An innovator in a time when education is in need of a paradigm shift. In an ever changing world of economic and technical change, Clint is opening the door to students who are passionate, creative, and willing to participate in their own growth and learning. He brings dedication and a giant heart to serve each child in the unique way necessary for their own growth.
Founding Head of School
Clint is a passionate and dynamic educator who has served as a classroom teacher, coach, director of college counseling, and director of middle school for close to twenty years. Clint's educational philosophy is centered on relationships, rigor and risk-taking all within the confines of compassionate and student-centered environment. As a graduate of Columbia University’s esteemed Teachers College and a member of the Klingenstein Institute for Independent School Leadership, Clint was exposed to the very best progressive, independent school educators in the world.
Columbia University is the center for progressive education; surrounded by an inspiring cohort of visionary educators, Clint had the opportunity to immerse himself in the philosophies of John Dewey and other progressive thinkers as well as connect to a wide variety of educational disruptors from around the world.
Returning to California, Clint continued to develop the foundation of the Discovery’s model. It was here on the west coast that Clint found the wise mentorship of Dr. Stuart Grauer, founder of the Grauer School in Encinitas. The Discovery Prep School is the beneficiary of Dr. Gauer’s expertise as a 25-year head of school.
Through his ability to connect with the heart of each child, He unfolds within them confidence and an ability to believe in themselves to pursue their passions and interests creating for themselves a joyful, fulfilling life.
I was born and raised in Baltimore, Maryland. I graduated from the State University of New York, College of Environmental Science and Forestry in Syracuse with a Bachelor's of Science in Environmental and Forest Biology. I began my Masters of Science at the University of Maryland, College Park.
I enjoy spending time with children and enjoy their energy and curiosity and enthusiasm for their surroundings; it will be my goal to transform that energy and enthusiasm into stewardship. I feel privileged to have done so over a teaching career spanning 15 years.
Lead Science and Math Teacher
I have developed curricula and taught students the ecology, physics, chemistry, and mathematics which govern the biological world around them. By integrating chemistry with pre-algebra, and physics with algebra, students have been able to make clear connections between the fundamentals of math and the manner in which that math can be applied to the concrete world they interact with daily. Designing my own curricula coupled with the small class sizes of independent schools has allowed me to the flexibility to help students understand concepts deeply, and to alter lessons to best meet the demands and interests of each of my students; this in turn has allowed a very high level of learning and understanding of remarkably complex material in the context of their everyday lives. After my classes, students feel empowered to use a multitude of tools to help answer questions in and out of the classroom.
My other interests lie in things outdoors, especially in learning and discovering plants and nature. I am an avid horticulturalist, growing an expansive garden and over 4000 orchids in my home. I am heavily involved in the orchid judging and awarding system of the American Orchid Society. In addition, I maintain a personal herbarium of over 2000 specimens, and collect professionally for the U.S. National Arboretum in Washington, D.C.
Ph.D. Music Theory, Guitar, Vocals and Songwriting
Clint Haycraft began his musical journey at the age of 9 when he began playing the clarinet in the St. Margaret’s Episcopal School church services and pep band. By age 11, he had traded in his clarinet for the guitar, and began playing and singing in rock bands with his fellow students. By age 13, he was recording and performing his own songs, and continued to do so throughout high school. While studying Literature at the University of California, San Diego, Clint discovered composition for orchestral instruments, receiving the Special Award for Composition in 2003. He went on to earn masters degrees at California Institute of the Arts in 2007 and Zurich University of the Arts in 2010. Most recently (in 2015), he was awarded a Ph.D. in Music Composition from the State University of New York, Buffalo.
While living in Buffalo, NY, Clint Haycraft played in various bands with local musicians. Most notable of these was Citizen Dan, which covered exclusively Steely Dan material, including the album Aja in its entirety. Clint then joined the band High Horse, adding keyboards, lead and rhythm guitar, and vocals. High horse was awarded the Buffalo Nightlife Magazine Music Award for “Best Niagara Falls Band” in 2011, 2012, 2013 and 2014, and voted “Best Adult Contemporary Band” in the Western New York Music Awards in 2013.
Clint has privately taught guitar since 1999 and piano since 2010. In 2011, he began teaching music theory and music appreciation at the undergraduate level as a teaching assistant at the University at Buffalo and then in 2013 as an adjunct professor at Trocaire College. He has experimented with progressive teaching techniques with great success, and feels that the traditional way music is taught leaves much room for improvement. Clint‘s extensive knowledge of music theory, composition, and technology coupled with his passion for rock music allows him to offer students a holistic perspective on creating music, always with the intent of nurturing their creative spark.
Director of outreach and service
Laura is an inspirational teacher, A dream-chaser, and a world traveler. Her passion for experiential and her background in outdoor leadership training, makes her an amazing asset to our expeditionary learning team she is currently participating of the National Outdoor Leadership School's (NOLS) 2017 Semester to East Africa. This spring she is leading our upper school students on a meaningful service expedition to the island of la Gonave, Haiti.
Laura's degrees, in Global Cultures and Psychology & Social Behavior from University California, Irvine have influenced the philosophical and analytical nature of her teaching style. Laura's professional experience as a team-building facilitator inform her ability to create community while developing empowered leaders.
Anna Spanton, community Liason
Anna comes with an innate ability to win the hearts of children. Anna comes from a family of teachers and entrepreneurs. Seeing the gifts Discovery Prep had to offer her son, she jumped in with both feet to support and assist in the vision of its founder, Clint Davis.