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Welcome to the Erwin Freshman Academy Success – Nothing Less!

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1 Welcome to the Erwin Freshman Academy Success – Nothing Less!

2 National Statistics More students fail the ninth grade than any other grade. Students who live below the national poverty level are twice as likely as others to be retained and six times more likely to drop out of school. Students who repeat at least one year are three times more likely to drop out of school than students who have not failed a grade. Among 14 - 15 year-olds who struggle with basic reading and math skills, 20% drop out of school within two years. A National Challenge

3 Our 2006-2007 Statistics Forty-nine percent (49%) of our students received free or reduced price lunches. Out of a class of just under 300 Freshman: 65 students (22%) failed two or more classes 89 students (30 %) missed 10 or more days of school Only 21.4% of our economically disadvantaged 10 th graders met their reading proficiency goals. Our Challenge

4 Our 2006-2007 Statistics Percentage of Students Making Level III or IV on the NC End of Course (EOC) Graduation Requirements: English I – 63% US History - 62% Civics & Economics – 59% Biology – 59% Algebra I – 62% Over one third of the students in each of these classes will have to retake the test and some will have to retake the class. Our Challenge

5 A committee of teachers, counselors, emeriti, and administrators was formed to design a solution. The committee conducted research and visited successful programs in NC and SC. The following key areas of need were identified: Change of learning community culture Common assessments in core subjects Greater teacher collaboration Greater teacher autonomy Shorter class periods Our Response District Initiative

6 Our solution is the establishment of the Erwin Freshman Academy. Based solidly on current research, the Academy is a comprehensive program that strives to provide every ninth grade student with a nurturing academic environment for the successful transition from middle school to high school. Our Solution Erwin Freshman Academy

7 The goals of the Erwin Freshman Academy are to: Ensure the academic success of all students. Eliminate the appeal of dropping out of school. Improve attendance rates of students. Reduce discipline problems. Maintain a safe and orderly learning environment that more intentionally addresses the social, emotional, and academic needs of ninth grade students. Our Goals Student Achievement

8 The Freshman Academy will be comprised of three teams (or families), each made up of four core content teachers and one Leadership teacher. Our Teams = Our Families

9 Common planning time for all Academy teachers. Solving challenges and celebrating successes as teams (and families). The flexibility within teams to adjust class time to accommodate and maximize student learning. Communicating with parents to establish a positive working relationship. Our Teams Teacher Collaboration Freshman Academy Teachers will collaborate on all aspects of curriculum design, instruction, and scheduling to support the achievement of all students. This includes:

10 The Freshman Academy faculty recognizes that parental support is critical to the success of every student. The faculty will incorporate strategies to increase parental awareness, communication, and participation. Strategies will include: Parent conferences during team planning time. Parent involvement in the planning of service activities. Parent involvement in cooperative discipline. Erwin Freshman Academy Homepage Creation of a PTA. Our Tools Parental Involvement

11 Core courses, Leadership, and Foundations will be taken by freshmen during five (5) 45 minute periods and one (1) 60 minute period before lunch. Electives will be offered to freshmen during one 90 minute period after lunch. Our Tools Class Schedule

12 Math45 Minutes Science45 Minutes English45 Minutes Social Studies45 Minutes Leadership45 Minutes Foundations60 Minutes Lunch30 Minutes Elective90 Minutes The Schedule An Example

13 The length of class periods will be determined by the nature of lessons. Flexible scheduling will: Empower teams to control instructional time. Reduce time for disciplinary problems to occur between classes. Lessen the amount of time students spend in the hallways. Allow for all core academic courses to be taken before lunch. Provide greater opportunities for interdisciplinary units and thematic instruction. Our Tools Flexible Scheduling

14 The Cooperative Discipline model will facilitate the process of teachers and administrators working in cooperation with students, colleagues, and parents to solve discipline problems and to make the classroom a safe and inviting place in which to learn. Cooperative Discipline is a process that will build strong partnerships with students and their parents and will maintain a positive discipline approach. Our Tools Cooperative Discipline

15 All freshmen will take a Leadership class. The objectives are to: Explore, develop, and reinforce appropriate social behaviors. Encourage supportive peer relationships and conflict resolution skills. Foster communication between home and school and among members of the school community. Facilitate students recognition of the impact of education on their futures. Promote awareness of diversity and tolerance. Our Tools Leadership

16 ….. The objectives will be to: Undertake community service both within and outside the school (such as with the Erwin Pride Initiative). Illustrate how government, businesses, community groups, and non- profits work together to create strong communities. Prepare students for life transitions by developing and using ten year plans. Promote character development, with emphasis placed on envisioning a positive future school/life outcome. Our Tools Leadership

17 Students will participate in Foundations for 60 minutes each day. The objectives are to: Ensure a solid foundation for success in all classes and particularly in exit standard classes. Provide tutoring and/or enrichment in subject(s) of need. Provide individualized instruction. Provide time and structure for Self Selected Reading (SSR), a component of the Balanced Literacy Model. Our Tools Foundations

18 Special Education services will be delivered through the inclusion model. Our Tools Exceptional Children

19 The Academy will be located on the hall currently housing Social Studies. All core classes, except Science, will be taken on the Freshman Academy hall. Freshmen will travel down one flight of stairs to take Science classes in the existing Science labs. Our Tools Location of Academy

20 One administrator (Dr. Jack Hill) and one guidance counselor (Mrs. Laura McCreary) will be dedicated to the Freshman Academy. Dr. Hill and Mrs. McCreary will be housed on the Freshman Academy hall. Our Tools Guidance & Administration

21 Welcome to the Erwin Freshman Academy We invite you to be a part of our success!

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