Berkeley Middle School For Boys Lets Them Grow Into Self-Reliance


In the special “All Things Considered” series “Men in America,” NPR (7/27, Westervelt) reports on its website with embedded audio on the East Bay School for Boys in Berkeley, California, “a private, non-profit middle school” that “is trying to reimagine what it means to build confident young men.” In some cases, that means that “the sparks of inspiration result in, well, actual sparks,” because “the school’s different approach starts with directing, not stifling, boys’ frenetic energy.” School director Jason Baeten describes the school’s goal as one in which boys “can make mistakes, be vulnerable and learn to be self-reliant,” according to NPR, and that approach results in this such as “trying to upend tradition is by re-inventing shop class for the 21st century.” The school calls it simply “work.”