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Miami-Dade County Public Schools Smaller Learning Communities Grant Program 2008 Cohort PowerPoint Presentation
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Miami-Dade County Public Schools Smaller Learning Communities Grant Program 2008 Cohort

Miami-Dade County Public Schools Smaller Learning Communities Grant Program 2008 Cohort

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Miami-Dade County Public Schools Smaller Learning Communities Grant Program 2008 Cohort

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Presentation Transcript

  1. Miami-Dade County Public Schools Smaller Learning Communities Grant Program 2008 Cohort Nicki Brisson, Director School Choice and Parental Options

  2. “Research tells us that Smaller Learning Communities (SLCs) can be remarkable opportunities for improving the intellectual and social life of children, youth, educators, and parents where all students can achieve at high levels and where staff can engage in exciting opportunities to teach and learn, and where exciting momentum can be parlayed into systematic school reform.”

  3. The USDOE Smaller Learning Communities Grant Program……. • Awards discretionary grants to local educational agencies (LEAs) to support the implementation of SLCs and activities to improve student academic achievement • Was established in response to growing national concerns about students too often lost and alienated in large, impersonal high schools • Also was designed to address concerns about school safety and low levels of achievement and graduation

  4. SLC Overview…… • Federal dollars used to organize large high schools into smaller structures • Freshman academies • Multi-grade academies organized around career interests or other themes • Houses in which small groups of students remain together throughout high school • Utilizes personalization strategies such as student advisories, family advocate systems, mentoring programs, etc

  5. SLC Goals & Objectives…… • To increase the focus on the learner and the collaborative nature of teacher and student work • To increase student academic achievement • To increase the graduation rate • To improve the school culture • To close the achievement gap among subgroups

  6. SLC Strategies to achieve goals…. • Create an environment for success • Equip ALL students with rigorous coursework and skills for post-secondary success • Provide accelerated learning strategies and interventions for students below grade level • Provide opportunities for students to engage in real-world, relevant learning projects • Provide high-quality, relevant professional development • Increase participation in advanced academics

  7. SLC Impact to Miami-Dade County Public Schools • 2004 SLC Cohort (closed June 2008) • 6 comprehensive high schools • $3,000,000 grant award • 2005 SLC Cohort • 10 additional comprehensive high schools • $11,000,000 grant award • 2006 SLC Cohort • 10 additional comprehensive high schools • $9,000,000 grant award • 2008 SLC Cohort • 8 additional comprehensive high schools • $10,416,611 TOTAL $33,416,611

  8. Use of federal grant dollars….. • Full-time release SLC Coordinator • Hourly funds for after-school planning, mentoring, etc. • Stipend for professional summer professional development attendance • Academy specific supplies • Travel to professional conferences • Field trips • Dues and fees

  9. SLC Program Evaluation……. • Required by the grant for each year of funding • 2007/08 are available and will be sent to each school • University of Miami Education Evaluation Team (UMEET) • Dr. Ann Bessell, Director of Research • Miriam Pacheco-Plaza, Senior Research Associate

  10. USDOE Annual Performance Reporting……. • Required for each year of the grant • Data will determine program effectiveness and continued funding for 2012 and 2013 • Will require minimal data collection from school-site personnel

  11. MDCPS Smaller Learning Communities opportunities…… • Additional funding to support and strengthen SLC academies/activities • Improved school culture to meet the needs of today’s students • Increased opportunity for improved academic achievement of students • School recognition through designation as a national SLC Design Studio

  12. SLC Design Studio Defined… • An SLC grant recipient school that has been identified as having exemplary SLC practices and research-based key elements in place for ALL students • An SLC grant school that has demonstrated student achievement

  13. SLC Design Studio Goals…. • Provide visiting school teams with research-based SLC strategies and structures that have proven successful at the host school • Assist visiting school teams with concrete plans to develop and implement their own SLC plan • Provide reflection and introspection from the host school on their own SLC practice to learn, strengthen, and enhance their own continuous improvement

  14. Points for discussion when considering design studio status…. • What is our purpose in sharing what is happening in our school? • What current successful instructional components and SLC principles should be the focus of our Design Studio? • Who is willing to commit the time to do the work required and be responsible to carry our tasks in a timely manner? • Who will be the lead in the Design Studio process? • What is the role of the district and how can the school garner their support?

  15. Examples of Target SLC Instructional Strategies • Academic Teaming – interdisciplinary teams of teachers who share the same student • Adult advocate systems – a practice that ensures that at least one adult knows each student well

  16. Target instructional strategies cont… • Differentiated Instruction – provides academic instruction for students of all academic skill levels • Freshman transition activities – a process to ensure a successful transition into both high school and an academy or house • Multi-year groups – teachers remain with a group of students over a period of tow or more years, fostering trust and relationships

  17. Examples of Target SLC Organizational Structures • Academies – subgroups within schools organized around particular themes • Alternative scheduling – allows teachers to develop lessons that are more compatible with learning objectives • House plans – divides students in a large school into groups of several hundred, either across grade levels or by grade level

  18. Target organizational Structures cont…… • Magnet Programs – involves the use of a specialty core focus to attract students • School-Within-a-School – a small autonomous program housed within a larger school building • Teacher Advisory Systems – advisory activities that include assisting students develop personal learning plans, engage in career education, and develop post-secondary plans

  19. District Support • Nicki Brisson, Director School Choice and Parental Options 305-995-1530 Office 786-412-3184 Blackberry nbrisson@dadeschools.net • Ana Amador, Budget Analyst School Choice and Parental Options 305-995-7406 aamodor@dadeschools.net

  20. QUESTIONS??????? “Although the task of change is monumental, the work is good, the work is timely, and the work serves the needs of today’s children.”