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F RESHMAN I NNOVATIONS 2010 – 2011 R EPORT Conestoga Valley School District Board of Education June 13, 2011 “Conestoga Valley Freshman Innovations has.

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Presentation on theme: "F RESHMAN I NNOVATIONS 2010 – 2011 R EPORT Conestoga Valley School District Board of Education June 13, 2011 “Conestoga Valley Freshman Innovations has."— Presentation transcript:

1 F RESHMAN I NNOVATIONS 2010 – 2011 R EPORT Conestoga Valley School District Board of Education June 13, 2011 “Conestoga Valley Freshman Innovations has been an overwhelmingly positive experience for both the students and teachers involved in the program.” – Mel Upton (Team Leader)

2 I NNOVATION S TUDENT I NDICATORS The Conestoga Valley Freshman Innovations program was started to help students transition from the expectations of the middle school to the rigor of the high school. We have found that many students are not reaching their potential, and we aim to change that. The CVFI candidate is a student who...  would benefit from a smaller learning community  has the ability to complete the work, but usually does not  lacks interest in school  attends school but do not participate in class  enjoys project-based learning  needs more attention (grade monitoring, contact with parents, etc.) than a traditional classroom can support  is not necessarily a behavior problems  might “slip through the cracks” without extra mentoring “I like the program very much. She showed great improvement; she likes to read books, which I think is very impressive considering she hardly read books until now.” – Jacqueline Cruz (Parent)

3 P ROJECT – B ASED L EARNING We are an interdisciplinary team (English, math, science, social studies, reading) that focuses on project-based learning and current, relevant non-fiction topics. For example, we began this year with a study of the Gulf Oil Spill. We are ending the year with a duel unit on “going green” and being informed consumers. In English this year, we read The Seven Habits of Highly Effective Teens and Chew On This, as well as daily newspaper and magazine articles. We have also included technology in our program. We are the pilot group for the CVHS one-to-one laptop initiative. Each student received a laptop that that was theirs to use throughout the school year (at CVHS and home). This allowed students to have access to all of the same programming they used at school, as well as the capability to contact their peers and teachers when they were not within the school building. Students also had access to Flip Cameras to use when creating videos and projects for class. “CVFI is a great program. I am very impressed by everyone who is a part of the program. I can’t praise it enough!” – Timothy J. Lefever (Parent)

4 T EAM A PPROACH Having the flexibility in the all year A/B schedule, a weekly scheduled Learning Lab, common planning time and prep, CVFI students as a management team, and eight students for each teacher to mentor, has allowed us to make instructional decisions and immediate interventions based upon the needs of our students. The majority of the students have improved in attendance, academics, and behavior. The students have learned to take responsibility for their actions. They still do not always make the right choices, but they take responsibility for them. They also encourage their peers to make better choices. Many of the students have made CVHS a place where they are welcomed and involved. They now have a sense of spirit and pride in their school that was not previously seen. Over 1/2 of the students participated in clubs or sports this year, and in the end-of-year spirit assembly, CVFI students volunteered and participated in 6/8 Clash of the Classes events. 8 of the students created a Relay for Life team. “I think it is a great program. My son was more interested in learning.” – Kimberly A. Modesett (Parent)

5 T EAM A PPROACH This year we had speakers that were tailored to the students’ career interests (fashion designer, machinist), and took a field trip to the LCCTC to show them the options available for gold-collar careers. CVFI teachers have helped to celebrate the students’ success by holding Student of the Month breakfast celebrations, making positive phone calls home, and writing encouraging notes. We held an End of Year CVFI celebration with awards ranging from “You’ve Come a Long Way, Baby!” and “Most Growth” to “Most CVHS Spirit!” and “You’ve Come Out of Your Shell” to “English/Math/Science/Social Studies Awards” and “Student of the Year.” Our students have now seen success and they want that to continue. CVFI is a full-time job. The teachers meet several times throughout the week to discuss individual students, as well as the scheduled weekly meeting to discuss students and curriculum. Students are being tutored by the CVFI teachers before school, during lunch, and after school. The students often use Skype to contact the teachers once they leave the campus. A few CVFI teachers even held a Saturday morning bowling outing for the students. “The CVFI teachers never give up on us.” (Anonymous Student)

6 T EAM A PPROACH – L ESSONS L EARNED Unfortunately we have not been able to reach everyone. One student is currently in juvenile detention, one student will be moved to ALP next year, and one student was removed from CVFI due to truancy. We have learned that we need to have higher expectations for responsibility earlier in the year. This marking period has shown marked improvement in academic behaviors, and we would like to see that revelation come earlier in the year. We have also learned that we need to explicitly teach test taking skills. Since we have created a project-based program, we need to show them how to be successful on the myriad of tests they are given (Gates- McGinitie Reading tests, 4-Sights, CDTs, Keystones, and classroom content exams). “This program has given her the ability to see she has the potential to learn and go on to be whatever she wants.” – Karen Brazill (Parent)

7 4-S IGHT R EADING T EST R ESULTS “CVFI teachers understand us, look out for us, and recognize us as individuals with specific needs.” (Anonymous Student)

8 S TUDENT G RADE P ERFORMANCE “The CVFI teachers are fair and expect us to do our best.” (Anonymous Student)

9 N EXT S TEPS CVFI & CVSI interviews were conducted in May and June to enter students in the innovation program. While the goal of 48 students in each grade level team is proving to be difficult to attain, our goal is to maintain or exceed the current level of students in the innovation program at both grade levels. Summer curriculum hours are allotted for both Innovation teams to meet over the summer and plan project-based curricular ideas. Welcoming letters and invitations to opening events will be created over the summer in preparation for the school year. “The CVFI program has woken a passion to excel and move forward to be bigger and better things in Zach, which were not present before CVFI.” – Douglas Herbert(Parent) CVFI Team Tara Flick – Science & Team Leader Brandon Hershey – English Candy Boyer – Social Studies Bethany Hovan – Math CVFI Team Mel Upton – English & Team Leader Stacey Davis – Science Joel Buch – Social Studies Wendy Evans – Math Colette Barnett – Reading Specialist (both teams)


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