The house system is widely used in British schools and schools that model themselves after the British system in countries with past British colonial ties, such as Australia, Canada, Hong Kong, India, and Singapore. The system began in boarding schools, where students actually ate, drank, and slept in individual houses during school terms. The house system still operates this way in prestigious British boarding schools, such as Harrow, Eton, and Winchester College.
At first it may seem that competition and camaraderie are at odds, and sometimes they probably are. But in Auburn Classical Academy’s house system, we expect them to go together quite well. A traditional fixture of many British schools, the “house” system will enable ACA to accomplish a number of goals that can be elusive for many schools, specifically comradery across grades and supportive competition.
At ACA we expect the advantages of the house system to be manifold. The houses provide not only an increased feeling of identity and belonging, they also provide students with a sense of tradition and abundant leadership opportunities.
Because of the competition and the identification of each student with a house, there is the opportunity for constant encouragement for students to do their best. We expect to see positive attitudes of students toward one another and toward the school as well as the beginnings of a sense of tradition beyond our daily procedures. House banners are carried with the house members to specific events or competitions.
Another benefit of the house system to the ACA community is the leadership opportunities available to students. Students in third grade and beyond are place in one of four houses: Chester, Lewis, Tolkien, or Wilder. House Captains are chosen by ACA faculty members. He or she presides at House meetings and reports directly to the faculty. Other offices may be added at a later date.