Today January 17th is Ben Franklin’s birthday. In researching Ben Franklin, I learned that he created a list of 13 virtues to live by. They are:
Temperance Justice Moderation
Cleanliness Tranquility Chastity Silence
Order Frugality Industry
Humility Sincerity and Resolution
I started to think about Trish McCarty, the founder of the StarShine Schools. Ben Franklin is one of her heroes and mentors. And, I realized that most of these virtues are characteristics in the school that she designed. Trish is a visionary like no one I have ever met. She seems to have the ability to see into the future, and yet she is grounded, has an uncanny ability to build a world-class team and is an all around nice person.
In 2002, after becoming frustrated with all that was happening or wasn’t happening in education, she opened StarShine. She was not an educator and had never really considered opening a school before. Actually, she was a banker and a business leader. However, in August 2002 she opened Starshine Academy. I guess you could say ‘the rest is history’.
The StarShine schools are celebrating their 10th year of operation. They have grown into outstanding, cutting-edge, high quality, technology based schools that have never forgotten the 13 virtues that Ben Franklin created. Unlike most schools, the StarShine Schools teach art, etiquette, music and fitness. They all have a garden and an ambassador program. And – they are able to integrate all of these subjects with the core subjects of reading, math, science and social studies. However, the only reason these schools are possible is that Trish never lost her vision. Not for one moment.
So Happy Birthday – Ben Franklin
Thank you, Trish McCarty for bringing us StarShine and being the visionary that you are.
If you’d like to read more stories about StarShine Academy, you’ll want to read:
The StarShine Effect (also the name of Trish’s upcoming book)