High school reform plan unveiled: Wilmington, Del. News-Journal

I love stories like this and including stories like this on this blog because it gives us all an opportunity to see what other school districts are doing (and what they’re doing right).

Look at this story from the Wilmington, Delaware News-Journal.

Delaware leaders highlighted a brand new high school reform campaign, “Reaching Higher for Student Success,” during a daylong conference Friday in Dover, according to the News-Journal. The plan includes graduation standards better aligned with college entrance requirements, mandated one-on-one student advising, expanded college-level classes, more opportunities for real-world experiences, and improved technical education.

The article says that funding will come from state money, federal dollars and grants, including a two-year, $2 million National Governors Association grant from the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation.

An excerpt:

Robert Barr, keynote speaker at Friday’s conference and emeritus senior analyst with the Boise State University Center for School Improvement, remembers touring a school where students were sleeping in the back of a room. When he asked what class it was, the principal said it was math for children “who couldn’t learn algebra.”

“I’ll tell you the reason these kids aren’t learning algebra,” Barr said. “It’s because we aren’t teaching them algebra.”

State Board of Education members passed new Delaware graduation requirements in August. The changes make the state’s standards among the most rigorous in the country, upping needed credits from 22 to 24. Four others mandate 24, with some requiring as few as 13. Delaware’s class of 2011 must take senior-year math, at least algebra II, and three lab science classes. The class of 2013 must earn two world language credits.

State leaders will promote more rigorous classes through the expansion of advanced placement programs. The state last year won an $871,595 federal grant to increase how many low-income students participate in the college-level classes and tests. The grant funds teacher training, tutoring and online learning for AP classes schools don’t offer.

E.C. 🙂

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