Monday, February 15, 2016

RELC showing positive gains

I am pleased with the early data that is coming back from our newly implemented preschool program. We started the Rugby Early Learning Center (a collaboration between RPS and Head Start) two years ago. We plan to follow each cohort as they progress through school. I have heard some of the recent reports that the benefits of preschool fade over time. Our first cohort's data is showing a positive trend. Below you will find data from our NWEA MAP Assessment.
We are currently taking applications for the 2016-2017 school year. Applications and more information can be found here.

Monday, February 8, 2016

Is it cool to care?

I am reading An Ethic of Excellence written by Ron Berger. This is an excellent book on building a strong school culture based on developing positive peer pressure within your school. There are a few questions that really made me think about our school culture.

Is it cool to show an interest in school, learning, and completing homework?

So what is the social norm in our school or your school? It is cool to care? What are we doing to ensure that they feel safe? Not just physically safe, but safe to take risks, safe to care about trying hard. 

How does a student behave in this school in order to fit in?

Where do students feel safe? 

What are the opportunities for the student to contribute, to create, and to be recognized for his or her talents or efforts? 

What motivates a student to care? 

There are many students who feel that school is just not a place that works for them. How do we build a school experience that doesn't alienate or cause resentment? 

Berger shares many thought provoking questions throughout his book. He is a believer in peer feedback and using multiple revisions to improve student work. The video linked below will give you some insight on his work. Take a minute to watch Austin's Butterfly below.