KENDALE LAKES, FL – The Mission Statement on the Archimedean Schools’ website reads: Η Αποστολή και ο Στόχος των Αρχιμηδείων Σχολείων είναι να μυήσουν τον νεαρό νου στην τέχνη του σκέπτεσθαι μέσω της διδασκαλίας των Μαθηματικών και της Ελληνικής Γλώσσας. In English, that means: The mission of the Archimedean Schools is to initiate the young mind into the art of thinking through the teaching of Mathematics and the Greek Language.
The lower school, the Archimedean Academy (AA) was founded in 2004 by a group of Miami residents led by Greek-Americans John Haralambides, George Kafkoulis, Lambros Katsoufis, and Aleco Haralambides, for students from Kindergarten to Grade 5.
In 2005, the Archimedean Middle Conservatory (AMC) opened, for Grades 6 through 8, and the Archimedean Upper Conservatory (AUC) opened in 2008, for high school students (Grades 9 through 12).
Recently, the Washington, DC-based Kids Philosophy Slam organization voted the AUC “Most Philosophical School in America.”
Patricio Mendez, an eighth grade philosophy teacher and Chair of the AUC’s Philosophy Department, who was integral in involving AUC in the Philosophy Slam told TNH about the school’s initiatives in other areas of study: AUC “ was the state representative at the National Science Olympiad,” he said, which is a competition for elementary, middle, and high school students. “Additionally, our school was the State representative for the Department of Energy’s National Science Bowl. The National Science Bowl is a highly competitive science education and academic event among teams of high school and middle school students who compete in a fast-paced verbal forum to solve technical problems and answer questions in all branches of science and math.”
The Upper Conservatory was voted the 19th Most Challenging High School in America in 2014, by the Washington Post, among more than 1900 high schools evaluated. It also ranks first in mathematics, reading, and science among all Florida schools.
As Kafkoulis explains on the Archimedean Schools website, 22.214.171.124 (that is the web address), not only is the Greek language immersed into the curriculum, but also the European method of learning mathematics, which serves to complement and enhance, not replace, the American method.
A recent (2012) ranking of AA students placed 3rd graders 23rd overall in Florida in math and reading, while 5th graders placed 10th and 9th in those categories, respectively. That data, taken together with the superior rankings commensurate with grade level, is an indicator that the Archimedean method works. The longer students progress through the program, the better they do vis-a-vis their counterparts nationwide.
Archimedes (287-212 BC) was one of the leading mathematicians and scientists of Ancient Greece. He is popularly known for having shouted through the streets – in an excited state – “eureka!” That was after having discovered the way to prove whether a royal crown was indeed made of solid gold or if other inferior metals had been added to the mix. Archimedes concluded that a solid gold crown submerged in water would displace more water than one containing less dense materials. He was hailed for having been able to ascertain the metallurgical components of the crown without the need to destroy it by melting it.
Archimedes will forever be remembered for his substantial contributions to numerous scholarly fields, It seems that students who study under his name, at these Florida Charter Schools, do justice to him insofar as their performances in those disciplines.