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School Philosophy Updated 2023

Millikin’s Philosophy of Education

The Basics+ program provides an alternative program that stresses the teaching of the basic fundamentals of academic skills in a consistent manner using research-based teaching techniques in a structured learning environment.

The Basic+ programs provide a solid educational foundation for all students: 

Teaching will focus on the following fundamental basic skills.

  • The Reading Program will stress a phonics approach. Whole class sets of books or Readers will be used.

  • The Language Arts Program will stress both oral and written language.

  • Handwriting will be practiced daily. Transition to cursive writing will be in Third Grade.

  • Spelling, Vocabulary, and Grammar are explicitly taught in all grades.

  • Mathematics instruction will focus on the attainment and mastery of basic mathematical skills. Memorization of addition, subtraction, multiplication, and division facts will be required.

  • The repetition, review, and drill necessary to achieve mastery of the basic subjects will be stressed, including rote learning. 

  • Tests, formative and summative assessments, will be administered frequently to determine students' academic abilities in all basic subject areas. 

  • Homework will be given on a regular basis in order to reinforce instruction, encourage independent work, and instill good study habits. 

Millikin provides a structured learning environment.

  • Classroom activities will be teacher initiated, directed, and supervised. Students will be expected to do work neatly, properly, and on time.

  • The typical standard expectation in each classroom environment will consist of desks in rows during basic skills instruction. Modifications of this arrangement may occur during other subjects.

Students' Social Emotional Wellbeing

  • Students will participate in lesson/activities to help and strengthen and enrich students social-emotional wellbeing.


  • Students will participate in and utilize technology for lessons, research, assessments, and enrichment. A focus on basic computer skills will be taught but the focus will always be on paper and pencil learning.

Family expectations

  • Habitual tardiness or excessive absences are considered disruptive to the classroom, and contrary to the philosophy of this program. Excessive tardies and absences will result in the child being returned to their school of residence. 

  • Communications between teachers and parents will be through email, notes, and newsletters. Parent-teacher conferences are scheduled during the first trimester. Further conferences may be held at the request of either the parent or the teacher. Parents are asked to put such requests in writing, so that the teacher may prepare adequately.

  • Parents are expected to support their child’s learning at home. Providing time and a quiet space for students to complete school work. Parents are also expected to ensure all work is completed each night and ready to turn in. Parents are not expected to correct student work but are encouraged to make sure students followed directions. 

  • Parents are always welcome to volunteer for schoolwide activities and PTA events as much as possible.

It is the intention of the Millikin Basics+ Alternative Philosophy, Goals, and Objectives to be in keeping with the general objectives of District Policy 6000 and State Education Code 58500.


The primary emphasis of Millikin Basics+ will be the mastery of basic academic skills, and subject matter, and the establishment of good study habits. This foundation in basic skills should allow the student to successfully pursue a course of higher education or gain productive employment. The Program recognizes the importance of other aspects of a child’s development but asserts the limitations of time prevent the school from achieving satisfactory results in so many areas.

Millikin Basics+ has attention to attendance and student behavior in an effort to ensure that all students develop self-respect, respect for others, accountability for personal behavior, and respect for property. The Program emphasizes academic success and growth with student performance in basic education fundamentals. There is consistency in both emphasis and methodology across all grade levels.

Millikin Basics+ is open to any child in the Santa Clara Unified School District whose parents desire a more structured method of education, which stresses basic academic skills, standards of performance, and accountability. This Program places a partnership with parents to develop the individual personal growth and responsibility of their children in seeking proficiency in behavior and academic skills.

It is the District’s policy to provide free appropriate public education to all students with disabilities in conformance with the provisions of the Individuals with Disabilities Education Act, Section 504 of the Rehabilitation Act of 1973, and Title II of the Americans with Disabilities Act of 1990 in all of its schools, including Millikin Basics+.

Robert Moss


(408) 423-1801