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We are compounding, not reducing, the impact of socio-educational status. Any school can be a good school, one in which effective teaching and authentic learning are nurtured and constantly developed to help students achieve. The challenge for parents is to discover the real depth of student engagement and learning. In the process they have to reserve judgment about such things as raw test scores, student ranks, neat and full workbooks, docile students in neat rows and hours of homework. Principals and teachers in good schools will talk about effective learning and what constitutes good teaching — in particular how professional teacher knowledge, practice and engagement works in their schools.

Good teachers know their students and their subject matter, are themselves learners and work alongside colleagues to improve practice across the school. Dr David Zyngier was a teacher and principal, and now is a senior lecturer in curriculum and pedagogy at Monash University, Australia. His research focuses on teacher pedagogies that engage all students but, in particular, how can these improve outcomes for students from communities of disadvantage.

He is Co-director with Dr Paul Carr of the Global Doing Democracy Research Project, an international project examining perspectives and perceptions of democracy in education to develop a robust and critical democratic education with over 60 researchers in 20 countries.

Nicky Morgan – Speech on Educational Excellence – UKPOL

The ruMAD Program which he developed with teachers in was awarded the Garth Boomer Prize in for its excellence in collaborative teaching and learning. This project researches new approaches and innovative solutions to student disengagement using grass roots partnerships rather than top down government interventions. About Us Advertise. Which of the following may be the most complex or difficult task to achieve? Sending rockets into the space; b. Making an artificial heart; c. Making the fastest super computer; or, d.

It takes time The creation of good schools is a long-term process. A good school is an aggregation of good classrooms in which effective teaching and learning are taking place — quality of classroom learning: Intellectual quality that produces deep understanding of concepts, skills and ideas. A supportive classroom environment characterised by positive relationships where learning is expected and supported. Connectedness and significance : learning needs to be meaningful to students and as much as possible anchored to their needs and passions.

Engaging with student diversity : the most powerful lever for disadvantaged students. Choice Choice makes people anxious and too much choice makes people unhappy. Choosing the right school When choosing a school parents operate on two levels. Any school can be a good school Any school can be a good school, one in which effective teaching and authentic learning are nurtured and constantly developed to help students achieve. Good schools have strong and effective school leaders whose primary focus is on establishing a culture of learning throughout the school.

The school is organised, and resources are allocated, in pursuit of this overarching purpose. The principal, with the support of the school leadership team, drives the development of school policies and sets and articulates goals for school improvement. A high priority is placed on professional learning, leadership and collaboration among all school staff. The principal must have the respect of students, parents, and staff with a vision, high expectations, and the ability to help others succeed.

This person must be able understand people, and motivate them, creating a positive attitude throughout the building. Successful schools have a sense of trust built on the back of an honest and caring leader. Many factors go into helping a child become a productive adult, and there is no way one assessment a year can measure success or failure. The fact that so many people believe that one test on a couple of mornings can determine school quality, teacher quality, and student learning shows an alarming lack of understanding in what makes a good school.

This factory model of assessment would have been great 50 years ago, when schools were modelled after and trained students for work in factories. However, that day has long passed. Leaders in education need to look at what it takes for students to succeed and help create schools to educate the students of today and tomorrow. Students identify as Ruskin High School students, but they travel to the tech academy to collaborate with students and STEM employers from throughout the region to complete their projects.

We pay special attention to identifying the leaders within schools or businesses to be our primary contacts. We build relationships within the human resources departments that see our organization as key to building a pipeline to meet future workforce needs. And in some cases, we cultivate relationships directly with an engineer or individual within a company who is willing to advocate for our organization from within. Often parents become aware of FIRST Robotics through their child's school and become interested in advancing the program to other parts of the community, or volunteering on a larger scale.

Individuals, who are involved in professional engineering societies or civic organizations outside of their companies, often help us open doors that we didn't even know where there. Once we determine that there is interest from within a school or organization, it is up to us to make sure we pull in the leadership. Sometimes, we find ourselves making introductions within organizations—a teacher may contact us about starting something small at her school and not realize that the superintendent is working on a larger-scale plan. Or a parent leader may contact us about a grant for his own child's team, but is not aware that his employer has already made a sizeable donation to benefit all teams.

We also do a lot of match making. Sometimes a school leader will contact us and ask us about a specific program. We get that leader and her key decision makers, including building administrators, into a similar program at another school. In all of our communications efforts we are keenly aware that companies would like us to respect the process within their organizations.

Frequently this means that we limit our direct communication with individual employees, instead opting to send announcements, volunteer opportunities, or requests through one key contact within the company. We take the same approach with schools, limiting communication with individual teachers, instead opting to communicate with district or building administrators to share information. This may slow things down, but it creates buy in and builds trust over time.

Strengthening STEM skills within a community takes commitment and collaboration from many parties. But it's a win for everyone: students and their families, schools, and industry. Follow Laura Loyacono on Twitter: stemkc. It's been an ongoing series of events and experiences that have stayed with me and helped mold me into the student and person I am today.

That person is a second-year graduate student at the University of Kansas Medical Center, pursuing a doctorate degree in biochemistry. I liked chemistry. I wasn't sure I'd fit in. It was Jackie's physics teacher, Dean Scherman, who encouraged her to get involved. Jackie soon found herself fully immersed as the project manager for the Paola Panther Robotics—Team When I look back, it's not so much about the technical skills I learned, it's more about the leadership and business skills I gained.

You spend a lot of time together, especially during the six-week build period. We had dinner together most every night—different parents would supply our meals. It was like a family. You grow to depend on each other and count on each member to bring what they can to the table to support the team. After completing her undergraduate degree in Chemistry at Baker University, Jackie headed to KU Med to study proteins and the role they play in human health and disease.

I see them like robots, little tiny molecular machines. In my research and work, I find myself using the same problem-solving strategies I first learned with the robotics team. Scherman," Jackie added. It's so encouraging to have adults who believe in your talents and abilities, but it was on us. They inspired us to put in the time, to do the work They expect us to excel.

Jackie's coach and mentor, Dean Scherman, died in the fall of from pancreatic cancer. Scherman," Jackie said. I saw adults working in all kinds of STEM-related careers who were volunteering their time to create this nurturing environment for kids. And they were all so supportive of me as an undergrad and offered guidance as I made decisions regarding graduate school. While no easy task, we have the framework to do this. Implementing these standards simply has to be done. If we don't, we are shortchanging our students—and our future. However, we need to approach Common Core implementation with our eyes wide open.

This transition is going to be a sea of change in terms of how and what teachers teach, and how students are assessed. Implementing Common Core successfully will require enormous professional development for teachers; solid communication with educators, state government, parents, and students; and a realistic approach to funding. It is important to understand how we arrived at these standards.

What makes a good school? What makes a good teacher?

Education for K students in the United States has been a patchwork of different levels and standards since the creation of public schools in the late s. The founding fathers supported the idea of a "common school" for each community governed by a local school board, but they did not think that it was the federal government's responsibility to run these schools.

In fact, the word "education" is not mentioned in the United States Constitution. Funding and implementing public schools, including curriculum, standards, and testing, was left to the states. As a result, student performance outcomes across the country are inconsistent. For example, a student living in one state might be deemed competent or proficient on one state test and deemed in need of improvement in another state. The Common Core standards were developed to provide a clear framework of what K students across the country should know at each grade level in ELA and math.

Launched in , the final version of Common Core Standards was completed in June As of this writing November , they were adopted by forty-five states, the District of Columbia, four territories, and the Department of Defense Education Activity. Alaska, Texas, Nebraska, and Virginia have not adopted the standards. Minnesota has adopted the standards in ELA but not in math. Despite the appearance of overwhelming support, an underlying tension has surfaced because some states do not want the federal government determining how they run their local schools or what their students need to know.

Some states are threatening to pull out of the Common Core while others are having second thoughts. Although I believe the Common Core will prevail, there are several key challenges that need to be addressed for the standards to have a successful impact:. Cost: Implementing Common Core standards will not be free. States will need to buy new books and other materials that align with the Common Core standards. A Algebra I text book, for example, is not going to stress the problem-solving skills that students will need to know.

And, because testing will be on computers, school districts may have to increase their technology budgets, making individual computers available in every testing session. Communication: Legislators, administrators, parents, and students will have to understand that this is a new game. Teaching will look and feel different and testing practices will change and cost more. And as a teacher, I know that if you don't tell students and parents that a change is coming, there will be a lot of push back. Assessment: The interplay between content, the student, and the teacher is like a triangle—if one point changes, then the other points change as well.

With Common Core, all three points are changing. This will require different assessments—and with the exception of a few pilot tests, we simply aren't ready. It's going to be extremely challenging to build assessments that measure in a reliable and valid way what a child can do at this higher level. That is one reason that the National Education Association and the American Federal of Teachers recommend slowing down implementation of Common Core to give us ample time to get the system of assessment right.

Test Scores: We must be realistic about test scores; they will not be the same initially.

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In New York, where Common Core was adopted early, test scores dropped, and parents were not happy. I believe the new tests will go through various iterations and they will get better—but states will have to decide to ride out the period when their students do not look as good academically as they once did. Or lower the standards, which we might let states do initially, but we should press them to increase the level of the bar every year. Impact on Urban Schools: Implementing Common Core will be particularly challenging for urban schools. It's not that these children can't learn, it's that we often have had low standards for them.

The first thing I recommend doing is to focus on ages three through third grade. We know that if a child is not reading at grade level by the time she's in third grade, she will not likely graduate from college or even high school. I would train teachers how to teach effectively using Common Core standards and teach parents how to help their children at home by reading to them. Next I would make every effort to get high-quality teachers into classrooms in urban areas, in rural areas, and in suburban areas. We need teachers who see education for these children as the civil rights issue of our time.

We must stop the practices that leave these children behind. Change is hard. Especially if you are implementing it in a massively large school system consisting of 52 million kids, 16, districts, and , schools. But we must. Because while students make up 20 percent of our population, they are percent of our future. Urban public education is in crisis. Evidence of poor academic performance, the struggle to recruit and retain great teachers, and the unintended consequences of low expectations are all challenges that should and must be overcome. There is no single solution that will address the urban education crisis.

Districts, charter school operators, philanthropic organizations, universities, and others have poured significant resources into finding ways to bolster student achievement at a time when a great education is more critical than ever to a life of opportunity and independence. Four foundations with long-standing commitments to urban education began working together in as the Kansas City Education Funders Collaborative to more intentionally explore the effectiveness of their respective activities and find ways to work together to improve student academic and life outcomes.

Leaders of the organizations comprising the Kansas City Education Funders Collaborative met to discuss the origins of the group, their beliefs, and hopes for sustainable impacts on students in Kansas City's urban schools. How did your organizations decide it was better to move forward together than alone? Tracy McFerrin Foster, Hall Family Foundation: The Hall Family Foundation has a history of working collaboratively on various community initiatives, so when the Kauffman Foundation convened a meeting with several education funders in late to discuss the landscape of education in Kansas City, the Foundation was eager to participate.

We agreed to be "sector-neutral. We agreed to partner with schools to implement research-based best practices in teaching and learning. Tracy: We wanted to develop a strategy with each member having an equal say, so, in early , we hired a consultant Education First Consulting and explored four potential strategies. They included 1 supporting teacher effectiveness, 2 supporting turnaround schools, 3 promoting public engagement in education, and 4 supporting "green shoot schools," or those with the potential to serve as proof points of best practices in urban education.

We decided we wanted to work with people who were committed to creating some proof points in Kansas City, and we felt it could be done. Denise St. Omer, Greater Kansas City Community Foundation: Separate and apart from their working relationship, our Collaborative members set expectations internally and laid a ground work for trust and honest, open conversation from the outset. When we meet, we have a safe space where we can disagree and challenge one another's thinking. That approach allowed the Collaborative to continue and to grow.

Tracy: Our first grant was to a program called Donors Choose. While our foundations probably would not support the program individually, we felt that collectively our funding made a statement in support of public school teachers. With our goal being to expand the number of quality seats in Kansas City, we felt it was important to support the teachers in those classrooms. We were interested in helping those teachers who were motivated enough to go through the Donors Choose application process to try to get the tools and resources they needed for their students.

Since that time, the Collaborative's contribution has funded projects for teachers at schools. Carey: With Donors Choose going well, we decided to target professional development and invested in the 5Essentials program from the University of Chicago. In , twenty-nine area schools participated in the 5Essentials evaluation process and are working with the Collaborative to identify areas for professional development that would equip teachers to improve outcomes for students. Additionally, the Collaborative offered to engage more Kansas City schools in the 5Essentials process in Tracy: Number one for all of us is: what is a good school?

What does it look like? How do you define it? It was great to bring 5Essentials to Kansas City. It's research-based with a survey tool that can help schools diagnose whether they have the five essential components for school success—effective leaders, collaborative teachers, involved families, supportive environment, and ambitious instruction.

It has given us a framework to make grant program decisions, and it helps schools help themselves. Denise: The 5Essentials program really focuses on school culture, and I think the results really challenged the perceptions of many schools that participated. For us as funders, it challenged our ideas of where and how we can be helpful to schools. We're coming together and getting feedback from the schools on where philanthropy can help them the most. Tracy: The feedback we're getting is, if they could address just one Essential, the majority would choose ambitious instruction.

Denise: We know as funders that we are not going to be in a position to make grants to every school. I think one of the unintended benefits of our convening 5Essentials sessions is that the participating schools are starting to look for ways to come together, share resources and, then, approach us as funders in a way that will allow us to leverage our dollars and have a greater impact. Tracy: We expressed to the schools when we were starting with the 5Essentials that there are many things about school culture that you don't need money in order to address.

Aaron: I've been proud of the schools and the conversations we've heard in these sessions. The schools have been very open about their survey results. A lot of the schools really owned the areas for improvement because these are indicators for higher performance, not measurements tied to any one standard or test. As a Collaborative, it gave us an apples-to-apples comparison and also an enhancement over the raw data we typically get. Ideally, the schools will also hold each other accountable for their ideas.

Denise: The schools identified their biggest needs to be collaborative teachers and ambitious instruction. So, the discussion turned to opportunities for professional development PD. One idea raised was that the funders could bring in a national program or leader in PD, and the schools could coordinate their school calendars so their PD days would be the same.

Aaron: Our investment has been modest on the front end. Like Donors Choose, we're looking for ways to provide targeted support with the potential for high impact. Tracy: Funder leverage can be more than money. During the strategic planning process with Education First Consulting, the Collaborative learned that it could strive to be a critical voice on education issues, giving the seal of approval or advocating for a specific action.

It could help to conceptualize an idea through analysis, fact-finding, and focused attention. It could also try to be a catalyst, to convene, initiate, and provide a non-partisan point of view. I think that's the space the Collaborative has occupied to this point — we have not provided big grant dollars. As we move forward, I think we'll be even more focused on how to support schools leaders and teachers to really get to the nuts and bolts of improving academic achievement for their students.

How do you balance the interests and initiatives of the Collaborative with those of your individual foundations? Personally, working with the Collaborative has been an outstanding professional development opportunity for me, providing invaluable insight into best practices that could be implemented locally for the benefit of Kansas City students. Denise: An interesting offshoot of our group is that it has led to the launch of a similar collaborative in early childhood education. I think the way the early childhood collaborative works and functions will be very different, but, at its core, it's the same idea.

Are there areas where we can come together? Can we fund efforts together that we might not be able to fund individually? It's changing the landscape of how funders interact. Aaron: A huge part of this is simply demonstrating the value of the communication. I feel people show up to our meetings because they want to know what's going on, but they also want to share what they're doing and hear what others think.

They answer questions about projects or initiatives, and then ask questions of others. Denise: We're sending a clear message that we, as funders, work well together, meet regularly, and share information. Hopefully, that's made it easier for organizations to approach us collectively for funding, understanding that there truly is shared communication. Tracy: The first thing that comes to mind is the need to establish a trusting relationship within the collaboration.

You establish the rules of the game. Anything that's said in the meeting stays in the meeting. You're free to give your unvarnished opinion about things, and everyone's views are respected. Another lesson is that successful collaborations take time. They take work. Aaron: We decided that no matter how much money your foundation put in, each organization gets one vote—and majority rules. We also rotate where we meet so each organization has ownership.

Establishing those operating principles was an important early step. Tracy: We try to document what we do and the feedback we receive. Individuals change roles, but we want the Collaborative to have continuity and sustainability of focus. Aaron: I would add to the list that it takes time. Get started, build slowly, find a couple of early initiatives that are at appropriate scale and for which you can set target outcomes.

For us, Donors Choose was one level of complexity; then, 5Essentials was a much different level of complexity and potential. And our next initiative may build on that. Denise: When we first started, we purposely tried to stay under the radar. We didn't want people to think, "Oh, here's another pool of funding. How can we apply? Aaron: The last lesson learned is that if you start off saying, "We're about student outcomes, and this is how we believe this can happen," it can be sector neutral, and we want to work with people who want to work on this in a really meaningful way.

This is how we set up the Collaborative—focusing on student outcomes—and I think that was a great part of defining the principles and values to which we've been committed. Tracy: For me, the challenges are not unique to Kansas City, and my answer has changed from when I first started this work in I really think that the biggest challenge is the complexity of the issue.

When you think about public education in most of our major cities, you've got to think about the public policy environment, poverty, culture, attracting and keeping effective teachers and leaders, governance, and the list goes on and on. There are so many varied elements that go into delivering a high quality education, that it is just so complex. The garden unifies the community; families often come on weekends to help in the garden. Exemplary teaching practices ensure growth and yearly progress for all students.

Diversity amongst the staff and students creates an optimal environment for cultural, ethnic, and geographical richness, all of which enhance classroom learning. Strategic use of data enriches classroom instruction and ensures instruction is aligned to the school mission.

Focusing on 21st Century teaching and learning, staff and students regularly analyze various data to foster the development of each child's social, emotional, artistic, physical and academic excellence. The dedicated staff, high-performing students, community support and innovative thinking create a safe and strong learning environment.

This atmosphere enables military-connected families to focus on their military mission, with the confidence that their children are in the best and most capable hands, at M. Perry Elementary School. Lakeland, Florida. In , Lincoln Avenue Academy assessment score rose from to , out of points. Achieving an almost perfect score, and the highest score in the state, Lincoln Avenue displays incredible accomplishments. LAA accepts students from across the county and has a special education program for students with special needs. A discipline management plan eliminates disruptions to the learning environment so that students will get the maximum amount of benefit out of every class session.

Students having difficulty in one or more subjects are assisted by a Response Intervention Team. Parents are expected to support their children and make sure they adhere to school policies and rules, including a uniform code. LAA serves grades K through 5.

Multicultural programs are presented throughout the year to recognize and show appreciation for the diverse population of the school. Ankeny, Iowa. A relatively new school, Northeast Elementary was built in and serves grades K through 5. While certainly giving due attention to academics, Northeast takes special interest in focusing on nurturing the whole child through the arts and reflective exercises to strengthen social skills. Art is one of the classes offered to NEE students and each month the art teacher selects students from each grade as Students of the Month.

A slideshow showcasing the art of each of the students given this honor is posted on the home page of the monthly Building Newsletter. Band is also offered and fifth grade band students give a fall concert. School counselors offer lessons for each grade to build social and emotional skills in the students.

go to link Each grade is given a unit and an essential question with learning goals for the students. Northeast is one of the highest performing schools in the state and in was awarded a National Blue Ribbon for being an exemplary high-performing school. Bluewater, New Mexico.

Cleveland Metropolitan School District

Bluewater Elementary has less than a hundred students, but serves grades K through 6 with great success. For the school year, Bluewater had a B rating by the New Mexico Department of Education, but raised that to an A rating in , one of the highest in the state. In November, students and parents gather non-perishable food to donate to those in need, a community project held every year at Bluewater.

Bluewater participates in a nationwide character-building initiative called the Character Counts Program. Students learn what it means to be a good person, to set a good example and to be a good person of character. Other qualities taught in the character-building program are respect, caring, responsibility, trustworthiness, fairness and citizenship.

Students are encouraged to build lifelong study habits and to ask for help when there is some difficulty concerning the work or homework. Parents are given tips on how to help their children to be successful. Anchorage, Alaska. Established by parents in as an open concept pilot program, Chugach began serving grades one through six. The grades were grouped into three major groups: primary grades one and two , middle grades three and four and upper grades five and six.

The parents, with the teachers, set up multi-level learning groups so that the learning climate would allow students to learn within their own level and teachers could present material and projects in a flexible and innovative environment. Because the classes are populated with two grades there are abundant opportunities for peer tutoring from the older grade to the younger grade. Having classes stay together for two years allows a connection to develop between teachers, students, and parents, which helps develop a lasting learning culture. The curriculum is organized by themes that center on science, history, geography, English, and philosophy so that concepts can be taught through these multi-discipline themes.

Since the inception, Chugach Optional has experienced success on the school level, but also on the state assessments. Students participate in gymnastics, yoga, stitching projects, clay sculpting, needle crafts, and projects in the environment to help students learn by exploration. Only students are accepted each year and they are chosen by lottery. Chugach students consistently rank higher than most schools in writing, math, science, and reading. Henderson, Nevada.

A unique feature of the John C. Vanderburg Elementary School of the Clark Country School District is an on-campus rainforest biosphere which features live animals. Construction of the biosphere was funded completely through donations. It is a unique science lab, but must be maintained with fundraisers to help the care costs of the animals. Another unique feature of this school is the Art to Remember program, which teams the art of the students with a company who can place their artwork on keepsakes that parents can enjoy throughout their children's lives.

The students also have a student council and the PTA helps to provide extra-curricular activities. The school serves Pre-kindergarten through Fifth grade and students have additional courses in art, music, physical education, and science. Nevada adopted the Common Core standards in The state of Nevada grades schools based upon growth in achievement and reductions in achievement gaps. John C. Vanderburg ES received a grade of 90, the highest grade achieved by any elementary school in Nevada, and achieved a five star ranking which is the highest ranking a school can receive.

The school's motto is Be Kind, Work Hard. There are 49 teachers for Kindergarten through fifth grade. Sandpoint, Idaho. Third and fourth graders at Northside Elementary had perfect scores on state assessment tests in reading, language usage, and math. The average of all scores for third through fifth graders in reading, language usage, math, and fifth grade science was Each teacher is given space on the web page for their own pages with some innovative and entertaining webpages, by some, including the second grade teacher who has class reviews and pictures by his dogs.

Textbooks are available online, as well as online help in specific subjects. As NES faces a new year at school, they, along with all other Idaho schools, face new challenges as changes in the math state assessment begin this year. Although the first administration in June will not be used to determine state rankings, it does signal a new and more rigorous math programs for NSE's community support helps make it special.

Since September almost volunteer hours have been clocked. Our kindergarten students have a centers worth of iPads to learn on with teacher direction. Northside Elementary also has a large, community supported organic garden that has been featured on websites, in books and on the radio. South Barrington, Illinois. Students at Barbara B. Rose ES held a competition to choose the mascot for their school.

The fifth grader class wrote a persuasive speech on why the mascot should be the stingray, and they won. The school helps students to become stakeholders in the smooth functioning of the school by having them create and star in videos explaining the school's behavioral expectations and why they should not be bullies or allow someone else to be a bully. The school is relatively new school, but is one of the top performing schools in the state. The school is truly a labor of love as students, parents, teachers, other schools, and community businesses all contributed to the fund-raising and beautification of the new campus.

Hale'iwa, Hawaii. The school is set in a rural residential area that boasts some of the best surfing and fishing on the island. Parents and members of the military work on school and community volunteer projects together. A school newsletter, Hale'iwa Highlights, features photographs of community and military volunteers in their various projects.

Howard, South Dakota. As part of that program, parents, with their children, can participate in the Tiger Pride Paws Program and volunteer with several different community projects in which the school participates. Students in grades K through 6 attend Howard Elementary and through F. Fun After School Program , students can have structure and supervision after school with fun activities to share with their peers. Businesses and individuals of the community have generously donated both time and money to develop and grow this program, making the school a community concern.

Any student in grades K through 6 may participate. HES utilizes an online resource to encourage students to write and improve their writing. It is called Write to Learn and helps students who are learning English as a second language, and all students develop reading comprehension and literacy. The administration keeps parents and the community up-to-date through a monthly online newsletter called Tiger Tales.

Important announcements are made, procedures are explained, resources for planning for a college education are provided, and tips are furnished to help parents help their children. Greensboro, Georgia. Students are chosen through a lottery, not merit. It is a tuition-free, public charter school for the residents of Greene County. LOA opened in and currently serves grades PK — 9th with expansion through grade 12 by The elementary and middle school is a 60, square feet facility featuring learning neighborhoods with plentiful open spaces.

The school features a media center and rooms for special programs such as the gifted and talented classes, music, language, art, and science labs. Each of the twenty-six classrooms features smart boards with which students can interact using their own computers and have the ability to connect to all school services from home.

Students in K through 5 participate in an elementary basketball league. All 4th grade students learn to play piano in the school's piano lab and 5th grade students play in the school band. Beaverton, Oregon. Students at Bethany Elementary School benefit from a strong partnership between parent volunteers and school staff. There are over approved volunteers throughout the school and approximately 30—35 volunteers assisting on a daily basis. This program is aimed at increasing the influence of positive male role models.

Watch DOGS members patrol the campus, greet students and families, and assist in the classroom. In geography, students study the countries by continents in a program designed for BES called Geo Quest. There is a trophy for each grade each month and the classroom that earns the trophy the most times receives a pizza party at the end of the year.

Students also earn points individually. Students that earn at least six points will receive a prize at the end of the year. The GEO Quest provides another opportunity for parents and other community members to volunteer because graders are needed for each level. BES is a Level 5 school with the highest report card rating.

Parents are kept abreast of events and announcements through a weekly newsletter, social media, and a school-wide texting service. Rogers, Arkansas. With students, Eastside Elementary serves students in grades K through 5, with forty percent or more from disadvantaged backgrounds.

The principles and FISO

Students are given many opportunities for enrichment. Second graders have a grade-wide project that begins in early spring when they begin working in the school greenhouse making preparations for the Mother's Day plant sale. Volunteers plant seedlings so the plants will be ready to sell when Mother's Day arrives. Fifth grade students are an important element in the school. Students who participate in the activities reserved for fifth graders learn valuable lessons in responsibility.

The school provides tips to parents on how to improve their child's memory and to help them to instruct their children on building good and effective observation skills. There are also tips for parents who want to help their children work with fractions. In the school's media center, students can access learning games, including those that are interactive with the classroom smart boards.

Moore, Oklahoma. On a point scale, Wayland Bonds Elementary scored a for the to school year. All students in grades three and five scored in 90s in reading and math. Fourth graders scored a high A in math and a high B in reading. Fifth graders made As in science and writing.

The school serves over students in grades Pre-K through 6. The school opened in and features multiple activities for students including art, archery, student council, music, a walking club, a safety patrol, an after-school program, scouts, and basketball for sixth graders. In the media center the students have access to printed books and activities as well as computer resources and activities. Teachers and media center specialists collaborate to create learning units to bring together classroom content with information skills. Multiple businesses in the community partner with WBES, donating goods, services, and money to assist the school.

The school was named after a former school superintendent who taught in Kansas before joining the army. He then moved to Moore where he taught before entering administration. Caledonia, Mississippi. As of the fall of , the principal had been with the school thirty-eight years. The school is an A rated school in the Mississippi system and has been for nine years.

There are over a thousand students enrolled at CES in grades K through 5. The Institute for Academic Excellence awarded certification to Caledonia as the first school in the country to receive Master School Certification. Austin, Texas. Rated as an exemplary school by the Texas Education Agency, in ratings, Canyon Creek has been designated as a six star school for earning distinction status in writing, math, reading, and science.

Center for Urban Education Leadership: Preparing Great School Leaders

Serving grades Kindergarten through fifth grade, all students participate in a class science project. Individual students may create and present their own personal science projects if they wish. In addition to a physical library, the district provides an online library for students. The library offers a reading incentive program and a birthday book program.

Students have music, art, and physical wellness education in addition to the academic courses required. Brazil, Indiana. With close to students, the students in this K through 5 school take part in the Shurley Method Language Program where students are given a concentrated program in English. Additionally, they take part in the Jackson Township Elementary Character Education Program and students study thirty-three characteristics which are emphasized in daily lessons as well as through visual aids available throughout the school.

Jackson Township Elementary is a member of Artsonia, a website claiming to be the largest kids' art museum where students can post their work, maintain personalized art pages, and participate in online art contests. It also participates in the National Gallery of Art for kids, an interactive website that is both educational and fun. The art teacher also co-authors a website for music and the culinary arts. JTES's pro-reading efforts have led to ingenious ways of helping young students choose books that are appropriate for their reading levels.

By starting early in elementary school, students will be better poised to become better readers in middle school. Students are also taught library rules, a good practice to start young, as well as instruction in the Dewey Decimal System. Ann Arbor, Michigan. One unique feature King Elementary is a summer space camp where students create robots that can operate anywhere, including under the water or in the air! Students build and launch rockets and get the opportunity to experience space simulators. Before and after school, an enrichment program called King's Kids is held for students whose parents work.

Students are not restricted to interaction with their peers, but can participate in activities with students whom they choose. Students are presented with activities and projects designed specifically for education, but which also provide a great deal of pleasure and recreation. King's Kids is run by a non-profit organization and is supported by the school district through the Recreation and Education Department. KES serves grades K through 5 and students receive instruction in Spanish, music, art, and all academic subjects.

Every day starts with a morning meeting in which students can actively participate and teachers can teach the character traits in the Lifelong Guideline and Life Skills curriculum. When students demonstrate any of the characteristics taught by this curriculum, any adult in the district can reward those students with an appreciation token. Appreciation tokens are then placed in to a jar in the student's classroom. When the class collects a certain amount of tokens, the class has a celebration. Students participate in the Science Olympiad and the Math Olympiad.

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Students also assist with the planting and care of the school's garden. Third through fifth graders can compete in strategic math, logic, language arts, and social studies thinking games, participating in competitions on the regional, state, and national levels. Severna Park, Maryland.