The Original Magnet School

Our Program

The J. Graham Brown School, the Original Magnet School,  is a district-wide magnet school for students who thrive in a  Self Directed Learning environment. Brown enrolls approximately 720 students in grades K through 12. Brown was recognized by the Kentucky Department of Education as a Distinguished school at the elementary, middle, and high school levels.

J. Graham Brown students engage in an aligned college preparatory liberal arts curriculum based on our four tenets of Self-Directed Learning: Independence, Empathy, Initiative, and Innovation. Our academic program cultivates critical, open-minded, and creative thinkers who are willing to take risks and are eager for new knowledge. Our learning environment develops compassionate, tolerant, and respectful human beings who value cultural diversity and contribute to the community. Grade level academic performance and age appropriate social skills are expected for success in this informal educational setting.

For detailed information about Self Directed Learning at Brown, click here:  Self Directed Learning Framework 

Here are some video examples of the work students at Brown do through Self Directed Learning.


Our Students

Brown School Students . . .

  • Are interested in pursuing the most rigorous academic program available to prepare them for liberal arts study in college. They are developing a strong work ethic.
  • Are willing to take risks and stretch their comfort levels when pursuing academic study. They want to learn to challenge themselves, work hard, and self-regulate their own study.
  • Prefer a smaller learning community where relationships are developed over time with all community members. They want to be known by their teachers, administrators, and fellow students.
  • Want to work in an environment where students support one another in academics, activities, and athletics. They support each other to be better in all things and challenge each other to grow and excel, thus maximizing everyone's potential.
  • Prefer a school culture where differences are recognized and unique talents of individuals are appreciated.
  • Are comfortable around people who are different from themselves. They are secure in their own place in the world and are not uncomfortable with differences found in others.
  • Know they are in a college-ready environment and are supportive of this focus in the educational program.
  • May be average ability students with the desire to achieve at high levels, or gifted students wanting to be challenged. They are ready to learn how to be better students. They are willing to learn how to take on rigor as students and thrive in this environment.
  • Are developing habits of self-direction. They practice self-regulation in completing tasks and do not have to be monitored closely for their study. They can complete homework assignments and long-term projects with little supervision and reminders.  Their parents understand and value learning beyond the school day. Parents have an intrinsic value of homework to strengthen student skills.
  • Value relationships with adults and are comfortable with teachers that challenge them to be the best they can be.
  • Like to be a participant in activities and athletics, and not merely an observer.
  • Are comfortable knowing everyone and being known by everyone in the school community.

Self-Directed Learning/Project-Based Learning Example