel at keeping students motivated and on track with their studies. You can rest assured that each student receives highly personal attention—every academic program is individually designed to best cater to that student's academic needs and interests. Each student at Delphian is treated as an individual, and we seek to help all of them find their purpose and use for their education.
Delphian's story began in 1974 when a group of individuals purchased the property in Sheridan, Oregon, and got to work building a new educational model. Delphian School's goal, and mine, is a civilization based on reason. Since 1976, Delphian School has been working to establish and refine its unique approach to education. For forty years, we have been at the forefront of a movement that is now gaining momentum among the broader educational community—that of competency-based education. Understanding this term as it is used on the broader educational scene still does not fully understand Delphian's unique program. We need to coin our terms. Perhaps "Mastery-Based Education"? Because Delphian students master every subject, they study before moving on to tackle the next higher understanding level.
Within a close-knit community and lively campus environment, Delphian students are given highly personal attention from instructors, an individual academic program, and a focus on demonstrated competence rather than memorizing facts or time spent in class. Students learn to understand what they study and become competent in the use of logic and reason.
Delphian School's mission is to empower young adults to bring positive change in the world through reason, creativity, and integrity. We believe the ability to reason is inextricably linked to successful study at all levels. Thus our emphasis is on students developing a discipline of study expertise and thinking with and using knowledge. At Delphian, students learn the value of studying for oneself, thinking for oneself, and evaluating its truth, importance, and usefulness.
We believe that his education should enrich a person's creativity. Thus our emphasis is on wide-ranging projects and service activities in the immediate or broader community, where students exercise and hone their creative-thinking skills. At Delphian, students learn that to become tomorrow's leaders in business, science, humanities, and the arts, they need to be imaginative and practiced problem-solvers today.
We believe that personal integrity is the keystone of any successful activity or life. Thus our emphasis in all student activities, in and out of the classroom, is on the value of unbiased observation and open communication. At Delphian, students learn that a successful group—and a rewarding life—depend on individuals who recognize their responsibility for honesty in themselves, each other, and the groups of which they are apart.
Delphian is not a typical educational experience. Students do not memorize facts only to forget them after the test—memorizing is not learning. Learning at Delphian may involve reading about a subject, evaluating the ideas presented by comparing them to other concepts or ideas already studied, explaining the idea to someone else, demonstrating how it works, teaching it to someone else, and showing how they could apply it to their lives. In the end, it is not just another fact to be memorized and abandoned. The subject has been incorporated into the more massive structure of their education. And in the process, our students have learned to think and evaluate for themselves and use reason to solve life's problems.