Our Innovative Model
We use a number of innovative strategies used by the highest performing urban schools in the country to close the achievement gap and give our scholars a rich, well-rounded education.
We infuse our school culture with a college theme so that scholars see college as a realistic part of their future. Classrooms are named after colleges, students participate in an annual college visit every year, starting in kindergarten, and a teacher, family member or guest presents on their alma mater at our weekly Community Meeting.
Two teachers in every classroom
Our team-teaching model allows us to teach small groups with a low teacher-student ratio and ensures that we can meet the needs of diverse learners in the general education classroom. This also allows for constant professional collaboration, which is good for students and teachers.
Teacher support and collaborative planning
We believe that great teaching changes lives, so we invest heavily in our teachers. This includes observation and coaching, professional development, and collaborative planning time for all teachers, every week.
Knowing our kids’ needs allows us to help them grow. We constantly analyze student academic work and data to ensure that our instruction is getting results and to determine how we can better meet the needs of individual students.
Longer school day and year
School runs from 8 AM to 4 PM every day and we have more days in the school year. This provides the instructional time needed to close existing achievement gaps without having to sacrifice classes like art, music, and PE.
Growth mindset and positive character
We teach our scholars about having a “growth mindset”, because this helps them see that their ability can be developed through dedication and hard work. We also teach “soft” skills like shaking hands and sitting up straight, which are critical for success in high school, college, and the professional world.
Arts education and play for all
To inspire and support the natural creativity and curiosity inherent in all children, all students take music, art, and physical education classes. Our curriculum and school experience is infused with performances, field trips, and shows, so students have opportunities to develop their love of the arts. And kids have recess every single day - a critical opportunity for social growth (and fun!).