Ted Graf, Keep Education Weird: Exploring College After Exploring Yourself First

The Path to Higher Ed is a SchooLinks hosted podcast community that explores trending topics and issues in the area of college and career readiness. Our featured guests are pushing education forward by constantly learning from, innovating and applying their college and career readiness practices. Listen to gain their insights and apply them to your own college and career readiness practices.

Today, we’re speaking with Ted Graf, Head of School at Headwaters School in Austin, TX. To Ted, relationships are everything. Recognizing that all students have unique passions and aspirations, he nurtures an environment where his staff shares a common vision of love, encouragement and empowerment for its students. The students of Headwaters are encouraged to honor their interests by using their voices to advocate for what they believe in. As a result, Ted is able to reach the minds of his students by first understanding their hearts.

About Ted Graf

Ted Graf is a career-long independent school student, teacher, and leader, who holds degrees from the University of Vermont, Brown University, and the School for International Training. His deep involvement in every aspect of education includes work with the Coalition of Essential Schools and its progenitor, Ted Sizer. Before joining Headwaters School, he was the Upper School Director at the Latin School of Chicago. Ted is truly remarkable in his ability to bring a tech focus and mindset to the approach of Headwaters. As a result, his students are becoming better prepared for the ever-evolving world of career paths.

About Headwaters School

Headwaters School is an independent school in Austin, Texas serving students from early childhood through grade 12. Beginning with a Montessori foundation and progressing to the International Baccalaureate (IB) Diploma Programme, we cultivate identity formation, foster empathy, and embrace diversity to bring more peace to the world. We guide our students to live authentically, think expansively, and create bravely. Founded in 2001, we design vibrant learning environments across our three campuses: our Springs Campus (Early Childhood), our Creek Campus (Elementary), and our River Campus (Middle & High School).

Headwaters School is an International Baccalaureate (IB) World School offering the Diploma Programme. IB schools share a common philosophy — a commitment to high quality, challenging, international education that Headwaters School believes is important for our students. Read more about Headwaters and IB at this link.

Incorporated into our philosophy is a commitment to the further development of Peace Education. We desire to create a school community supportive of the family that models health, mutual respect, creativity, cooperation and diversity: a multi-dimensional approach toward the science of peace. We are clear that our children are our most precious resource in creating a peaceful and productive future. Our goal is to empower every child’s creative and joyous spirit and guide them toward a lasting love of learning and a true experience as an active member of a supportive community.

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