Preparación universitaria para todos
PLATFORM FOR EXCELLENT SCHOOLS:
The skills that many students do not achieve mastery of when they are in middle school are the same skills that they fail to display when they arrive at the doorsteps of college. Even though they have met the requirements for high school graduation, they remain profoundly limited in their abilities to do college-level academic work, in many ways because of what they did not learn in middle school.
WHAT DO WE WANT?
1. College preparatory curriculum and culture: All middle and high schools students must have high-quality courses, including 8th grade Algebra, in order to meet the needs of high school, college and careers. Our middle schools must embrace and promote college going expectations and culture for all students, regardless of income or race.
2. Highly effective principals and teachers: Successful schools have principals and teachers who are highly effective, have high expectations and believe in the intellectual capacity of students of color. They are accountable for the academic growth and success of all students as they prepare them for college and careers. All principals and teachers must be given support and professional development in a timely and ongoing way, to ensure student successes in the classroom.
3. Healthy student environment and safe schools: Students and parents must have safe and caring schools that supports their social and emotional well being. An environment that celebrates and honors all peoples' real histories, cultures and contributions. Discipline must no longer be used to push low-performing students of color out of school and into the streets.
HOW DO WE GET THERE?
1. Quality Extended Learning Time: High Achieving middle and high schools utilize a longer school day and year. This additional time allows students who are behind (70%) to reach grade level and above. This quality time allows for student development and a rich/supportive student environment - by including the arts, sports, internships, tutoring and ELA supports.
2. Common core standards: The Common Core will bring students' education up to the 21st century. These standards will ensure that all youth are well prepared for college and careers. Implementation of these new standards will be difficult for teachers, students and principals at first, but we must stay the course.
3. Timely data and prompt academic interventions: Using timely data to monitor student progress and teacher effectiveness is a critical component of highly effective schools. Data enables schools to quickly identify and address needed interventions and support for both students and teachers.
4. Restorative Justice: Every school should have Restorative Justice (RJ) and an RJ Coordinator for quality implementation. RJ replaces harsh zero tolerance practices, racial disparities and the overuse of police for minor misbehavior with a fair and caring approach to resolving conflicts at school. With consistent RJ- attendance increases; tardiness goes down, academic performance improves, graduation rates grow and suspensions shrink. Students mature and grow from this approach!
5. Healthy and safe schools: Safe and healthy schools include a welcoming school culture for parents and students. Staff respect for one another's backgrounds, languages, customs and contributions is critical. In addition, fresh healthy foods, organized physical education, and supports for the social and emotional well-being of all students - are critical to having healthy and safe schools for all students. Transportation for all students ensures safety and access to all schools and activities.