Our sixth grade flexible learning communities help to facilitate cross-disciplinary project-based learning experiences, such as our upcoming Identity unit. Unified under the theme of identity, as well as cross-cutting concepts and skills, students will tackle the questions, "Who Am I," and "How Can I Make An Impact On My Community?" Engaging in a project-based learning experience like this asks students to delve deep into subject-specific content, while at the same time allowing for voice and choice in how they exhibit their learning to an authentic audience.
Brendan Riley, Middle School Science Teacher
The kindergarten professional learning community (PLC) has done strong work to identify power standards, to create common formative assessment as an effective way to understand how students learn. A secure in math in one kindergarten class translates to the same mastery level in another kindergarten class. The standards, the content, and context of learning and the competency, the mathematical practices, are commonly understood by all members of the kindergarten PLC for transparency, consistency, and clarity.
Rachel Gray, Kindergarten Teacher
Working with a professional learning community (PLC) gives me an opportunity to think clearly about how we are measuring student growth across classrooms, and which are the most accurate ways to measure that growth. Measuring growth helps us know what instructional practices are working better than others—which in turn pushes my thinking regarding what I am doing in the classroom to foster that growth. So ultimately PLCs help improve my practice—which means I am learning too!
Vicky Colorado, High School Social Studies Teacher
Academics are important, but we also care deeply about our students' passions and interests and helping them learn to be great individuals.
Ryan Bruce, Middle School Dean of Student Life
In supporting our students’ learning, we know how important it is for us to have a clear and aligned set of strategies. Schools are complex organizations with lots of moving pieces, and our common strategies help ensure we are rowing in the same direction and able to make more progress.
We want to make sure you are aware of and understand our key strategies, which are outlined in the strategic plan we laid out several years ago. One of my key tasks as your new superintendent is to see how well we are doing implementing that plan.
That plan is outlined visually in the graphic below:
The four key pillars of the strategic plan are based on extensive research on best practices in schools in the US and globally. Those pillars are:
Professional Learning Communities (PLCs)
Strengthening our teacher teams through Professional Learning Communities in order to foster deeper collaboration, shared learning and innovation among teachers
Being clear on the standards and expectations we have for our students so we can carefully design our learning programs and daily lessons to meet those standards
High Impact Instructional Practices
Helping teachers strengthen the instructional practices they use in classrooms to foster personalized learning and help students grow
Ensuring we are focusing on the care of every child in a whole child approach, with care for their social and emotional development
During my listening tour, I am interested in hearing your thoughts on our strategic plan -- are we focusing on the right things? How are we doing implementing our key priorities? If you have not had a chance to sign up, please look over the schedule and find a time that works with your schedule where you can come join in the discussion.
I look forward to connecting with you in the weeks to come and hearing from you about how we can continue to offer a life-changing experience for each student who joins our schoolwide learning community.