Innovations in the News
Stephens County Dropout Prevention Project
The Stephens County (GA) Dropout Prevention project strives to reduce the dropout rate of students in the county and provides viable alternatives to holding students back a grade. The project uses research-based dropout prevention strategies to achieve its goals. This project is supported with a grant administered by the Office of Innovation and Improvement.
As part of its approach to dropout prevention, the project provides behavioral, social, and academic services to students who have been expelled from school or have broken the law. The program is built on seven supports: 1) community collaboration, 2) summer camps, 3) a "Recovery Academy," 4) mentoring services, 5) an alternative school, 6) a middle grade academy, and 7) a school-to-work program. Last year's summer camps included the "Summer Think Camp" for middle school students and "Horizons 2002" for high school students. These 6-week camps offer hands-on learning experiences and extracurricular activities that differ from those offered during the regular school year.
The "Recovery Academy" provides case management, counseling, and tutoring services to expelled and adjudicated youth and their families. These services are provided instead of putting students in jail or expelling them from school for an extended period of time. The goal is to have students return to school and continue until they graduate.
The project is being evaluated by the National Dropout Prevention Center at Clemson University, collects data and provides technical assistance. (Feb. 2005)
Note: The featured program is innovative but does not yet have evidence of general effectiveness from a rigorous evaluation. The success of the program may not be replicable, depending on unique conditions in differing locations.
The "Our Documents Teacher Sourcebook" is a free resource created by National History Day, Inc. in cooperation with the National Archives that transports educators back in time to 100 critical moments in our nation's history. The sourcebook provides educators with lesson plans and activities that will help them incorporate 100 milestone documents from American history into classroom curriculum. "Our Documents Teacher Sourcebook" is part of a presidential initiative entitled "Our Documents: A National Initiative on American History, Civics and Service." A key resource for working documents in the classroom, the teacher sourcebook includes an annotated timeline, key themes, guidelines to primary sources, and detailed lesson plans. Educators can request free copies by emailing email@example.com or calling National History Day at 301-314-9739. (Feb. 10)
The Teacher Quality Index website, developed by a professor of education at California State University, Sacramento, rates the qualifications of teachers at each of California's 8,700 public schools. (Feb. 4)
"Our programs are here to help, whether through an effective Arts Education program that integrates arts into teaching math, or a technology tool that will make it easier for children in a rural district to access quality education, or through alternative teacher certification," according to Deputy Under Secretary Rees in School Reform News. The article also gives the names of key people in the U.S. Department of Education who will be advising her and directing programs. (Feb. 1)
The Council for American Private Education has a new guide called "Private Schools and the No Child Left Behind Act." ($20) (Feb. 1)
Innovations in the News
Charlotte-Mecklenberg Schools (NC) want to ensure that good teachers are distributed equitably throughout all the schools in the district. They want to cut the teacher turnover rate from 19.3 percent to 10 percent. See what the district is doing to meet these goals [More-Charlotte Observer] (Jan. 23)
When a school is in a level-3 improvement category in Indianapolis, parents can choose to send their children to higher performing schools. How does this work? [More-Indianapolis Star] (Feb. 2)
Advanced Placement classes help students form Oxford High School in Mississippi make the transition to college. [More-Daily Mississippian] (Jan. 31)
Last Modified: 04/26/2011